Fall through formwork void (29 April 2020)
Date of incident: 29 April 2020
At a construction site in Belrose, a 36-year old dogman fell through an open void in a deck as he was instructing a crane operator to lower materials. He fell three metres, impaling his left shoulder on a steel bar.
The void the worker fell through
Falling from a height is the number one cause of death and permanent disability in the formwork industry. Most incidents involve open voids on formwork decks and unprotected edges.
Consider ‘reasonably practicable’ control measures to manage the risks associated with falls from formwork decks and through open voids.
- all voids have edge protection or are covered, and that covers are securely fixed in place and marked ‘Danger: penetration below’
- you install guardrails and other edge protection, such as perimeter scaffolds and formwork screens, into pre-assembled systems before they’re lifted into position
- leading edges are minimal
- you work below the formwork deck, using temporary work platforms, and limit the distance between joists to 450 mm
- catch platforms are used when other edge protection is not reasonably practicable
- guardrails comply with Australian standards
- access to incomplete decks is prevented.
- Working at heights
- Code of practice for managing the risk of falls at workplaces
- Code of practice for construction
- AS 1657: Fixed platforms, stairways and ladders