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Scaffold accident prevention

Any California construction worker who regularly uses a scaffold to perform his job duties is risking life and limb every time he or she climbs up on top of a scaffold. Indeed, human beings were not meant to fall from heights of multiple stories, and if the worker loses his or her balance, it can result in catastrophic injuries.

Because of the grave dangers associated with scaffold use, the Occupational Safety and Hazard Administration (OSHA) has created strict rules and regulations that apply to scaffold use at construction sites. This article will highlight the two most important areas covered by these regulations:

  • Design and construction: The construction and design of all scaffolds need to be in alignment with OSHA requirements. These requirements cover the type of equipment, its rated capacity, the way it's constructed and how it's being used. For example, all scaffolds have to be able to hold their own weight, and quadruple its intended load. In addition, suspension ropes have to support six times their intended load.
  • Inspection: The other area of importance relates to the regular inspection of scaffolds. A competent person must be specifically assigned to the task of inspecting scaffolds before each shift. This person needs to look for visible defects and other dangers associated with the scaffold. The person also needs to inspect personal protection equipment to be used with the scaffold. Any damaged equipment must be removed and/or repaired immediately.

Did you get hurt while using a scaffold on the job? You may be able to file a workers' compensation claim to receive money to pay for your medical care. If your injuries are so severe that you're unable to work, you might also be able to receive wage replacement benefits.

Source: FindLaw, "Scaffold Injuries," accessed July 28, 2017

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