Working safely at height

The Working at Height Regulations 2005 came into force on 6 April 2005 and consolidates previous legislation.

They apply to all work at height where there is a risk of a fall liable to cause personal injury.
Working at height means ANY height – the old 2 metre threshold no longer applies.
They must be adhered to by Contractors, Employees, Self-employed and everyone working at height.

Before beginning any work at height, ensure that you carry out a proper risk assessment to determine if working at height is necessary and if Project Hire and Sale can advise on what the most appropriate equipment is to use.


Avoid working at height unless you have to.
Always look for alternative ways to get the job done.
(See Providing Low-Level Access Solutions below).


If you have to work at height, do everything you can to prevent a fall. Consider all the risks in advance and carefully
choose the right equipment for the job and the environment.

Remember to:

Use the most suitable equipment.
Give priority to collective protection measures (eg. Guardrails) over personal protection (eg. Safety harnesses).
Take into account working conditions.
Think about the safety of everyone in the area where the equipment is to be used.


If you cannot eliminate the risk of a fall completely, use work equipment or other measures to minimise the
consequences should one occur.

Five major requirements

The regulations are aimed at maintaining and improving standards for all work at height. Standards for work above 2 metres will not change, they are simply being extended to work at any height.

Duty holders must ensure that:

  1. All work at height is properly planned and organised.
  2. Those involved in work at height are competent.
  3. A full risk assessment is carried out and appropriate equipment is selected and used.
  4. The risk from fragile surfaces is properly controlled.
  5. Equipment for work at height is properly inspected and maintained.

Providing low-level access solutions

The 2005 Work at Height Regulations state that:
“Ladders should only be used as a means of getting to a workplace. If they have to be used as a workplace it should only be for light, short-term work.”

What are the alternatives?
Podium Steps and Adjustable Platform Steps are ideal to be used as low-level working stations, they are.

  1. Fully compliant with the 2005 Work at Height Regulations.
  2. Safer alternatives to ladders and steps.
  3. Provide low-level height access with full guardrail protection at all times.
  4. Ideal for essential maintenance and repair work.