Scaffolding Guide

Working Platform

A working platform must have a means of access which is safe and does not present any risk. In most cases a ladder is used. Ladders must be securely fastened to the scaffold and be long enough to extend above the height of the working platform, normally one meter of five rungs. This will provide a safe handover when getting onto the landing area of the platform. Landing areas must have guard-rails and toe-boards and must be kept clear at all times.

All working platforms must be close boarded and fitted with toe-boards and guard-rails. If materials are to stacked to height above above the toe-board, then a suitable barrier, for example a brick guard, must be used to prevent the materials from falling off.

First and foremost the primary purpose of a scaffold is to provide support for a temporary working platform. As required by law, all places of work must be safe and not expose any risks to users, other trades people and members of the public.

Whenever work has to take place at height employers must provide a work platform that is safe and a convenient means of access and egress. The employer must comply with the requirements set out by the Work at Height Regulations 2005.

The Work at Height regulations 2005 state that scaffolds and scaffold working platforms must not be used until inspected by competent person. This inspection must is normally known as the 'hand over' inspection.

Intermediate transoms are used for extra board support when a lift is to be boarded over as a working platform. The intermediate transoms are usually laid across ledgers in the centre of each bay, fixed with putlog couplers. Additional intermediate transoms may be required to support shorter boards.
When the platform is no longer required the intermediate transoms can be removed and used elsewhere on the scaffold.

The prime reason for erecting a scaffold is to provide a platform for working at heights that cannot be reached from the ground or from any other parts of the building.

Transoms or putlogs should be laid no more than 1.2m apart if used for supporting 38mm scaffold boards. If using 50mm scaffold boards then they should be laid no more than 2.6m apart. The actual length of the of the transoms or putlogs is determined by the width of the working platform, this width is determined by the by the intended use of the scaffold. Working platforms should have a minimum width of 600mm.

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