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Alert: Surge in Accidental Falls from Rooftops, Ladders, Trees, and Mobile Scaffolds! Declaration of Serious Accident Crisis Alert! 2024.05.09
Author : KOSHA
Recent months have witnessed a distressing trend of fatalities resulting from falls off
rooftops, ladders, trees, and mobile scaffolds during minor construction endeavors such
as springtime facility upgrades and landscaping projects. In response, the Ministry of
Employment and Labor (MOEL, Minister Lee Jung-sik) and the Korea Occupational Safety
and Health Agency (KOSHA, President Ahn Jong-ju) have designated March 27, 2024 as
the 6th On-Site Inspection Day, focusing on averting falls, which constitute the majority
of serious accidents.
* According to the statistics on fatal accidents subject to investigation, there were
251 fatalities attributed to falls in 2023, accounting for a staggering 24 percent of
the total 598 fatalities from accidents.

These preventable incidents underscore the significance of preemptive measures,
including thorough risk assessments and dissemination of safety protocols through
safety briefings and toolbox meetings prior to commencing work. Additionally, essential
safety precautions including donning safety helmets; installing and using safety rails and
harnesses; and deploying work platforms, safety guardrails, and fall protection nets are
pivotal in averting such accidents.

To heighten awareness and prompt action, the MOEL has activated the serious accident
siren, signaling the issuance of a falling accident crisis alert. Businesses are urged to
exercise heightened vigilance and participate in the occupational safety assessment, akin
to a comprehensive health checkup for workplaces.

Ryu Kyung-hee, Head of the Occupational Safety and Health Office at the Ministry of
Employment and Labor, stresses the efficacy of basic safety measures, noting “Many
fatalities from falls occur at relatively low heights, around one meter, where adherence
to fundamental safety protocols such as wearing safety helmets and utilizing work
platforms could have prevented the majority of incidents. I advocate for collaborative
risk assessments between labor and management to identify potential hazards and ensure
rigorous enforcement of safety protocols and educational initiatives.”