4 Must-Know Facts for New Commercial Building Contractors When Hiring Scaffolding

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Few people take notice of scaffolding yet it is an essential piece of equipment when working on commercial buildings that extend several floors. For improvements projects like painting or remodeling exterior areas, scaffolding can be a safe and viable option. If you are a new construction contractor, who has just landed their first contract, buying scaffolding might be quite an expensive option considering the alternative of renting. This article reviews top tips that could be useful to new commercial building contractors when they plan to hire scaffolding.  

Add-Ons -- Scaffolding works hand in hand with other safety-related products that help workers to operate safely in higher exterior surfaces of a building. Catch nets offer an added level of protection for falling projectiles such as tools. Such a net can also help hold a worker in case of accidental drops. Another safety product like the safety edge barrier secures the scaffolding from any movement when in use. All these additional products can be hired alongside the scaffolding. Look out for vendors who can offer a discount when you hire all these products at once.

Standards -- Before hiring scaffolding, make sure that the equipment conforms to Australian standards. Ask yourself these critical questions -- How are you planning to erect or disassemble scaffolding at the site? Are the manufacturers of the equipment certified? There are set standards for safe use of scaffolding at the workplace as prescribed by the Australian New Zealand Standard AS / NZS 1576 Scaffolding Standards. When hiring the equipment, ask the supplier if they will provide certified professionals to erect and dismantle the scaffolding. You might also hire your qualified installers to assemble the material. Both options may have some additional financial implications for your project. Whichever option you favor, ensure that there is compliance with all these standards to avoid injuries, deaths, and lawsuits. 

Working Height of Scaffolding -- The height of the scaffolding platform coupled with the height of the worker is referred to as the working height. The height enables the employee to operate comfortably without straining. Overstretching can lead to physical exertion, which might be a potential safety hazard in a work site. Therefore, when hiring scaffolding, especially the freestanding or mobile design, keep in mind this working height.

Scaffolding Insurance -- With technological and engineering design improvements, scaffolding has adhered to quality checks that make the equipment comparatively safe for use in commercial buildings. However, scaffolding cannot be free from any risk associated with working in high areas. The scaffolding can damage property that belongs to your client or that of third parties. Also, there is a risk of personal injury to the workers or people at the site. To avoid any liability, consider taking an insurance cover against property damage, injury or even death. You protect not only goods and people, but also the reputation of your business.