Controlled Handling of Materials

scaffolding example

The practice of bombing or throwing materials from scaffolding is considered an un safe practice.

Scaffold materials should never be thrown, dropped deliberately or allowed to fall.

All materials should be handled in a controlled manner, when raising and lowering during scaffolding operations which may for example consist of passing materials hand to hand or using manual handling aids such as gin wheels and ropes.

safe handling diagram

Chaining or hand balling as illustrated is still used as one of the quickest methods to safely transfer scaffold materials too and from the work area. This method involves operatives been positioned on different lifts of the scaffold where materials can safely be passed from person to person transferring materials up or down structures.

Materials can be passed through the hands using gripping and sliding techniques, the materials been handled will usually determine on the distance between operatives and number of operatives required to safely transfer materials. I.e., operatives would need to be adjoining lifts when traversing shorter tubes and boards or fitting bags. Where longer materials may be transferred with operatives on alternate lifts.

It is important that when raising and lower materials a suitable risk assessment has been carried out to identify associated hazards (dropped materials form height etc) and that effective working practices are adopted to minimise and control the risks.

When scaffolding materials are moved by scaffolders the general public and other tradesmen are at risk.

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