Working With Scaffolding? Three Tips

Whether you're painting on a site or doing brick work, a scaffolding system can give you access to heights and allow you to work on a much greater surface area than you perhaps would otherwise. If your team isn't always working with these platforms, you'll need to remember these suggestions when beginning.

Get the Right Type

For starters, you've got to have suitable scaffolding in order to work. That means you'll need to break out a tape measure so you know the amount of scaffolding you'll need to work the entire space or structure. However, measurements are just one piece of information you'll require.You'll also have to be smart about the material of the system you choose. For brick work, for instance, H frame scaffolding could be the safest and most sturdy; any other material may buckle under the weight of bricks and workers. You'll typically be renting scaffolding, so check with your rental company staff to be sure you're not going to make a mistake about what kind of material you should opt for.

Inspect Site Beforehand

Before the scaffolding is delivered, you need to make time for scoping out the entire site so you can anticipate and resolve any troublesome issues. Ensure that you've chosen the best possible location for the system and that the platforms won't be obstructed. For example, clear the ground of equipment, stumps and other items so it is level and unlittered. If power lines are nearby, make a plan for steering clear of them as you work. Talk with your team to hear their ideas about what could make the scaffolding system most effective.

Ensure Everyone Wears Proper Gear

The federal agency OSHA dictates what fall protection gear is most appropriate for this kind of work. However, OSHA guidelines should only be part of the common sense guidelines workers should be following. Although OSHA only requires handrails on platforms higher than 10 feet, think carefully about whether your employees would benefit from handrails even if the platforms are lower. Wear the appropriate harnesses and helmet when you are on the scaffolding platforms and insist that everyone else does too. In fact, you might want to periodically monitor the scaffolding to ensure everyone is wearing their gear and performing safely.

Scaffolding systems are essential for many work sites; should you use them, the information here is important. The rental company can give you more specific information when you tell them about your project. Contact a scaffolding company, like Savage Scaffold & Equipment Co., for more info.