January 2015 - Catch Me...I'm Falling!!!

The number one cause of fatalities in construction is falls.

Nearly 300 construction workers are killed each year due to fall related incidents. All falls are preventable, and by implementing the appropriate protection plans and standards at the job site, employers can ensure their employees will be protected from work related fall hazards.

CFR 29 1926, Subpart M, addresses the main issues of fall protection in the construction field. There are three main sections, and five non-mandatory appendices to offer additional guidance for employers. 

1926.501, addresses the employer’s duty to have fall protection for their employees when working on or around unprotected sides and edges. Leading edges, hoisting areas, ramps, excavations, holes, and roofing work that could allow an employee to fall 6 feet or more to the next lower level are also addressed in this section. 

Fall protection systems, criteria and practices are discussed in 1926.502. This section gives specific information about the implementation of the appropriate guard rail, safety net, or personal fall arrest systems applicable to the particular type of protection needed for specific job tasks.

Most importantly, the training requirements for employees who might be exposed to fall hazards are addressed in 1926.503. It is a relatively short read, but is to the point and very helpful for employers.

The appendices (A-E) are additional guidance related to different options available to employers and help answer questions that may have arisen from reading the aforementioned standards.

Once an employer reads and understands the standards, there are additional resources available to assist them with fall protection questions.  SCATS consultation services, equipment vendors and manufacturers are available to assist in eliminating or minimizing fall hazards to employees.

SCATS offers classes on fall protection on a regular basis. You can register for classes on our website at www.4safenv.state.nv.us.

For more information or for a schedule of training courses offered at no charge by SCATS, call toll free 1.877.4SAFENV [1-(877)-472-3368], or visit, www.4safenv.state.nv.us.