We all deal with different hazards when we’re working. For some people, daily use of heavy machinery poses risks on a regular basis. For others, dangerous building tools stand to do damage. And, sometimes, it’s the sheer elevation we work at which poses risks.
We are, of course, talking about when business takes to the sky. There’s a multitude of careers which involve working above-ground. And, whether your business comprises of cleaning windows or cutting down trees, you should consider health and safety.
This is crucial in business at the best of times. But, when the very nature of the job is dangerous, it becomes even more important. Should anything happen because you didn’t put the right procedures in place, you could lose a lot of money through legal action. Not to mention that staff will soon stop feeling safe when working. Before you know it, neglecting this area could lead to shutting up shop.
Instead, it’s time to have a long and hard think about how you could keep staff safe when they’re up in the clouds. To get you started, let’s consider some of the leading safety points worth focusing on.
A sensible workforce behind you
Before you even get your business off the ground, you need to take time over the people you employ. While health and safety does fall on your shoulders, you also need to ensure your staff can be trusted. That means, each time you hire an employee, you need to consider how sensible they seem. A good judge of this would be their experience. Workers who’ve already done similar jobs are proven entities. You won’t have to worry about such people working in the right way. Those without experience, however, are unknown quantities. In this instance, pay close attention to mannerisms during interviews. Does that candidate seem giggly and unprepared, or serious and reliable?
Of course, observation isn’t always a sure art. So, to protect yourself further, it’s worth employing people on probationary periods. That way, you’re within your rights to let go staff who don’t seem suited to the work. Ask your trusted team members to keep an eye. If they notice worrying behavior, or a new team member messing around, they can let you know. Signs like these in the early days are sure to lead to trouble. So, if this is the case, it’s time to let people go. It may seem harsh, but you can’t take chances in a dangerous career like this. If you find it hard to break the news, remind yourself that you’re only doing to keep the person in question safe.
A safe way to get up there
Then, you need to consider the safety of the method your staff use to get up high. Once upon a time, ladders were the only option here. And, these could still serve you well in some cases. Window cleaners working on residential properties could get away with one of these. Equally some builders and gardening companies could put ladders to good use. These have the benefit of not relying on electronics to do the job. But, there is a downside as well. On unsteady ground, this is far from a safe option. What’s more, a damaged ladder might not make itself known until someone’s already received an injury. But, that doesn’t mean this can’t be a safe option. By training staff on where to set up ladders, you can ensure they only ever make use of stable and reliable ground. And, by carrying out regular equipment checks, you can rest easy that no ladders will malfunction.
But, the days when this was your only option are long gone. Now, telescopic boom lifts like those found at www.hr2fl.com/telescopicboomlifts/ could also serve you well. These are ideal for getting up higher than a ladder can go. If your company cleans windows on commercial skyscrapers, for instance, a machine like this could serve you well. The benefit here is that these lifts provide stable foundations for staff to stand on. To ensure even more safety, train all staff members in proper use. And, do regular checks on the state of your machine. If you notice a glitch, don’t hesitate to call out a mechanic who can take a closer look. You owe it to your team to keep on top of things like these.
The right clothes to wear
Of course, worrying about the method of elevation itself isn’t enough. You also have a legal responsibility to provide the correct safety gear. As height is the name of the game in your enterprise, helmets should be your primary priority here. Options like the Petzl Vertex Best Helmet, as found at www.gmesupply.com, are your best bet. Hard shells like these are ideal for those who work at height as they offer complete protection. It’s worth keeping these in the workplace so that you can be sure of condition. Given that these are essential to what you do, it’s also worth keeping some helmets aside for emergency use. That way, you can rest easy that you’re always covered should there be any breakages.
Of course, safety gear doesn’t end with helmets. Workers up high also need standard options such as work goggles. These are especially crucial at height. Getting something in the eye could leave a colleague unable to see. If that happens when elevated, an accident could ensue. Think, too, about supplying options such as safety boots and hi-vis jackets. While less specific to the level at which workers operate, these are part and parcel of a safe working environment.
And, last but by no means least, you should provide safety harnesses for those out in the field. This will ensure an added level of safety, and can also put worker’s minds at ease. You should provide in-depth training on harness use to every new employee. Make sure, too, that you regularly check all your workers are following procedure. Cutting corners here could cost lives. And, that would be on your shoulders.
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