The Dangers of Falling From a Height

Falling from Access Equipment

Training should always be provided for those erecting and using access equipment to ensure its proper and safe positioning. The fall of both workers and objects must be prevented, and all access equipment must be maintained and inspected to the proper standards. Reach should not be increased by placing ladders on the access equipment, which needs to fit the purpose which it is needed for.

Falling from a ladder

For works of short duration, ladders and stepladders are often used. Ladders should preferebly be secured at the top or footed and positioned so that they are close to the work, so that over-reaching is avoided. The base needs to be protected to ensure neither pedestrians nor vehicles can bumb into the ladders.

Falling because of unsuitable equipment

It may seem easy to utilist objects such as chairs or boxes to reach places at a height, however this may cause serious accidents. These items often move easily due to their instability and unsuitablility for the task, causing workers to slip and fall.

Falling materials

This refers to tiles, bricks, wood cuttings, tools and other materials common in a construction site which may be loose and fall on workers. Even small items can cause considerable damage to people and structures if dropped from a height. Injuries range from bruises to fractures, and even fatalities. Damage to structures can also affect work schedules due to repair-work.

Weather conditions

- Rain or ice can cause workers to slip and fall
- Strong winds can blow loose materials/tools away, make access equipment unstable, and effect the balance of workers
- Overexposure to ultraviolet rays from the sun can cause cancer, sunburn and eye problems


Considering the high-level of risk when working at heights, employers and workers should first assess its necessity in relation to the work that needs to be done. Where it is unavoidable however, employers and workers need to be aware of the common causes of accidents when working at heights so they can take the necessary precautions to aviod them.

If you need Working at Height training, contact one of our team members at 01708 361430 for more information or to book your place on a course. To find out more about our courses at Skyward Training go to

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