Safety And Scaffolding

When scaffolding is used in a workplace, OSHA requires that certain safety regulations  be followed to assure that workers are protected at all times.  It is important that qualified people are hired to assure that safety measures are put into place and that all workers follow established safety procedures.  At the very least, a safety officer oversees the entire operation and reports any discrepancies to safety directors and managers.  This person also offers training classes for employees to keep them fully aware of the risks involved in their job.  Anyone performing work on a scaffold must understand that there are many hazards revolving around the type of work that they do.

All companies must follow OSHA regulations and also put some of their own safety measures into place.  There are many requirements set forth by OSHA.  Scaffolds must be able to support at least 4 times the maximum designated load they are designed for.  Certain kinds of suspension scaffolds must have ropes that will support 6 times their intended load.  Connections to floors and roofs must be able to support 4 times the tipping moment related to the load of the hoist. 

Scaffold platforms have some rigid requirements also.  The space between planks, the platform and uprights cannot be more than one inch wide.  The front edge of scaffold platforms cannot be any further than 14 inches from the work surface.  The only exceptions are for outrigger scaffolds or if there is a guardrail in place.  Also, some scaffolds such as ladder jack and pump jack must be at least 12 inches wide. 

In addition to these and other OSHA regulations, each company takes additional measures to ensure the safety of their employees.  The last thing a company wants is for one of their employees to suffer from a serious fall or injury while working on a scaffold.  Concerned companies take the time to look closely at all of their equipment to make sure that it can be safely used by their workers.  In addition, they require safety helmets, goggles and harnesses for their employees.  Working on scaffolding can be made safe as long as a company is willing to assure that the best working environment is always in place for their valued employees.

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