When Should We Use Tool Tethering?
Tool tethering prevents dropped tools from becoming a hazard. Tool tethers should be used in any scenario where dropped tools could cause injury to team members or damage equipment or premises.
Work at Height
Dropped tools are most likely to be hazardous when teams are working at height. But what does work at height actually mean? The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) defines work at height as:
“Work in any place where, if precautions were not taken, a person could fall a distance liable to cause personal injury.”
As you can see from this definition, work at height doesn’t just take place far above the ground but includes any scenarios where there is risk of falling. There isn’t a minimum height level for a task to qualify as work at height. In fact, a colleague could even be working at or below ground level and have a fall risk (e.g. working over an opening in the ground). The same principle applies to tool tethering: it doesn’t matter how high a worker is, but whether or not there is any possibility of a dropped tool becoming dangerous.
Sadly, falling tools is a work at height risk that is often overlooked. A dropped tool can have just as devastating consequences as a fall, so it’s crucial that health and safety professionals take the issue seriously. Even if injuries are avoided, dropped tools can cause damage to premises or be damaged themselves. At the very least, a team member will have to take time out from their task to retrieve the tool.
Do We Still Need Tool Tethering if We Use Netting & Exclusion Zones?
Netting and exclusion zones are a good idea are often required to eliminate other falling debris on construction or industrial sites. However, they should be used in conjunction with tool tethering for the best protection. It is extremely difficult to contain tools that drop from height – objects can bounce and ricochet as they fall, which can render netting and exclusion zones ineffective. Tool tethering is the best way to keep dropped tools from causing damage to premises or employees.
Tool@rrest is a leading manufacturer of engineered, certificated solutions to prevent dropped tools in the global work at height sector. Our systems centre around our patented blue tool tether and our new self-tether options.
If you’d like to discuss your tool tethering requirements or place an order for a tethered tool kit, please get in touch with the Tool@rrest team or call: +44 (0) 1952 292 782.
Tool@rrest – The Drop Stops Here.