Week 3 of National Safety month focuses on falls in the workplace and at home. Every year, people are injured from falling at a construction site, high ladder, or from tripping. Luckily, there are ways to prevent falls in these areas.
Construction sites are where majority of fall accidents occur. Every year over 200 construction workers are killed from falling and over 10,000 are seriously injured.
Prevent falls in hazardous workplaces:
- Always wear a helmet to prevent head injuries.
- Workers who work 6 feet or higher above ground are required to have fall protection such as a guardrail, safety net, or a personal fall arrest system (PFAS). If this is not the case at your workplace, talk to someone about a fall protection system.
- Have fall protection training implemented at your construction site.
- Use aerial lifts to prevent fatal falls. The user must follow the instruction manual and know how to operate it properly.
Workplace and home falls are a little different than construction falls. Although some can be, majority are not fatal. Factors involved with workplace and home falls include age, sense of balance, and eyesight.
Prevent falls at your workplace or home:
- Keep your area clean and pick up children and pet toys that aren’t in use.
- Clean up any liquid spills that might cause slippery surfaces.
- Use a step ladder instead of a chair if you need to reach a high place indoors.
- Take a break from your computer screen so your eyes can adjust to your surroundings. Staring a screen for so long can put strain on your eyes and cause your vision to weaken overtime.
- Tell someone when you are using a ladder and have someone spot you to prevent injury.
- Download helpful apps such as the NIOSH Ladder Safety app to indicate whether your ladder is at unsafe angle to climb.
Your overall sense of balance is extremely important when preventing falls. One way to improve your balance is by practicing strength training, such as yoga or Tai Chi . It is also important to make sure your eyes are in good health. Your safety is in everyone’s best interest and taking care of yourself will benefit you the most. Use these simple practices to prevent falls at home and in your workplace.