With falls from elevation continuing to be one of the leading causes of death for construction workers, preventing falls from height can mean the difference between life and death.
It can also mean the difference between saving money and costly safety fines, as fall prevention safety standards were among the top 10 most frequently cited OSHA standards during 2014.
In order to raise awareness of preventing fall hazards in construction, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is partnering with the National Safety Council, the Center for Construction Research and Training, and several others to assist with this year’s National Fall Prevention Stand-Down.
It is OSHA’s goal for more than 20,000 Stand-Downs to take place from May 4-15, 2015. The hope is to reach at least 3 million workers. This is a significant increase from last year, where 1 million workers were reached.
What does it mean to Stand-Down?
A Safety Stand-Down is a voluntary event for employers to talk to employees about safety, while focusing on falls hazards and fall prevention.
What’s great is a Stand-Down doesn’t need to take huge amounts of time or resources (though you may want to bring snacks!). It can literally be a 10-15 minute meeting held at any point of the day that is convenient for employers.
Have you ever been a part of a toolbox talk? Think of a Safety Stand-Down as a glorified toolbox talk that puts greater emphasis on one of the most important safety topics in the construction industry and allows you to be part of a greater effort to protect workers.
Anyone who wants to prevent falls in the workplace can participate! Of course that includes construction companies and contractors, but general industry employers, the U.S. Military, governmental organizations, unions, safety equipment manufacturers, and others can also join in on the cause.
Though HSE Press is a division of a small company called Geigle Safety Group, Inc., we will be holding our own Stand-Down. We believe we all have to work together to make the world a safer place!
Tips for holding a successful Stand-Down
If an employer is interested in holding a Stand-Down, it is important to realize that each workplace is different and a Stand-Down should reflect the unique needs of that workplace. Though a Stand-Down may only be a 10-15 minute conversation, some employers may want to go above and beyond to stand-up for fall safety by standing down.
To help you get started, we have developed an infographic that will help you conduct the best Safety Stand-Down that will leave employees talking for days.
Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtags #StandDown, #FallSafety, and #FallProtection so we can invite others to join us in standing down for fall safety!
If you plan to conduct a Stand-Down at your workplace, tell us about it in the comments below or join our forum conversation!