What is the height at which fall protection is required? That probably all safety professionals and many employers are searching an answer for this one question. There is not a fixed height across all industries and tasks for which a protection is required. It varies and every employer needs to ensure that his employees have all the required protection when they are working at a certain height.
There are few laws and regulations as far as OSHA and ANSI fall protection is concerned. All employers (whether private or public) need to abide by these laws. Here is everything you needed to know about fall protection height:
While as already mentioned, there is not a fixed height, which is considered safe; there are standard values that many industries follow.
For general industry, the height is 4 feet and this rises to 6 feet in the case of the construction industry. The height varies between 4 feet and 5 feet in the cases of marine terminal and shipyard work.
This means, in any work scenario, if any of your employees were exposed to heights that are equal to or greater than the values mentioned above, you would need to provide them with some sort of protection. This can be any fall protection system, which is connected to a proper fall protection anchor.
Pointers to Keep in Mind
As an employer, there are certain things that you need to keep in mind like:
1. Regardless of the height that you employees are exposed to, it is your duty to offer fall protection all the time, if your workers are working over dangerous machinery or equipment.
2. There are few exceptions to the standard values that are mentioned above. Construction works are dynamic in nature. It is also not easy to foresee fall hazards and it is difficult to always have a fall protection system at place.
3. In the case of scaffolding, fall protection is not required unless the concerned person is off the lower level by 10 feet.
In order to avoid legal hassles and offer your employees a safe environment to work in, make sure you invest in the right protection systems.