Keep Suspension Trauma In Mind!

At-risk users should plan their work with suspension trauma in mind. Trying to avoid it in the first place is all-important, and so people planning jobs need to be mindful of the risks of accidents, how and when a worker could be placed in suspension, and how long it will take for them to be rescued. The critical things for workers to remember are:-

  1. Hanging immobile in suspension is a life-threatening emergency
  2. You must never work in suspension unless you are sitting on a workseat or actively using your legs
  3. If someone falls into suspension and cannot be rescued, lifting their knees into a sitting position is very important and may save their life
  4. When rescuing someone, avoid them laying flat on the ground. Keep them sitting up for 30 minutes
  5. Explain all this to the emergency services, paramedics or hospital doctors - most will not know it

If you are working in the EU, then your national version of the EU Temporary Work at Height Directive makes it law that you plan for, and educate your workers in, the risks of suspension trauma. You also have to have effective and fully trained rescue plans and equipment in place for all work.

We strongly recommend further reading regarding suspension trauma at: