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Fall Construction Gtech

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  • 1. Fall Protection for Construction A Survival Guide
  • 2. Statistics
    • Falls are the number one cause of fatalities in the construction industry.
    • 150-200 workers are killed each year and more than 100,000 injured as a result of falls.
    • Overall (including general industry) falls are the number two biggest cause of fatalities in the U.S. (motor vehicle accidents are number one).
  • 3. Statistics
    • Falls 33%
    • Struck By 18%
    • Electrical 17%
    • Caught In 18%
  • 4. Statistics
    • 40% of the fatalities were from heights over 40 feet
    • Most falls occur on scaffolds or roofs
    • 25% of fall fatalities were from heights of 11-20 feet
    • 25% of fall fatalities were from heights of 20-30 feet
  • 5. Most Frequently Cited Unprotected sides & edges - Fall protection Fall hazards training program Fall protection - Steep roofs Fall protection - Residential construction 6’ or more Fall protection - Roofing work on low-slope roofs
  • 6. Physics of a Fall
    • A body in motion (free fall) can cover vast distances in a short period of time. Consider this:
      • A body in free fall can travel 4 ft in 0.5 seconds
      • A body in free fall can travel 16 ft. in 1 second
      • A body in free fall can travel 64 ft. in 2 seconds
  • 7. Application of Regulations
    • Subpart M (1926.500) applies to fall protection during construction activities.
    • There are a few exceptions from this rule for the following activities:
      • Inspection
      • Investigation
      • Assessing conditions prior to or after the work is performed
  • 8. Application of Regulations
    • Other existing standards for fall protection are discussed in different standards (subpart M would not cover the following items):
      • Scaffolds (subpart L)
      • Cranes (subpart N)
      • Steel Erection (subpart R)
      • Stairs and Ladders (subpart X)
      • Power Transmission (Subpart V)
  • 9. Contents of Subpart M
    • 500: Scope, Application and definitions
    • 501: Duty to have fall protection
    • 502: Fall protection systems
    • 503: Training Requirements
    • Appendices
      • A: Roof widths
      • B: Guardrail systems
      • C: Fall arrest systems
      • D: Positioning device systems
      • E: Fall Protection Plan
  • 10. Duty to Have Fall Protection 1926.501
    • Fall protection is required when one or more employees have exposure to falls of six feet or greater to the lower level.
    • Surfaces must be inspected before the work begins.
    • Employees are only permitted to be on surfaces that are strong enough to support them.
  • 11. Duty to have Fall Protection
    • The following areas require fall protection when employees are exposed to falls (six feet or greater):
      • Leading edges
      • Ramps/runways
      • Residential construction
      • Hoist areas
      • Wall and floor openings
      • Unprotected sides and edges
      • Above dangerous equipment (any height)
      • Overhand brick laying
      • Steep or low slope roofs
      • Walking surfaces
      • Form work and reinforcing steel
      • Excavations, wells, pits
      • Precast concrete
  • 12. Duty to have Fall Protection Low Slope Roofs
    • Low slope roofs (under 50 feet in width):
      • Fall protection systems or
      • Safety monitor (with elements required in this subpart)
    • Low slope roofs (50 feet width or greater):
      • Fall protection systems (safety nets, guardrails, PFAS) or combination of
      • Warning lines and safety monitor or
      • Warning lines and guardrails or PFAS
  • 13. Protection from Falling Objects 1926.501(c)
    • Protection from falling objects is a requirement.
    • Employee working in an area where there is a danger of falling objects must wear a hard hat.
    • Employer must take steps to protect employees from hazards (establish barricades or build canopies).
  • 14. Types of Fall Protection
    • Passive are protective systems that do not involve the actions of employees.
    • Active includes systems and components that require manipulation by employees to make them effective in providing protection.
  • 15. Examples of Fall Protection
    • Passive system include:
      • Guardrails
      • Safety nets
      • Covers
      • Fences
      • Barricades
    • Active systems components (personal fall arrest system-PFAS) include:
      • Anchorage points
      • Lanyard
      • Snap hooks
      • Life lines
      • Body harness
  • 16. Active Systems
    • Designed to operate in free fall situations.
    • Must be connected to other systems/components or activated to provide protection.
    • Active systems are designed to protect employees from the following items:
      • Falls
      • Forces that can cause injury
  • 17. Guardrails 1926.502(b)
    • Guardrails are the most common form of fall protection.
    • May be made of wood, pipe, structural steel, or wire rope.
      • Flags must be provided on wire rope to increase visibility
    • Must have top rail, mid rail, posts and toe board
    • System must be strong enough to support 200 pounds of force applied to the top rail
    • Steel or plastic bands are not acceptable
  • 18. Guardrails-Design Criteria 1926.502(b)
    • The top rail must be elevated above the surface 39-45 inches and must be free of jagged edges.
    • The mid rail must be located between the top rail and the walking surface.
    • Posts must be spaced no greater than 8 feet.
    • Toe boards must be made of a solid material with no openings greater than one inch and be 3.5 inches high.
    • Chains or movable rails must be used near hoists.
  • 19. Safety Net Systems 1926.502(c)
    • Placed beneath the working surface (not to exceed 30 feet) to catch personnel or falling material.
    • Must be placed as close to the hazard as possible.
    • Equipment must be drop tested and certified.
    • Must be inspected weekly and after impact.
    • Openings can not exceed six inches.
    • Defective equipment can not be used.
    • Safety nets must extend outward from the outer most projection of the work surfaces.
  • 20. PFAS 1926.502(d)
    • PFAS shall not be tied to a guardrail system or hoists
    • All components of a fall arrest system must be inspected before each use and after impact.
    • Action must be taken promptly to rescue fallen employees.
  • 21. PFAS 1926.502(d)
    • When stopping a fall, a PFAS must:
      • Limit the arresting force to 1800 pounds.
      • Be rigid so that an employee can not fall more than 6 feet of contact a lower level.
      • Bring an employee to a complete stop and limit maximum deceleration distance an employee travels to 3.5 feet.
      • Strength to withstand 2X potential impact of employee falling 6 ft. or permitted fall distance.
  • 22. Inspecting Equipment 1926.502(d)
    • Equipment must be inspected before each use for:
      • Degradation due to ultraviolet light
      • Any other condition that is not normal
    • The following items must be inspected:
      • Tears or other wear
      • Deformed eyelets, D rings or other parts
      • Labels/placards
      • Dirt, grease, and oil
  • 23. PFAS (Harness) 1926.502(d)
    • Harness systems consist of either nylon or polyester and the best system will encompass the entire body (full body harness).
    • Body belts can not be used for fall protection.
    • A full body harness will evenly distribute weight across the waist, pelvis, and thighs.
  • 24. PFAS (Lanyard) 1926.502(d)
    • Lanyards connect the harness to the anchorage point.
    • Must have a minimum breaking strength of 5000 pounds.
    • Should be attached to a D ring between the shoulder blades above the employee.
    • There are several types of lanyards that include: synthetic webbing, synthetic rope and shock absorbing.
  • 25. Types of Lanyards
    • Self retracting
      • Eliminates excess slack in the lanyard (cable, rope, or web)
    • Shock absorbing
      • Device slows and eventually stops decent and absorbs the forces (i.e.: rip stitch controlled tearing)
    • Synthetic rope
      • Absorbs some of the force by stretching
    • Synthetic webbing
      • Strong but not flexible (absorbs little force)
  • 26. PFAS (life Lines) 1926.502(d)
    • Life lines consist of flexible material connected at one or both ends to an anchorage point.
    • There are two types of life lines:
      • Vertical:hangs vertically (5000 pound minimum breaking strength)
      • Horizontal: connects at both points to stretch horizontally (serves as connection point for other components of PFAS-total system must have safety factor of two).
  • 27. PFAS (Snap hooks) 1926.502(d)
    • Used to connect lanyards to D rings on a body harness.
    • D rings must be compatible. Must be connected to harness or anchorage point only.
    • Snap hooks must have 5,000 tensile strength and be proof tested to 3600 pounds.
    • When using snap hooks:
      • Use only one snap hook per D ring to prevent rollout
      • All snap hooks must have a locking mechanism
  • 28. PFAS (Anchorage Points) 1926.502(d)
    • The anchorage point is most effective when it is above the employee’s head. Located as to not allow an employee fall more than 6 feet.
    • All anchorage points must be a solid immovable object that is capable of supporting 5000 pounds.
    • Must not be used to support anything else.
  • 29. Positioning Device Systems 1926.502(e)
    • Allows employee to be supported from a vertical surface (i.e.: wall or telephone pole).
    • Must be inspected before each use for defects.
    • Must be rigid for no more than a 2 foot free fall.
    • Not a fall arrest system!
    • The anchorage point must be capable of withstanding twice the potential impact of an employee’s fall or 3000 pounds, whichever is greater.
  • 30. Warning Line System 1926.502(f)
    • Rope, wire, or chains are used to warn employees of an unprotected edge.
    • Used mainly on roofs , where PFAS- impractical.
    • Established not less than six feet from the edge.
    • Materials must have sufficient strength and complete structure must withstand 16 pound tipping force.
  • 31. Controlled Access Zones (CAZ) 1926.502(g)
    • Only qualified personnel involved in the operation are allowed to enter the zone.
    • Ropes, wires, or chains are used to designate the area.
    • Must be erected not less than six feet nor more than twenty five feet away from edge.
    • Shall be connected on each side to wall.
  • 32. Controlled Access Zones (CAZ) 1926.502(g)
    • CAZ must be defined by a control line (strength of 200 pounds) erected 10-15 feet from the edge
    • Lines must be flagged at six foot intervals.
  • 33. Safety Monitoring System 1926.502(h)
    • Uses a monitor (competent person) to patrol the area and warn employees of the dangers.
    • All safety monitors must comply with the following criteria:
      • Be on the same level the work is being performed
      • Be close enough to orally communicate
      • Have no other assigned duties
  • 34. Safety Monitoring System 1926.502(h)
    • Employees must comply with all instructions from the monitor.
    • The full attention of the monitor must focus on protecting the employees.
    • It is recommended that you have a written plan for using the safety monitoring system to address:
      • Identification of the monitor
      • Roles of employees in a monitoring system
      • Training for using the monitoring system.
  • 35. Covers 1926.502(i)
    • Used to protect personnel from falling through holes in walking surfaces.
    • Covers must be secured in place and the word “Hole” must be written on the cover.
    • Covers must have sufficient strength to support:
      • Twice the weight to be imposed upon it for pedestrians
      • Twice the largest axle weight of vehicle traffic
  • 36. Falling Objects 1926.502(j)
    • Employers are required to protect their employees from falling objects.
    • Some methods that might have to be used (when necessary) consist of:
      • Installation of toe boards (at least 3.5 inches wide)
      • Building barricade and restricting entrance
      • Installation of screens
  • 37. Fall Protection Plan 1926.502(k)
    • Fall protection plans are allowed for the following operations:
      • Residential construction
      • Leading edge construction
      • Precast concrete erection
    • The plan should be strictly enforced.
    • The employer must demonstrate that it is impractical to use fall protection before a fall protection plan can be used as an alternative.
  • 38. Fall Protection Plan 1926.502(k)
    • Plan must be developed by qualified person and made specific for each site (also must be up to date).
    • Only as qualified person can make changes to a plan.
    • A copy of the plan must be maintained at the site.
  • 39. Elements of a Fall Protection Plan
    • Statement of Policy
    • Fall Protection Systems to be Used
    • Implementation of Plan
    • Enforcement
    • Accident Investigation
    • Changes to the Plan
  • 40. Training 1926.503
    • All employees exposed to fall hazards must receive training by a competent person that addresses:
      • The nature of fall hazards in the work area
      • Procedures for erecting, maintaining, disassembling and inspecting fall arrest equipment
      • Use and operation of fall arrest equipment
  • 41. Training 1926.503
    • Training elements:
      • Role of employee in a safety monitoring system (when used)
      • Limitations on the use of mechanical equipment for low slope roofs
      • Role of employees in fall protection plans
      • Standards contained in 1926.500-503
      • Procedure for handling and storage of equipment
  • 42. Training 1926.503
    • Fall protection training must be certified by the employer through a written record.
    • The latest training certificate must be maintained.
    • Retraining is required when:
      • There are changes in the work place
      • Changes in the type of fall protection used
      • There are inadequacies in employee’s skills

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