Suva campaign focuses on safe maintenance work
Safety tips, statistics offered
The Swiss occupational safety body Suva has launched a campaign highlighting potential dangers in maintenance work. Under time pressure, workers tend to improvise, becoming careless and forgetting rules, and taking shortcuts that can be dangerous or even fatal. One example from the Suva campaign focuses on mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs) being extended with unauthorised attachments because the work was not properly planned and the wrong machine was selected. Other examples focus on scaffolds, machines not being shut down completely before repairs are undertaken, and safety systems being bypassed in order to perform quick fixes.
Accidents in maintenance and construction work account for a fifth of all work-related accidents in Europe, according to the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA). In Switzerland, every third serious accident occurs in maintenance work. MEWPs are just one part of the Suva campaign which reinforces the message that accidents can be prevented if operators keep a clear head and adhere to safety procedures.
The Suva campaign offers safety tips, statistics and stickers in three languages:
IPAF, focusing on the powered access industry, continues to offer a wealth of resources such as films and technical guidance, as well as campaigns like Clunk Click, Spread the Load and Report an Accident, to promote best practice and safe work at height.
About the Author
IPAF is the parent organization of North America's Aerial Work Platform Training (AWPT). Both are not-for-profit member organizations that promote the safe and effective use of powered access equipment. Find more information at www.ipaf.org.