Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Construction Focus Four Updated!

OSHA has updated their Construction Industry Focus Four Outreach Training Packet. This training consists of lesson plans on each of the Focus Four Hazards: 1) Falls 2) Caught-In or -Between 3) Struck-By 4) Electrocution.

1) Falls - Guardrail and safety net systems are two ways to protect workers from falls on the job. If you are more than 6 feet above the lower surface, some type of fall protection must be used by your employer.

Guardrails:

  • Toprails must be at least ¼ inch thick to prevent cuts and lacerations; and they must be between 39 and 45 inches from the working surface;

  • If wire rope is used, it must be flagged at least every six feet with highly visible materials;

  • Midrails, screens or mesh must be installed when there are no walls at least 21 inches high. Screens and mesh must extend from the toprail to the working level.

  • There can be no openings more than 19 inches;

  • The toprail must withstand at least 200 lbs. of force; the midrail must withstand 150 lbs. of force;

  • The system must be smooth enough to protect workers from cuts and getting their clothes snagged by the rail.

  • If guardrails are used around holes at points of access, like a ladderway, a gate must be used to prevent someone from falling through the hole, or be offset so that a person cannot walk directly into the hole.
Safety Nets:
  • The nets must be as close as practicable under the
    working surface, but never more than 30 feet below;

  • The safety net must be inspected every week for
    damage;

  • Each net must have a border rope with a minimum
    strength of 5,000 lbs.;

  • The safety net must extend outward a sufficient
    distance, depending on how far the net is from the
    working surface (OSHA has a formula to follow);

  • The safety net must absorb the force of a 400-pound bag of sand dropping
    on to the net ("the drop test");

  • Items in the net that could be dangerous must be removed as soon as
    possible.
National Safety Compliance has published the Focus Four OSHA Student Book in an easy to read booklet at a very reasonable price. NSC has also produced various OSHA Safety Training Videos to aid in the safety training of employees.

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