The 10th Annual National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction will take place May 1-5, 2023. This initiative from OSHA helps to raise awareness on fall hazards in an effort to reduce fall fatalities and injuries. In 2021, there were 17 fatalities in the structural steel and precast concrete contractors’ sector and 11 of them were due to a fall, slip or trip, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“In the first three quarters of FY 2022, OSHA conducted over 9,700 inspections in the construction industry, of which 47% identified fall hazards with over $34 million in penalties issued for serious and willful violations in fall protection,” said Patrick Kapust, deputy director of OSHA’s Directorate of Enforcement Programs said in an interview about OSHA’s 2022 Top 10 Citations list. The list shows that OSHA cited 5,260 violations for Fall Protection-General Requirements in 2022, making it the number one most frequently cited workplace safety standard for the 12th year in a row. Fall Protection- Training Requirements also made the list as number eight.
Four of the top ten citations are related to working as height which is why OSHA encourages employers to participate in the initiative by hold Safety Stand Down meetings the first week of May. Companies can conduct a Safety Stand-Down by taking a break to have a toolbox talk or another safety activity like conducting safety equipment inspections, developing rescue plans, or discussing job specific hazards. It can also be an opportunity for employees to talk to management about falls and other job hazards they see.
In support of the National Safety Stand-Down, SEAA has created a Safety Stand Down page with lots of resources. Our downloadable posters are available for free to the public. The new poster for the 2023 Safety Stand Down, How to Make JSA’s Intentional, provides suggestions on how to complete a job safety analysis and getting the whole team involved in order to keep safety at the forefront of the job.
Additional resources provide insight into related topics, such as fall prevention for loading and unloading trailers, wind hazards on elevated work platforms, protecting retractable lifelines from arcing damage, and more.
Visit the Safety Stand Down Resources page for best practices.
Census of Fatal Occupation Injuries Summary, 2021
OSHA’s Top 10 Citations of 2022
Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities, 2021. NAISC code 23812
This Safety Flash was contributed in cooperation with SEAA’s Safety Committee. It is designed to keep members informed about ongoing safety issues and to provide suggestions for reducing risk. Best practices are gathered from a variety of sources. They may be more or less stringent than individual corporate policies and are not intended to be an official recommendation from SEAA. Always get approval and direction from your company officers on any new practice or procedure as these best practices may not work for all situations.
Everyone benefits when a worker avoids injury. Submit your ideas for Safety Flash to email@example.com.