The Sky Isn’t Falling (And Your Tools Shouldn’t Either)
Fall protection refers to anything that can fall, whether it’s a worker, tools or equipment.
- For all objects at height – including humans – the focus always should be on preventing things from falling rather than on catching objects.
- There are more than 50,000 “struck by falling object” OSHA recordables every year in the United States, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s one injury caused by a dropped object every 10 minutes.
- An eight-pound wrench dropped 200 feet would hit with a force of 2,833 pounds per square inch – the equivalent of a small car hitting a one-square-inch area.
- A worker delivering sheet rock to a construction site in Jersey City was killed by a one-pound tape measure that had slipped out of another worker’s hands 50 stories above.
The difference between a fall protection program for humans and fall protection program for tools is only a matter of perspective: The first saves you; the second saves others