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									                        Health & Safety Arrangements
                      For Management of Work at Height

Management and Employee Guidance

Introduction
Wirral Council recognises that accidents can arise from working at height.
Falls from height can be a cause of injury and absence from work and may
result in permanent disability and death. These arrangements provide
managers and supervisors with guidance for managing all work at height.
These arrangements were produced by following The Work at Height
Regulations 2005 & INDG402: Safe use of ladders and stepladders.

Definition of working at height
A place is ‘at height’ if a person could be injured falling from it, even if it is at
or below ground level, for example;

   Falls from ladders
   Falls from machinery or vehicles
   Falls from open edges
   Falls through roof lights
   Falls through fragile roofs
   Falls from scaffolding or similar access equipment

The most common factors identified in falls from height incidents involve
failure to:
 recognise a problem;
 provide safe systems of work;
 ensure that safe systems of work are followed;
 provide adequate information, instruction, training or supervision;
 use appropriate equipment; and
 provide safe equipment.

Management responsibilities
It is the responsibility of management to ensure:

   They follow the hierarchy for managing risks from work at height;
          o AVOID work at height where they can;
          o They use work equipment or other measures to PREVENT falls
              where they cannot avoid working at height; and
          o Where they cannot eliminate the risk of a fall, use work
              equipment or other measures to MINIMISE the distance and
              consequences of a fall should one occur.

Planning work at height
 Ensure that no work is done at height if it is safe and reasonably
   practicable to do it other than at height; When ever possible avoid working
   at height if it is reasonable practicable and safer to do so another way.
 Ensure that the work is properly planned, organised and appropriately
   supervised to be as safe as is reasonably practicable and ensure all work
   at height is only carried out by trained competent persons;
 Undertake risk assessments and implement the necessary controls for any
   work at height activities (see appendix 1)
H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2
   Plan for emergencies and rescue
   Choose the right work equipment and select collective measures to
    prevent falls (such as guardrails and working platforms) before other
    measures which may only mitigate the distance and consequences of a fall
    (such as nets or airbags) or which may only provide personal protection
    from a fall.
   Where a residual risk exists, provide personal protection such as a
    harness and suitable training on their use
   To ensure all work at height takes account of weather conditions that could
    endanger health and safety;
   To ensure the place where work at height is done is safe;
   Ensure equipment for work at height is appropriately inspected;
   The risks from fragile surfaces are properly controlled; and
   The risks from falling objects are properly controlled.
   The area below the work being undertaken is secured to prevent injury to
    persons below

Management systems
Managers in control of any tasks undertaken at work are responsible to
ensure appropriate management systems are in place to ensure the following;
 Systems exist to ensure the regular maintenance and inspection of work
   equipment is undertaken as required within the manufactures / suppliers’
   instructions and appropriate records are maintained (see appendix 2 for
   ladder checklist)
 Risk assessments for any work undertaken “at height” take account of the
   equipment provided for that work (see appendix 4 for example risk
   assessment)
 Reports of all accidents/incidents involving work at height are investigated
   and reported as outlined within the Health and Safety Management
   Arrangements for Reporting & Investigating Accidents and Incidents
 All staff are provided with relevant information, instruction and training with
   regard to the risks identified and any safe systems of work / working
   procedures implemented to eliminate or reduce the risk of harm from work
   at height (see appendix 3 for ladder toolbox talk).
 That any safety marking relating to the setting up, use and putting away of
   any equipment are clearly visible
 That adequate warnings are provided where necessary for the use of the
   equipment against specific hazards
 The use of work equipment is restricted only to persons specifically trained
   for the use of that equipment and that it is used according to the
   manufactures/suppliers instructions

Third party control
It is the responsibility of Facility Managers or those Officers who arrange for
any work being carried out by contractors on Council premises to ensure it is
properly supervised. It is also the responsibility of department managers to
challenge contractors if they are posing a risk to our employees, themselves
or members of the public who may be affected. (See H&S Management
Arrangements for the Control of Contractors).




H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2
Employees Responsibilities
Employees have a duty of care for their own and others safety and should;
 Attend and follow training for working at height
 Not use or operate any work equipment for which they have not been
  trained
 Carry out pre use checks on equipment that has been provided for work at
  height
 Report any defects to their supervisor or manager regarding any work
  equipment that has been provided for work at height
 Follow any safe working procedures / method statements or training that
  has been provided to carry out work at height safely
 Familiarise themselves with any significant findings of risk assessments
  and raise any concerns over control measures with their supervisor
 Not interfere with any measures put in place for the health and safety of
  themselves or others.

Links to other policies & arrangements
These arrangements should be read in conjunction with;
 Council Health and Safety policy, which identifies the roles and
   responsibilities of all employees and managers
 Health & Safety Management Arrangements for Risk Assessment
 Health & Safety Management Arrangements for Reporting & Investigating
   Accidents and Incidents (including Industrial Injuries)
 Health & Safety Management Arrangements for the Provision and Use of
   Work Equipment
 Health & Safety Management Arrangements for the Control of Contractors




H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2
Appendix 1

The following issues should be considered when planning any work at
height;

   •   What activity/task is being carried out
   •   How long the task will take
   •   Suitability of the equipment
   •   Failure of the equipment
   •   Falls from height (severity)
   •   Falling objects
   •   Weather conditions
   •   Manual Handling (carrying ladders + equipment)

These controls can be implemented when carrying out any work at
height;

   •   Ensure the correct equipment is selected and used
   •   Short duration work only for ladders
   •   Secure ladder (top or bottom, preferably both)
   •   Use cherry pickers, scaffolding, fall arrest equipment etc
   •   Frequent inspections of equipment and implement a defect reporting
       systems
   •   Training of staff and supervisors
   •   2 people to carry out the job (no lone working)
   •   Tool belts to be worn or equipment passed up to staff
   •   Inspection of ground before use
   •   Supervision of staff
   •   Consideration of weather conditions

Employees should receive information, instruction and training for all
work activities they perform. They should also be provided with
information on the hazards of working at height such as;

   •   Leaning ladders slipping as they are not secured
   •   Overstretching on a ladder or from access towers, cherry pickers etc
   •   Faulty ladder, scaffolding, access tower due to no formal inspection
       regime or defect reporting system in place
   •   Slipping or loosing your footing due to poor footwear or stretching
   •   Stepladders wobbling due to missing feet or due to incorrect use
   •   Not positioning the ladder correctly
   •   Not checking ground conditions
   •   Working in inclement weather




H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2
H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2
Appendix 2

                                   Ladder / Step ladder Inspection Checklist

The frequency of the inspection regime would be dependant on the risk assessment and should be done in
accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. Ladders that are part of a scaffold system still have to be
                                      inspected every seven days;

Ladder ref/serial no:                               Date of Inspection

Inspected by:                                       Signature:
Location at time of                                 Manager Signature:
inspection:
Item to be checked                                  Condition    Action Required   Who by   When by
                                                    Pass/Fail
GENERAL
Suitable for work use
Loose steps or rungs (consider loose if they
can be moved by hand).
Remove from use: repair or discard
Loose, damaged or corroded nails, screws,
bolts or other metal parts.
Remove from use: repair or discard
Warped, bent or twisted stiles.
Discard: do not attempt repair
Cracked, split or broken stiles, braces, steps or
rungs.
Discard: do not attempt repair
Slivers/splinters on stiles, rungs or steps.
Remove from use: repair or discard
Damaged, missing or worn non-slip feet.
Remove from use: repair or discard
Ladder painted (may hide defects).
Remove from use: remove paint or discard
STEPLADDERS
Wobbly or unstable.
Remove from use: repair or discard
Loose or bent hinge spreaders.
Remove from use: repair or discard
Broken stop on hinge spreaders.
Discard: do not attempt repair
Loose hinges.
Remove from use: repair or discard
EXTENSION LADDERS
Loose, broken or missing extension locks.
Discard: do not attempt repair
Defective locks that do not seat properly when
ladder is extended.
Remove from use: repair or discard
Deterioration of rope.
Remove from use: repair or discard




H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2
Employees
Toolbox Talk on Ladder Safety
Establish the ladder or stepladder is in a safe condition before using it, carry out a
visual inspection on its condition…if you think it’s unsafe DO NOT USE IT!

       Use a safe ladder                  Position the ladder                Keep the ladder level
   Make sure the ladder has         Make sure the ladder stands     The ladder should never tilt
   safety feet. Check the           on firm ground and rests        sideways. On sloping ground or
   condition of the ladder          against a solid surface.        stairs, use an approved levelling
   before (see overleaf).Make       Make sure both feet have        adjuster and secure the ladder at the
   sure the ladder is stored        good contact with the ground    top and bottom. Last resort is to have
   safely after each use.           so it does not slip.            someone foot the ladder

  3 Points of Contact:
  Always maintain at least 3
                                                
                                            Make sure you use
                                                 the correct
                                                                    The 4:1 rule: The base of the
                                                                    ladder should always be one metre
  points of contact with the                 equipment for the      from the wall for every four metres
  ladder. This will help with your              job. Ask your       in height. Don’t step on the top
  stability. This can be 2 feet and         Manager if you can      two rungs, get a longer ladder if
  one hand, 2 feet and your mid-                 see the risk       necessary
  rift etc                                   assessment if you      (8 metres up = 2 metres out)
                                            feel a job is unsafe.
          Secure the ladder                 You should NEVER                      Face forward
  Use rope, lashings or straps to             carry out work at     Don’t twist or turn on the ladder. Step
  secure a ladder at the top and            height unless a risk    up or down the ladder one rung at a
  bottom to prevent it from slipping.         assessment has        time. Don’t use the ladder if someone
  Secure it at the bottom if there is      been carried out and     else is on it. Always pay attention to
  a risk of it moving away from the        controls are in place.   the job in hand.
  building or structure. Last resort
  is to have someone footing the                              Employee Responsibilities
  ladder. If it’s tied it won’t slip!      1. Avoid work at height where possible, can it be done from the
                                               ground i.e. cleaning windows from the ground
        Keep your hands free               2. Use a ladder safely and for the purpose it is intended
  You need both hands to climb.            3. Inspect a ladder before use (see inspections overleaf)
  Carry light tools in a shoulder bag      4. Maintain at least 3 points of contact at all times
  or tool belt. Pull up bulky or heavy     5. Follow the 4:1 rule when using an extendable ladder
  items after you reach the top. If in     6. Do not stretch, over reach or twist when using a ladder, if
  doubt ask your Manager!                      you can’t reach move the ladder closer
                                           7. Consider service users, public, colleagues and others that
                                               could be struck by falling objects (use barriers)
             Overstretching
                                           8. Postpone any external ladder work if the weather is bad
  Do not overstretch when using a
                                           9. Only use ladders for short duration tasks only (30 minutes
  ladder; if your waist isn’t within the
                                               maximum)
  stiles (sides) of the ladder, you’re
                                           10. Report any unsafe working conditions/defects to their
  leaning too far. Keep you navel
                                               Manager
  inside the stiles of the ladder at all
                                           11. Stop work if they feel the job is unsafe or hazardous and
  times. Otherwise it could topple!
                                               speak to their Manager about their concerns


A third of all reported fall-from-height incidents involve ladders and stepladders – on
average this accounts for 16 deaths and 1150 major injuries to workers each year.



H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2
Employees
Toolbox Talk on Ladder Safety
Have you checked the ladder before use…..how do you know it’s safe to use?
Always check a ladder is in good condition BEFORE you use it.
                                                                            Falls from ladders
                     Extendable Ladder Inspections                          resulted in 16 deaths
 Before using an extendable ladder it is YOUR responsibility to check its   and 1146 major injuries
 condition before proceeding. You should be looking out for:                in 2007/08, amounting to
 1. Loose steps or rungs - Remove from use: repair or discard               over a quarter of all
 2. Damaged screws or bolts - Remove from use: repair or discard            major injuries as a result
 3. Warped, twisted or bent stiles - Discard: do not attempt repair         of a fall from height.
 4. Cracked or split stiles or rungs - Discard: do not attempt repair
 5. Damaged or missing feet - Remove from use: repair or discard            Dynamic Risk Assessment
   Your Manager should also ensure recorded periodic inspections are        Before you do any job, make
        carried out using the Council’s Ladder Inspection Checklist.        sure you have done an on
                                                                            the spot assessment or a
                                                                            dynamic risk assessment. If
  Common Causes of Accident               Common Control Measures           you spot a hazard or feel the
 1. Unsuitable equipment used        1.   Check the risk assessment         job is not safe then speak to
 2. Leaning Ladder slipping          2.   Secure the ladder (top/bottom)    your Manager.
 3. Overstretching                   3.   Move the ladder closer
 4. Equipment Failure                4.   Inspections (visual and formal)       Classes of ladders
 5. Slipping or loosing footing      5.   Correct footwear                  You should NEVER use
 6. Bad weather                      6.   Postpone the work                 domestic ladders in
 7. Poor ground conditions           7.   Inspect the ground/area before    work. Check the label on
 8. Lack of competence               8.   Provide training to employees     the ladder. You should
 9. Horseplay/messing around         9.   Supervision from Manager          be using EN131 or Class
                                                                            1 (industrial)
 Never position a ladder:
 1. Within the area of overhead power lines                                 Risk Assessment:
 2. Where it can be knocked by a window or door (lock them)                 A risk assessment is an
 3. Where service users or the public can walk under them (barrier off)     assessment of a task, in
 4. Against a fragile surface such as plastic guttering or a window         this instance working at
 5. Where it can struck be a passing vehicle                                height. Carrying out a
                                                                            suitable and sufficient
                        Stepladder Inspections                              risk assessment will
 Before using a stepladder ladder it is YOUR responsibility to check its    help you identify what
 condition before proceeding. You should be looking out for:                precautions are needed
 1. Loose/bent hinge spreaders - Remove from use: repair or discard         to protect you from
 2. Loose hinges Remove from use: repair or discard                         harm. A risk assessment
 3. Broken stop on hinge spreaders Discard: do not attempt repair           is just thinking about
 4. Missing or damaged rungs Discard: do not attempt repair                 what task you are going
 5. Missing or damaged feet Remove from use: repair or discard              to do, how you are going
 6. Wobbly or unstable Remove from use: repair or discard                   to do it and what safe
                                                                            systems of work you are
 Speak to your Manager if you have any concerns about the condition of      going to follow.
                               a ladder.

Always try and position stepladders with the rungs facing the work activity and not
side-on, as this is less stable



H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2
                                                     Department: Your department                                     RISK ASSESSMENT                               M34
                                                                                                                     RECORDING FORM
            Guidance on completing this form is available in the Health & Safety Management Arrangements for Risk Assessment
Location or                                                          Date assessment                                   Assessment undertaken
address             Your building/location                           undertaken       Today’s date                     by           Assessor’s Name
Activity or                                                          Review                                            Signature
situation           Activity i.e. changing light bulbs               date       Year from today’s date                            Assessor’s Signature
1) Hazard (See appendix 2 -   2) Who can be harmed and   3) What controls exist to reduce the risk?                                          4) Any further action;
H&S Management                how? (See appendix 2 -     Have you followed the hierarchy of controls (eliminate, substitute    Risk Score    This should be included in
Arrangements for Risk         H&S Management             etc)                                                                 Consequence    the action plan on
Assessment)                   Arrangements for Risk      (See appendix 3 in H&S Management Arrangements for Risk              X Likelihood   overleaf
                              Assessment)                Assessment)

Changing high level           Employee could fall and    Hierarchy of Working at Height                                                      Manager to look into
lights in 3 squash            suffer serious injury or      1. Avoid work at height where possible                                           the option of
courts approx 25 – 30         death. Public could be        2. Use equipment that prevents the fall                           4 x 3 = 12     purchasing a mobile
feet up. Using an A-          injured by falling            3. Minimise the consequences of a fall                                           elevating platform for
frame free standing step      tools/equipment.                                                                                               carrying out work at
ladder. Task is carried                                  Avoid – This task cannot be avoided as light bulbs must                             height tasks.
out by an employee                                       be changed.
approximately 9 times a                                                                                                                      This action must be
year.                                                    Prevent – Equipment that prevents the fall is not available                         transferred to the
                                                         for this task.                                                                      action plan below.

This column should                                          Short duration task only – maximum of 5 minutes up                              The Manager must be
include information                                          the ladder                                                                      able to demonstrate
about the task                                              The employee uses an A-frame step ladder                                        that a cost benefit
including:                                                  The ladder is tagged and formally inspected by the                              analysis has been
 Height of task                                             Manager using the ladder inspection checklist every 3                           carried out to
 Duration of task                                           months and a visual inspection carried out by the                               ascertain whether it is
 Frequency of task                                          employee prior to use                                                           viable to purchase
 Equipment used                                            Employee has received working at height training                                equipment that
                                                            Suitable footwear worn by the employee                                          prevents a fall (see
                                                            Another employee is available to keep the ladder                                appendix 5 for
                                                             steady                                                                          examples)
                                                            Area is cordoned off to the public


H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2
                                                  Risk Rating                                                              Action Required

                                                                         Unacceptable – stop activity and make immediate improvements
                                               17 - 25
                                                                         Tolerable – but look to improve within specified timescale
                                              10 – 16
                                                                         Adequate – but look to improve at review
                                               5–9
                                                                         Acceptable – no further action but ensure controls are maintained
                                               1–4

                                          (1) List hazards something with the potential to cause harm here
                                          (2) List groups of people who are especially at risk from the significant hazards which you have identified
                                          (3) List existing controls here or note where the information may be found. Then try to quantify the level of risk the
Likelihood:            Consequence:
                                             likelihood of harm arising that remains when the existing controls are in place based on the number of
5 – Very likely      5 – Catastrophic        persons affected, how often they are exposed to the hazard and the severity of any consequence. Use this
4 – Likely           4 – Major               column to list the controls that you might take and develop all or some of that list into a workable action plan.
3 – Fairly likely    3 – Moderate            Have regard for the level of risk, the cost of any action and the benefit you expect to gain. Agree the action plan
2 – Unlikely         2 – Minor               with your team leader and make a note of it overleaf. If it is agreed that no further action is to be taken this too
1 – Very unlikely    1 – Insignificant       should be noted.

(5) ACTION PLAN
                                                                                                                      Responsible person             Completion
Action required:
                                                                                                                                                       date
Manager to look into the option of purchasing a mobile elevating platform for carrying out work at height             Manager                        Immediate
tasks.




Action plan agreed with (signature)      Managers Name                 Date Today’s Date



H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2
                                   Quality Control Document


          Quality Control – All changes to these arrangements are recorded in this table



           Date                        Amendments                             Officer
      04/07/2012       1. Example risk assessment included              Gareth Roberts
                       2. Toolbox talk updated
                       3. Header and footer included




H&S Arrangements/Work at Height/GR/04/07/2012/Version 2

								
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