Falls from height – step in to keep customers safe

Falls from height can happen at any time, but the summer months present a particular problem. So far this year, the Opus team have witnessed two builders merchants allowing children to climb on the back of transit vans.

In our last newsletter, we looked at the risks of having children on site during school holidays. Parents balancing childcare and work commitments may bring their kids to your branch, increasing the odds of a safety incident.

To prevent accidents and claims, it’s essential to set clear safety standards for customers of all ages and empower staff to uphold them.

Falls from height

Falls from vehicles can cause significant injuries and preventing them should be at the forefront of every merchant's mind. In a typical work environment, common causes include slipping from access steps and ladders, inappropriate footwear, insufficient training and lack of awareness. When a child is involved, the risks rise exponentially.

Under Health and Safety law, you’re required to protect the welfare of anyone on your site. In relation to falls from height, this means:  

  •  preventing anyone from falling a distance that is likely to hurt them
  •  preventing anyone from being hit by a falling object

Simple safety measures

  • Display signage that highlights fall from height risks. Clear instructions and visual prompts can help customers make wiser safety choices.
  • Train teams on the dangers of customers – and their children – accessing the vehicle roofs. This coaching should form part of a wider safety education programme and a culture that motivates workers to spot and act on hazards.
  • Encourage staff to educate builders about the risks to themselves and their children.

Get tailored training and expertise from Opus

We’ve worked with hundreds of builders merchants to train staff and prevent accidents in branch. If you have questions about your current safety and compliance programme, we’re here to help with one-to-one answers and advice.

Schedule some time in the diary or get in touch on or 0330 043 4015.