CoatingsPro Magazine

MAY 2016

CoatingsPro offers an in-depth look at coatings based on case studies, successful business operation, new products, industry news, and the safe and profitable use of coatings and equipment.

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36 MAY 2016 COATINGSPROMAG.COM Safety Watch A ccording to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), fall protection violations once again topped the list for 2015 with 7,402 total violations. Te good news is that the numbers are down from previous years; there were 7,516 violations recorded in 2014. Furthermore, there are more than 50,000 "Struck by Falling Object" OSHA Recordables every year in the United States, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics; that's one injury caused by a dropped object every 10 minutes. Te key to continuing to lower these numbers in 2016 and beyond is worker training and support. We need to make sure every worker understands the basics of wearing and maintaining his or her fall protection equipment — and that includes you. Using Fall Safety Gear Even as the owner, to make the most of your company's safety gear, you should frst familiarize yourself with your company's fall protection program, and then be sure you understand how to use the equipment safely, within the context of that plan and jobsite. For example, if part of your job is to apply the coatings, you should examine whether your equipment matches the jobsite particulars and whether the gear provides a safe amount of fall clearance to ensure you aren't at risk of hitting anything below. You should also ensure that you have a safe and secure anchor point and connection for both yourself and your equipment. In addition, you should make sure that you know not only how to use the gear but also how to set it up properly. For example, a tool that isn't attached correctly to a D-ring can lead to preventable accidents and can even end in a tragedy. From a managerial standpoint, simply providing your workers with a plan, the tools, and the right equipment is not enough, especially when it comes to fall protection. Unlike hard hats, safety glasses, and gloves, which may be intuitive to use, fall protection gear is more specialized, and most workers do not know how to use it properly. It goes without saying that the efectiveness of fall protection gear, no matter how durable or reliable, will be compromised when your workers don't use it correctly. Tat's why you should always enlist a specialist to show your workers not only what tools to use but how to use them properly. On-site training courses are also a great solution, as they allow your workers to apply the training — and From a managerial standpoint, simply providing your workers with a plan, the tools, and the right equipment is not enough, especially when it comes to fall protection. Photos courtesy of Capital Safety By Mark Caldwell, Director Fall Protection for Tools, and Tim Tompson, Project Manager, for Capital Safety, a 3M Company How to Fit, Wear, and Inspect Your Fall Protection Gear

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