PPE hard hats

Personal protective equipment (PPE) is an industry that looks set to boom. Hard hats and hi-vis jackets may not be everyone's idea of a multi-billion industry, but according to predictions made by Fortune Business Insights, the PPE market is set be worth $85.72 billion globally by the year 2026.

Growing concerns about the environment, employee safety and large-scale regeneration and infrastructure projects look to be the key drivers behind this rapid growth. Let's take a look at what the future may hold for these vital products.

 

Eco Friendly Developments

Growing concerns about the environmental impact of business and industry are dominating headlines in many parts of the world right now. All sorts of industries are striving to adapt and make their processes more sustainable, and the PPE industry is no exception. Many companies are looking at ways to develop eco-friendly products, either through more energy-efficient machinery or by utilising recycled materials. Some companies are even turning to plastics made from organic materials such as sugar cane.

With products like that already beginning to appear, there can be little doubt that PPE manufacturers will soon be investing in sustainable and hard-wearing materials that are good for workers and the planet. We can't wait to see what materials will be used to make the PPE equipment of tomorrow.

 

Infrastructure and Large-Scale Projects

The topic of the environment leads us to the predicted boom in large-scale infrastructure projects across the globe. Whether it's the building of green technologies or wider public transport infrastructure, big construction projects are set to be key market drivers for the PPE industry.

In the UK, High Speed Rail 2 could potentially employ 30,000 people to build and design the railway alone, showing the sheer scale of labour required for projects of this scale. With more construction jobs set to be created over the next few years, it's no surprise that the market is set to boom internationally. Thousands more employees will be needed to work on expansive new projects, and protective workwear is bound to have a key role to play.

 

Employee Safety

Keeping employees safe is a critical concern for modern businesses. With growing concern for safety and increasing legal protection for workers, employees can now expect more PPE equipment to be provided for them in their place of work. In the UK, companies are legally bound to protect their employees and follow workplace safety legislation.

As more legislation is passed by Parliament and devolved assemblies in the UK, we can expect to see industries tightening safety regulations and supplying more types of PPE and safety equipment to prevent hazardous accidents. With fatal accidents falling in the UK over the past decade thanks to health and safety protections, it's no wonder that companies worldwide are beginning to introduce more regulations in order to keep employees safe.

At SafetyLiftinGear.com, we have everything you need to keep your employees safe and your warehouse running smoothly, including a range of personal protective equipment for all workplace scenarios.

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You can take a closer look at our aluminium telescopic ladder in action below:

 

For more information on our new reduced prices on our telescopic ladder, contact a member of the SLG team today by calling 0117 9381 600 or emailing sales@safetyliftingear.com.

Fall Protection Equipment

Different types of work require different safety measures. Therefore, it is vital that when working at height, you are properly equipped to complete the specific task-at-hand. However, with so many different working environments, operations and equipment, it can be a challenge to know exactly what type of equipment is needed for what task. Here, we break down the features of working at height, what is required when doing so and the several different working conditions, providing the necessary equipment needed to carry out work in the safest possible way.

Working at Height

Managing work at height follows a hierarchy of controls – avoid, prevent, restrain, arrest, which begins with the question “can the work be done safely from the ground?” Fall arrest equipment should only be considered as a last resort if other safety equipment cannot be used. For situations where work cannot be completed from the ground collective protection equipment such as nets and railings must be considered first.

A common solution is utilising scaffolding or mobile platform (MEWP) that provide easy and safe access at height. If none of the above methods can be implemented, individual fall protection equipment safeguarding from falls must be used. i.e. restraint equipment.

The basic features of individual fall protection equipment protecting against a fall from height are:

RESTRAINT:

  1. Using fixed length equipment to position the user ensuring it isn't possible to reach a position from which he/she may fall from a height.

FALL ARREST:

  1. If a fall occurs, the equipment must minimise the distance and consequences of a fall.

 

Components of Fall Protection Equipment

All fall protection systems must comprise three basic components:

  • An anchor point – Anchor points are the first and most important element of an individual fall protection system. They connect to the workplace and work to fasten the connecting safeguarding component to a support structure. Anchor points may be permanent such as horizontal safety line systems with a steel rope or mobile such as safety tripods. All anchor points must conform to the requirements of EN795:2012 and be installed and tested in accordance with BS7883.
  • Energy-absorbing components – This part of the fall protection system connects the safety harness to the anchor point. In the case of a fall, the energy-absorbing component must arrest the fall and absorb the energy generated. The component absorbs kinetic energy and limits the impact force to 6kN or less, which reduces the risk of further injury by suddenly stopping the fall. Typical equipment used with this function are energy-absorbing lanyards or a fall arrest blocks.
  • Full body harness – The main purpose of a full-body harness is to keep an individual’s body supported while falling and ensure secure distribution of dynamic forces produced while arresting the fall.

 

Types of Work

As mentioned, different work conditions consist of different height safety requirements and procedures as a result of the environment they occur in and the dangers involved. Here we take a look and break down the safety requirements for working on a roof, fragile surfaces, ladders and scaffolds and the correct equipment that is needed to carry out work safely.

Roof Work

All work on roofs is highly dangerous, even a job that can take only minutes to complete consist of potentially fatal risks. Therefore, proper precautions are needed to control all the risks that are involved. The individuals managing and conducting the work need to be properly trained, competent and must fully plan the work to be completed in relation to the main risks, causes of accidents and equipment required.

Falls from roofs, either through fragile surfaces and openings or from roof edges can occur on both commercial and domestic projects as well as new build and refurbishment jobs. Many deaths happen every year involving smaller buildings working on the roof of domestic dwellings, which tend to fall under two types:

  • Slopings roofs – These roofs require scaffolding to prevent workers and materials from falling from the edge. You must also fit edge protection to the eaves of any roof and on terraced properties to the rear as well as the front. Where work is of short duration, properly secured ladders to access the roof, such as roof ladders, may be used.
  • Flat roofs – Falls from flat roof edges can be prevented by simple edge protection arrangments – a secure double guardrail and toeboard around the edge.

Work on a fragile surface roof requires a combination of stagings, guard rails, fall arrest and safety nets slung beneath and close to the roof. All roofs should be treated as fragile until they have been confirmed as not. Fragile rooflights are also a hazard as some may be difficult to spot in certain light conditions or maybe hidden by paint. These areas must be protected by using either barriers or covers that are secured and labelled with a warning. Here at SLG, we provide a number of products that ensure when working on sloping and flat roofs, you are completely protected against falls. You can view our best products for working on flat roofs below.

Fall Arrest Harness >      Fall Arrest Block >       Portable Safety Anchor >

 

Ladders

Every time a ladder is used to carry out work at height, a pre-use check needs to be conducted to ensure that it is safe for use. This should be carried out by:

  • The user
  • Before using the ladder
  • After the ladder has been dropped or moved from a dirty area to a clean area (conditions of feet need to be looked over)

The benefit of carrying out pre-use checks is to identify any immediate or serious defects that can cause an accident. The areas of most concern are the ladder’s stiles, feet and rungs. Once this has been completed and you are satisfied that the ladder is in good working condition, you must then ensure that all of the required safety precautions to carry out work whilst on the ladder are in place, including wearing the right equipment. At SafetyLiftinGear, we provide a range of secure ladder safety equipment that ensures your safety whilst working at height, including quality fall protection kits.

Ladder Safety Kit Level 1 >           Ladder Safety Kit Level 2 >

 

Scaffolds

Tower scaffolds are one method used to prevent a fall when working at height on a sloped roof. The type of scaffold selected needs to be suitable for the work and erected and dismantled by people who have been trained and are competent to do so. However, despite scaffolds existing to prevent a fall, dangers still exist once the scaffold has been set up, with many people injured each year as a result of falling from them. Incidents with scaffolds often occur as a result of dangerous methods of erection or dismantling, defects in the erected scaffold or the scaffold being misused. To ensure maximum safety whilst working on a scaffold, it is recommended that all workers wear appropriate protective equipment, such as specialist scaffold harnesses. You can view ours below!

Scaffold Harness Kit >    2-Point Scaffolders Harness Kit >

 

Mobile Elevated Working Platforms (MEWPS)

When using mobile elevated work platforms such as cherry pickers and access platforms, there are a number of safety precautions that need to be implemented in order to avoid and prevent falls from occurring. Such as:

  • Wearing a suitable harness
  • Only using the platform on level, firm ground
  • Working with a trained operator at ground level
  • Only using equipment with outriggers and stabilisers
  • Keeping the platform within safe working limits and radius, taking account of wind speeds, beams, hanging obstructions and power cables

If all of these things are adhered to, then the likelihood of a fall or serious consequences as a result of a fall occurring is dramatically decreased. You can find our best-selling access platform harness below!

Safety Harness Kit For Access Platform >

 

In order to avoid potentially fatal falls when working at height, it’s vitally important that you understand the specific requirements of every task you carry out. The working environment needs to be assessed by competent and qualified people, who can identify dangers and hazards before they cause a real accident. When the work is actually being carried out, the importance of wearing the correct equipment as well as setting up the necessary safety precautions cannot be understated. As well as the above products, we supply a whole range of height safety equipment, perfect for a variety of operations at height. You can browse our extensive collection below.

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If you have any questions regarding our range of height safety equipment or any of the listed products, please do not hesitate to contact us today by calling 0117 9381 600 or email sales@safetyliftingear.com.

 

A roofing company boss has been sentenced to jail after one of his builders fell 30ft to his death whilst working on a £7 million home in Kensington.

The owner of G&L Scaffolding and Roofing, Kevin Leathers, 41, had “flagrantly ignored” safety warnings when father-of-five Jon Currie, 36, was not wearing a harness when he fell, leading to “catastrophic brain damage” and ultimately his death in July 2017.

The experienced scaffolder lost his footing while taking down a temporary roof of corrugated iron panels. Leather pleaded guilty to failing to ensure the health, safety and welfare of employees and was eventually jailed for eight months, having been previously warned about his employees working in dangerous conditions.

Prosecutors stated that Leathers had been sent a letter reminding him of strict health and safety requirements and that his working practices were “unsafe” when his crew were spotted working without safety harnesses. When Mr Currie fell, he and another worker were again not wearing safety harnesses and no risk assessment had been carried out to identify potential dangers. Curries was also not qualified for the job that he was doing that day. Prosecutor stated that Leathers “failed to exercise his duty of care and as a result, Jon Currie died while working for him. Leathers intentionally breached or flagrantly ignored the law.”

Passing sentence, Judge Joanna QC said “after the letter in April, Leather could not have been warned in clearer terms about the dangers of the activities undertaken. He failed to take appropriate steps. If death results from such failures you must expect to receive an immediate prisons sentence.”

Leather was charged with manslaughter by gross negligence after Curries fell working on an extension to a double-storey basement.

This is another example of the extreme dangers faced when work is carried without the required equipment. Here at SafetyLiftinGear, we provide quality, effective height safety equipment including harnesses, lanyard and fall arrest blocks that assure your safety when working at all heights. You can browse our range below!

Our Height Safety Equipment >

 

For more information on our height safety equipment or to speak to one of our experts about any of our products, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us today by calling 0117 9381 600 or emailing sales@safetyliftingear.com.

Lifting Gear Inspections

 

From construction to shipping and mining to engineering, lifting equipment is used by a wide range of different industries for various tasks and applications. Often created using robust metals and other long-lasting materials, the majority if not all lifting equipment is designed and manufactured to last the test of time. However, regardless of where lifting equipment is used, it will no doubt be subject to some degree of pressure, strain and stress at one time or another and as a result, will need to be inspected and tested to ensure it is still safe and suitable to use.

 

The reasons for lifting gear inspections

There are two primary reasons as to why you will need to conduct inspections on your lifting equipment:

  1. Over time, your collection of lifting equipment is going to degrade and become slightly dated. With continued use, you may start to see and experience abrasions, corrosion and deteriorations in performance, which is completely natural and expected. Inspections aim to help identify these things before they have the opportunity to become a real issue.
  1. Inspections are required by law! Under the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, you will find two important pieces of legislation. The first being the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER) and the second the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER).

Both of the above pieces of legislation declare that all lifting applications are properly planned, which involves utilising the correct equipment that has been properly tested and inspected. PUWER states that all lifting equipment must be ”safe for use, maintained in a safe condition and inspected to ensure it is correctly installed and does not subsequently deteriorate.” Therefore, to ensure that you stay on the right side of the law, it’s imperative to regularly inspect your lifting gear.

 

Types of lifting gear inspections

As well as there being two reasons to conduct lifting gear inspections, there are also two types of lifting gear inspections. Firstly, there are inspections that can be carried out by yourself. It’s recommended that these are conducted before each lifting operation to ensure that the task can be performed as safely as possible.

The second type of inspection is a thorough, professional inspection conducted by a qualified person. These inspections should be completed once every six to twelve months, depending on the type of gear. Generally, loose lifting equipment such as eyebolts and shackles should be looked at every six months, whereas other equipment should be every twelve months. Once these inspections are complete, you will receive a certificate which confirms the equipment is suitable for use until its next inspection.

 

How to prolong the life of your lifting equipment

In order for your equipment to pass its lifting gear inspections, it’s important to keep it in good working order. Here are some things that you can do to ensure your lifting gear maintains a longer service life:

  • Ensure your lifting gear is stored and used safely in the correct conditions
  • Always follow the correct procedures and guidelines before, throughout and after use
  • Ensure you never exceed the safe working load (SWL) of your equipment
  • Only trained and qualified personnel use the equipment
  • All equipment is handled with care and patience

 

How SLG can help you with your lifting gear inspections

Did you know that SLG offers professional lifting gear inspections? If you need to get your equipment inspected, simply get in touch us and a member of our qualified team can help! For more information or to get any more lifting gear inspection questions answered, do not be afraid to contact us.

 

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