Working Safely at Heights
1a Aerials, The Wirral
A recent survey conducted by the Health & Safety executive
concluded that over a twelve-month period, approximately 49% of
injuries and fatalities in the workplace were fall related.
From 214 accidents investigated:
- Falls from Roof: 76
- Falls from Ladder: 43
- Falls from Scaffold: 44
- Ground level falls: 17
- Height Steel work: 9
- Other: 25
From this it is obvious that our industry works within the high
of these risks. Over the last twelve months the CAI has been hard
at work finding ways to reduce the number of fall related accidents
within our particular industry.
Following the publication of the new ‘Green Book’ supplementing
the CAI Health & Safety book, we now have in place, a training
course which arms installers with the knowledge of how to use the
safety equipment detailed.
Working Safely at Heights’ is specifically tailored to our
industry and is run at the West Midlands Training Centre in Birmingham
by CSS Worksafe. It tackles procedures from the most basic of tasks,
such as how to safely erect and secure a ladder, to moving around
from ladder to ladder and on roofs safely.
The most obvious concerns about the recommendations in the green
book and the implementation of these procedures for installers,
have been ‘How long will doing all this take? ‘Moreover,
can I afford to spend this time?’ so I went along to find
out more about the course.
Our teacher for the day was George May from CSS who has many years
experience in safe working at heights.
- The course first touches on the official legislation for Health
& Safety. Importantly, you should be aware that as an employer
it is your responsibility to yourself and employees that relevant
safety training and equipment be supplied and used.
- Following the legislation section, there is a brief talk on
simple safety equipment. PPE (Personal Protection Equipment)
- Then safe use of ladders and how fall arrest equipment for the
antenna installer should best be used.
- A demonstration follows on PPE inspection and use, with a demonstration
of how such fall arrest equipment works and how it should be maintained.
- The practical demonstration takes place on site on a single
storey building with a pitched roof.
we have the weather it was quite pleasant to be out in the fresh
air, but as autumn is upon us, CSS are commissioning the construction
of an ‘indoor’ training building at the site.First impressions
show that CSS have looked in much detail at an industry to which
they were not familiar and worked hard to develop a safe working
procedure for installers. Initially some of the equipment looked
a little complicated and the implementation of the equipment and
it’s use looked a little time consuming, it is fair to say
that most of this was time was taken up by George being thorough
in his instruction. As the course moved on to the practical demonstration,
it soon became clear that with practice, even one installer working
by himself could implement these procedures with little more than
five or ten minutes added to a service call depending on the size
and shape of the building.
the end of the course students felt they had taken away valuable
knowledge, which will help keep themselves and employees working
safely at heights.
We have all had customers to scared to watch what we are doing
for fear of watching an accident. With these procedures in place,
the CAI membership now have another string to our professional bow
and can assure consumers that we can do this job safer than non
CSS do offer CAI rates for PPE from their catalogue. Alternatively,
you can purchase the necessary equipment from reputable suppliers
Inspector Kevin Dawson sat the first course along with CAI Director
Karl Gasson of Astra. So those of you due inspection that are interested
in finding out more can ask Kevin directly or alternatively contact
the CAI office for training dates and rates.
Reproduced with kind permission from the Confederation
of Aerial Industries.
here for course information