OSHA’ s annual National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction begins Monday, May 2. Use valuable resources from OSHA and NAHB to educate workers on fall risks and help avoid preventable injuries.
Fatalities caused by falls on jobsites continue to be the leading cause of death for construction employees, accounting for 351 of the 1,008 construction fatalities recorded in 2020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Those deaths were preventable with the proper training, jobsite requirements and equipment.
In addition, improper fall protection is the most frequently cited OSHA violation each year for construction.
OSHA, with support from NAHB, holds a week-long stand down to encourage construction firms to set aside time to discuss fall protection with workers. In advance of the stand down, company managers should review their policies, training materials and equipment to make sure workers have everything they need.
Pick a specific topic to focus on, one that is relevant to the current work on the jobsite like scaffolding, ladder or roofing safety. Present the information to the workers, keeping it short and simple. Use visual aids or conduct hands-on demonstrations, such as how to put on a harness or inspect a ladder/scaffold.
For tips on holding a stand down, visit the NAHB Fall Safety Stand Down page. NAHB also has a free comprehensive written toolkit for members that includes a model plan, training resources and handouts on a wide range of fall protection topics. Consider showing the video below to workers during the stand down (Spanish version available here).
Taking just 15 minutes on one day next week to focus on fall prevention can save lives, missed time and money. Falls on construction sites are preventable if everyone takes safety seriously.