Work at heights safety tips | Height safety PCBU, OHS, WHS (2023)
When you work at height it can be very dangerous if safety precautions aren’t taken seriously. A little lapse in concentration when working at height can cause serious injury and even death. People’s idea of what working at heights means is widely misunderstood and underestimated.
Rember safety is "everyone's responsibility" under the current PCBU's, OHS / WHS legislations and as per the SafeWork Australia referenced standards.
PCBU’s explained by SafeWork Australia
As a PCBU you are required to eliminate risks to health and safety so far as is reasonably practicable. If elimination is not reasonably practicable, you must minimise those risks so far as is reasonably practicable.
In deciding how to control risks, you must consult other duty holders, your workers and their health and safety representatives who will be directly affected by this decision.
SafeWork Australia Fact Sheet Principles that apply to WHS duties:
1. WHS duties are not transferable
A duty holder cannot transfer their duties to another person. Any contractual term that seeks to transfer or reduce the duty holder’s responsibility will be invalid.
Duty holders who have a duty in relation to the same matter can enter into reasonable arrangements or agreements with each other to make sure everyone’s duties are met, while at the same time avoiding unnecessary duplication of effort.
2. A person can have more than one duty
A person can have more than one duty at the same time. For example a person can be both a worker and an officer or a worker and a PCBU (if working as an individual contractor).
3. More than one person can concurrently have the same duty
Multiple duty holders who have the same duty must each meet their duty to the standard required.
Where more than one person has a duty in relation to the same matter, the duty holders retain responsibility for their duty in relation to the matter and must discharge the duty to the extent to which the person has capacity to influence or control the matter. These duty holders must also consult coordinate and cooperate activities with each other.
4. Management of risks
A duty holder must manage risks to health and safety by eliminating risks so far as is reasonably practicable and if not reasonably practicable, to minimise those risks so far as is reasonably practicable.
Reasonably practicable means doing all that you reasonably can to keep people safe at work.
ANKAme Pty Ltd safety tips
A fall from a height could range from a ladder, a roof, loading dock, opening on the floor etc. Nearly 11% of deaths occur due to falling from a height. Most of the accidents take place at less than 1 metre above the ground. Here are six top safety tips that your organization and roof workers need to know:
1. Avoid Working Alone:
Working in pairs helps to avoid accidents. Having someone on hand to help you straight away can make all the difference.
2. Train your Staff to Use Safety Equipment Correctly:
Ladders can be very dangerous so make sure your staff are well trained. Teach them:
- The three point rule on safe ladder handling i.e. two legs, one hand or two hands, one leg.
- To put the ladder on a solid level surface.
- Tie both the bottom and top of the ladder, to prevent ladder it from slipping.
- If you’re working in grass or mud, make sure that the anti-slip teeth of the ladder sinks into the ground.
- If you’re working on a deck or patio, use a board at the bottom of the ladder in order to avoid slipping or sliding on the ground.
- Always raise the ladder one metre above the edge of the roof contact location on the building, for safer access.
3. Avoid Working on Wet or Icy Roofs
Icy or wet roofs can be slippery. While working on wet or icy roofs, make sure you wear safety shoes as they are usually designed with good traction. And it’s never a good idea to walk on the roof backwards although, so many roof workers tend to do this while measuring, which is a danger in itself
4. Understand the Fall Protection System:
No matter what type of fall protection equipment you are wearing, they are of no use if they don’t reach the ground before your fall. It may sound obvious but there are so many accidents that occur due to not having an understanding of the fall protection system. These problems usually arise if employees haven’t taken proper fall protection training or have been used without the assistance of a qualified person.
5. Personal Safety equipment should be inspected prior to use
Only a competent person can inspect the personal safety equipment. Personal safety equipment like roof anchor points, ladder access brackets, harnesses and lanyards may work BUT they are of no use if any part of your safety equipment fails while working. Thus, they should be inspected prior to use.
6. Choose an acceptable Roof Anchor Point
No matter how correctly your harness and lanyard is set up, if the anchor point is not capable of holding the load as per AS/NZS 1891.4:2009 15kN – approximately 1.5 Tons of load) then they are of no use. Simply ask your manufacture for the roof anchor test report.
Here is the ANKAme roof anchor test report: CLICK HERE
Do you need a registered, insured structural engineer to provide you with a design layout for your permanent fix roof anchor points, static lines and ladder access bracket installation intent ?
We have you covered, we have partnered with ROSS Engineers, whom can provide user friendly design intent roof safety plan layouts as per AS/NZS requirements for a competent person to then be able to install the roof ANKAme roof safety systems as per signed engineers cad drawings and manufactures user manuals. Prices start from $500.00 + GST.
ANKAme are fall protection safety experts! We are passionate about our work.
Check out or purchase ANKAme’s wide range of safety equipment.