Construction’s biggest health & safety risk

Working at height. The three little words that every contractor dreads - and not without good cause, as new data from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reveals that falls from height are still the biggest cause of death on UK construction sites.
While the total number of deaths on site remains relatively stable compared with previous years, the percentage caused by falls from height has increased.

Figures from the HSE show that between April 2020 and March 2021, 39 construction workers died on site, a quarter of whom fell from a height.

Falls from height also accounted for 41 per cent of construction worker deaths within the latest data released, which covered the period between April 2021 and December 2021.

More safety training

The report found that deaths and injuries were most commonly caused by falls from ladders and through unstable surfaces such as fragile roofs. However, the report cites the example of 17-year-old Clayton Bottomley, the youngest worker to have died during this period, who lost his life along with his father, David when an industrial elevator plunged from 100ft to the ground.

The problem isn’t confined to the UK. A survey by 360 Training reported that 55% of construction workers in the US believe they need more safety training – a statistic which is borne out by the fact that over 60% of construction accidents in the US occur within an employee’s first year of work, highlighting the need for proactive, high-quality training. The same report shows that in the US, falls account for 34% of all construction deaths — and calculates that eliminating falls in construction would save more than 300 lives every year.

Despite advances over the last decade in construction safety equipment, technology and training, the dangers posed by working at height appear to have been overlooked as the construction industry continues to face high rates of fatal and nonfatal injuries among its workers.

Eliminating lone working and improving safety awareness and training are two solutions that have been implemented with varying degrees of success. But rather than simply trying to mitigate the risks involved in working at height – what if there was an alternative? A way of delivering the same outcomes on a project without the need to work at height for extended lengths of time?

Less time at height means less risk

At Gripple we think the less time contractors have to spend working at height the better.

Faster, simpler and safer installation is a key theme that all of our solutions offer, and for applications carried out at height this in turn means reduced risk.

A great example of this is our Fiber Cable Support Kits.

Fiber cable installation for multi-drwelling units (MDU’s) is one job that would benefit hugely from reduced working at height. Often this involved contractors scaling buildings using large ladders, powered access equipment or even abseiling to reach the install location and route cables externally.

That’s why Gripple have been working closely with network providers and contractors to develop a new safe, simple and quick to install system for supporting fiber cables externally. Based on our tried and tested catenary systems, our new Fibre Cable Support Kits are an innovative method of supporting fibre optic cable runs. They enable external fibre broadband cabling to be installed much faster on MDU’s, thanks to fewer fixing points and our quick-to-tension wire joiners.

Contractors already using our Gripple Fiber Cable Support Kits are able to drastically reduce the time spent working at height on the outside of buildings. They’re also completing installations up to three times faster than with traditional methods, helping to keep projects on track, hit network provider deadlines and minimise labour costs.

Installers appreciate the ease and simplicity of the system, and can install the kits with minimal training.

Health and safety is frequently cited as the number one concern on any given construction site, with contractors investing considerable amounts of time and money on training, equipment and processes to help minimise the risk of injury and fatal accidents. By choosing Gripple’s Fibre Cable Support Kits for your next cable installation project, you can demonstrate your commitment to health and safety - instantly reducing risk by cutting the time your installers spend working at height.

Let’s make construction falls from height a thing of the past.


Why use Gripple?

  • Innovative, patented solutions designed by an in-house team of engineers
  • Considerable reductions in packaging, vehicle movements & embodied CO2
  • A range of support services at every stage of your project, provided by our technical team
  • Complete, off-site solutions which minimise health and safety concerns
  • Significant time and cost savings on your project