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Guard Rails

How to Prevent Falls at the Workplace



Employers have a duty to ensure that their working environments are safe for their employees. In most industries, slip and falls are common causes of workplace injuries. Employees who get into the accidents may suffer a wide range of injuries, from minor bruises to breaking of bones. Some falls can even lead to death.


As an employer, it is your duty to set up roof fall protection measures at your workplace that will prevent employees from falling into holes in the walls and floors, from elevated work stations or off overhead platforms. This is a requirement set by the government. For example, employees working at raised elevations should be provided with fall protection gear. This also applies to employees working with dangerous machinery and equipment, regardless of the fall distances.


There are a number of strategies you can implement at the workplace to reduce employee injuries. These include:


o             Providing toe-boards and guard rails to prevent workers that can fall into dangerous equipment or machines (Such as a conveyor belt, acid or a vat) from getting injured. The safety accessories should be provided regardless of the height that employees are working from.

o             Provide a toe-board and guard rails around every elevated open sided platform, runway or floor.

o             Ensure every floor hole that workers can accidentally walk into are guarded using a floor hole cover, toe-board or railing.

o             Certain jobs may require other means of protection such as hand rails, stair railings, safety net, safety harness and line and so on.


There are other duties you are responsible for as an employer that are meant to make your employees safe at the workplace. These duties include:


o             Ensure workers are trained about the potential job hazards at your workplace in a language they understand.

o             Provide personal protective gear and roof fall protection equipment at no cost to your employees.

o             Ensure the floors in work areas are clean and dry

o             Ensure your employees work in conditions that are free of known dangers.


Educating Employees on Potential Job Hazards

To prevent or keep workplace injury cases low at your premises, it is important for your employees to be trained on basic safety rules. Ideally, this should be done when the employee is still new at the organization. Refresher lessons should also be offered occasional to experienced employees.


You can hire a workplace safety consultant to train your employees. Alternatively, you can require new employees to take specific safety training courses before they can begin their jobs.