The Closest Thing to Wings

Although the issue receives little attention in the aviation industry, fall protection has, for decades, been a major concern for workers regularly exposed to dangerous heights. According to the National Safety Council Accident Facts, in 1997, falls to...


You've covered all the bases as far as developing a program and training employees on the equipment. So what happens if someone does fall off a wing, truck or ladder and injures himself or herself? Assuming the system has done its job, a rescue plan is necessary to ensure the employee can be retrieved quickly and without endangering the rescuer. You may need a crane or hoist, as well as some method of attaching a rescue rope to the individual. The extent of any injuries should be determined and first aid administered before moving the victim. If there are no serious injuries requiring medical attention, refer to guidelines of your program and safety equipment to rescue the worker.

Developing a fall protection program requires a commitment to safety and no shortage of hard work, but the benefits will far outweigh the costs. Know the regulations, identify the particulars of your situation, implement a fall protection plan, and train using ALL of your resources. Follow all of these steps, and productivity and shop safety will soar, and you can take pride in knowing you've equipped your mechanics with a set of "wings" nearly as effective as the real thing.

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