Breaking your fall

26 February 2008

Each year in the UK five workers are killed and about 2,000 seriously injured in falls from vehicles, according to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Most of them are low falls from the load areas of heavy goods vehicles.

In a bid to reduce the accident rate industrial engineering company Ainscough Vanguard has come up with a new trailer safety system to break a worker's fall.

Trailer-Wings are essentially retractable nets that are stretched along the length of trailers after they arrive at a worksite. The product follows the Work at Height Regulations 2005, which state that it is the employer's responsibility to prevent, so far as is reasonably practicable, persons falling “a distance liable to cause personal injury.”

The wings' main attribute, according to Anthony Ainscough, is that they can be fixed into position by one person within five minutes. They can also be permanently attached to the trailer for use at any length across the deck.

The system is sold as a set, ready to bolt or weld into position, and is available in a range of colour.

*In October the HSE began its Falls From Height Campaign to highlight the issue. While the campaign is targeted at depot managers, fleet managers and buyers, it is hoped the message will reach everyone in the industry, including drivers.

• For tips on preventing accidents and case studies see:

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