What is a scaffold?

A scaffold is an elevated, temporary work platform. There are two basic types of scaffolds:

1. Supported scaffolds, which consist of one or more platforms supported by rigid, load-bearing members, such as poles, legs, frames, outriggers, etc.
2. Suspended scaffolds, which are one or more platforms suspended by ropes or other non-rigid, overhead support.

*Other types of elevated work platform equipment, principally scissor lifts and aerial lifts, can be regarded as “other” types of supported scaffolds. These types will not be covered in this meeting.

What hazards are associated with scaffold use?

Abrasive blasting operations can create high levels of dust and noise. Abrasive material and the surface being blasted may contain toxic materials (e.g., lead paint, silica) that are hazardous to workers.

1. Falls from elevation, due to lack of fall protection
2. Collapse or tip over of the scaffold, caused by instability or overloading
3. Being struck by falling tools, materials or debris
4. Electrocution, due to proximity to overhead power lines or other hazardous energy sources

What controls may be used to protect yourself from scaffold related injuries?

1. Never assemble, disassemble or repair scaffolding unless you have been trained to do so
2. Never use scaffolding unless it meets the manufacturers use requirements
3. Never modify scaffold components without written approval from a competent person
4. Visually inspect scaffolds before and after each shift and do not use the scaffold if a hazard is present
5. Report all scaffold related hazards to your supervisor immediately and warn others about the hazard
6. Ensure that minimum safety distances from power lines have been established by a competent person before you use scaffolds
7. Restrict access to base of scaffold whenever possible to avoid vehicle contact with scaffold
8. Ensure barricades on the ground or toe boards are utilized to prevent tools and material from falling onto workers below
9. Ensure guardrails are present and secure when applicable
10. Ensure anchors are present and secure when applicable
11. Ensure a competent person inspects the scaffold daily and each time components are added, removed or modified.
12. Ensure all suspension cables, ropes and other equipment is visually inspected before each use and daily by a competent person

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