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SCAFFOLD BOARDS SAFETY ALERT

NASC issues Safety Alert concerning defective scaffold board dangers

The National Access and Scaffolding Confederation (NASC) has recently issued a Safety Alert covering defective scaffold boards.

The alert follows an incident in which a bricklayer was walking from an inner birdcage onto the external top lift of scaffold at 8 metres above ground level. On stepping onto the inner most scaffold board of the external scaffold lift it snapped in half, fortunately the bricklayer managed to stop himself falling completely through the 225mm gap.

Defective Scaffold Boards

The bricklayer sustained bruising to his legs and knee and was treated for mild shock. One half of the board fell to the ground but within the scaffold structure.

The Alert outlines the lessons and concludes that the board “should not have been used”. The preventative actions recommended are:

  1. All scaffold boards should be thoroughly inspected by the scaffolding contractor who erected the scaffold to comply with the specification as detailed in British Standard 2482:2009;
  2. Boards are not to be used as part of a working platform if they are damaged, cracked or have notches cut out of them;
  3. Site management are to record findings and ensure suspect boards are replaced; and
  4. Trades likely to use power tools, specifically abrasive wheels, on scaffold are instructed to use sacrificial timber and not to cut directly onto scaffold boards.

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