Shipyard work safety programs for private sector businesses are generally under the jurisdiction of Federal OSHA regulations. The shipyard workplace environment presents a wide range of injury hazards including confined spaces, scaffolds and ladders, rigging, and equipment associated with painting, welding, and material handling. To help reduce the risks affiliated with these environments, Personal Protective Equipment is frequently recommended. OSHA has published a complete guide to Shipyard Industry Safety Standards with recommendations for small, medium, or large businesses.
Of particular interest to this blog are the shipyard safety standards provided for Scaffolds, Ladders, and Other Working Surfaces. In this post we will take a look at the training recommendations for work safety Hazard Identification, Assessment and Control, and also provide information about access products to meet OSHA requirements at shipyards.
Hazard Identification and Controls
We have discussed the importance of work hazard assessments on this blog. The published OSHA standards cover the basic policies of inspecting the workplace, evaluating the level of risk, and working with employees and management to identify and determine solutions to work hazards. In addition, OSHA provides valuable recommendations regarding how to manage risk associated with identified hazards in the short term while longer term solutions are being developed. Placing priority on hazard abatement timeframe is important, and interim solutions should be considered.
OSHA also emphasizes the importance of systematic processes, from checking injury logs in support of hazard identification, to using checklists during inspections and breaking down jobs into tasks to determine root causes of accidents or hazards. The Shipyard Standards document additionally provides a hierarchy of hazard prevention controls, starting with engineering and work practice improvements. These involve ‘physical changes to jobs’ and are the top level priority. When engineering controls are not feasible, or in support of engineering controls, administrative controls and personal protective equipment are to be considered next in the hazard prevention hierarchy.
Custom Shipyard Access Products from IAS
OSHA provides detailed requirements for scaffolds, ladders, deck openings and edges, and access to vessels, dry docks/marine railways, and cargo spaces. Innovative Access Solutions has provided shipyard work safety access products for each of these applications. A few of the OSHA-referenced access solutions include portable metal ladders, gangways, guardrails, platforms, access to lower levels, and ladders for accessing cargo areas or confined spaces. IAS is experienced, knowledgeable and available to help meet your shipyard access needs. Contact IAS at (800) 388-6884 to inquire about shipyard access products.