Avoiding Slips and Falls

Winter is not the only time you can slip or fall while you're working. You can slip on wet leaves, wet grass, or even a ladder or truck step. And that's just slipping. You can trip, take a misstep, or even have an unstable surface move under you, and you can take a terrible fall.

Approximately 1,200 workers in the United States die each year as a result of a slip, trip, or fall. And since our crew members spend nearly all of their time working outside in the air or an uneven surface, the risk of an injury is greater.

Here are a few safety steps and procedures we share with all of our associates during their weekly and daily safety briefings

Working and walking surfaces of all equipment, including mobile equipment, shall be made skid-resistant. This also includes different steps on your truck.

Tree-Climber.jpgTree climbers, you need to be secured while you're ascending and the tree. You need to be tied in once the work begins, and stay tied in until it's completed and you've returned to the ground. You also have to be secured when you're repositioning the climbing line.

If you're cutting down a tree or trunk, pre-plan and clear your escape route. The preferred route is 45 degrees in either direction from the line of the fall. Make sure you clear your obstructions before you actually start to cut. Use this path to get out of the way once you have made the cut.

Don't accumulate brush and logs in work areas, as these are tripping hazards. Make sure you have an efficient "branch management" system so brush doesn't accumulate at the worksite.

Similarly, never leave tools unattended if they're not in use. Tools that are temporarily not in use should be placed in a work-site storage location. When you're finished with a tool, return it immediately to the proper storage area on the truck.

Watch out for depressions, holes, and uneven spots in the ground. These can be especially hazardous, because the grass may be long enough to hide the uneven areas, and you won't find it until you step in it. And while we're on the subject, be sure your boots are laced up tight to provide enough support if you step into a hole.

And as we get closer to the winter, there will be more surprise ice patches and wet leaves to slip on. So be careful when you're getting in and out of your truck.

If you have any questions, instances where a piece of equipment is no longer skid resistant, or a your truck's running boards are broken or missing anti-skid measures, talk to your crew leader about it immediately.
Posted: 8/15/2018 1:00:00 PM by