Safety nets are often installed on building sites with the view that they are there to protect the workers should they fall from scaffolding or high up on the site. This is true and is a vital part of safety nets performance, however, they also have a secondary but just as vital service to provide – one of security. How?
Well, what if you happened to be walking under an area where building was happening above you and something was dropped? Having a safety net installed would provide you with the security of knowing that you were protected.
“Security” is often a word that is described as being the state of being free from danger or threat. Isn’t that what you want your work team to feel when they are on one of your building sites. WorkSafe NZ’s current push is to remind employers to get their teams home healthy and safe. Installing a safety net at your building site will help to ensure just that. Your people are worth the investment.
Having a security net installed between the upper reaches of your building site allows you to have teams working on multiple levels of your site and all workers have both safety and security provided for them.
Safety nets are designed to reduce the likelihood of a person who has fallen being injured. They are installed with a specific tension designed to deflect and absorb the energy of an object or person that falls.
When you have a building site that is more than a storey high, a safety net will also reduce the distance a person can fall. If a person was to fall, a safety net is always positioned so that there is enough clear space below the net and the ground so that the fallen person or object does not strike an obstacle or the ground.
Some people worry that a safety net will restrict their ability to move around the site. This is not the case. Safety nets can be installed across scaffolding to provide a sense of “walls” no matter how high up the scaffolding is. Safety net installers are well aware of the type of movement that needs to be allowed for construction workers at height and thus will install the safety nets with enough tension to allow movement but with enough tautness to stop anything or anyone from falling.
Relying on safety nets is good but the best building sites also maintain good workplace housekeeping practices. By having site housekeeping rules in place you will provide another level of protection for your teams. These rules can be along the lines of:
- maintaining a tidy site
- having clear access and egress ways
- following good site management practices
- having designated areas for material delivery and waste storage
- regular maintenance of plant and equipment
- installing barriers where required
- erecting signage as required
- provision and maintenance of sanitary facilities for staff.
Workplace health and safety is taken very seriously in New Zealand and there are hefty fines and penalties for companies found in breach of standards.
On your next building site
provide your staff with safety AND security and install a Site Net safety net system!