As we all know one of OSHA’s focus four topics is Struck By.
Being struck by falling objects kills hundreds of workers each year and injures tens of thousands more. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 247 deaths were attributed to impacts from dropped tools and other objects in 2015.
Furthermore, according to Liberty Mutual struck by incidents caused 8.6% of the national burden in 2016 resulting in $5.3 billion dollars in direct cost.
Protective equipment, such as hard hats, have long been available with standards written to minimize the effects of struck-by incidents, but this is only addressing this hazard after the object has fallen.
Prevention measures such as netting and toe boards are also put in place to mitigate the risk, however, those practices do not entirely prevent incidents.
While working at heights, active controls utilized to prevent falling tools and objects by tying them off or containing then with tethering systems are a rapidly growing proactive safety practice.
ANSI recently established manufacturing guidelines for tethering systems which was a significant step in reducing dropped tool incidents. Click here to purchase the standard.
While doing work from an elevated position, make sure you evaluate your potential for dropping objects. Identify all those who could be exposed and take necessary precautions to keep everyone safe.