Saturday, May 12, 2012

Working At Height is a Complex Issue

Event Industry News published an interesting article about Working at Height.  This is something that is almost always required during the mounting, running, and strike of most events.  However, the definition of what ‘working at height’ actually is should serve as a reminder to organizers of the important role played by event safety consultants.  Sadly, most events in North and South America don't have independent oversight of personnel safety, they tend to lump the task in with the event security work and fail to see the difference between the two roles. No show is so important that workers should ever be put at risk, yet they are routinely asked, nay, TOLD to do things that place riggers and ground crews unnecessarily in danger of injuries, or worse.

Chris Hannam from the UK safety consultant firm Stagesafe says that some of the myths surrounding health and safety are absurd, often sensationalized by the media and driven not by the UK Health and Safety Executive, but by insurance companies.  He says that it’s important not to be mislead by incorrect health and safety myths, but instead to keep things simple and read the correct guidance.  In his column, Chris provides the essential guidance for event professionals when working at height.

Safety involves equipment, the surfaces it will be operated upon, and the personnel performing the work.  His article can be found here:

An OSHA Fast Facts bulletin on the subject can be downloaded here as a PDF:

An OSHA QuickTake on the subject can be found here:

OSHAAcademy Online Fall Protection Training Course #714:

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