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Non-binding guide to good practice for implementing Directive 2001/45/EC (Work at a height)

"How to choose the most appropriate work equipment for performing temporary work at a height?" is the subtitle of this guide published by the DG Employment.

Given that work at a height exposes workers to the risk of falling, this guide presents various non-binding examples of good practice in connection with the practical application of European Parliament and Council Directive 2001/45/EC (which amends Directive 89/655/EEC) concerning the minimum health and safety requirements for workers’ use of work equipment provided for temporary work at a height, in particular scaffolds, ladders and ropes, which are the equipment most commonly used to perform such work, in combination with Framework Directive 89/391/EEC and Directives 89/655/EEC, 95/63/EC, 89/656/EEC, 92/57/EEC and 92/58/EEC.

This guide is chiefly designed to help employers, and in particular small and medium-sized enterprises, to select and use work equipment correctly on the basis of a risk assessment, and according to the type and duration of work and ergonomic constraints. It contains many good practice examples, which have either been selected from the guides existing in the EU Member States or have been specially designed for this guide. It lists the relevant European directives, European standards (EN) and a list of relevant national guides in this area.

CAUTION: The suggestions and recommendations in this guide are based on the experience of experts in the EU Member States. You will very likely find a situation relevant to you in the guide. However, since every workplace and every task is unique, these suggestions and recommendations do not absolve you from the obligation to undertake a thorough risk assessment before opting for a specific method. You must also obtain details of the laws, regulations and standards applicable in the Member State where you work, and comply with them.

The manuscript of the guideline was completed in September 2006.

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