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MOM: Alarming Increase in Fall from Height Accidents PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 04 November 2011 14:22

Poor housekeeping resulting in tripping hazards

 

Increased Falling From Height Accidents

According to the newpaper reports, in the first half of this year, 13 people died due to Fall From Height (FFH) accidents. This is more than last year's FFH fatalities, whereby only nine people died during the first half of the year. These FFH accidents mostly involved workers doing roof maintenance work and replacement of skylight.

Causes:

  1. Workers were found to be negligent and irresponsible with unsafe work procedures such as unsafe access to roof areas.
  2. Lack of proper fall protection equipment such as safety harness with anchorage.
  3. Improper use of A-Frame Ladders in manufacturing works, warehousing operations, and electrical works.

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM)'s recent inspections at 4,500 worksites, across construction sites, shipyards and general factory premises, uncovered more than 1,800 Work At Height (WAH) safety lapses.

Findings of MOM Inspections (wrt WAH Violations):

  1. Unsecured openings without proper barricades
  2. Lack of proper work areas' access.
  3. Failure to provide adequate anchorage for fall protection during WAH such as roof works.

As a result, MOM stopped work at 37 worksites and fined more than half of the sites. MOM also fined 150 small roofing contractors for unsafe WAH practices over the past nine months. The contractors were summoned to attend a WAH awareness and compliance session last August.

According to MOM's Director Policy, Information and Corporate Services for Occupational Safety & Health, Mr. Suresh Navaratnam, MOM will try to curb further FFH accidents. He said, “Fall-from-height (FFH) accidents are entirely preventable.

What MOM is likely to do very soon:

  1. MOM will step up its targeted enforcement, including surprise inspections.
  2. MOM will also working with WSH Council to educate employers and workers on the importance of a fall prevention plan".
  3. MOM will inspect over 1,000 worksites in the construction and marine industry from October to December this year for WAH safety lapses.

MOM reminds employers that companies that fail to ensure workplace safety may be charged under the Workplace Safety and Health Act, which carries a maximum fine of $500,000. Individuals can also be charged under the WSH Act for a maximum fine of $200,000 and/or 24 months jail term. MOM will not hesitate to issue stop work orders in workplaces that present immediate danger to the workers.(Source news and photograph: The Ministry of Manpower - 3 November 2011)

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All the best to your efforts.....Work Safely, Stay Healthy and Happy.....

Last Updated on Saturday, 26 November 2011 17:49
 

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