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How Can We Prevent Scaffolding Collapse from Happening?


Scaffolding is a temporary means of the support structure which enables workers to reach the required heights while constructing, maintenance or repairing the existing structures.


On one hand, scaffolding tends to offer a comfortable and safe working arrangement as compared to working from ladders, leaning over edges and stretching overhead. While on the other hand working at height itself is a big danger and working on scaffolding enhances the risk to it especially when safety regulations are ignored. Scaffolding accidents mainly involve people falling, incorrect operating procedures, environmental conditions and falling materials due to equipment failure.


Major causes of scaffolding collapse include:


#1 Insufficient or lack of on-the-job training

#2 Improper construction or work rules

#3 Inadequate fall protection

#4 Ignoring safety rules

#5 Weak planking

#6 Failures at attachment points, a parts failure

#7 Insecure or non-existent bracing

#8 Defective equipment

#9 Changing environmental conditions (extreme temperatures, high winds, presence of toxic gases)


Additionally, major scaffolding collapse occurs due to overloading of scaffolding. Individuals exposed to scaffolding hazards include scaffold erectors and dismantlers, personnel working on scaffolds, employees and the general public near scaffolding. Scaffold erectors and dismantlers are at particular risk since they work on scaffolds before ladders, guardrails, platforms, and planks are completely installed.


So how can we do to prevent the scaffolding collapse? Below may show you the answer.


#1 Well trained, certified and experienced manpower

#2 Strict adherence to scaffolding using standards

#3 Use of certified and tested scaffolding materials

#4 All materials used should be inspected thoroughly before and after use

#5 Employers should ensure that all the equipment’s in use are in good condition as per “Personal Protective Equipment at Work” regulations

#6 Ensuring proper permit to work

#7 Each activity should follow proper job hazard assessment

#8 Follow the“Scaffolding Management Procedure”


For safe use of scaffolding, all the above provisions should be strictly met. All additional safety measures should also be calculated to strengthen the safe working environment.

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