Don’t Fall for It – More Care Needed When Working at Height

23 Oct 2019

Construction Safety Week Day 3 (Wednesday 23rd October) focus is on Working at Height, which unfortunately, continues to be the causal factor for fatalities and serious injury nationwide, not only in construction but in other workplaces such as in industry, in agriculture and persons at home.

A fall from height does not necessarily involve scaffolding or ladders and indeed many falls occur at relatively low heights (for example, 2 or 3 metres above aground level). Hence, there is a need for everyone to recognise the potential hazards when working above ground level and to take appropriate precautions.

Height for Hire has recorded a video for Construction Safety Week, which explains the importance of undertaking checks for hazards when utilising plant machinery and height access systems. This is accessible at


Dermot Carey, Director Safety and Training, with the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) said:

Working at height is one of the recurring cause of fatalities and serious injury in the sector, particularly on the smaller sites and for the self-employed. A review of construction-related fatal accidents, as undertaken by the Health and Safety Authority for years 1989 to 2016, identified falling from height as the single most common cause of fatal accidents, accountable for 40% of all deaths in the construction sector. In accordance with the slogan, ‘Don’t fall for it’, the CIF is calling for all those engaged in construction activity to undertake risk assessments for work at height activities and to make sure the work is adequately planned and  organised in accordance with the ‘General Principles of Prevention’, taking steps to avoid, prevent or reduce risks. Visit: to view a video recording with Height for Hire, which serves to outline certain precautions associated with working at height, including use of MEWPs.

Michael Mc Donagh, Senior Inspector for Construction with the HSA said:

“Falls from heights are the most common cause for fatal and serious injuries in the construction sector. Employers must ensure all working at height is managed in a safe manner, that collective protective measures are prioritised where possible and that all equipment used is in a safe working order and inspected as required. Workers must be suitably trained and supervised.”


Construction Safety Week is an initiative of the Construction Safety Partnership Advisory Committee (CSPAC) and is administered by the CIF. The CSPAC is a grouping of all the main stakeholders in the construction sector in Ireland, namely Employers, Unions, State Bodies (in conjunction with the Health & Safety Authority) and Professional Bodies.

Our collective mission for Construction Safety Week 2019 is to partner together to;

  • Eliminate accidents and incidents on construction sites in Ireland.
  • Promote a healthy culture of sharing lessons learned and best practice case studies in safety, health and wellbeing.
  • Reflect on the positive initiatives taken and celebrate achievements in good safety performance, whilst appreciating the potential consequences of failing to act responsibly in terms of safety and health.
  • Continue to work with colleagues and others to strengthen the construction industry’s safety and wellbeing culture.


“At HILTI Health, Safety and Environment is embedded in our purpose – We passionately create enthusiastic customers and build a better future –  this reflects our corporate strategy and is focused on sustainable value creation through leadership and differentiation. This principle not only runs through our products, services and operations, but also extends to the importance we place on health, safety and the environment. We feel a great responsibility towards our employees, customers, partners and suppliers, society and the environment.

As such, the opportunity to get involved and sponsor such an important initiative as CIF Safety week makes perfect sense. Ultimately the people in our industry are what matter the most and it’s in Hilti’s DNA to play our part in raising awareness and developing solutions to improve the worker experience and build a better future.”

Hilti, Construction Safety Week Sponsors 2019


“At Gas Networks Ireland (GNI), we are delighted to partner with the CIF and ESB Networks to sponsor Construction Safety Week again this year. Our collective ambition is to highlight the importance of safety and eliminate incidents and accidents on construction sites in Ireland. Last year’s campaign saw an exponential increase in both the number of companies signing up to take part and the wider engagement with the industry, particularly smaller contractors.

As the operator of Ireland’s gas network, GNI has recently launched a new online version of its Dial Before You Dig mapping service. Maps of underground services are now available in minutes, making it easier for contractors to operate a safe site – a critical step when planning any excavation. For more information, please visit

Gas Networks Ireland, Construction Safety Week Sponsors 2019


Construction Safety Week 2019 is sponsored by Walls Construction, Collen Construction, SSE Airtricity, Irish Water, Hilti, IOSH, Keating Construction, Gas Networks Ireland, Kirby Group Engineering and ESB Networks.


For more information, see: , check out activity on @CIF_ireland or by using #CIFSafety19

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