In the New York City region, fall protection plays a major role in site and worker safety. Fatalities caused by falls from elevation continue to be a leading cause of death for construction employees, according to OSHA. Despite the availability of improved equipment and thorough training, OSHA continues to see fall protection as a top job site violation. That’s why Werner, the world leader in ladders and manufacturer of climbing products and fall protection equipment, is so committed to offering a deep library of training videos and conducting live and virtual safety training events every year.
The ABCs of Fall Protection
“Werner has a long history of not only putting workers at heights but also protecting them,” says Thomas Herlihy, Territory Manager for Werner. “The ABCs of fall protection highlight the things workers need to do to be safe on site.”
"A" is for Anchorage Solutions
“‘A’ is for anchorage,” Herlihy notes. “Workers must have a secure point of attachment for fall protection equipment. The point of attachment is where a lifeline or lanyard is connected to provide support, and it must be strong and sturdy enough to support the weight and forces generated during a fall.”
Werner’s A510300 R3 Concrete Anchor is a reusable, safe, and secure anchorage solution for horizontal, vertical, or overhead anchoring applications. It features a rapid quick-release button that allows users to easily install and remove the anchor. The rigid tri-wedge design and diamond-hard carbon coating ensures durability. An omni-directional design allows it to rotate 360 degrees and flip back and forth 180 degrees, to increase connector compatibility.
"B" is for Body Support such as the Chair in the Air
Body support is provided by the equipment worn by a worker that provides support and protection in the event of a fall. “This typically includes full-body harnesses like the ones Werner manufactures,” says Herlihy. “They are designed to distribute the forces of a fall across the body’s strongest parts, reducing the risk of injury. Werner harnesses are adjustable in five places instead of the usual three, which disperses the impact and force of a fall, making it a safer choice. The Werner harness must be properly fitted and adjusted to ensure maximum effectiveness.”
Every Werner Harness can easily be converted into a ‘Chair in the Air’ to keep the worker safer until they can be rescued. “While these harnesses are lightweight and comfortable, they also offer real protection,” he explains. ” And with the ProForm SP SwitchPointTM Harness, it’s even easier to make it a Chair in the Air: all it takes is a pull on an easy-to-operate deployment cord to place the suspended worker into a comfortable seated position with freedom of movement for improved rescue operations.”
"C" Is for Connecting Devices, like Self-Retracting Lifelines
The connecting device is “C.” It’s the component that links the worker’s harness to the anchorage point. “The connecting device has to be appropriate for the job,” Herlihy emphasizes, “and it must be the appropriate length and have the right safety features as determined by the job site.”
Werner offers a range of high-performance self-retracting lifelines (SRLs) that adhere to the newest guidelines put out by ANSI. Werner’s self-retracting lifelines keeps the maximum arrest distance to 24 inches, so they are ideal for low clearance. Werner SRLs also offer a range of lifeline hook options and can be combined into a twin leg model for 100% tie-off applications.
Herlihy says that following the ABCs of fall protection is the first step for maintaining safety while working at heights or in situations where fall hazards exist. However, it is also critical to receive proper training to understand how fall protection works. When on-site teams use the equipment properly, they can protect themselves from potential falls.
Werner Also Helps With the "D" and "E" - Descent and Rescue, and Education
In addition to the traditional ABCs of fall protection, Werner can also help contractors improve the “D” and “E”: Descent and Rescue, and Education.
“Werner’s chair in the air feature is an important part of descent and rescue,” Herlihy adds. “If a worker falls, instead of hanging in a harness, they are able to easily convert the Werner harness into a chair in the air, so they are repositioned into a seated position. This can reduce injury, increase comfort, and improve mobility, so rescues are easier.”
Education, the “E” in the Werner ABCDE approach, raises awareness, shares knowledge, and trains workers in use of Werner fall protection gear. Herlihy explains, “A well-designed education plan ensures that everyone involved in tasks at heights understands the potential hazards and knows how to use fall protection equipment effectively.”
Werner’s unparalleled education programs include awareness of hazards, understanding regulations and OSHA standards, proper equipment selection, safe usage of Werner fall protection equipment, and ongoing updates and refresher courses.
“OSHA demands that workers wear and use fall protection gear correctly. Our education programs help make that happen,” he adds. “By incorporating Werner’s ABCDE approach to fall protection safety, contractors and developers in the New York City region can significantly reduce the number of fall-related accidents and create a safer working environment for everyone involved.
Metro and Werner Offer Fall Protection Products in the New York City Region
In addition to being a world leader in ladders, Werner is the only manufacturer to serve both climbing and fall protection users. Metro is proud to offer the complete line of Werner’s fall protection and climbing products designed for working at heights, including scaffolding, pump jacks, stages, planks, and fall protection equipment, including harnesses, lanyards, anchors, and compliance kits.
“Metro does an excellent job across the board,” Herlihy emphasizes. “It’s a pleasure to do business with them, and they do a great job explaining the Werner benefits to customers.”