Scaffolding is a complex industry that carries a lot of risks to those who work in the sector on a daily basis. Fortunately, there are many strict laws and rules in place to adhere to. We help answer those questions that people who aren’t ‘in the know’ may want to gain information on
Read on and find out more…
What is Scaffolding?
In the most basic terms, scaffolding is a temporary fixture or framed support that is made up of a combination of wooden boards and metal poles. They’re constructed for the purpose of providing above-ground support for workers who are carrying works out on buildings.
When is scaffolding required?
It is up to your trader to assess the level of risk and use the appropriate equipment. Fixing a handful of broken tiles on a low roof wouldn’t be the same as installing a group of solar panels 15 floors up. What we’re saying is, it really depends on exactly what work is required and what level of risk is involved to determine when scaffolding is required.
Essentially, if site crew need to work at height, they must minimise the risk of falling by using existing safe roof areas or scaffolding.
What sort of scaffolding is required?
Most scaffolding used around residential properties will adhere to an established, standard structure. Supported scaffolding is built from the base upwards, following a set design.
However, if these standard structures aren’t possible to use, the scaffolding contractor or designer must then create a tailored design so as to ensure the appropriate rigidity, strength, and stability levels of the structure during building, use and dismantlement.
What sort of liscencing is required?
Should a builder or scaffolder be required to put up scaffolding within the boundary of a property, a licence is not needed. However, if any part of the scaffolding exceeds the boundaries and will be on a pavement or the road outside your property, the builder or scaffolder on the job will have to get a licence from the local council. It is the scaffolder/builder’s responsibility to obtain the licence, and is the property owner’s responsibility to check that all the paperwork is in place and above board.
When should scaffolding be checked for safety?
It’s required by law that the hirer or user of the scaffolding, must check it in order to make sure it’s safe:
· Before being used
· After every seven days, post-erection
· Following alterations, damage or after extreme weather
Scaffolders face an exclusive set of risks because of having to work at height. Builders or scaffolding firms must have insurance that covers the risks faced with working at height, such as:
· Public liability insurance; which covers any injury that may occur to the public from falling items from the scaffold
· Employers’ liability insurance to cover workers if they are injured while working at height