Safety training is an ongoing necessity on the construction site.

  • 1 in 5 deaths among U.S. workers is in the construction industry.
  • A total of 1,008 construction workers died on the job in 2020.
  • Each year, 10.2 of every 100,000 construction workers suffer a fatal injury, which is the third highest rate of any industry.
  • Falls account for 34% of all construction deaths, eliminating falls in construction would save more than 300 lives every year.

Training can take many forms, one of which is Toolbox Talks.These are short, 5-10 minute talks that can be given at meetings before the work shift or during breaks where workers can ask questions and discuss the topic.

Even though these are short talks, they still take preparation so that the information is delivered efficiently and effectively.

Statistical sources.

Format of a Toolbox Talk

  • Begin with an example of the types of incidents that are possible if workers do not follow the fall prevention guidelines outlined in the training.
  • Give guidelines for preventing falls related to the topic, such as ladders, roofing work, scaffolding.
  • Each training sheet should include blank lines so that workers can include ways the topic is applicable to their job.

Advice for Safety Trainers

  • Try to get the whole crew to actively participate. That will help everyone remember the information given.
  • Ask questions instead of simply talking to/at them. A good way to do this is to ask a question, wait for people to think then call on a volunteer for the answer.
  • Ask about the crew’s personal experiences, such as has anyone fallen off a ladder or scaffold? Hearing stories helps for others in the crew to remember what was said and make it more real and relevant.
  • Try to make sure that everyone has a chance to talk. This may mean asking the more talkative people to wait a minute so someone else can speak up.
  • All questions and answers are relevant. No question is a “stupid” one.
  • If you don’t know the answer, don’t guess. Parking lot the question and let them know you will find an answer.
  • Keep the crew on target with the topic. It’s easy to digress; however, let them know other concerns can and will be addressed later.

You’ll find three examples of Toolbox Talks in this Fall Prevention Training Guide. Take a look and see how you can build fall prevention training into your daily activities.

Like this content? Don't forget to share.