Dropped Object Protection - are second chances sufficient?
In recent years the hazard of dropped objects has risen to become the second most deadly hazard in the Australian workplace. Between 2010 and 2014 work related fatalities caused by dropped objects was only superseded by vehicle accidents on public roads.
We all know that the resource, construction and utilities work environment is a dangerous space, but we also do a lot to minimise the risk to all those who are exposed to these hazards. The question is - are we doing enough?
In the connection of dropped objects, the traditional measures of managing the risk involves hard hats, drop zones, barricades etc. In the light of todays alarming statistics - are these sufficient?
In reality, all these measures are second chances. They certainly have a place in every 'falling object risk management plan', however it needs to be recognised that they are literally second chances, designed to hopefully minimise the damage caused by an object that has been dropped and is hurtling towards the ground totally out of control...
In contrast to this, some items are NEVER allowed to drop...They are called people! Personnel height safety is non-negotiable and is promoted and invested in heavily at all levels.
What about the tools? In today's world 'dropped tools' is a serious risk in every workplace involving heightwork and the question needs to be asked...."Are second chances sufficent?