Eurosafe urges contractors to test equipment

By Sarah Ann McCay26 April 2012

According to research carried out in 2011, falls from height accounted for 34 out of 72 deaths among

According to research carried out in 2011, falls from height accounted for 34 out of 72 deaths amongst construction workers

Contractors who fail to regularly test their working at height equipment are putting their staff at risk of broken bones, fractured skulls or even loss of life, according to safety experts at Eurosafe Solutions.

Research by the UK Government's Health & Safety Executive has revealed that falls from height continue to be one of the biggest causes of deaths amongst construction workers, accounting for 47% of deaths. In addition, over 4000 major injuries, such as broken bones or fractured skulls, are reported to the HSE each year and over half of these serious injuries involve falls from height or from tripping over and are easily preventable.

Eurosafe is urging building owners and facilities managers to implement regular safety checks and staff training to help prevent accidents.

Work at Height Regulations (2005) state that cable-based fall protection systems and personal protective equipment (PPE) associated with work at heights and eyebolts on roofs should be tested every 12 months. Abseil anchors should be tested every six months. Anchor devices need to be tested with forces applied in line with expected service.

"We carry out an individual load testing on each element of the fall protection system, which provides them with a more accurate assessment of the safety of their systems and will identify if any maintenance or replacement work needs to be done," explained John Boyle, director of Eurosafe Solutions.

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