The Washington Department of Labor & Industries, Division of Occupational Safety and Health, is considering changes to Washington’s fall protection regulations. These are rules intended to protect construction workers from injury caused by falls on a jobsite. The Division has been interested in this topic since 2013, when the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration expressed concerns about our state regulations, particularly as they apply to residential construction. The Division has held meetings around the state and has found widespread support for a uniform set of regulations that would apply throughout the state. It also learned that some industry participants were not aware of the current regulations.
Further meetings have been scheduled (December 11 in Spokane and December 18 in Tukwila) at which attendees can learn more about the current regulations. For more information about these meetings or the regulatory process leading towards amendment of the regulations, consult this state website.
Injuries from falls can be very serious and many can be prevented. The Division’s website is a good source of information about construction injury risks and prevention strategies. Keeping up to date on these and other safety rules is not only important for success in the construction business, it’s the law.