There are many industries and professional specializations in which work at height, based on construction access or rope access, may be applicable. However, allowing employees to work at higher heights or in confined spaces requires them to have both appropriate equipment and skills, supported by appropriate authorizations. When it is worth enabling your employees to work at height and why it is so important to properly train in this field (altitude courses), you will learn from this article.
Does business need employees to work at heights?
Why does companies need employees employed in the area of work at heights? Of course, it is determined by the nature of the products and services available in the offer of a given plant and the scope of its activity. Some enterprises, on the way of dynamic development and as they acquire new, key competences, may plan in their strategy to expand their offer with modern products or services. Others, in turn, after recognizing the disadvantages of cooperation with subcontractors in a given field, equip their employees with new skills - this allows them to carry out work within their own resources. Positions related to the performance of activities at heights can be used in almost every larger enterprise, especially in industries related to construction, electricity, agriculture, telecommunications and logistics.
What is work at height?
According to Polish law, work at height, as a rule, covers any work performed at least one meter above the ground or floor level. There are two exceptions to this rule, related to the condition of stable or permanent securing of the space in which the employee is present during the work performed. Often, employees, apart from being at height, also perform various activities related to their skills and predispositions. These activities include, for example, mounting a satellite dish, removing ice overhangs or hanging advertising banners. Work at heights may concern such professions as construction worker, fitter, and even a movie stuntman or acrobat. It is stipulated that each employee performing work at height should have appropriate height permissions related to building or rope access.
Building access and rope access
Both issues concern works carried out at heights. The differences between them come down to the way the work is done, depending on the use of the appropriate equipment. In construction access, workers often use scaffolding, fixed or mobile ladders, lifts, landings and other work platforms. This is especially useful when working on structures such as high-pitched roof surfaces, trusses, masts, and columns. The equipment used in rope access is related to work on the suspension or support and includes ropes, solutions based on rope systems and other types of equipment and accessories (e.g. lanyards, grippers, carabiners).
Who is really worth hiring
An employee who performs work at height should meet certain conditions, i.e. good mental and physical condition, be at least 18 years of age, have at least basic education and have appropriate height licenses. However, it is worth verifying other predispositions and competences of the candidate in the recruitment process. Qualifications in technical fields, such as electrics, assembly, construction and telecommunications, can prove to be an important asset for the employer. Skills, such as divisibility of attention or spatial imagination, are not without significance. In addition, it is desirable that the candidate shows responsibility as well as reliability and diligence in performing the assigned duties. The ideal candidate is the one for whom this type of work is not only a necessity in life, but sees an additional value in it, i.e. satisfaction.
What an employee working at height should know
Everyone working at height should be aware of the risk areas associated with this work (fall, contact with radio radiation or asbestos, undesirable effects of manual transport work for heavy objects, etc.). You have to be aware of the importance of common sense here. Any carelessness may involve a security risk. That is why the use of:
- appropriate equipment (e.g. harnesses, lines, helmets),
- solutions (i.e. vertical and horizontal security systems),
- procedures and standards of operation (e.g. health and safety and fire protection, each time checking and proper maintenance of equipment, rules of equipment operation),
- all good practices (being cautious or divided into attention),
helps to slow down a possible fall or eliminate its consequences. In case of undesirable situations, it is important to know the principles of first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation, especially in emergency situations. Each employee must remember that he reports to the supervising manager. The task of supervision over the performance of works at height of a given type is to keep the order of work and control of the activities performed. All necessary information in the field, i.e. work at heights, is provided to students during a course with a specific scope (mountaineering course, etc.).
Work at heights - employee training
Training employees is an investment. Thanks to trainings, employees consolidate and update their existing knowledge and acquire competences based on the latest trends and technologies on the market. The initial outlay allows in the long run to increase the effectiveness of human resources (maximizing the quality of work performance and minimizing costs resulting from errors and delays). It is no different in the case of industries or areas of activity of enterprises in which the work of people employed at work at heights is used. There are high-altitude courses to ensure the safety of employees. Therefore, we encourage you to familiarize yourself with our training offer. KURSO lays the foundations for the future of safety and staff education in many industries, with a training offer in the field of work at height. We are a solid and reliable partner for cooperation. It's worth trusting us.