A. Guardrails Scaffolding Mobile Towers Multi user MEWPs

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1 Annex M Appendix 1 Access Equipment and Fall Prevention Guidelines. Ladders, step-ladders, hop-ups, trestles and platforms without guarding may only be used if a task specific risk assessment justifies their use and that more appropriate equipment has first been considered. In 2006/7, 58 people died and over 3200 suffered a serious injury as a result of a fall from height in the workplace. Additionally, nearly 4000 suffered over 3 day injuries. 16 fatalities to workers were related to ladders 2200 major injuries were attributed to ladder use 40% high fall major injuries High fall - 2 metres of greater fall height 28% low fall major injuries Low fall less than 2 metres fall height Source: Selection of Work Equipment The following model should be used when planning work at height or selecting suitable methods of protecting your workforce. Based on HSE guidance Collective Protection Personal Protection Work equipment which prevents fall A. Guardrails Scaffolding Mobile Towers Multi user MEWPs B. Personal fall prevention. Work restraint. Pulpits. UNDESIRABLE DESIRABLE Work equipment which minimises height and consequences of fall Work equipment which minimises consequence of fall Work equipment which does neither C. Nets at high level Soft landing systems (both close under working level. Not always reasonably practicable). Nets at lower level <2m from work surface. E. Soft landing systems. Nets at low level 6m below working level. (May be difficult to justify why nets can t be installed D. Personal fall protection systems F. Injury reduction systems. (e.g. inflating jackets. New to market). higher) G. In no particular order Ladders, step-ladders, hop-ups, trestles, platforms without guarding Page 8 of 29

2 A. Collective fall protection. First check if the proposed work can be undertaken other than at height, e.g. prefabrication of parts. The following level of protection should be provided for all work that can not be undertaken other than at height unless the risk assessment considers the adoption unreasonable. Full edge protection around work area platform Full edge protection around A. Personal Fall Prevention Where collective fall protection measures are not considered reasonably practicable, personal fall protection measures should be adopted. Such protective measures will be considered as the minimum requirements at Loughborough University unless a task specific risk assessment identifies that alternative arrangements are more suitable. The operative and line manager should record the risk assessment on which the decision was made and be prepared to demonstrate the reasoning behind their choice. Differing methods of personal fall prevention. B. Collective Fall Arrest Page 9 of 29

3 Fall arrest measures should only be utilised where there are technical reasons why fall prevention measures can not be used. The choice of adoption of these measures must be supported by a written task specific risk assessment. Managers and Supervisors should be prepared to demonstrate their rejection of more appropriate fall prevention measures. Examples of Collective fall arrest utilising high level nets. C. Personal fall protection - Fall arrest systems Personal fall protection systems should only be considered where more appropriate measures are inappropriate for the task at hand. The use of such methods must be supported by a task specific risk assessment and a statement of why safer measures have not been adopted. Equipment will not prevent a fall but mitigate the effects. Ensure that planning includes release from the harness following a fall. Page 10 of 29

4 D. Soft landing systems Air bags and nets at low level are not generally approved for work at Loughborough University. A specific case must be made where their use is envisaged or requested. The case must be supported and approved in writing by the University Project Manager in consultation with the FM Health and Safety Manager and the University Health, Safety and Environment Manager where appropriate. F. Personal fall protection systems Such systems are relatively new onto the market and are currently not approved for use at Loughborough University. G. Work Equipment which offers little or no fall protection The use of work equipment which offers little or no fall prevention or protection should only be considered as a last resort, having assessed all of the above systems first. Managers and staff involved in using such equipment should be prepared to be challenged on a regular basis and provide task specific risk assessments and reasons for not using more appropriate equipment. Where used, ladders and podiums with side guardrails and protection on three sides are preferred to those without such protection. The task specific risk assessment should record why such equipment has not been chosen. Where the risk assessment does indicate their reasonable use, ladders, stepladders, hop-ups, trestles and platforms without guarding should only be used for access or short duration light work which allows one hand hold. Anyone using such equipment must be suitably trained and must do so as recommended by the equipment suppliers. Ladders and step ladders must only be used as follows: Short duration work < 15 to 30 minutes max. per position. Must have one hand free to grip ladder when climbing or descending Must have a handhold for majority of time. If not, consider a harness or alternative fall prevention or access equipment. Hand hold must be available. Page 11 of 29

5 1. NOT ACCEPTABLE 2. SEE ABOVE GUIDANCE Procedure for Safe Use of ladders and step-ladders 1. Introduction Falls from height are still one of the biggest causes of death and injury in the UK workplace. Many of these accidents are due to the inappropriate use of ladders and step-ladders. Their simple design, ease of use and familiarity often leads to the safety implications of their use being overlooked. Ladders and stepladders shall not be used on work which is covered by this procedure unless a task specific risk assessment has been undertaken and recorded, which establishes that a safer system of work has been considered and rejected as not appropriate in favour of ladders and/or step ladders. There is a simple hierarchy for managing and selecting equipment for work at height within the Work at height Regulations 7 (The Regulations): - avoid work at height wherever possible - use work equipment or other measures to prevent falls where working at height cannot be avoided or - where the risk of a fall cannot be eliminated, use work equipment or other measures to minimise the distance and consequences of a fall should one occur. 7 The Work at Height Regulations 2005, Statutory Instrument 2005 No. 735 HMSO, London Page 12 of 29

6 Scope of procedure This procedure covers work involving all ladders and step-ladders being used on Loughborough University owned or leased land and within or on buildings owned, leased and operated on the University s behalf. Where a safer system is not appropriate this procedure introduces working practices to minimise the risk of falls from height and must be followed by all individuals, supervisors and managers. This procedure covers all personnel who in the course of their work may consider the use of a ladder for light short duration work (see risk assessment below) or to gain access to roofs, roof voids, racking or other high places. Contravention of this procedure will be treated as a serious breach of the contractor s or an individual employee s terms and conditions. Responsibilities Managers A site register of all access equipment being used must be maintained by the senior manager on site. Managers, supervisors and line managers must ensure that a task specific risk assessment has been carried out that considers the following: - How and where ladders are being used in on the task - External influences on their use, including weather, lighting, inhibiting routes for access and egress etc. - Whether a safer system of work can be provided. The reasons for not choosing a safer system must be recorded on the risk assessment. - Provide means whereby portable ladders can be secured at the top, and if impracticable, provide means for securing them at the base. - Institute a system of periodical inspection, dependent on use, and keep records of purchase, repair and inspection A preuse checklist and six monthly inspection record sheet are included below. Employees, contractors, sub-contractors and self employed Page 13 of 29

7 Employees and contractors shall not introduce ladders, step ladders and platforms to the work site without prior permission from the senior person in charge of the site or work location. Any access equipment used on the site must be included on a site specific register. Employees, contractors, sub-contractors and self employed personnel shall adopt the following strict requirements. Any deviation from these procedures shall be agreed in writing by the senior person in charge of the site or work location. - Ensure that a task specific risk assessment has been carried out for the work and that you understand its content and how to comply with the requirements. - Use only equipment that has been registered and approved for use on site for the task at hand. - Check the equipment is in a good condition and being used safely by using the pre-use checklist - Ensure that the ladder is firmly secured at the top or if this is impracticable, see that it is firmly secured at the base. - Set the ladder at the correct angle 1 out to every 4 up. - Stand the ladder on a firm level base and not on loose material. - Make sure footwear is in good condition. - Clean wet, icy or greasy rungs before use. - Clean off mud or grease from boots before climbing. - Carry light tools in a holster or a tool bag slung from a strap over the-shoulder, or use a hoist line. Ladder use and procedure Everyone using ladders must be competent in their use and in recognising defects and any remedial work that may be needed before their use. A register of all access equipment used on the site and a maintenance log of all inspections, defects found should be kept, as required by the Provision and Use of Workplace Equipment Regulations To aid this process all ladders must carry an identification mark/number. A ladder inspection checklist is included below for guidance which should be used as a pre-use checklist prior to every use and to record the 6-monthly inspections. Page 14 of 29

8 The inspection records should be retained for the length of the job or at least two years, whichever is the greater. Procedure: - Set rails on level, even and solid footing (use foot blocks or mud sills if necessary) at locations where there will be no danger of being struck by passing vehicles or equipment. - When ladders must be placed in passageways or other thoroughfares, they should be protected by substantial barricades around their bases. Care must be taken not to obstruct emergency access and egress routes. - The permissible pitch for free standing ladders access ladders shall be 1 in 4 depending upon site conditions and ladder rail sizes (i.e. one metre horizontal for every 4 metres height). - Tops of ladders should extend cm above the top landing in order that workers getting on or off will have a solid handhold. - Secure ladders at both top and bottom. At the top, nail the ladder or lash it with wire or rope to a secure object. At the bottom, secure it against movement by blocking, tying or other suitable method. - Solidly decked landing should be provided at the top of all ladders. When cleats extend to the top of the side rails, landing platforms at least 76cm wide should be built out from the floor to extend to a minimum of 51cm beyond the outer edge of the side rails. Guard - rails and toe - boards should be erected on the outer end and the exposed side of the platform - If protected coatings are considered desirable, only transparent coatings or wood preservative should be used. Inspection and Maintenance All job - made ladders, landing and lashings should be inspected at least every week, and any defects that have developed (or damage that has occurred) should be corrected immediately. Identifying job made ladders by number, location or both and maintaining records will help make sure that all job-made ladders are inspected on schedule. Ladders shall not be painted with an opaque coating. DO NOT - Use a make-shift ladder Page 15 of 29

9 - Use a ladder that is too short. - Stand a ladder on a drum, box or other unsteady base. - Allow more than one person on a ladder at a time. - Overreach from a ladder; move it to a more advantageous position. - Use metal or metal reinforced ladders near electricity cables. - Use ladders with cracked or broken rungs or other defects. Page 16 of 29

10 Ladder Inspection Checklist Ladders should be checked before every use and formally inspected and the results recorded every 6 months using this checklist. Date of inspection: Ladder ID: Inspected by: Location at time of inspection: Item To Be Checked GENERAL Suitable for work use? Class 1 or EN131 only Loose steps or rungs (consider loose if they can be moved by hand)? Remove from use if loose: repair or discard Loose, damaged or corroded nails, screws, bolts, or other metal parts? Warped, bent or twisted stiles Discard: do not attempt repair Cracked, split or broken stiles, braces, steps or rungs? Discard: do not attempt repair Slivers/splinters on stiles, rungs or steps? Damaged, missing or worn non-slip feet? Ladder painted (may hide defects)? Remove from use: remove paint or discard STEPLADDERS Wobbly or unstable? Loose or bent hinge spreaders? Broken Stop on hinge spreaders? Discard: do not attempt repair Loose hinges? EXTENSION LADDERS Loose, broken, or missing extension locks? Discard: do not attempt repair Defective locks that do not seat properly when ladder is extended? Deterioration of rope? Condition? pass/fail Action required Who by? When by? Ladder must NOT be used until a task specific risk assessment has been carried out and all of the above have been considered with any appropriate rectification work carried out. Records should be retained for the duration of the contract or at least two years, whichever is the longer. Page 17 of 29

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