What Any Commercial Window Cleaners Should Be Doing Health and Safety Wise – Abseiling

Health and Safety is a serious issue when it comes to window cleaning. It may well be your responsibility to ensure that contractors on your site are working safely and complying with the relevant guidelines. Responsibility will certainly lay with the directors.

More information about these guidelines is available from the Health… Safety Executive and specifically at the HSE website, enter falls and guidlines. “Every year more than forty workers die following a fall from height and more than three thousand are seriously injured.” According to the HSE.

Reducing this unnecessary injury toll is a priority and Shattered Lives is the HSE’s latest campaign. Find out what happens when workers are put at risk and what you can do to stop falls from height in your workplace by visiting HSE website and entering “shattered lives ” (c) HSE “Every month over a thousand people suffer serious injuries as a result of slips, trips or falls in the workplace.

These shattering injuries can be avoided by sensible and proportionate management of the risks.” (c) HSE For more information go to: Shattered Lives: http://www.hse.gov.uk/shatteredlives Make sure that you check carefully the safety record and procedures of any contractor you intend to use. Your contractor should provide you with a copy of their comprehensive Health… Safety Policy. This should be site specific to your requirements and not just a generic statement.

Abseiling: Definition: Rope access from the top of a building working downwards. Reason for use: On buildings five plus storeys high that cannot be accessed by cherry pickers/platforms or cradles. Requirements: Access to a flat roof. Some form of fixed structure to which abseilers can anchor themselves. Highly qualified and competent abseilers can test strength loadings before using fittings that are already in place and provide a certificate of conformity valid for six months. If no such fittings exist, abseilers can supply free-standing fittings. These are heavy and need to be transported to the top of the building, ideally in a lift.

Please be aware that according to IRATA guidelines, abseilers should always work in teams of no less than two and no more than four of which one has to be of level THREE qualification. The rest of the team can be a mixture of levels twos and or ones. Always demand proof of qualification by asking for copies of certification etc to keep for your own records.

For information on window cleaning click here.