What’s Fall Protection?

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Fall protection includes various equipment and policies to minimize the risk of injury to workers operating tasks elevated above ground level. It includes devices like guard rails, safety harnesses, and inflatable devices. Different sub-categories like fall arresters and restraint devices are also used. The use of fall protection is mandatory in some industries, and the combination of equipment used varies depending on the degree of risk involved. All types of fall protection help preserve human life and protect workers engaged in various activities.

Fall protection is a broad term that is used to describe various types of equipment and policies that help minimize the risk of injury to workers when operating tasks that are elevated above ground level. Within this broad category, companies often use a combination of safety devices along with training staff on how to use the equipment to avoid falling while performing a certain task. Fall protective equipment includes devices such as guard rails, safety harnesses, and even inflatable devices that can be used to break a fall and prevent serious injury.

Within the broad category of fall protection, various sub-categories are often referred to. Fall protection includes devices that erect a sort of barrier that helps keep workers from falling off ledges and other areas suspended high above the ground. Guard rails and rope barriers are two examples of fall protection. Fall arresters serve a similar purpose and can be ideal when various types of protective equipment aren’t practical. Seat belts are an example of restraint devices.

The use of fall protection is common in many different professions. In the construction industry, employees will often wear protective gear and seat belts when handling tasks associated with building a high-rise building. Repair personnel working in manufacturing companies will often make use of walkways surrounded by railings when inspecting and making repairs to large tanks. Even people who paint building exteriors or wash the windows of multi-story buildings often use at least some type of fall protection while performing their assigned duties.

Depending on the setting, different types of fall protection devices can be used simultaneously. For example, an individual may wear a safety harness while suspended on scaffolding that includes a safety rail as part of the safety measures. An inflatable buoyancy aid can be placed on the ground below it ready to self-inflate should the safety harness fail for some reason. The exact combination of equipment used will vary, depending on the degree of risk involved in performing a given task at a certain level above the ground.

In many countries, the use of fall protection is mandatory in some industries. Unions may require the use of safety equipment and fall safety training for their members. It’s not unusual for governments to pass regulations requiring companies to provide employees performing certain tasks with specific types of fall protection equipment and also ensure that those employees know how to use the equipment safely. When used to their best effect, all types of fall protection help preserve human life, minimize the risk of injury, and generally protect workers while engaged in various activities associated with their assigned duties.

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