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The ABC's of Fall Protection

The ABC's of Fall Protection

The ABC's of fall protection are a set of fundamental principles that are essential to ensuring safety while working at heights. These principles are:

A - Anchorage: A secure point of attachment must be identified and used to secure the fall protection system. This anchor point must be strong enough to support the weight of the worker and the equipment.

B - Body harness: A full-body harness is worn by the worker to distribute the force of a fall over the entire body, reducing the risk of injury. The harness must be properly fitted and adjusted to ensure maximum protection.

C - Connecting device: A connecting device such as a lanyard or lifeline is used to attach the worker's harness to the anchor point. The connecting device must be designed to absorb the force of a fall and prevent the worker from hitting the ground.

"A" - Anchorage Point

An anchorage point is what holds a person during and after a fall. Typically, this is something that is permanently attached to the structure where work is being completed. In most cases, a steel member is a preferred choice for an anchor point. Any bolts and washers used for the anchorage point should be inspected and evaluated for their load-bearing capabilities.

 

"B" - Body Harness (Safety Harness)

There are specialty harnesses for every job application and industry. A wide variety of styles and complexities from standard harnesses to more premium harnesses. When selecting a harness it is important to choose the d-ring configuration for the fall protection requirement depending on the type of work you will be performing.

A single d-ring Harness is sufficient for basic fall protection as the connector will attach to the back d-ring of the harness.

If the application calls for more restraint or positioning, then a 3 d-ring harness will provide side positioning for attachment of positioning and/or restraint lanyards.

 

" C" - Connector

The "Connector" is anything that brings the anchorage and body harness together. Connectors are designed to attach to the full-body harness and anchorage point, the connecting means is what determines the length of a worker’s potential fall. 

 

Two Types of Connectors:

Safety Lanyard 

A lanyard is a short, flexible line of rope, wire rope, or webbing strap with connectors at each end. Lanyards are attached to a full-body harness at one end, and to a deceleration device, shock absorber, anchorage connector, or anchorage point at the other end. Many lanyards include an internal or external shock absorber designed to reduce the force exerted on a worker in the event of a fall.  Shock Absorbing Lanyard/SRL - serve to dissipate or limit the substantial amount of energy imposed on a worker in the event of a fall. During a fall a worker free fall at a rate of 64 feet in as little as 2 seconds and can be subjected to catastrophic arresting forces as much as 5k lbs. without a deceleration device such as a KwikSafety Rattler shock absorbing safety lanyard. Slow the descent and limit arresting forces to under 900 lbs.

 

Self-Retracting Lifeline

A self-retracting lifeline performs the same function as a lanyard, connecting the worker’s safety harness to an anchorage point, but with one key difference. Rather than hanging freely, a self-retracting lifeline retracts automatically into the unit housing and must limit the free-fall distance of the worker to two feet or less. Because of the function of a self-retracting lifeline, it only needs to meet a minimum tensile load of 3,000 lbs.

Are the Components Compatible? 

When looking to properly outfit your team, it's important to confirm that you have a product that is ANSI tested and meets OSHA regulations. It is also best practice to ensure that all the components within any fall arrest system are compatible with one another.

At KwikSafety we offer a one-stop-shop for you to outfit your team with an ANSI Tested and OSHA Compliant product that is compatible with any SRL, safety lanyard, or vertical lifeline.

You can purchase the SCORPION Fall Protection Safety Harness separately or the complete SCOPRION Fall Protection Kit which includes everything you need and is the ultimate bang for your buck with high-value PPE products all bundled into one!

Each SCORPION KIT comes with:

Example: Best practice is to pair ANSI Tested and OSHA compliant full-body harnesses and lifelines that tether a worker to an anchor point such as the GATOR Roof Anchor or the GIBBON Cross Arm Strap with the MAMBA Self Retracting Lifeline.

 

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Following these ABC's of fall protection is critical for preventing falls and ensuring the safety of workers who are working at heights. It is also important to receive proper training and to regularly inspect and maintain all fall protection equipment to ensure that it is in good working condition.

 

If you have more questions, please visit our FAQ page.

 

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The ABC's of Fall Protection | KwikSafety