25 Aug 2009

Ladder Inspections - What to look for

Every time you use a ladder you should carry out a pre-use check beforehand to make sure that it is safe for use. A pre use inspection should be undertaken by the user;
  • at the beginning of the working day; and
  • after something has changed - eg. the ladder was dropped or moved from a dirty area to a clean area (check the condition of the ladder's feet).
The benefit of conducting daily pre-use checks is that they provide an opportunity to pick up any immediate/serious defects before they cause an accident.

1. Leaning ladders

  • Stiles need to be in good condition
    Do not use the ladder if they are bent or split - the ladder could collapse.
bent leaning ladder
  • Check the stiles
    Do not use the ladder if they are bent or damaged - the ladder could buckle or collapse.
bent stiles on a ladder
  • Check the feet
    Do not use the ladder if they are missing or worn or damaged - the ladder could slip.
damaged feet on a ladder

  • Check the rungs
    Do not use the ladder if they are bent, missing or loose - the ladder could become unstable.
missing rungs on a ladder

2. Step ladders pre-use checks - things to look for

  • Check the locking bars
    Do not use the ladder if they are bent or the fixings are worn or damaged - the ladder could collapse.
loose locking bars on a stepladder

  • Check the feet
    Do not use the ladder if they are missing or worn or damaged - the ladder could slip.
damaged feet on a stepladder

  • Check the stepladder platform
    Do not use the ladder if it is split or buckled - the ladder could become unstable or collapse.
split in the platform on a stepladder

  • Check the steps or treads
    Do not use the ladder if they are contaminated - they could be slippery.
  • Check the steps
    Do not use the ladder if the fixings are loose - they could collapse.
loose fixings on a stepladder

  • Check the stiles
    Do not use the ladder if they are bent or damaged - the ladder could buckle or collapse.
bent stiles on a stepladder 
Source:  http://www.hse.gov.uk/falls/preusechecks.htm  (Reproduced under the terms of the Click-Use Licence).
Good to Go Safety provides a step by step checklist, complete with guidelines, to help ensure that your ladders are always 'good to go' before being used. A copy of all pre-use inspections is kept for future reference as part of a maintenance programme or as evidence of correct procedures, in the event of an accident. The ladder insection system is simple to use and implement within the workplace and is designed with the worker in mind - it won't take long for employees to get used to carrying out regular inspections; raising their awareness of health and safety policies; empowering them as they become valued and trusted to carry out important safety procedures; improving morale as the company is seen to be taking care of employees. For more detailed information on ladder safety and our ladder inspection systems and ladder safety kits visit the Good to Go Safety website.
20 Aug 2009

Forklift Safety Week

Britain's second National Fork Lift Safety Week takes place between 21st to 27th September this month. This national awareness campaign was introduced due to unacceptably high accident tolls. British workers are killed or hospitalised by fork lift trucks at a rate of over one per day, with more people killed in the month of September than at any other time of the year.

Pedestrians & Operators: Look out for each other!

This year's campaign tagline is aimed as much at colleagues and visitors, as the fork lift truck operators themselves. As many as two thirds of those seriously injured in forklift accidents are pedestrians; warehouse workers, members of the public and delivery drivers.

"Look out for each other" advises:

Operators to take extra care when pedestrians are around. Pedestrians may not know your warehouse rules, and might assume they have right of way.

Pedestrians to be aware of fork lift trucks and not to assume the driver can see them. Pedestrains need educating that forklifts often have blind spots and they should make allowance for potential mistakes.

Product Focus: Forklift Inspections
Since the launch of Good to Go Safety amongst our most popular products have been our Forklift Intro Kits and Forklift Annual Kits.

Industry guidelines recommend that a forklift truck should undergo a daily inspection to ensure that it is 'good to go'. Our research tells us that often a checklist is kept on the truck, often under the seat, and all too often simply forgotten about until such time that an audit is due. The feedback we have received suggests that the checklists are then simply backdated and falsified to avoid recrimination.

Good to Go Safety has been designed to maximise visibility of inspections. Our patented status tag clearly informs drivers 'DO NOT USE' if an inspection has not been carried out.

Our checkbooks provide 25 individual checklists, each of which includes a carbon copy of a completed inspection for future reference. Each book also provides the operative with a list of guidelines as to what they should be looking for.

Once completed, the checklist is placed inside the status tag to clearly indicate that the forklift is 'GOOD TO GO' and clearly shows the date of validity. The system is particularly beneficial for multiple users of the same truck, providing a clear visual confirmation that the truck has been inspected (rather than assuming it has been).

The Forklift Intro Kit provides all you need for 50 inspections (a weekly inspection for an entire year). The Forklift Annual Kit provides 275 inspections (a daily inspection for an entire year, based on a 5-day working week).
12 Aug 2009

Ladder Exchange - Replace faulty ladders

HSE Shattered Lives:

Ladder Exchange Initiative 2009 is coming soon

This year the Ladder Exchange Initiative will run from 1 September until 31 December 2009. It is easy to get involved. If you need to use a ladder, make sure it's in good working order, safe to use and the right ladder for the job. Inspection is such a crucial component of using ladders safely. Check your ladder before you use it; if it's broken, damaged or bent then 'Ladder Exchange' is an opportunity to part exchange your old ladder for a new one and get a discount of up to 50%.

What is the Ladder Exchange Initiative?

The Ladder Exchange Initiative is simple; if you have a ladder which is bent, broken or battered you can part exchange it for a new one at any one of our partner outlets who are offering discounts on the sales of all ladders at very competitive rates. It also provides dutyholders with an opportunity to review pre-use checks, training, supervision and other arrangements for ladder work.

What the HSE has achieved with their partners so far

Over the last two years HSE has worked collaboratively with Local Authorities, and several partner outlets, to remove over 5,500 ‘dodgy’ ladders from the workplace.. As a result of these successes, Ladder Exchange will now be an annual initiative.

Why are the HSE making this an annual initiative?

During 2007/8p 58 workers died and 3623 suffered a serious injury as a result of a fall from height. Ladders remain the most common agent involved accounting for approximately a third of all reported falls from height incidents.

Source: http://www.hse.gov.uk/falls/ladderexchange.htm?ebul=slips/aug09&cr=2 (Reproduced under the terms of the Click-Use Licence.)

This initiative from the HSE is an amazing opportunity for companies to replace their faulty ladders. It is also an ideal opportunity to consider the implementation of our ladder inspection systems. Once you have your shiny new ladder, the implementation of our innovative ladder inspection system will help ensure that your ladder remains in good condition. Visit the HSE website for more details on the scheme, or visit www.goodtogosafety.co.uk/ladder.php for more information about our ladder inspection solutions.

4 Aug 2009

Construction - Latest Accident Statistics

Fatal accident statistics

New figures from HSE reveal that the number of people killed at work in Britain has fallen to a record low. Provisional data shows that 53 construction workers were killed between 1 April 2008 and 31 March 2009.

Judith Hackitt, HSE Chair commented "these statistics are encouraging but there is no magic wand in health and safety. When those running organisations show personal leadership, and when workers are involved in tackling the risks that they face, safety can be improved and lives saved - that is how we can turn this encouraging sign into real sustained improvement."

'One death is too many' - Inquiry into the underlying causes of construction fatal accidents

An Inquiry into the underlying causes of construction fatal accidents was commissioned by the Secretary of State for Work & Pensions in December 2008. The Inquiry arose from concern over the number of construction deaths, to examine what more could be done to tackle the underlying causes.

The Inquiry was chaired by Rita Donaghy CBE FRSA. Her report and recommendations were published on 8 July 2009 and is available for download.

Safe systems of work

9 July 2009 - Construction company fined £150,000 after worker dies and another is seriously injured at Wembley stadium

HSE warned employers to ensure proper procedures are in place to keep staff safe when working on construction sites.

The warning follows the prosecution of PC Harrington Contractors Ltd after an employee died and another was seriously injured during construction works carried out at Wembley Stadium. PC Harrington Contractors Ltd, based in Grays Inn Road, London, pleaded guilty to a breach of Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. The court fined the company £150,000 and ordered them to pay full costs of £25,203.

The investigation followed an incident on 15 January 2004, when a platform became dislodged during a lifting operation, causing it to fall and hit two workers. This resulted in the death of one worker, Patrick O' Sullivan and seriously injured another. Both men were working on the building of the concrete superstructure of the stadium at the time.

Source: http://www.hse.gov.uk/construction/ebulletins/july09.htm?ebul=hsegen/03-aug-2009&cr=9 (Reproduced under the terms of the Click-Use Licence.)

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