People who are undergoing scaffolding training are given tips to help them to inspect or recognise hazardous scaffolding platforms. This article discusses some of the telltale signs that trainees are told to observe when identifying a good scaffolding platform.
Scaffolding platforms should never be made from painted components. This is because those painted surfaces stand a high likelihood of becoming slippery in case it rains or liquid materials spill on them. Slippery platforms pose a safety risk since workers or materials can slip and fall from that elevated position.
Most scaffolds are made from wooden or metal components. Wood is the most common material that is used to erect scaffolds onsite. It is important for people to know what kind of wood is safe to use during the erection of these scaffolds. Different jurisdictions have bodies that grade and recommend different types of timber for different purposes. One should therefore know the grades of the different timber species that can be selected for erecting scaffolding. Those recommended grades are normally capable of handling several times the maximum load rating of the scaffold. This excess capacity increases the safety margin for the workers and materials that will be on those platforms.
Scaffolding platforms are a combination of various parts that have been held together to provide a stable surface onto which personnel and materials can be stationed during a project. The strength of that platform depends on the soundness of each of the components that were used to make the platform. People undergoing scaffolding trained are equipped with the skills that they need in order to spot any lack of uniformity in the components that were used to make a platform. That lack of uniformity, such as some planks being thinner than others are, can lower the overall structural integrity of the scaffolding platform. Identifying and replacing those components that don't match can avoid accidents from taking place when those weaker members fail under load.
Trainees are also advised to avoid using scaffold platforms whose components don't extend beyond the end supports that hold them in place. Those components must exceed the supports by a minimum length, such as six inches. Such a structure is stable and can distribute the weight of the loads evenly throughout the scaffolding to its base. Shorter components may create instability by concentrating more weight on one section of the scaffolding.
Platform construction isn't the only aspect of scaffolding safety that one must be aware of. Enroll for scaffolding training so that you can receive comprehensive training in all the relevant aspects, such as fall arrest systems, which can ensure that no avoidable accident occurs while you are using scaffolding at a jobsite.