Injuries and fatalities from dropped objects contribute significantly to injury and death statistics in the construction industry. But prevention is the key! In 2018, the ANSI/ISEA 121-2018 Standard for Dropped Object Prevention Solutions went into effect to reduce the number of injuries and deaths caused by dropped objects.
Being struck by dropped objects is part of the “struck by object” fatality category, which is the second in OSHA’s “Fatal Four,” or the four most common causes of construction fatalities on the job outside of highway collisions. According to OSHA, just over 11 percent of deaths on the job are due to workers struck by an object, including dropped equipment, tools, or materials. Therefore, prevention is key to eliminating injuries and fatalities from dropped objects.
Preventing Dropped Objects
With the adoption of ANSI/ISEA 121 came new equipment categories to define and categorize dropped object prevention options. The four major types are:
- Tool Attachments. These are attachments made to be field installed onto tools or equipment to provide appropriate connection points for tethering. “Trapping” equipment should never impede the tool’s function or compromise its integrity.
- Anchor Attachments. These are attachment points intended to be field installed on a building, equipment, or workers, to create appropriate connection points for tethering. Recommended anchor attachment point preferences should be attaching to a structure, attaching at a worker’s waist, and connecting to a worker’s wrist.
- Tool Tethers. These are lanyards or materials designed to connect tools to approved anchor points. There are a variety of lanyards available, including wrist lanyards, retractable lanyards, coil lanyards, specialty lanyards for hard hats, cell phones, etc. Safe Keeper recommends choosing the shortest tether possible.
- Containers and Bags. These are devices such as bags, tool pouches, hoist buckets, or other containers designed to safely carry or transport tools and equipment to and from heights, eliminating one losing their grip.
Like all fall protection equipment, always inspect dropped objects prevention equipment before each use. For your convenience, safe Keeper carries a single tool lanyard and a double tool lanyard, and a comprehensive inventory of safety protection products and accessories.