Willmott Dixon rolls out safety tech for MEWPs

Willmott Dixon MEWPs
Harness ON system in use on a Willmott Dixon project (Image: Willmott Dixon)

Willmott Dixon is using new harness-based technology on its construction projects to enhance safety for workers using a boom-type mobile elevating work platform (MEWP).

The technology system, Harness ON, requires anyone operating a ‘3b’ boom type platform to wear a full-body harness with a lanyard that connects to a specific intelligent anchor point within the MEWP’s basket.

Harness ON prevents the MEWP basket controls from operating unless the operator’s harness lanyard is correctly attached to the anchor point.

The technology has been developed by Nationwide Platforms. Harness ON is now mandatory in all ‘3b’ MEWPs used in Willmott Dixon’s projects.

Falls from a mobile platform remain the most common cause of incidents resulting in major injury or death. 

The IPAF Global Safety Report 2023 showed there were 759 reports in 2022 from 34 countries, resulting in 831 people being involved in incidents, and 102 deaths.  

Falls from height were responsible for more than 55% of major or fatal injuries in the ‘3b/1b’ MEWP categories of the 2021 IPAF safety report.

Chief health, safety & environment officer at Willmott Dixon, Mark French, said: “The annual IPAF Global Safety Report continues to show the significant numbers of incidents involving people working at height using mobile platforms, mostly caused by falls.

“I think we are the first tier one contractor to mandate this system across our business and supply chain. Safeguarding the health and wellbeing of our supply chain team on our construction sites is paramount and this is an excellent new way for those who use MEWPs to carry out their work.”

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