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SG4:15 Evolution not revolution

03 December 2015

With the publication of its 2016 Yearbook, the NASC has unveiled details of the impending core scaffolding fall prevention guidance, SG4:15. So what does this mean and how will it affect you?

In the confederation’s 70th anniversary year, the NASC 2016 Yearbook documents the imminent release of the industry standard for safe scaffolding, SG4:15 – re-titled ‘Preventing Falls in Scaffolding Operations.’
The flagship safety guidance note SG4:15 is described by the UK scaffolding industry trade body as 'evolution not revolution' and features a broader scope to reflect a significant increase in the number of TG20 compliant scaffolds, changes to scaffolding good practice and innovation in the industry.
Kevin Ward, NASC immediate past president says that SG4 works: "The NASC accident statistics speak for themselves and, in light of these, this revision has been more of a fine tuning exercise rather than trying to reinvent the wheel."
SG4 was first realised nearly 20 years ago and has become the established performance standard for the protection of scaffolders working at height.
The NASC says the revision reinforces its commitment to ensure guidance remains current. In a statement, a spokesperson said: "It has been revised to reflect the needs of the scaffolding industry as a whole and to form the basis for continual improvement in scaffolding safety.

"Work at height is by far the biggest risk faced by scaffolders and adhering to the principles within the guidance will not only serve to offer continual improvement in accident prevention, but also to assist users to meet their legal obligations in relation to work at height."
As with previous versions, the guidance is again supported by a user guide (SF4:YOU) to provide essential information to scaffolders in a user friendly format. Additional supporting information will be available via the NASC website.

What's new in SG4:15
Although many of the principles of SG4 remain unchanged from the previous edition, the latest revision has broadened in scope to reflect the significantly increased number of TG20 compliant scaffolds, changes to current good practice and scaffolding industry innovations.
These include

  • Erecting floor height lifts
  • Bridging with beams
  • Loading bay gate installation
  • Cantilever scaffolding
  • Chimney stack scaffolding
  • New personal fall protection equipment