Bags I the Fall Arrest Bag
The most recent statistics from the UK’s Health and Safety Executive (HSE) show that there were 35 fatalities resulting from falls from height in 2017 – 2018. A fall from height remains the most common cause of death or life changing injuries in the workplace and most of those falls occur in the construction industry. The roofing sector is the industry’s major group working at height, so the more methods of avoiding falls we have to choose from, the better. Today we’re going to take a look at one of the alternative methods of protecting workers from falls from height, the fall arrest bags (FAB), or fall arrest air bags, as they are also known.
Fall arrest bags are light fall protection air cushions that are easy to inflate, allowing for quick and easy installation in a wide range of applications and locations. What’s more, they are so easy to use that they can easily be moved from building to building, making them a really versatile option in many situations.
The inflatable air cushion fall arrest protection system offers users extra convenience, speed and adaptability to protect workers on site. Each bag can be inflated in about 30 seconds using a petrol or battery operated pump, Bags can then be clipped together to provide a collective yielding surface that can be tailored in shape and size to suit the specific site requirements.
These bags are extremely portable, as 50 of them will easily fit into a works van, making them much easier to both store and transport than many other fall arrest systems available on today’s market. Once on site, the requisite number of bags can be quickly and easily inflated, then clipped together in a range of shapes and sizes to form a large cushion that very much resembles a bouncy castle.
The cushioned surface provided by the fall arrest bags once inflated to normal pressure means that any worker who falls onto them is met with a soft landing and prevented from reaching ground level by the air in the bags.
What’s more, most fall arrest bags are relatively cheap (though you do need to buy several units, depending on the size of the area where you need to offer fall protection. They are particularly handy in limited spaces or difficult to access areas as they can be carried to the area where they’re to be used and inflated and assembled in place.
While fall arrest bags are not suitable for all fall arrest applications, they do provide an ideal solution in many smaller areas, where the installation of the requisite fall protection systems is challenging. For roofing and building contractors who may need to use fall arrest bags on just the odd job here and there, there are plenty of providers who hire them to contractors for a reasonable charge. This means that on the odd occasion where the deployment of fall arrest bags is the most practicable solution, they can be used at a reasonable expense which can be added to the cost of the project.