Companies that strive to protect their employees know that injuries on the job often cause time away from work, and fatalities may occur when the proper safety equipment is not in place.
Fall prevention equipment such as safe-access gangways reduces the likelihood of serious accidents. But, what do you do when a safety solution is damaged?
If you have already made an investment in workplace safety, broken equipment is frustrating. Your initial thoughts may be that you should re-weld a damaged gangway to save on cost. However, even a small dent may affect the safety of your equipment permanently.
Learn why repairs are not always the best course of action and how replacing broken equipment improves workplace safety.
3 Signs Your Safety Equipment Needs To Be Replaced
It is vital to workplace safety that you provide equipment in safe working order and appropriate for the specific job at hand. If a safe-access gangway does not meet these requirements, you need an equipment upgrade.
Consider these signs that your safety equipment needs to be replaced and whether they are applicable to your business:
Your company is experiencing repeat accidents involving the same piece of equipment.
Your gangways feature obvious physical signs of damage, or have been hit by a truck or other heavy object.
Your facility is growing, and it makes financial and logistical sense to replace equipment altogether.
Vendors And Customers Don’t Always Agree
Due to your safety equipment vendor’s commitment to providing solutions that protect your employees, your vendor is likely to advise that any time size parameters change or there has been damage to equipment, you should replace the equipment entirely. New equipment improves workplace safety because it is designed for your specific needs, and it’s in functional working order.
Your vendor is not legally able to say that a gangway is safe to use if the size of your vehicles has changed or the gangway is broken. Customers often understand their vendor’s perspective but prefer to simply repair the equipment instead.
Replacement parts for traditional wear and tear are readily available. However, if a gangway is broken and you choose to replace a part rather than replace the gangway entirely, you must sign an indemnification covenant releasing your vendor from liability in order to purchase the part. And, without sending someone to your work site to inspect repaired equipment, your vendor is not able to say whether the equipment is safe to use.
If your gangway has been hit by a truck or other heavy object, there may be damage you’re not able to see. And when your vehicle size changes, a gangway still provides vehicle access but lacks adequate fall protection.
In order to create a safe workplace for your employees, it’s best to simply replace gangways and other safety solutions that are no longer safe or correct for a designated task. Don’t forget that the primary function of your safety equipment is to protect lives.