By Michael Matthews – Duro-Last Corporate Safety Director
Fatalities caused by falls from elevation have been a leading cause of construction worker death for many years. In 2017, Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows that over one third of the almost 1000 construction fatalities that year were the result of falls from elevation. To bring awareness to this serious safety issue, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) is hosting the 6thannual National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction from May 6th – 10th.
A Safety Stand-Down is an opportunity for employers to talk directly to employees about safety. Any workplace can hold a Stand-Down by taking a break to focus on fall hazards and reinforcing the importance of fall prevention. Many participants organize “toolbox talks” and make a commitment to discussing fall safety while they inspect equipment and review specific jobsite hazards.
As part of the National Safety Stand-Down, Duro-Last® Quality Assurance Technical Representatives will review a safety topic each day before starting their work. Topics that will be covered include: general ladder safety, annual ladder inspections, safe warning line usage, rescue plan development, and a review of the Duro-Last Standard Operating Procedure for proper PPE usage. We encourage our network of contractors to also participate in this event by setting aside time to have open discussions with employees regarding fall safety and safety on the jobsite.
Employers that organize Stand-Down activities will be able to provide feedback about their discussions and download an official Certificate of Participation. For more information about the National Stand-Down initiative and to download additional resources, visit https://www.osha.gov/StopFallsStandDown/.