Falls from height can have devastating consequences, such as serious injury, permanent disability and death. In fact, falls from height are the most common class of workplace injury and therefore the focus of a major campaign by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE).
Churches are often large and lofty buildings and a risk of injury can arise from the need to clean and maintain items which are high up. Working next to stairways or trap doors also poses a risk.
Here are our TOP TEN TIPS on avoiding the risks from working at height:
- avoid working at height wherever possible, for instance by using extensible brushes for cleaning.
- make sure everyone who needs to work at height knows how to do so safely.
- visually check a ladder or stepladder for safety before attempting to use it.
- ensure all ladders and steps are checked for safety by a Competent Person at least every year.
- Take care when using ladders or steps to site them on a hard, level surface away from doors or windows.
- make sure that nobody can climb on any fixed ladders or scaffolding in or around the church.
- lean over balconies when carrying out maintenance or cleaning tasks.
- stand on chairs or tables.
- over-reach whilst working from a ladder or stepladder.
- risk using a ladder or stepladder if you are not sure it’s safe. If it doesn’t look safe, it probably isn’t.
To find out more, and to read our full guidance on working safely at height, download the FREE booklet here (in PDF format)