Safety Alert: Worker falls from height

January 22, 2018 Tara

A contractor was working on a roof when he  stepped onto a brittle clearlite panel and fell
2.5metres onto the conveyor below. The worker was wearing the correct fall restraint harness,
which was correctly anchored. He had, however, failed to tension the rope grab, thus impacting on
the restraint system’s ability to restrain him. Falls, including people falling or objects falling on
people, is one of the four fatal hazards that result in 80% of fatalities in the extractives sector, both
in New Zealand and internationally. Falls tops the list ahead of collisions, entanglement, and pressure release.

We recommend that all sites review tasks that cannot be completed on solid ground and any working at height activities.

You need to ensure that:

• There is safe and adequate access to all areas of the plant where maintenance
is carried out

• Clearlite panels and other unstable surfaces are covered to provide a stable
working surface where access is required for maintenance or other activities

• Risk assessments are completed on all non-routine tasks to ensure that hazards
are identified, risks assessed and effective controls are put in place

• Regular workplace inspections are conducted to ensure that risk controls are in
place and are effective

• All workers are trained, and regularly re-trained, in Working at Heights
procedures and the correct use of fall restraint equipment.

Let’s work together to keep ourselves and our workers safe.

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