Construction worker getting ready to work from a height.

‘At Height’ does not have a clear definition. We have previously described working at height as working in any situation that could leave you open to falling from one level to another. Crucially, with every additional meter of height, the risk of injury or even fatality increases dramatically.

The Health and Safety Executive says you are considered to be working at height if:

  1. You are working above the ground
  2. You could fall through a fragile surface or opening
  3. You could fall off an edge

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As we have discussed many times on this blog, we must all follow the UK’s Work at Height Regulations to the letter. There have been many cases over the years of employers ending up in court after they failed to adequately assess a situation or to provide their team with sufficient training that would protect them when working at height – and you don’t want this to be you.

The following three hazards are just some that you may come up against when organising work at height:

1. Falls From Height

Be it high winds and unsecured equipment, inadequate edge protection, slippery surfaces or a distracted employee, a fall from height is certain to cause injury and may even be deadly, particularly if work is being carried out with anything other than a stepladder. Be sure to invest in proper safety training for your team and make sure that your equipment is from a reliable manufacturer and has been checked for defects before work begins.

2. Scaffolding Collapse

Often leading to a fall from height, scaffolding collapse is very dangerous and often fatal because PPE can only do so much when a person falls from a significant height. Regularly inspect scaffolding and be mindful of its upper load limit. Additionally, even if scaffolding has already been erected, do not start any job relating to it during bad weather conditions. Take your time and ensure that the surfaces are robust enough for work to begin.

3. Lack Of Training

Untrained workers can cause an infinite number of problems, more than we would care to guess, which is why following mandatory training guidelines and then investing in regular refresher courses can do so much good. At Ability International we offer both in-person and online safety training courses, covering everything from fall arrest and safety harnesses to how to properly inspect scaffolding. Click here to take a look in more detail.

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In summary, there are a lot of potential risks to working at height and many things that can go wrong. But fortunately, the actual solution to all of this is very simple – investing in the proper training and equipment. You can take a look at our online training solutions here, and our safety equipment is showcased on our products page here. Fill out our enquiry form to speak to a member of our team and let us know what you need to get your team the safest options available for working at height.

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