Edge protection has broad applications across a multitude of industry areas, but one discipline where it may be particularly needed at present is farming.
Farming is a great British institution, and continues to provide important employment opportunities, as well as generating much of the food we consume on a daily basis.
But it is also a labour-intensive occupation, and often involves working at height – something the sector seems ill-prepared for.
NFU Mutual, a specialist provider of financial and insurance services to the farming sector, noted this in a recent trading statement.
Chief executive Lindsay Sinclair said: “In 2013, we saw a substantial increase in large claims. Many involved a fall from height, resulting in extensive bodily injury and a requirement for lifelong care.”
“Whilst farming accounts for 1.5% of the UK’s workforce, it is responsible for 15-20% of all workplace fatalities,” he added.
Clearly, not all work at height can be protected by fixed edge protection; however, where possible, safety ladders can make it safer to reach rooftops and other elevated working positions.
These can then be complemented with walkovers on weak roofs, and guardrails to prevent falls from the edge of the roof, safeguarding the working process at as many points as possible.