A 400 kg steel shutter which was placed on the ground was required to be lifted. The banksman, noticed that he could not insert the lifting gear hook onto the lifting point because it was too close to the ground. What he did, he instructed a fellow worker to insert a ledger beneath the frame and to lift it a few centimeters for him to attach the hook. While the worker is trying to attach the lifting gear, the shutter slipped off the ledger trapping and fractured the worker's left hand finger. The accident occurred due to an unsafe act on the part of a competent banksman.
To reduce possible risk of danger to life or injury to persons resulting from lifting of heavy equipment, the following measures need to be ensured:
- Ensure manual lifting of heavy loads is avoided.
- Ensure proper stacking stands are provided for all material stored on site or placed on wooden pieces to prevent accidental shifting of material.
- Ensure the risk assessment and method statement addresses all possible hazards relating to the task being undertaken.
- Ensure adequate toolbox talks are provided to workmen on the dangers and risks involved in manual lifting of loads.
- Ensure competent supervisor to carry out inspection of the specific task relating to the activity prior to lifting.
"Placement of the shuttering should be on blocks so lifting points don't get blocked."