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by the NFCC

Control measure

Assess and monitor stability: Scaffolding

Control measure knowledge

As scaffolding can collapse suddenly, with little or no warning, it is important to understand the purpose and type of the scaffolding, and the method and sequence of construction or erection. This information should assist in assessing the likelihood of localised or progressive collapse.

The assessment of the scaffolding should include observing whether there are signs of compromised or missing structural support, or there are temporary supports such as shoring and propping.

Specialist advice or assistance regarding the collapse or potential collapse of scaffolding may be required from:

  • The scaffolding provider
  • Local authority building control teams
  • Structural engineering
  • Urban search and rescue tactical advisers

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Make arrangements with appropriate agencies for the provision of advice or assistance regarding the collapse or potential collapse of scaffolding

Tactical actions

Incident commanders should:
  • Identify the purpose and type of the scaffolding

  • Assess the stability of any scaffolding and monitor it throughout the incident 

  • Assess the scaffolding for signs of structural support that has been compromised or is missing

  • Exercise caution when operating near scaffolding 

  • Consider the likely footprint of a scaffolding collapse when establishing cordons 

  • Consider the impact of current and forecast weather conditions on scaffolding 

  • Consider requesting specialist advice or assistance on the stability of scaffolding