Safety in the workplace is an incredibly important part of any business. Accidents and injuries can impact the bottom line but the good news that most can be prevented. To that end, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has set up strict guidelines and regulations to protect workers. Businesses that handle a lot of rigging is subject to its own set of rules set out by the agency.
OSHA regulations for riggers.
Employees must be qualified to be riggers. OSHA allows companies to decide how they will make sure all people working in rigging rigging are properly certified with a certificate, professional accreditation or college degree but none of these are demanded by the agency. The company merely has to show that all employees working in rigging have the necessary knowledge, experience and training to do the job safely. For example, they must be able to use all equipment. If someone is handling hook rigging, they need to know how to handle the hook system, for example.
Different loads require different skills. Different rigging jobs require different skill sets. OSHA has a special designation for certain riggers to work on specific loads. These workers meet OSHA specifications to be ?qualified? to handle certain kinds of loads and rigging equipment. Some are qualified to handle structural but not hook rigging, for instance. Again the employer is responsible for making sure workers are qualified to do the jobs they are assigned to do.
Some jobs demand qualified workers be present. OSHA has a set a list of instances where qualified workers have to be on site. Whenever any worker will be in are under a load. They must also be present for activities such as hook rigging, guiding the load and when a load is connected to a structure and a rig at the same time.
Rigging Certification. When a worker has this, they are considered to be a qualified rigger. To ensure compliance with OSHA regulations, some employers will send their workers to training programs that have been approved by the agency but it is not required. There are many different programs of differing lengths. Some programs offer different safety training such as fall arrest training. Others focus more on use of the different types of lifting equipment.
By following OSHA?s safety recommendations, businesses have been able to reduce workplace injuries and illnesses from nearly 11 incidents for every 100 people to only 4.3 for every 100 people in the years from 1972 to 2011. The agency developed a ?plan, provide and train? program to prevent falls, for instance. Their regulations on rigging have also included the equipment used. For example, lifting slings that are used constantly must be inspected quarterly or monthly while if they are used less often, inspections can be done every year.
Most companies have embraced newer safety training, procedures and equipment. Fall protection equipment such as safety nets and harnesses, protect workers from injuries but they also allow them to focus on their job rather than worry about falling from a high space. This added focus makes them more effective and efficient. Increased worker safety is just a good thing all around and for everybody involved.