Calling all OSHA fall protection violators, it's National Beheading Day and it's time for your comeuppance. Yep, OSHA started a new policy... well maybe not. But, before anything bad happens to you or your crew let's learn how to create a fall protection plan.
A written fall protection plan is a good thing to have on hand for safety and is evidence that a company gives a crap about its employees. We recommend you have one. OSHA says that a fall protection plan must be developed by a qualified person, made specific for each site, and most importantly, kept up to date. Here are a couple steps for creating your fall protection plan.
1. Determine and identify the areas of risk and hazard.
2. If possible, engineer out or eliminate the hazard entirely.
3. If you can't eliminate the hazard, implement fall prevention equipment such as guardrails and warning lines.
4. For the remaining hazard areas select appropriate fall arrest equipment for your site and crew.
5. Use experts to properly install appropriate anchors as well as lifeline systems.
6. Prepare rescue equipment for every possible fall.
7. Train your employees on the correct way to install and use your fall protection equipment as well as rescue equipment.
8. Put all of the stuff from the previous steps into a written plan including a statement of policy, description of measures being taken, the delegation of ongoing inspection and maintenance, equipment replacement, and incident reporting.
9. Put someone in charge of updating the fall protection plan for each job site.
10. Get to work safely.
There you go. 10 simple steps to get your fall protection plan up and running. If you're using fall protection, you need a fall protection plan. Don't become one of those "duh?" companies that OSHA has to write a paper on and charge you for it. You're better than that.