Health and Safety issues


Health & Safety File

Trussed Rafter Component : Health and Safety Hazards

Hazard Safety Precaution / Warning Flag
Timber components, splinters and sharp edges When handling use industrial type gloves, head protection and safety shoes.
Steel plate connectors and sharp edge protrusions When handling trusses use industrial type gloves, head protection and safety shoes.
Size and Weight-awkward shape and heavy Check the Health and Safety file for truss weights prior to handling. Number of persons required for safe handling to be assessed, taking into account the Manual Handling Regulations. Trusses should never be handled by one person only and must be maintained in the vertical position using suitable hand, foot and head protection. Note that the manual handling regulations specify the following person per lift by weight:-

Up to
1(not for trusses)

Above 75kg consider mechanical devices for all handling. Wherever possible mechanical lifting is preferred when positioning trusses on wall plates. Give particular consideration to asymmetric trusses.
Off-loading and site storage - poor ground Check the Health and Safety file for truss weights and heights prior to handling. The number of persons required for safe handling must be assessed taking into account the Manual Handling Regulations. Trusses should never be handled by one person only and should be stored on hard ground with the bottom of the stack supported to allow safe hand insertion.

Where trusses are banded together with tension strapping, cut through with appropriate consideration for strapping fly-back and pack stability. Stack above chest height should be avoided unless mechanical handling is available. Temporary storing should not be susceptible to accidental displacement or easy removal. Give consideration to height and presence of any overhead power cables.

Positioning on wallplate Consider the use of a mechanical lifting device or a suitable number of persons for safe handling taking into account Health and Safety file information etc. Take due account of weather conditions particularly when wind is gusting or visibility is poor.
Timber preservative-compounds / chemicals. Refer to the Health and Safety file for the type and presence of timber preservation treatment and/or chemicals. For handling refer to preservation manufacturers information in the Health and Safety file.
Large cantilevers - possible overturning Consider the extent of the cantilever. Provide a temporary support before fixing.
Binders and Bracing - working a height. Use a suitable safety platform.
Ceiling binders - width of binder The section can transmit a man load for the purposes of erection, but is of insufficient width to be defined as a platform of support.
High level binders and bracing - nail fixings. Insufficient strength in the 2 no. nail connection to resist a restraint harness falling force.
Trusses - minimum timber thickness. Single trusses are normally assembled from 35mm, 44mm and 47mm timbers which are too thin to adequately support a safety harness.
Trusses - natural defects When seeking hand holds watch in particular for large knot defects which will weaken the timber.
Trusses - long web members. Long web members may be a source of weakness when seeking hand holds, particularly when leaning away from the web. This weakness will be accentuated by knots or any other timber defect.
Binder/bracing fixings - nails missing from trusses Because of the narrow width of timber, nails may miss the truss member. Care should be taken when seeking hand holds in the regions of nailing.
Metal hangars - projecting past timber. Proprietary metal hangars can expose sharp edges after folding and fixing. All edges should be carefully flattened to the timber face.
Nailplates projecting past the timber. Nailplates have sharp corners and nails which may inflict deep cuts. Take extra care when working in the vicinity of nailplates and always wear suitable head, foot and hand protection.
Metal restraint strap protrusion Metal restraint straps should never protrude beyond a truss face. All straps should be laid and nailed across a timber noggin fixed between the trusses.
Working at height - falls Consider the use of safety netting to restrict falls. Board rafters at each level of construction at the earliest possible point. Consider the use of boards at truss level particularly for complex roofs and where extra services maybe required in the roof space.

A~TRUSS COMPANY LTD., Rathcairn Industrial Estate, Rathcairn, Athboy, Co. Meath, Ireland.
P + 353 46 9430555 - F + 353 46 9430556 Email: info@a-truss.ie