Sad reminder of Scaffolding Tower obligations

In a joint announcement from HIANZ and Scaffolding, Access and Rigging  NZ (SARNZ) 

An accident involving a mobile scaffolding tower is a sad reminder of the need for vigilance when offering equipment for hire. The NZ Herald   reported that the accident on the 28th August caused critical injuries to two workers, one of whom later died in hospital.

As the fatality is the subject of an ongoing workplace investigation, Worksafe NZ are unable to provide information on the probable cause. Neighbours in the apartment complex where the accident occurred, suggested that the accident involved two painters using their own scaffolding.

A view of the accident site suggests several possible issues.  The structural integrity and unsafe use of the scaffold tower may possibly have contributed to the fatal fall from height.

HIANZ members are reminded that any scaffolding or scaffolding towers offered for hire must comply with the AS/NZS 1576.1:2019 standard for scaffolding systems, and instructions for safe assembly and use must be supplied with the correct components when hired out. Outriggers must also be provided, especially when the height to width ratio of a scaffolding tower exceeds 3:1. Fulfilling these requirements will assist HIANZ members in meeting their legal obligations of duty of care, ensuring client safety.

Based on the information available, HIANZ, in collaboration with SARNZ, have reviewed and updated the Equipment Safety Data Sheet (ESDS) for Scaffolding Towers. The updated ESDS is available for download on the HIANZ website at HIANZ ESDS FORMS . (Members access only via login).  HIANZ members should ensure that up-to-date information for the safe use, including the ESDS and manufacturers instructions, is always provided to clients.

The HIANZ Team