Falls are the No. 1 cause of workplace fatalities in the construction industry, which is why OSHA has scheduled a national safety stand-down from June 2-6 to raise awareness among employers and workers about the hazards of falls.
"Falls account for more than a third of all deaths in this industry," OSHA Administrator Dr. David Michaels said. "We're working with employers, workers, industry groups, state OSH plans and civic and faith-based organizations to host safety stand-downs that focus on recognizing hazards and preventing falls. We are getting the message out to America's employers that safety pays and falls cost."
During the stand-down, OSHA encourages employers and workers to pause their workday to talk about fall prevention in construction, and discuss topics such as ladder safety, scaffolding safety and roofing-work safety.
OSHA said it has launched a national safety stand-down Web page with information on how to conduct a successful stand-down. Afterward, employers will be able to provide feedback and receive a personalized certificate of participation.
The stand-down is part of OSHA's ongoing fall-prevention campaign, which the agency launched in 2012 with NIOSH. The campaign provides employers with lifesaving information and educational materials on how to plan ahead to prevent falls, provide the right equipment for their workers and train all employees in the proper use of fall-protection equipment.
"Preventing falls in the construction industry benefits everyone from the worker to the employer to the community at large,” NIOSH Director Dr. John Howard said. “This safety stand-down serves as an important opportunity for everyone to take the time to learn how to recognize and prevent fall hazards."
OSHA's stand-down Web page provides details on how to conduct a stand-down; receive a certificate of participation; and access free education and training resources, fact sheets and other outreach materials in English and Spanish.