AN ACT in relation to the protection of employees performing labor in the erection, repair, alteration or painting of houses, buildings and structures.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Delaware in General Assembly met:

Section 1. A person employing or directing another to perform labor of any kind in the erection, repairing, altering or painting of a house, building or structure shall not furnish or erect, or cause to be furnished or erected for the performance of such labor, scaffolding, hoists, stays, ladders or other mechanical contrivances which are unsafe, unsuitable or improper, and which are not so constructed, placed and operated as to give proper protection to the life and limb of a person so employed or engaged.

Scaffolding or staging swung or suspended from an overhead support, or erected with stationary supports, more than twenty feet from the ground or floor, except scaffolding wholly within the interior of a building and which covers the entire floor space of any room therein, shall have a safety rail of suitable material, property bolted, secured and braced, rising at least thirty-four inches above the floor or main portions of such scaffolding or staging and extending along the entire length of the outside and the ends thereof, with such openings as may be necessary for the delivery of materials, and properly attached thereto, and such scaffolding or staging shall be so fastened as to prevent the same from swaying from the building or structure.

Section 2. All contractors and owners, when constructing buildings where the plans and specifications require the floors to be arched between the beams thereof, or where the floors or filling in between the floors are of fireproof material or brick-work, shall complete the flooring or filling in as the building progresses to not less than within three tiers of beams below that on which the iron work is being erected. If the plans and specifications of such buildings do not require filling in between the beams of floors with brick or fire-proof material all contractors for carpenter work, in the course of construction, shall lay the under-flooring there on each story as the building progresses to not less than within two stories below the one to which such building has been erected. Where double floors are not to be used, such contractor shall keep planked over the floor two stories below the story where the work is being performed. If the floor beams are of iron or steel, the contractors for the iron and steel work of buildings in course of construction or the owners of such buildings shall thoroughly plank over the entire tier of iron or steel beams on which the structural iron or steel work is being erected, except such spaces as may be reasonably required for the proper construction of such iron or steel work, and for the raising or lowering of materials to be used in the construction of such building, or such spaces as may be designated by the plans and specifications for stairways and elevator shafts. If elevators or elevating machines are used within a building in the course of construction, for the purpose of lifting materials to be used in such construction, the contractors or owner shall cause the shafts or openings in each floor to be enclosed or fenced in on all sides by a barrier at least eight feet in height, except on two sides which may be used for taking off and putting on materials, and those sides shall be guarded by an adjustable barrier not less than three nor more than four feet from the floor and not less than two feet from the edge of such shaft or opening.

Any person violating the provisions of this Act shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof shall be fined not less than Fifty Dollars nor more than One Hundred Dollars for each offense.

Approved April 25, A. D. 1917.