Scaffold safety measures can impact everyone on a worksite

| Apr 30, 2021 | Firm News |

Falls from scaffolding is one of the most common causes of serious injuries on New Jersey construction sites. Your employer has the responsibility and liability for damages if you have injuries sustained as a result of negligence.

OSHA regulations regarding scaffold safety, including fall protection, are complex. They begin with vertical and horizontal standards and apply to any industry. Some regulations pertain to specific applications. In addition, scaffold systems more than 20 feet above the ground have particular safety and training requirements. Per regulations, you must have the appropriate training before using them.

At-risk workers

Depending on the project, a broad range of individuals use scaffolding when completing their duties, such as the following:

  • Welders
  • Electricians
  • Painters
  • Window washers
  • Steeplejacks
  • Maintenance workers

State safety laws create a non-delegable duty of care between workers and owners. This duty applies whether the workers are independent contractors or employees. As a result, the owner of the worksite cannot delegate the responsibility of an accident to a manager, foreman or other personnel.

The right personnel

Construction projects that utilize scaffolding must have at least one competent person on-site. This individual must understand the safety requirements and have familiarity with scaffolding. He may conduct the worksite safety training and direct the workers who construct, take apart and move the platforms and rigging. A qualified person typically has industry knowledge and qualifications. His responsibilities may include inspecting the scaffold at the end of each shift and identifying unsafe conditions.

Regardless of your job and duties, employers must have safeguards and best practices in place that help minimize your fall risk. If you sustained injuries due to OSHA non-compliance, you may have grounds for a claim, which can help pay for medical expenses and lost wages.