OSHA Focus 4 – Struck By Safety – Toolbox Talk #4 – Equipment & Falling Objects

by Rob

in Podcast Episodes, Safety

Struck By Safety—Toolbox Talk #4

For more information about the Focus 4 Campaign and to access to all the toolbox talks in English and/or Spanish, click here.

Equipment & Falling Objects

Being Struck by Falling Objects is a leading source of construction fatalities. Even a small object falling from a height can cause serious or fatal injuries.

Here is an Example: In March 2017, a laborer was picking up debris at a construction site. A forklift was lifting a pile of lumber to the third floor next to him. The lumber was not secured and fell three stories from the forklift. One board struck an employee in the head. He was wearing a hard hat, but the incident left him with a concussion.

  1. What could have been done to prevent this incident?
  2. Are materials regularly being lifted by heavy equipment to upper levels on your worksite?
  3. If so, what do you do to protect yourself when walking through the site? What do you do to protect others?

Prevent Being Struck by Equipment or Objects

  • Loads should not be hoisted or allowed to pass over people.
  • Loads need to be secured when lifted by forklifts, cranes, or any sort of material mover.
  • Hard hats can help minimize injuries to the head and therefore also protect your spine.
  • Toe boards need to be placed on all scaffolding, unprotected sides or edges, and open elevations to protect workers below from falling materials such as lumber, brick, tools, debris, nuts and bolts, nails, screws, and equipment.
  • Materials should be stacked and secured appropriately and not leaning or ready to topple over.
  • Tools in elevated working areas need to be secured if close to any change in elevation. There are new and improved tool lanyards available.
  • Even when taking all of the above cautions, items can shift, winds can gust or change, workers can lose their grip, someone can accidently kick an object, or any number of other things can happen to allow objects to become airborne and drop to lower levels. So listen and watch as you walk the site; get off the cell phone; remove the earbuds or lower the volume of the music.

Let’s talk about this jobsite. Record notes and share with appropriate parties

  • Are elevated loading areas or zones on this project and cordoned off to restrict entry?
  • Is there any area on this site that the Controlling Contractor should be told about to eliminate a potential falling object
    exposure?

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