15% of all injuries & fatalities in Manitoba workplaces are a result of a fall.
Who needs fall protection?
Whether you’re working on a roof, painting ceilings or cleaning windows, if you’re at risk of falling from a height of 3 metres or more while you’re at work, you need to be wearing fall protection equipment.
What is fall protection equipment?
Fall protection systems can come in a variety of shapes and sizes depending on the job:
- Guardrails – a barrier that stops you from falling one level to another on a job site. They should readily visible and structurally sound to keep you from falling over the edge of a roof or down stairwells.
- Travel Restraints – can be seen with safety harnesses, lanyards, rope grabs and anchor points. These features restrict your movements to stop your fall and should be inspected by a professional engineer to ensure they are suitable for the weight of the load and distance of the potential fall.
- Fall Arrest – commonly used in construction projects and stops your fall before hitting the ground. A harness, shock absorber or retractable life line, lanyard and rope grab are all fall arrest components.
When should I replace my gear?
Any equipment that has been involved in a fall, including rope, should be replaced and not used again. If there is a defect or any doubt about how effective the equipment may be, do not use it and refer the questionable pieces to the person managing the job site.
Every piece of equipment (that has not been involved in a fall) should be reviewed and inspected at least once a year by a trained and certified professional. It is encouraged to keep written records of these inspections and approvals to ensure items are replaced when needed.
If you’re interested in learning more about fall protection equipment, the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety and SAFE Work Manitoba have additional resources.