Fall Protection Training

Competent Person Course

FROM THE WORLDWIDE

EXPERTS

IN FALL PROTECTION & RESCUE

Contents
INTRODUCTION Standards Legislation Quiz Section 1 – Fall Protection Basics Fall Prevention Fall Arrest Systems Quiz Section 2 – Body Support Body Belts Full Body Harnesses Quiz Section 3 – Connectors Snaphooks Carabiners Lanyards Energy Absorbers Quiz Section 4 – Anchorages Impact Force Anchorages Anchorage Connectors Horizontal Lifeline Anchorages Quiz Section 5 – Specialized Equipment Self Retracting Lifelines Vertical Lifelines and Rope Grabs Ladder Safety Systems Horizontal Lifelines and Rigid Rails Quiz Section 6 – Rescue Basics Rescue Systems Self Rescue/Evacuation Quiz Section 7 – Equipment Care and Maintenance Inspection Care and Maintenance Identification and Logging Storage Quiz Section 8 – Appendix A – Definitions i iii iv v 1-1 1-2 1-4 1-8 2-1 2-1 2-2 2-7 3-1 3-1 3-3 3-5 3-7 3-9 4-1 4-2 4-3 4-4 4-7 4-8 5-1 5-1 5-6 5-9 5-11 5-14 6-1 6-2 6-4 6-5 7-1 7-1 7-2 7-3 7-3 7-4 8-A

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Introduction
Just the Facts…
• • • • • • Fall Protection can be defined as the methods used to minimize injury and the associated costs, both human and monetary, due to falls. Falls cost employers millions of dollars each year, in lost time, compensation, and third party liability suits. ANSI and CSA are voluntary compliance boards that set standards for the manufacture of equipment and/or voluntary best practices for safety . They do not make laws. Your federal government has a department dedicated to occupational health and safety that makes laws with regard to safety while working at height (OSHA for US and CCOHS for Canada). Fall protection is required when working above specific heights, or above anything hazardous. The trigger height for fall protection will depend on your local and national regulations. In most places, a work area erected 4 feet (1.2 meters) or more above the next lowest level in an industrial establishment must be guarded.


Within an industry of a multitude of legislated definitions, each organization purporting
to be experts within the field and struggling for their own particular identity, will give their own twist on defining fall protection. However, common to all and in its simplest form, fall protection can be described as the methods used to minimize injury and the associated costs, both human and monetary, due to falls.

Don’t let a fall get you down!

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compensation. the greatest beneficiary to this type of a program often reply with the following typical statement: “I’ve been doing this job. why should I change now?” Though it takes time. Falls cost employers millions of dollars each year. and the Occupational Safety and Heath Administration (OSHA) have set stringent requirements for the inclusion of fall protection in industry because of the recognition that working at height can be so dangerous. this way. while the costs associated with a new safety program has kept many companies away from implementing comprehensive programs.S.July 2000 The U. They included the employer's failure to use guardrails for fall protection and to train employees about fall hazards and the use of fall protection. • Fatality Alert • Decatur. Governing bodies and standards associations such as the Canadian Standards Association (CSA). workers and management must realize that fall protection can not only make a job safer. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 ii . one would think that it would be easy to convince management and workers to listen.The Need! Statistics abound that indicate the need for fall protection.350 following a fatality at the site. Following an inspection of the facility. Falls are the leading cause of death in construction. in lost time. but it can often increase production and make many jobs easier. Workers. Some industries are slow to take up the torch and implement the laws. . With all of the preventative measures and rationale revealing the need for fall protection. learn and use fall protection methods. each year about 400 workers are killed and tens of thousands more are injured in falls. However. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration today cited and fined a construction firm $119. like any other change there is still an incredible amount of resistance. The National Safety Council (NSC) estimates that falls account for half the industrial accidents and related costs each year in North America. CCOHS and OSHA have even instituted severe penalties as well as shut downs work operations for non-compliance. the company was cited with two willful violations of fall protection standards. A worker was killed when he fell 21 feet from the third floor of an apartment building under construction to the concrete floor below. the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). Ga. Falls rank second overall in fatalities for all industries only after traffic fatalities. and third party liability suits. for the past 35 years and I’ve never fallen.

Detailed procedural guidelines. 1992 American Society of Safety Engineers Institute. 1992 American National Standards Institute. Inc. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 iii . while regulatory American National Standard bodies enact legislation that must be followed under For Ladders – Fixed – penalty of law. Inc. Both bodies are a voluntary compliance boards that sets standards for the manufacture of equipment. For Systems A14. Regular inspection. Within North America the standards Safety Requirements bodies that have the greatest influence on fall protection are ANSI (American National Standards Institute) and CSA (Canadian Standards Association). will include the following: • • • • • • Identification of fall hazards encountered on the job site.1-1992 What is often not understood is the difference between standards bodies and regulatory bodies and ANSI® American National Standard how each affects the industry. Z359. Selection and use of appropriate equipment and systems.3-1992 Components The biggest difference is that standards bodies are primarily voluntary compliance. systems and identified anchorages. “Industrial falls are like winning the lottery.3-1984 Administrative Secretariat American Society of Safety Engineers Co-Secretariat American Ladder Institute Administrative Secretariat Approved November 24.3-198 Revision of ANSI A14. Revision of ANSI A14. And most importantly. In order to put the ANSI or CSA stamp on a piece of equipment it must undergo a series of tests in order to meet the ANSI & CSA Standards requirements that have been previously established. If any significant design changes are made to the equipment it then must again undergo the same level of testing to ensure that it still meet the standards. care and replacement of fall protection equipment. American National Standards Co-Secretariat American Ladder Institute Approved November 24. a comprehensive training and educational program. they only have to happen once. Management’s implementation of a company policy supporting the new fall protection program.Fall Protection Programs A comprehensive fall protection program which will successfully protect the workers using it as well as the management designing and implementing it. This process ensures that companies manufacture safe products and that the eventual end-users of the equipment do not have to stay awake all night worrying about the job the next day. to change your life forever!” Standards The fall protection industry is regulated by a number of standards bodies that provide guidelines for everything from minimum webbing and rope ANSI® strengths to maximum energy absorber deployment.

2000 Three workers fell 123 feet to their deaths when a suspended scaffolding system failed. and have the option to become even more stringent than the OSHA regulations. Manufacturer Equipment Tag with ANSI and CSA Standards Legislation In the United States fall protection is governed by OSHA. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 iv . The most applicable regulations pertaining to fall protection are OSHA. A fourth worker was saved by his fall protection harness and connected system. Proposed penalties totaled $126. They detail the duty to have fall protection.While ANSI and CSA are voluntary compliance boards. .) • Fatality Alert • Jackson. Fall Protection for General Industry. OSHA has the power and enforcement ability to issue stop work orders and severe fines for noncompliance. compliance is continually assured since both the legislative bodies and end users reference the standards when dealing with fall protection equipment. Fall Protection for construction. Subparts D & F. 1926. Subpart M. the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration. other standards bodies that may be relevant and applicable include the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association). (Note: The requirements for fall protection for iron workers (steel erectors) falls under OSHA 1926 except that they do not require fall protection until working 25 – 30 feet above a lower level. For end users it offers a reliable assurance that the equipment they are purchasing will be able to deal with the rigors of industrial use. and the Safety Equipment Institute.1-1992 ANSI A10. as well as training requirements. In addition to the main ANSI and CSA standards with regard to fall protection.14-1991 and OSHA REQUIREMENTS. These laws state that fall protection is required when working six (6) feet above the next lowest level. and 1910.Feb. MEETS ANSI Z359. system criteria and practices. Further. Individual states must then write their legislation to meet minimum requirements. which sets the minimum regulations for the entire country. within industrial establishments guarding is required on work platforms that are 4 feet or more above the next lowest level.000 for safety and health violations as a result of the accident. Miss. For legislative bodies the ANSI and CSA standards offer a benchmark that they can reference in new regulations.

and/or recommend voluntary best practices for safety. b. the industry that manufactures equipment designed to stop a worker in a fall. are joint health and safety committees which sets safety standards in industry. set international safety standards and enforcing procedures.Introduction Quiz (Circle the most correct answer). c. due to falls. c. set voluntary standards for the manufacture of equipment. b. c. 3. Fall protection is required: a. laws. d.2 meters) when not standing on the ground. the systems used to slow a worker down prior to hitting the working surface below. when working above 50 feet (15.2 meters) or depends on your industry. b. ANSI or CSA a. Fall Protection is defined as a. 1. when working at or below 4 feet (1. d. are governing bodies which makes laws. the methods used to minimize injury and the associated costs. and employer’s fall program © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 v . 2. both human and monetary. none of the above. d.

and controlled access zones. However. They are only to be used as a last resort to protect the worker. the terms are similar and seem to be interchangeable in most conversations. Fall arrest systems assume the inevitability of a fall. the first image that comes to mind when dealing with fall protection is a worker using a full body harness connected to an anchor point with a lanyard. in fact it is one of the later choices of most comprehensive fall protection programs. Rescue must always be a consideration in any fall protection program. Fall Prevention incorporates those systems and techniques that eliminate the possibility of a fall. Deceleration Distance and a Safety Factor. While “Fall Protection refers to the overall industry and process of protecting workers at height”. Fall Arrest.8 meters)). © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 1-1 . this is not the limit of fall protection. When installed and used correctly these systems are usually quite simple and self-explanatory. stair rails. each of the other terms refer to a component of that process. warning lines.Section 1 – Fall Protection Basics Just the Facts… • • • • • • Fall Protection refers to the overall industry and process of protecting workers at height. Warning Lines are used to cordon off hazardous areas. Fall Prevention. Typically. ladder cages. Controlled Access Zones are used at work sites where other fall protection systems cannot be used effectively. Fall Restraint. • • • ≈ Fall Protection. effectively engineering out the hazard. requiring minimal training yet still provide a high level of safety. This type of system is a “Fall Arrest” or more specifically a “Personal Fall Arrest” system. but they all refer to slightly different things. Included within the fall protection arsenal are systems that fall under the “Fall Prevention” heading such as guardrails. fall restraint systems. Personal fall arrest systems should always consider: “Freefall” (legislated to a maximum of 6 feet (1. All sites should have a written fall protection plan detailing critical components of their fall protection program. or may create greater hazards than those presently existing. Whenever possible the job description and area should be modified to eliminate the need to work at height.

but how easy will it be for the next worker to change the light when the bulb burns out? Whenever possible the job description and area should be modified to eliminate the need to work at height. • procedures for assembly. or installing a chain on an overhead valve so that it may be turned while standing on the ground. or a change in work procedures is the preferred method of providing fall protection. however. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 1-2 . use and disassembly of the fall protection system(s). eliminating the risk through the use of these systems. who is unable to rescue him/herself.e. inspection. effectively engineering out the hazard. A few examples include relocating a panel box to a more accessible location. • a list of the fall protection system(s). when work takes place at high levels (i. Fall Prevention Fall Prevention incorporates those systems and techniques that eliminate the possibility of a fall. and/or equipment to be used in each area. over 25 feet or 7. Fall protection plans are critical when safety monitors and control access zones are employed. all work sites should develop a written fall protection plan. Often this process is simpler during initial construction. and • procedures to rescue a worker who has fallen and is suspended by personal fall arrest system or safety net. all maintenance workers should think about this when installing any new fixtures within an existing facility as well. Engineering Out the Hazard Once a fall protection plan has been prepared. or engineering out the hazard with a modification to the area. or when a fall may involve an unusual risk of injury. It may be quite easy to initially install a light fixture while working from a scaffold. Some important characteristics of the more common fall prevention systems are described below. This may be accomplished with a modification of work procedures. which includes: • identification of the fall hazards in each area. Wherever possible.Fall Protection Plans First and foremost. one of the first steps to safe guarding workers at height is to try to eliminate the fall hazard altogether.6 meters). using a pole and adaptor to change a light. maintenance.

They are installed to give notice to workers who may be approaching the drop off. and originally designed for emergency use. Ladder cages are used where the length of the climb equals or exceeds 24 feet (ANSI A14. leg.39” above the working surface. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 1-3 . In fact a ladder cage is merely intended to restrict the movement of the worker so that he/she might regain a grip on the ladder rungs before actually falling. ladder cages are being used less frequently. Unfortunately. During a fall. As long as workers do not cross the warning line(s) they do not require any other form of fall protection. with colored flags attached. and at least 6 feet from the fall hazard. Ladder Cages Ladder cages are a common sight on most industrial workplaces. and use of all barrier type systems. This method of fall prevention is predominately used by roofers while working on flat roofs. we are not likely to see an immediate replacement of ladder cages due to the financial and convenience factors still inherent within such a system. and even within the realm of mainstream society. on public and private buildings. Governing bodies and standard setting agencies dictate the requirements for the installation. They are located. testing. falls into ladder cages have accounted for some horrific injuries and very difficult rescues. Guardrails are one of the most common and often overlooked forms of fall prevention. Even so. with manufacturers developing much safer and convenient ladder safety systems such as the SALA LadSaf® system. Guardrail or Railing Warning Lines Warning lines are used to cordon off a hazardous area. Where suitable. The unlucky worker gets stopped by the ladder cage usually when an arm.3 for Fixed Ladders). It is a common misconception that ladder cages are designed to arrest the fall of a worker. the lucky worker merely bounces from side to side until they hit the ground and/or the next platform.). The line(s) are positioned like a guardrail (34 . Fortunately.Guardrails/Handrails A guardrail system is defined as a barrier installed to prevent personnel from falling to lower levels while working or travelling on elevated working or walking surfaces. parallel. they protect the greatest number of employees with little or no training and no special maintenance. or their head goes through an opening in the cage structure and they become wedged.

• Fatality Alert • Alberta. the potential for serious injury has also been effectively eliminated. falling about 30 feet. where the potential for a fall exists. Controlled access zones are also utilized in conjunction with a safety monitoring system. Canada. Controlled access zones are only implemented when the use of all other fall protection systems would be considered unpractical or would create additional hazards. The benefits are obvious. Equipment used in restraint systems is generally less sophisticated than those employed in fall arrest systems since the equipment simply needs to hold the worker back and not support them in a fall. All of the above mentioned Fall Prevention systems see widespread use in industry today. not in his immediate work area. if the possibility of a fall has been eliminated. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 1-4 . Controlled Access Zones Controlled access zones are areas of restricted access where workers are at risk of a fall. The safety monitor must ensure that all workers in the “Zone” are aware of their surroundings.Fall Restraint Systems Fall restraint systems are designed and rigged to eliminate the possibility of workers falling to lower levels. Lanyards must be shortened and/or anchor points must be positioned such that workers cannot go beyond the edge where the potential for a fall exists. They are located on the hazardous side of warning lines. They should be used as a last resort. he backed up and tripped over the lip of the roof. advantages and disadvantages. While working. Controlled access zones can only be used in areas where work is being performed under the guidelines of a fall protection plan. and must be installed and used as per legislated and manufacturer guidelines in order to be effective and safe. It is important to remember to take all related hazards into account when using a fall restraint system. and that they do not ignore or forget the fall hazard. whereby an individual is given the sole responsibility of over-seeing the workers within the hazardous area. Some examples of appropriate applications of Controlled Access Zones include where leading edge or roofing work is taking place and the worker must work within the 6-foot danger area. They all have distinct applications. 1997 An employee of an Edmonton Roofing company was using a power broom to sweep away the gravel covering the flat roof where he was to make repairs. Often a fall restraint system is set up to protect a worker from one hazard and then it is later discovered that the worker could also travel to another point. Fall restraint systems are often referred to as travel restrict systems. In these instances the system should be designed with fall arrest considerations in mind.

In addition. they are a passive system. Note: Safety nets should only be installed. and not dedicated to a single worker or a group of workers. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 1-5 . it must be stressed that fall arrest systems are not a replacement for care and attention in the workplace. Unlike Fall Prevention. However. Fall Arrest Systems are normally implemented. materials.Fall Arrest Systems While Fall Prevention protects the worker by eliminating the hazard. Fall Arrest assumes the inevitability of a fall. A common problem experienced during the early stages of a fall arrest program is the increase in falls due to workers feeling invulnerable and becoming careless. they are different from fall prevention systems. there are specific testing and inspection requirements when they are used for fall arrest. They also require little or no training for the workers protected by them. This form of fall protection is used predominately by construction workers during formwork and while installing rebar. their installation is more complicated and requires an unobstructed area below the work surface in order to be effective. and is designed to stop the worker from hitting the level below and minimizing injury. Wall-form hook and chain rebar assemblies are the tools of choice when setting up a positioning system. it is recognized that engineering cannot always eliminate the risk of a fall. Ideally positioning systems should be backed up with a secondary fall arrest system connected to the dorsal D-ring. Safety Nets Safety net systems are similar in nature to guardrail systems. This can often be dealt with through proper training and diligent communication. Nets are more commonly utilized when there is a risk of material or debris dropping onto people below. Safety net systems are not very common in general industry but still see widespread use in construction and bridge maintenance operations. inspected and tested by a qualified or competent person. While safety nets offer similar advantages to fall prevention systems. Even with this assumption. Positioning Systems Positioning systems are primarily used for work at height where hands-free operations are required but excessive movement is not necessary. as they are used to arrest or catch the fall of workers. They are often used in conjunction with debris nets that incorporate much smaller mesh openings in order to catch smaller objects. or equipment from elevated surfaces. In such instances.

we will focus the remainder of this course on personal fall arrest systems. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 1-6 .e. While this calculation in itself offers little in the way of setting up a system. This distance should be set at a minimum of 2 feet. and/or injure the worker. since a freefall greater than this can potentially overload the system. Personal fall arrest systems are much more complex and require the end user to receive more detailed and comprehensive training. and care. These systems offer a safe and simple solution. As such. use. However. a Personal Fall Arrest System is required. Fall Arrest Considerations In the development and implementation of appropriate personal fall arrest systems it is important to be familiar with the following considerations: Freefall: is the distance traveled from the point where the worker starts falling to the point where the workers’ fall arrest system begins to slow him down. The freefall distance determines the speed of the fall and the force exerted on the system.Personal Fall Arrest Systems Fall Protection systems to this point have required little or no personal involvement from the worker. 42 inches). The location of the anchorage and the length of the lanyard will affect freefall. The higher the anchorage and the shorter the lanyard. prior to any bounce back up. when it is not practical or cost effect to employ such systems. calculated clearance. their components. Dring slide and harness stretch. 12 inches). Total Fall Distance: is the sum of the calculated freefall and deceleration distances. It is important to minimize the freefall and keep it as small as practically possible. Note: Most legislation allows a maximum freefall of 6 feet or less. the better the system. fall arrester lock-off (max. it does provide the necessary calculation for the final consideration. When using personal fall arrest systems. (approx. it is necessary to fully understand all of the components involved in order to work safely. The greater the freefall. 42 inches) and/or slip in the system (i. Free Fall Distance Total Fall Distance Calculated Deceleration Distance Clearance Safety Factor Deceleration Distance: is the distance attributed to the energy absorbers’ activation (max. This is the maximum distance that the worker falls. Safety Factor: is the amount of distance between the workers feet and the level below at the instant that the fall is arrested. the greater the deceleration and total fall distances.

if a workers’ primary support (hands and feet) fail then the fall arrest system will act as a backup secondary system and will stop the falling worker prior to hitting the ground. please see Section 6. the hazard exists if during the swing the worker comes into contact with an obstruction. For example. It is also important to remember that you must consider any obstructions that project out under a worker or machinery that may be on the ground. as well as the often overlooked Rescue/Retrieval component. prior to a much more difficult technical rope rescue. The calculated clearance is critical. the primary system is the work surface. the worker’s feet. This will decrease the workers calculated clearance. the cutting action of a sharp edge can be multiplied when the lanyard swings along it. in that. (For more information on rescue. Rescue: How a fallen worker is to be retrieved is a very important consideration that should be planned for well in advance. the fallen worker and any rescuers may be at risk. in case the worker’s primary system fails. our sense of balance and coordination. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 1-7 . The primary form of fall protection refers to the first line of defense. if a manlift or similar mobile work platform is available it should be used. Swing Fall: is a pendulum type fall that can occur when the anchorage is not located directly above the worker’s head. Although a swing fall is not hazardous in itself. as well as any positioning system that assists the worker from falling. The secondary system or line of defense is the fall prevention or fall arrest system being employed. the problem is obvious. etc. with the use of guardrails. Connectors and Anchorage. For example. primary system fails). However. if it turns out that the total fall distance is greater than the calculated clearance. a rescue doesn’t need to be complicated and should in fact be kept simple. For example. balance. The secondary system consists of the guardrails that will prevent a fall if the worker were to slip or trip (i. It is therefore recommended that the calculated clearance be at least two feet greater than the total fall distance. Body Support. The injury that may occur from a swing fall can be just as serious as falling the same distance straight to the ground.Calculated Clearance: is the distance from the work area to the ground or obstruction below. Without a comprehensive rescue plan and procedures.) The Primary and Secondary Approach to Fall Protection The primary and secondary approach to fall protection states that all workers should have two systems or lines of defense against falling. Fall arrest systems are similar. Fall Arrest Components The rest of this manual will focus primarily on the components that make up a personal fall arrest system.e. Further.

a fall arrest system. half of the total fall distance. b. they are the same things. the calculated fall distance safety factor. d. the distance between the workers feet and the ground. d. just as the fall arrest system stops the fall. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 1-8 . d.) 1. b. An example of a primary system is: a. b. a controlled access zone. none of the above. there is no difference. 3. Freefall is: a. your sense of balance..Fall Protection Basics Quiz (Circle the most correct answer. fall prevention assumes that a fall will happen. c. total distance traveled from the point that the worker starts falling to the point where the workers fall arrest system begins to slow him/her down. fall prevention eliminates the possibility of a fall. a guardrail. c. c. Fall prevention is different from fall arrest in that: a. 2.

NOTES: © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 1-9 .

The typical body belt consists of a length of 1 5/8 in. The Dorsal “D” ring on a harness must be used for fall arrest. never for fall arrest. at the center of the lower back.Section 2 – Body Support Just the Facts… • • • • • • Body Belts must only be used for positioning or restraint. Any time a harness or any other piece of fall arrest equipment is involved in a fall it should be retired. Positioning belts that are used in conjunction with pole straps or work positioning lanyards normally have two attachment points. Tolerable suspension time in a belt is 1. Body Belts The Body Belt was the first formal attempt at body support. but also prevent or limit the possibility of serious bodily damage. SALA 1001711 Single-Pass Friction Buckle Restraint Body Belt © Capital Safety 2008 SALA 1000925 Tongue and Grommet Positioning Body Belt with Comfort Pad mhb21308 2-1 . one located on each hip of the worker. Imagine the discomfort and potential for injury if one were to fall and have all the resulting impact forces concentrated in such a narrow band around the body. A tolerable suspension time in a full body harness is much longer.2kN). (41 mm) wide synthetic webbing which is secured around the body with a buckle.5 – 2 minutes prior to medical problems. All attachment points and load bearing straps on a full body harness must have a minimum breaking strength of 5000 lbs. ≈ Body supports have evolved considerably from the early days of tying a rope around ones waist and calling it a lifeline. (22. which should be positioned. A need was identified for the design and manufacture of body supporting equipment that would not only successfully arrest a fall. Some belts are equipped with a comfort pad (a wider piece of padded material) that is intended to distribute a worker’s body weight over a larger surface area. A standard fall restraint belt will have only one connection point.

these advantages include: prolonged tolerable suspension time. stating that the belt should not be used for fall arrest. a sit harness is not appropriate for use in industry where a worker could fall headfirst and slip out. In the event of a fall. Prolonged suspension of a worker that has fallen and gone unnoticed for an extended period of time may result in cardiac arrest. decreased potential for sustaining serious injury. legitimate possibilities for the body belt use still exist in work positioning and fall restraint scenarios. Most manufacturers include a written warning on. elevated blood pressure. SALA 1102010 Multi-Purpose Full Body Harness © Capital Safety 2008 mhb21308 2-2 . The design moves the impact from the internal organs (typically where a body belt distributes the force) to the major bone and muscle groups around the pelvic girdle. Unfortunately. increased pulse rate. and versatility. It is legislated that body belts must not be used for fall arrest. a body belt. the body belt does not usually maintain its desired position around the worker’s waist. The full body harness has significant advantages over body belts. Even when the belt stays where it is intended. which provided a more suitable distribution of the impact forces on the body compared to a waist belt.Body Belt Danger: Studies have proven that body belts can cause extensive internal injury and great discomfort when used for fall arrest. easier rescue. Although the body belt should be excluded from ones inventory of fall arrest equipment. Suspended workers will begin to experience difficulty breathing. Full Body Harnesses The development of the full body harness originated from the mountaineering sit harness. upright position of suspended worker. vomiting and unconsciousness. tolerable suspension time varies due to differences in anatomical make-up. However. nausea. ankles or slip off entirely leaving the worker to fall to the ground. if it is not worn properly the belt could end up around the workers chest. distribution of impact forces. or with. workers will usually average between 1 1/2 to 2 minutes before medical problems arise.

For further information concerning harness standards. Shoulder Straps Keepers Chest Strap Adjustment Buckle Front Leg Straps Dorsal D-Ring Sub Pelvic Strap ANSI Fall Arrest Harness Back © Capital Safety 2008 mhb21308 2-3 .2 kN).1-1992 and A10. full body harnesses must be designed.14-1991. refer to ANSI standards Z359. these categories are listed below: • Fall Arrest Harness: One attachment point located between the shoulder blades (Dorsal D-ring). ANSI Categories: There are various categories for harnesses as designated by ANSI depending upon their intended use. and tested in accordance with strict guidelines. One of the workers who did not connect his fall arrest system falls into the river below and is never found. Note: The average human wearing a properly adjusted full body harness will begin to experience severe internal damage when exposed to impact forces greater than approximately 2300 . if harnesses are maladjusted this figure is significantly lower. and The fall arrest attachment point must be located at the dorsal position (between the shoulder blades). (22. manufactured.• Fatality Alert • Detroit/Windsor International Bridge – December 2000 Eight workers fall when a swing stage they are standing on collapses in high winds. Standards: In order to meet the stringent standards established by ANSI and CSA. The remaining workers were rescued. including: • • • All attachment points and load bearing straps must have a minimum breaking strength of 5000 lbs.. When properly fitted the harness shall prevent fall out.2700 lbs.

NOTE: No matter what additional anchor points are included on a harness. • ANSI Ladder Climbing Harness ANSI Work Positioning Harness © Capital Safety 2008 mhb21308 2-4 . which may be either permanently or temporarily connected into the harness).e. Confined Entry/Exit Harness: One attachment point located on each shoulder strap to be used with spreader bar assembly to facilitate upright retrieval from confined spaces. ANSI Descent Control Harness ANSI Confined Entry/Exit Harness • Ladder Climbing Harness: Frontal attachment point(s) for connection to permanent ladder safety systems. i. Rescumatic or figure Fisk Descender. it must always include the dorsal attachment point for fall arrest. if located at the sternum). Work Positioning Harness: Positioning D-rings located on the hips for use with pole straps or work positioning lanyards to allow hands-free operations. (May have an integral waist belt. (Can be same D-ring as used for Descent Control.• • Descent Control Harness: Frontal attachment point(s) for use with manual or automatic descent control devices.

the worker’s neck was broken during the fall. All SALA harnesses incorporate this unique design feature. Delta Pad EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT The Delta-No Tangle Pad: This patented Delta Pad makes every harness easy to don and comfortable to wear. with the widest spread over your shoulders in the industry. it is important to realize that the extra attachment points may cause confusion and may even be potentially dangerous through misuse. Multi-purpose Harnesses: Equipment manufacturers have come up with a number of harness styles that incorporate some or all of the ANSI attachment points. confined space entry. and he died of his injuries. the Dorsal “D” ring must be used for fall arrest.Note: While the minimum breaking strength of most fall protection equipment is 5000 lbs. Apparently. As versatile as a multi-use harness may be. If a worker cannot adequately fit into any size of harness it may be necessary to acquire a custom fit harness for that particular individual or change work procedures to limit their access to heights. which was now in the front. The best practice is to stay as simple as possible and choose the harness with the least amount of attachments for the job. (weight of the worker. All reputable manufacturers provide specific sizes. without proper training some workers may choose the most convenient attachment point rather than the dorsal “D”. can significantly reduce a worker’s tolerable suspension time or produce an injury during a fall. or without being properly fit. Canada 1995 A worker died when he fell into his personal fall arrest system. the worker put his harness on backwards. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb21308 2-5 . as well as the “universal” size. Even minor maladjustments. the rated capacity of most harnesses is only 310 to 420 lbs. Adjustment/Sizing: It is all too common for harnesses to be worn incorrectly. Be sure that workers receive harnesses that will fit them properly. This practice will create the least confusion and doubt as to where to attach for fall arrest. As mentioned before. Although everything worked as it was supposed to. The “one size fits all“ universal sizing will more likely be a case of “one size fits most”. controlled descent and more. These harnesses are for specialized situations including work positioning. including clothing and equipment). Attaching to the wrong attachment point can result in severe injury during a fall. such as twisted leg loop webbing or uneven shoulder straps. and he attached to the Dorsal D-ring. • Fatality Alert • British Columbia.

While it is less expensive to purchase one harness for a number of individuals.Harness Choice: There is a continual debate between dedicated harnesses and multiple user harnesses. All the keepers should be positioned properly to prevent webbing slippage and entanglement. Transient or “multiple user” harnesses are most effective when equipped with tongue and grommet type buckles. the front D-ring should be positioned just below the rig cage (sternum) so that the shoulder straps will not slip off the shoulders. Firstly.) The dorsal ‘D’ should be positioned centrally between the shoulder blades. so speed and ease of adjustment become much more critical. it is safer to issue harnesses on an individual basis. a number of points are common to most harnesses. the full body harness will provide maximum safety and will not interfere with a worker’s ability to perform assigned tasks. Unfortunately the deciding factor most often comes down to one of budget. comfortable and allow for precision adjustment. but still allows free movement (see fit test below). Single-user or “dedicated” harnesses become a part of the individuals’ personal kit and are more likely to be properly inspected and maintained than those in a general access tool crib. Note: If a harness fails the pre-use inspection it must be retired. Although they do not offer the same level of comfort as quick-fit buckles. Place the shoulder straps on and secure all corresponding harness buckles. donning and adjustment. full body harnesses should be retired immediately following a fall. Ensure the sub-pelvic strap is positioned just below the buttocks and the chest strap is across the chest at nipple height. (If a cross-over style harness is being donned. Regardless of the type of harness selected. they are somewhat easier and quicker to adjust. However. lay the harness out on a clean. Follow all manufacturers recommendations for harness inspection. flat surface to ensure there are no tangles or twists in the webbing and to ease in the pre-use inspection. Dedicated harnesses are best equipped with quick-fit style buckles as they are generally more secure. Conduct a buddy check and attach the fall arrest connector to the Dorsal D-ring on the harness to begin working. As with all other fall arrest equipment. Harness Donning: The manufacturer’s instructions should be followed for the proper donning and adjustment of a full body harness. Adjust all straps and buckles so that the harness fits snuggly. Proper Harness Keeper Location “Snug Fit Test” © Capital Safety 2008 mhb21308 2-6 . if properly adjusted. Multiple user harnesses may be donned and readjusted by many workers in the course of any given work day.

Full Body Harness Quiz (Circle the most correct answer.)
1. The proper attachment point for fall arrest on a full body harness is a. b. c. d. The side “D” ring; the front “D” ring; the “D” ring on your body belt; the dorsal “D” ring.

2. The best body support for fall arrest is a. b. c. d. a rope lanyard; a body belt with a rear “D” ring; a full body harness with Dorsal D-ring; none of the above.

3. The minimum breaking strength of all attachment points and load bearing straps on a full body harness is a. b. c. d. 10,000 lbs.; 7,500 lbs.; 310 lbs.; 5,000 lbs.

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Section 3 – Connectors
Just the Facts…
• Snaphooks and carabiners used in fall protection or rescue operations must be auto-locking. • Some hazards associated with snaphooks and carabiners include forced rollout, false connection and loading over a sharp edge. • A captive eye or split pin will prevent a carabiner from cross gate loading. • Lanyards used for fall arrest must not be longer than 6 feet. • Lanyards should not be girth hitched (unless they are specifically designed to be used in this manner), or tied in knots. • All lanyards used for fall arrest should incorporate a built-in, or integral energy absorber. • An energy absorber will reduce the forces of a fall to below 900 lbs. but in doing so, can extend up to 3.5 feet, so watch your clearance!


Connectors include equipment that are used to couple or attach different components of
a fall protection and/or rescue systems together. For example, a connector may be used to join the workers full body harness to an anchorage or anchorage connector. Some connectors used in fall protection and rescue operations include snaphooks, carabiners lanyards, energy absorbers, and self retracting lifelines.

Snaphooks
A snaphook is a connector with a hookshaped body that has an opening for attachment to a fall protection or rescue component and a self-closing gate to retain the component within the opening. Snaphooks are commonly used in fall protection and come in a variety of shapes, sizes and models. Some snaphooks have integral swivels to prevent twisting of the system. Impact indicators are also incorporated into some snaphooks to indicate if the snaphook has been previously loaded and should be taken out of service.

SALA 9503175 and 9510057 Snaphooks

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They should have user-friendly. The basket fell when the additional weight of the worker jumping into the basket forced the hook gate to open. non-locking snaphooks are frequently found on work sites. they should still be coupled with much larger diameter hardware to prevent forced rollout. Note: Non-locking snaphooks must not be used for fall protection because of the hazard of “Rollout”. It occurs if the gate is forced open with a minimal amount of pressure. This is the accidental disengagement of a connector from whatever it is attached.Snaphooks are either automatic locking. Canada 1996 A worker fell 40 feet inside a man-basket when the slings used to support the basket to the nonlocking boom hook dislodged. Earlier in the day the basket was lowered and it is assumed that the slings wrapped over the boom hook’s gate unseen by the operator or worker. which remains closed and locked until intentionally unlocked and opened. • Fatality Alert • Saskatchewan. but cannot be locked. Correct Attachment Forced Rollout False Connection All snaphooks chosen for fall protection or rescue operations should be simple to operate thus ensuring they will be used correctly. one handed © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 3-2 . They have a self-closing. autolocking snaphooks prevent rollout. Although banned from use and sale. self-locking gate. Non-locking Snaphook Rollout Although. They have gates that are self-closing. Auto-locking snaphooks are the only types that are to be used for fall protection. or non-locking. Forced rollout may occur when a snaphook is attached in a manner that causes the side of the gate to be pried open.

A non-locking Gate © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 3-3 . A possible hazard that should be avoided is the false connection of a snaphook. Improper connections Snaphooks should not be attached together to connect two lanyards for additional length.g. or by integrally connecting a lanyard or an energy absorber to the harness. if the lock is closed and Spine the carabiner is loaded it can be difficult to unlock following the operation. the attachment of a snaphook to a D-ring on the back of a harness). sizes and features. servicing and storage of snaphooks. Regular buddy checks (having a fellow worker inspect all connections) will minimizes this danger as well. Please refer to Care and Maintenance section for proper inspection. Furthermore. because of the increased potential of forced rollout and freefall. Users should also ensure that a snaphook does not rest over a sharp edge. or if a worker forgets to lock it. Manual locking carabiners do not lock unless purposely locked by the user. Carabiners also come in a variety of shapes. They may cause problems if the barrel or twist lock becomes corroded hindering its use. They provide a maximum service life and minimize the potential of rollout. This may occur when the user can not see the attachment of the snaphook with the other component (e. Some materials used for the manufacture of carabiners include steel and aluminum. Steel auto-locking carabiners are recommended for fall protection and rescue operations.operation even when wearing large gloves. which may load the snaphook incorrectly and cause it to fail during a fall. Carabiners Carabiners are a type of connector that are generally oval in shape with a gate on one side that may be opened to attach to a fall protection or rescue component. To minimize the hazard of false connection a manufacturer can be requested to put an extension onto the dorsal D-ring of the harness.

carabiner. and double locking carabiners (used when there is the potential for an auto-locking carabiner to unlock). or unlocked carabiner has the potential to rollout. Non-locking and manual locking carabiners do not meet ANSI standards and should not be used. including pearabiners (commonly used for belaying). scaffold carabiners (used when a larger gate opening is required). This type of carabiner is called an Offset D. More recently carabiners have been designed to take the majority of the load along the section across from the gate (the “spine”). The Offset D also reduces the potential for the carabiner to turn sideways and get “cross-gate loaded”. All carabiners are much weaker when they are loaded across the gate. Other designs incorporate pre-drilled holes in the carabiner to insert a split pin to act as a captive eye. Cross-gate Loading There are a number of other types of carabiners. Split Pin Captive Eye SALA 2000106 Carabiner “Large Offset D” SALA 2000108 Carabiner “Scaffold” SALA 2007199 Carabiner “Captive Eye” © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 3-4 . This type of carabiner functions much like a snaphook. and is also not as strong as a similar carabiner that has been locked. rather than equally on both sides as with the original oval carabiner design. Another design that reduces the potential for cross-gate loading is a carabiner with a captive eye.

Please refer to ANSI Z359. webbing. Be aware that many connectors manufactured outside of North America will not meet these strict requirements. Cable lanyards are used when chemicals. and low cost. stamping. They must be capable of withstanding a 5000 lb. Hardware Requirements & Standards . They are used for their limited energy absorbing characteristics. All connectors should be self-closing and selflocking and must be opened by at least two deliberate actions. depending upon the circumstances. abrasion resistant. (22. Web lanyards range in width from 1 to 2 inches and can be comprised of nylon. very strong and have minimal stretch. All lanyards have integral hardware (either snaphooks or carabiners) at either end to facilitate attachment to other fall protection or rescue components.1-1992 for detailed standards and requirements. Lanyards Lanyards are used as a connecting means between the anchorage and the body support worn by the worker. lengths and varieties. their lightweight. Web lanyards are quite durable. The three basic lanyard constructions include rope. They may include an energy absorber (personal energy absorber) that is added or integrally connected. Cable lanyards are normally plastic coated stainless steel or galvanized wire rope that is 7 /32” or larger in diameter. Please refer to the ANSI Z359. (16 kN). Rope lanyards are made primarily of nylon or polyester and are braided three stands with diameters ranging from 1/2” to 5/8”. This carabiner also includes a split pin and pre-drilled holes to prevent cross gate loading when left in place for a prolonged period of time.1-1992 standard for more snaphook and carabiner details.2 kN) load and be proof tested to at least 3600 lb. and cable. forming or machining.Materials used for the construction of snaphooks and carabiners should be high tensile alloy steel or aluminum produced by forging. heat or welding © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 3-5 . and a 2” opening to receive most any component for fall protection or rescue operations. polyester or Kevlar. SALA 1220256 Adjustable Energy Absorbing Lanyard Lanyards can be constructed of a number of differing materials.EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT The SALA 2000108 is a self-closing/locking scaffold carabiner with an ultimate strength of 5000 lbs.

allowing the lanyard to be choked off (girth hitched). Web & Rope Lanyards Web Lanyard Rope Lanyard EZ Stop® Energy Absorbing Lanyard 1 2 3 4 This chart (taken from a SALA brochure) compares the forces that would be imposed on a 310 lb. as it can reduce the strength by up to 50%. However. SALA EZ Stop® Lanyard vs. Rope and web lanyards can be purchased with lengths that are adjustable. The length of the lanyard is a very important consideration. but kept as short as possible to minimize free fall distance.500 – 3. and therefore must be used with an integral energy absorber when used for fall arrest. rigid weight) who falls 6 ft. Cable lanyards are even more static in nature than web lanyards.000 – 3.000 – 4. allowing for universal use.000 – 2. do not tie knots in lanyards to reduce their length. with a polyester web lanyard. The lanyard should minimize the force on the worker to below 1800 lbs. Additional outer tubular webbing on this lanyard provides wear resistance and is one of the only lanyards that may be used in this manner. EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT The SALA 1221106 EZ Stop® II energy absorbing lanyard is comprised of 1” polyester webbing with self locking snaphooks at both ends and a floating D-ring.000 – 500 – 0– 0 TIME IN SECONDS Most lanyards without energy absorbers should not be used for fall arrest because of the impact forces that may result from a fall.500 – 2.000 – 1. However. but have a maximum length of 6 feet when used for fall arrest. Traditional lanyards must not be used in this manner as the webbing or rope can be cut during a fall or the snap hook can be forced open. it is recommended that all lanyards intended for fall arrest be purchased with integral energy absorbers. (8 kN) with up to a 6-foot free fall. worker (220 lb.500 – 5.500 – 4. a ½” nylon rope lanyard and an EZ Stop® energy absorbing lanyard.occurs in the immediate area. SALA 1221106 Girth Hitch Lanyard © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 3-6 . They should not be used if there is potential for electrical conductivity. It should be long enough to be user friendly. F O R C E I N L B S 5.500 – 1. Lanyards come in a variety of lengths to suit the needs of the user.

Most lanyards are available with traditional auto locking snaphooks attached to either end. When a worker must move along or up to a work area. Furthermore. while remaining protected by at least one lanyard at all times. the worker should not walk too far away from the anchorage overhead. or carabiners for connection to larger anchorages. However. or a swing fall hazard may occur during the fall. Note: A double tethered lanyard is designed for a single worker. a rope thimble that deforms when loaded) to indicated if the lanyard should be taken out of service. he/she moves hand over hand connecting the lanyards to the desired location. it should be immediately retired. Some lanyards without energy absorbers have indicators (i. Swing Fall Hazard © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 3-7 . SALA 1220416 100% Tie-Off Lanyard in Use Lanyards should be connected at or above the shoulder of the user to minimize fall distance. depending upon the requirements of the user. the manufacturer can attached larger snaphooks. If a lanyard has been used to arrest a fall. and must not be confused as two separate lanyards.e. Double tethered lanyards (two lanyards that are integrally connected at one end) are also available to provide for 100% tie-off protection.

In this case the total length of the connecting means must not be longer than 6 feet.5 ‘ (1. energy absorbers must retain the force of a fall below 900 lbs. When energy absorbers are integral to the Dorsal D-ring of a harness then use is ensured. but still reducing the forces of a fall to below 900 lbs. Deployed EZ Stop® II Energy Absorber © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 3-8 .1). All energy absorbers must have a deployment label. Lanyards with integral energy absorbers are recommended because they ensure that the energy absorber is used every time. workers must be aware that the maximum length of a lanyard used with these energy absorbers is 4-5 feet. Most energy absorbers dissipate the energy of a fall by extending. integral to a harness. (4 kN) and not deploy or extend more than 3.07 m). or extend in such a manner to visually display that they have been loaded or have arrested a fall. When using these types of energy absorbing lanyards the energy absorber end should be connected closest to the harness. SALA 1223302 EZ Stop® II Energy Absorber Energy absorbers may either be integral to a lanyard. tearing fibers. However. or may be separate units on their own. SALA sells different types of energy absorbers all working slightly differently. reducing the chances of false connection. Energy absorbers that are separate units should only be used when a company possesses lanyards and harnesses that are in excellent condition but wish to provide the added safety of an energy absorber. and/or producing heat (through friction) rather than a large impact force normally expected from a fall. These allow for visual attachment of the lanyard by the worker.Energy Absorbers An energy absorber (Shock Absorber) is used to dissipate energy and reduce the forces on the falling worker and the anchorage. to ensure that the entire connector is not longer than 6 feet. Once an energy absorber has been deployed it must be immediately retired. Note: To meet modern standards (ANSI Z359. The deployment or extension of an energy absorber must be added to calculations of total fall distance to ensure that the worker does not hit the ground or another obstruction below.

all of the above. (4kN). To meet ANSI and CSA standards a energy absorber must: a. b. only a and b. b. false connection can occur. it is more difficult to use. c. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 3-9 . attaching two lanyards together. all of the above.) 1. reduce the forces of a fall to below 900 lbs. c.5 feet (1. d. 3. e. d. girth hitching a lanyard that is not designed to be used in this manner.Connectors Quiz (Circle the most correct answer(s). it is illegal 2. d. always be integrally attached to a lanyard. b. rollout can occur. tying knots in a lanyard. A potentially hazardous use of lanyards is: a. c.07 m). A non-locking snaphook or carabiner must not be used for fall protection because: a. not expand more than 3.

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Section 4 . cable and synthetic slings. • Locate your anchorage directly above your work area. Some examples of typical anchorages include structural steel members. • Don’t use water pipes. deceleration device. pre-cast concrete beams. and wooden trusses. get it certified. • Clearly identify anchorages used for fall protection only. It can be used on a sloped or flat roof. when setting up an anchorage system. Also refer to Roof Anchor Fall Protection Kit. Some types include.Anchorages Just the Facts… • Pick an anchorage that will support 5000 lbs. inspect. • Ensure there is less than 45 degrees between sling ends. When shingling is complete simply cut off the D-ring and shingle over the sheet metal. and beam clamps. • Horizontal Lifeline anchorages are different than individual points used for fall arrest. Typical Residential Roof Anchor © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 4-1 . inspect your anchorages and anchorage connectors. electrical conduits. ≈ Anchorages can be defined as secure points to attach a lifeline. EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT The DBI Single-Mount Roof Anchor has a sheet metal base that is nailed over roof sheathing into the wood member beneath. This piece of equipment is used as a safe means of attachment for the lanyard or lifeline to the anchorage. but be careful. an anchorage connector (or anchor) will be required. consult an engineer. lanyard. or any other fall arrest or rescue system. The Dring is used for connection of the fall arrest or restraint system. • If an anchorage is used regularly. • Inspect. roof anchors. • Anchorages used for fall restraint and positioning systems may be designed differently than fall arrest systems. • Protect yourself from a fall even while you are installing the anchorage system. In most situations. light fixtures or guardrails.

the section he had attached to fell from its position to the floor below. pulling the worker to the ground with it. Canada 1998 A 40-year-old journeyman sprinkler-fitter and an apprentice were raising existing sprinkler lines in a building. It is this expected or calculated impact force that determines the strength requirements of the fall protection system components.2 kN) for every worker connected to the anchorage. then that I-beam should be capable of supporting a load of 10.Anchorages used for fall arrest must be capable of supporting a static load of 5000 lbs. worker freefalling 6 feet with a rope lanyard can be as much as 2500 lbs. the impact force resulting from arresting the fall of a 200 lb.. freefall distance. Anchorages that have engineering certification must still maintain a safety factor of at least 2:1. or maximum arrest force (MAF). Note: If two workers are required to attach to the same steel I-beam for fall arrest protection. the amount of give or stretch in the system). (22. unless engineering certification exists. when the system is designed.. and the amount of energy that is dissipated by the system (i.000 lbs. 5000 lbs for each worker.Impact Force The impact force. including the anchorage. The impact force is varies based upon the workers weight. can be defined as the maximum dynamic load that results from a falling worker’s sudden stop.e. Note: Typically. The journeyman fitter was standing on the platform of an overhead crane. While he was working on the line. 50 feet off the ground. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 4-2 . with his fall protection harness and lanyard attached to part of the sprinkler line. • Fatality Alert • Alberta. or more. installed and used under the supervision of a qualified person. 2500 lb 6 ft Strength Requirements for Anchorages Fall Arrest Systems .

whichever is greater.3 kN). Non-Certified Engineered Anchorage SALA 8000000 Tripod There are two classes of anchorages. it is recommended that the requirements of the fall arrest anchorage be used (i.Certified vs.Fall Restraint Systems . Certified (Engineered) and Non-Certiifed (Improvised). Fall Restraint System Note: The greatest concern with the use of any fall restraint system is that if it is not used correctly.). In these cases the work positioning anchorage must be capable of supporting a minimum of 3000 lbs. All engineered anchorages must be certified by a qualified person (a professional engineer familiar with fall protection requirements).g.In a properly designed fall restraint system. However. If there is ever any question of a potential fall while using a fall restraint system.e. OSHA requires that a non-engineered fall restraint anchorage be capable of supporting a minimum load of 1000 lbs. when they are used alone (e. All certified © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 4-3 . or may be existing structures that have been tested. a fall may occur.Work positioning systems should be backed up by a secondary fall arrest system where possible. and/or approved for use. Certified anchorage systems may be permanent or portable. evaluated.9 m). Engineered anchorages have either been designed and certified specifically for fall protection. 5000 lbs. utility pole climbing) the system shall be rigged such that the worker cannot free fall more than 2 feet (0. (13. Anchorages . so the impact force is a result of the worker leaning or stumbling into the system. the worker is not permitted to fall from the work platform. or twice the potential impact load. Work Positioning Systems .

Improvised anchorages. water and other fluid carrying pipes. once an engineered anchorage is installed or identified. As a result. This list should be maintained and the information kept by a competent person. also referred to as temporary anchorages. it should be added to a location list. When possible. trusses or other suitably strong structures located throughout a job site that are not practically certified. include existing beams. Inappropriate anchorages may include. It is not always feasible or practical to engineer or certify all anchorages used on a site. EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT The SALA 2101630 D-Ring Anchorage Plate provides a safe. workers using improvised anchorages must be thoroughly trained in their use and proper identification. As a result. compatible anchorage for a fall protection system. it should not be used until inspected and approved by a competent or qualified person. The plate is simply secured with two ½” bolts. The record describes the anchorage whereabouts and any additional relevant information. if there is any question don’t use it! © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 4-4 . and catwalk grating or mesh. locknuts and washers to a suitable structure with matching holes. guardrails. If there is any uncertainty as to the strength or state of an improvised anchorage. Furthermore. electrical conduits.anchorages should be identified with paint or special markings to ensure that they are only used for their intended purpose. non-certified or improvised anchorages must be used. a regularly used anchorage should be certified to remove any doubt as to its intended use. Note: A quick check to help identify appropriate improvised anchorages is to visually assess if the anchorage would be able to support the weight of a ¾ ton truck.

000 lbs when used in the basket-hitch configuration (because of the way they are made they cannot be girthCable Slings hitched). when using slings it should be noted that depending upon the method of attachment. Synthetic slings are chosen for their low weight. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 4-5 . There should not be more than 45 degrees between the sling sides. Most other slings are made of differing synthetic materials. However. Cable slings are chosen for their low cost. Most slings will converge together and be secured with a steel auto locking carabiner. and come in a variety of widths and thickness. swages and thimbles. it is important that the sling is long enough to entirely encircle the anchorage with length to spare. Furthermore. durability. Slings come in a number of different configurations and sizes depending upon the users’ requirements. heat and abrasion. The most common type of anchorage connector are slings. non-conductivity. A sling that is too short can multiply the load due to the large angle that is created between the two sling ends. the use of a choker or girth-hitch can reduce the strength of the sling by up to 66% compared to the same sling that is used in the basket-hitch configuration.Anchorage Connectors There are various types of anchorage connectors that can be used with engineered or improvised anchorages. the sling has different rated capacities. For example. and wear resistance to chemicals. such as polyester or nylon webbing. These slings have a breaking strength of approximately 12. All slings must be rated for a minimum breaking strength of 5000 lbs. and ease of use. Some slings are made of 1/4” plastic coated aircraft cable with Flemish eye splices.

beam clamps. Some include permanent and temporary roof anchors. SALA 1220145 Girder Grip with attached Lanyard SALA 3103120 Order Picker Cab-Mount Bracket © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 4-6 . This sling may be used in this manner because it is certified for 5000 lbs. thus ensuring that the sling is long enough to encircle the anchorage. Appropriate and Inappropriate Use of Slings X <45° X Basket Configuration less than 45 degrees Basket Configuration more than 45 degrees Girth Hitch or Lanyard Choker SALA 1003000 There are many other anchorage connectors that are available for use in fall protection.. while ensuring ease of use and providing a built in wear pad. eye bolts. rail sliders. A lanyard can be connected directly to the small D-ring on this sling. trolleys. It is most important that all manufacturer’s directions be followed when using anchorage connectors. a carabiner is not required. and shepherd’s hooks.EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT The SALA 1003000 Tie-Off Adaptor is designed to be used in the choker-hitch configuration.

All components of the anchorage system should be inspected prior to each use. in the direction that the force of the fall will be applied. this would also include any edges that the sling may come in contact with during a fall.Important Considerations There are a number of important points that should be considered when choosing or installing an anchorage or anchorage connector. Locating the anchorage for ease of rescue is also an important factor to consider. • “First Man Up” system SALA 2104519 Tie-off Adaptor System • When slings are used. • • © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 4-7 . the anchorages should be free from sharp edges. A swing fall is a pendulum type motion created by the worker falling back toward an anchorage that is not directly over his/her head. ensuring that the worker is not exposed to a fall hazard while attempting to set up the anchor system. Anchorages must also be chosen for ease of use and safe access. Swing Fall Hazard • The free fall distance should be minimized by locating the anchor system as high as possible. they include: • The anchorage should be located directly above the work area to minimize swing falls. If this is not possible a wear pad must be used. A common practice is to ensure that the anchorage is located at or above your shoulder. and The anchorage must be able to withstand 5000 lbs. and should be separate from the anchorage used for work positioning or supporting the workers weight. as well as on a regular basis by a competent or qualified person. This can be accomplished by choosing a location for the anchorage beside a protected catwalk or by using a “first man up” system to install the anchorage connector easily and safely.

number of workers using the system.) © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 4-8 . should not be confused with the strength requirements of the two anchorages needed for a horizontal lifeline. and its overall length.000 lbs in some situations.Horizontal Lifeline Anchorages The requirements for a single fall arrest anchorage. (Please refer to Chapter 5 and specifically the horizontal lifeline section for further information. and maintains a factor of safety of at least two. Some horizontal lifeline systems have in-line energy absorbers installed to reduce the overall forces in the system. There Horizontal Lifeline Anchor are a great deal of factors that are involved with resolving the necessary strengths of anchorages for horizontal lifelines. FH θ θ = Angle created by sag in cable FV = Impact force due to worker falling FH = Horizontal reaction force acting at end anchors FH FV θ >> 45º therefore: FH >> FV Note: All horizontal lifeline systems should be designed by a professional engineer who has experience with their design. Some factors include. pretension in the lifeline. previously discussed. Strength requirements can be well over 10. diameter and material used for the lifeline.

. 5. 0 degrees. none of the above. does not matter. NOTES: © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 4-9 . d. c. directly above the worker. d. 90 degrees.. Freefall and swing fall are both minimized by using an anchorage that is a. 3. b.000 lbs. 45 degrees. at foot level.000 lbs. b. twice the body weight of the worker connected to it. over 10. c.Anchorage Quiz (Circle the most correct answer. A non-certified or improvised anchorage used for fall arrest must be capable of supporting a load of at least a. 2. beside the worker. 3. c. When attaching slings around an anchorage in the basket configuration the maximum angle between the slings must not be greater than a. b. d.000 lbs.) 1.

Webbing Cable SALA 3103108 Ultra-Lok® Web Retractor SALA 3504430 Ultra-Lok® Retractable Lifeline © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-1 . • A permanent horizontal lifeline must be engineered. In the event of a fall the device will quickly lock the drum and prevent the lifeline from paying out. A ladder climbing system is the only fall arrest system that may be attached to the front of a full body harness. Under normal operation the line may be extracted and retracted under slight tension when the user moves vertically away from and towards the device. Some specialized equipment and systems include Self Retracting Lifelines. there are many situations that call for more specialized equipment or systems to protect a worker. Vertical Lifelines and Rope Grabs. and Horizontal Lifelines. The longest lanyard to be used with a vertical lifeline and rope grab is 3 ft. web retractors. but also a number of limitations that workers must be aware of to ensure safe use. or fall arrest blocks.Section 5 – Specialized Equipment Just the Facts… A self retracting lifeline is meant to be anchored directly above the worker. SRLs may also be referred to as retractable lifelines. thus arresting the users fall (within 3 ½ feet to meet ANSI/CSA). Ladder Climbing Systems. Avoid slack when using a self retracting lifeline. • • • • ≈ Although the lanyard is the most common and widely used fall arrest component. Each system or piece of equipment has a number of benefits for specific circumstances. retractable lanyards. Self Retracting Lifelines Self retracting lifelines (SRLs) contain a drum wound line. depending upon the size and make-up of the device.

) SALA 3101001 Talon SRL Line (Cable. the retraction spring.e. which may include: Anchoring Handle Housing (Within: the storage drum. Some models have mounting brackets attached to the housing that may be used to connect the SRL to a wall. Load Indicator Connector SALA 3403400 Sealed SRL The Anchoring Handle is attached to the housing of the SRL and provides a location to attach the device to an anchorage with. There are a number of different locking mechanisms (e. Finally. in most cases. and in some cases an energy absorbing mechanism. a carabiner.g. The Housing is a casing that protects the inner components of the SRL. light unit that can be directly connected to the harness or anchor point above. All the internal components are metal. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-2 . The speed sensing brake locks the drum and prevents the line from paying out when the exit speed of the line reaches a predetermined rate (i. or back of a harness. within the housing of the SRL there may also be an internal energy absorber.). davit or tripod. while still weighing less than 3 lbs. approximately 4. The retraction spring provides the tension on the line while it pays in and out of the SRL.5 ft/s).Components: SRLs are made up of a number of working components. The energy absorber will act to reduce the forces of the fall on the user and system (i. the speed sensing brake. A storage drum is located within the housing that holds any excess line when not in use. web or rope) EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT The SALA Talon Self Retracting Lifeline is a small.e. below 900 lbs. inertia cams or centrifugal pawls).

310 lbs. to ensure that the forces are kept to a minimum.The Line of an SRL can be comprised of cable. some SRLs have an added reserve line that only deploys in an emergency. or a rip-stitch indicator on the line. In many instances they are more appropriate for protection while climbing ladders than are ladder climbing systems. a coloured window or button that pops out on the housing. The Load Indicator visually shows if the SRL has been loaded or has arrested a fall. self retracting lifelines can be used in a variety of situations. Application: Although. or synthetic rope. This weight will include clothing and equipment and usually ranges from 75 . The SRL should be anchored to a location directly above the user and can be accessed with a tagline (small diameter synthetic line) when out of the user’s reach. © Capital Safety 2008 Movement mhb032808 5-3 . but add to the total fall distance. and can also include a swivel and/or load indicator built in. The preferred type is located on the connector so that it can be easily inspected prior to each use. The indicator can be a coloured band that appears on the connector. They can also be used with horizontal lifelines to improve the overall mobility of the system. This working range is normally measured from the end of the snaphook or carabiner to the top of the anchoring handle. the length of the lifeline is slightly shorter than the working range recorded on the device. they are primarily used to provide movement and protection of users in a work area vertically up and down. ORANGE BEFORE AFTER New Snaphook Load Indicator Deployed Load Indicator A Connector should be integrally attached to the end of the lifeline and it should be of the auto-locking variety. SRLs range in length from approximately 8 to 175 feet dependent upon the needs of the user. The connector can be a carabiner or snaphook. As a result. webbing. The SRLs that do not have internal energy absorbers often have external energy absorbers that are attached to the lifeline and provide a similar function. Most SRLs have a maximum and minimum weight capacity for the worker using the equipment. If a user is to fall with the line totally extended.

Some of the smaller SRLs (web retractors) can be permanently or temporarily attached to the back of a full body harness for added convenience (See page 5-2 Equipment Highlight section for the SALA Talon SRL). The manufacturer’s instructions should be strictly followed for inspection. should the need arise. In most cases the unit will have to be returned to the manufacturer for servicing or replacement. SRLs should also be regularly inspected and returned to the manufacturer for recertification if required by the manufacturer or legislation. They include: • All sharp edges. SALA 3103120 Harness mounted SRL All SRLs should be removed from service following the arrest of a fall. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-4 . These units provide user-friendly employment with first-man-up systems. electrical hazards. care. and maintenance. chemical contaminants and moving machinery should be avoided when using SRLs. or if the load indicator is visible. Another added feature on some SRLs is a built in lowering and raising mechanisms that can be manually engaged by a standby (rescue) worker. Potential Hazards: There are a number of guidelines that must be followed when using SRLs to ensure that the units are effective in their fall arrest function and other dangers are not present.

in most cases. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-5 . • Do not move laterally away from the anchorage point of an SRL. • SRLs should not be used in granular surfaces where a quick sand effect could occur. Washington 1997 A worker did not like the way his SRL was pulling on the back of his harness. Always work directly below the SRL. he forgot to remove the vise grips before he climbed up the ladder. In a fall this slack may cause unnecessary freefall that could overload the SRL and cause it to not function properly or fail. The slow sinking of a worker will not be fast enough to lock up the unit. so he asked a fellow worker above to clamp off the line with a pair of vise grips so that it would not pull anymore. The added weight of the extension could introduce slack into the system. will not arrest the fall until the user has gone over the edge. and • Only leading-edge SRLs. When the worker slipped. • Do not attach lanyards or other extensions onto the lifeline to extend their length unless directed by the manufacturer. while the cable may come in contact with the sharp eave. knotting or running the line over obstructions or around the body. In the event of a slip or fall the device. A swing fall may also put the worker at additional risk. as additional slack and freefall will be introduced. can be used on sloped or flat rooftops. he free fell 20’ before the SRL engaged due to the slack line. Standard SRLs should not be used on sloped or flat roofs. • Fatality Alert • Seattle.HAZARD! • Do not introduce any slack into the line by clamping. Unfortunately. The excess freefall created a greater load than the SRL could take and the cable snapped allowing him to fall over 50 feet to the ground.

© Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-6 . but all are categorized as either the manual (static) or automatic (mobile).Vertical Lifelines and Rope Grabs A vertical Lifeline is a vertically suspended flexible line with a connector at the upper end for fastening to an overhead anchorage. (26. pliable. Nylon ropes are very strong. Vertical Lifelines are typically composed of nylon or polyester.6 kN). While the worker climbs or descends. Rope lifelines range in diameter from ½” (12m) to 5 /8” (16 mm) and should have a minimum breaking strength of 6000 lbs. They are not very abrasion resistant and have the potential for up to a 20% loss in strength when wet. and absorb impact forces very well but have two distinct disadvantages.6 kN). Wire rope lifelines must have a minimum diameter of 5/16” (8 mm) and a minimum breaking strength of 6000 lbs. Wire rope or cable may also be used in the construction of vertical lifelines. (26. Rope Grabs (Fall Arresters) consist of any device. They are very static in nature and should be used with an in-line energy absorber or energy absorbing lanyard. thus providing a path along which a rope grab (fall arrester) can travel. but has the distinct advantage of being very tough and durable with excellent abrasion resistance characteristics and has no appreciable loss of strength when wet. Vertical Lifeline and Rope Grab Note: Sharp edges can reduce the strength of any rope by up to 70%. which travels on a lifeline and will automatically lock onto the lifeline in order to arrest the fall of the user. There are many types of rope grabs on the market today. Most rope grab systems use the principle of cam lever or inertial locking. Polyester is not quite as impact resistant as nylon and is stiffer. the rope grab is either moved by the worker (manual type) or follows the worker (automatic type) and will lock onto the line in the event of a fall.

Manual rope grabs also see widespread use in roofing applications as they work very well in fall restraint scenarios where the possibility of freefalling could load the lifeline over a sharp edge. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-7 .e. Always remember. They may incorporate inertia locking mechanisms. The rope grab will now precede the worker down the lifeline. If the worker needed his/her hands in order to climb.Manual (Static) rope grabs usually rely on the lever or cam lever principle to arrest a workers’ fall. SALA 2104168 Roof Anchor Kit (Manual Rope Grab & Lifeline) Automatic (Mobile) rope grabs are best used when hands-free operation is required. the automatic rope grab will simply follow or lead the worker shortly below. Upon descending the worker disengages the rope grab by either climbing above the device or by manually unlocking it. as it requires the worker to manually disengage the locking mechanism to facilitate movement along the lifeline. Further. a manual rope grab could be a hindrance. They are designed to remain locked onto the lifeline until the worker disengages the locking mechanism manually. climbing communication towers. fall restraint systems eliminate freefall potential and are preferred over fall arrest systems. but will still lock-off in the event of an accidental fall. Note: An automatic rope grab must not be used with a lanyard longer than 3 feet due to the free fall potential. As a worker climbs or descends. calculating clearance is important because of the added stretch in the lifeline and lock off requirements of the rope grab. which rely on speed of descent. When a worker arrives at an elevated location to perform the assigned task he/she should position the automatic rope grab overhead (“Park it”) in order to reduce any possible freefall distance. rather than changing the angle of camming levers. i. This type of rope grab is particularly useful when powered swing stages are in use as the worker does not require the use of his/her hands to climb elevated structures.

• • • • Rope grabs shall be automatic in their locking or fall stopping function. governing bodies have established strict guidelines and standards for the fabrication and use for rope grabs. With this in mind it is always advisable to obtain the rope grab and lifeline from the same source.EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT The SALA Lad-Saf® Automatic Rope Grab locks by an inertia/cam system.) DBI LS-1441 Automatic Rope Grab When using rope grabs of any type it is of crucial importance that the correct diameter and composition of rope is used. Lock-off distance shall not exceed 42” (1. triple sliding hitches and other friction type knots are not to be used in industrial fall arrest applications. Only one worker may utilize the lifeline at a time.1m). as specified by the manufacturer. • Rope grab lanyards must only be connected to dorsal attachment points on full body harnesses. a rope grab with very aggressive camming action may shear the lifeline if it is a type with nonrecommended fibers and/or construction. Laid (Braided) Rope Kernmantle Rope As with all fall protection equipment. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-8 . It can be attached or removed anywhere along the lifeline and can be purchased with an integral 3 foot energy absorbing lanyard. For example. Some rope grabs work best when coupled with laid ropes while others work far better and are much safer when used in conjunction with a double braid or kernmantle rope. thus preventing them from locking on the lifeline. thus preventing “Death Grip”. Prussic knots. (“Death Grip” can occur if the user holds open some models of rope grab while they are falling. A brief summary of these guidelines is listed below.

Note: Permanent ladder safety systems represent the only instance where workers will hook into frontal harness attachment point(s) for fall arrest applications. thereby limiting choices to either a auto-locking factory installed snaphook or a user installed auto-locking carabiner. The maximum connection length between the ladder safety sleeve and the worker’s full body harness cannot exceed 9 in (23 cm). If a worker should happen to fall while using a ladder safety system. but do not incorporate lanyards and are only used with cables or rails rather than rope. flat rail. This is permissible due to the very short connection length between the device and the harness and the resulting very short fall distance afforded by the system. Cable Ladder Safety Systems are relatively inexpensive.) © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-9 . which is installed either in the center or off to one side of a fixed ladder. A major advantage of the cable type system over a rigid rail system is the ability to remove or install the safety sleeve at any point along the cable. or notched rail assembly. (Most rigid rail systems can only be accessed at the top or bottom of the rail and cannot be removed at any other location. Ladder Cage Meets governing regs NOT recommended for everyday use.Ladder Safety Systems The possibility of sustaining severe injury is very high if the horizontal bands of a ladder cage arrest an accidental fall. the cable may be installed in the center or off to one side. Permanent ladder safety systems are recognized as being a safer alternate to ladder cages. injuries sustained are either minor or perhaps non-existent. which are commonly installed for protection while climbing or descending fixed ladders. This is mainly due to the fact that fall distances are minimal since lock-off of these devices generally occurs within 12 in (30 cm). Ladder safety devices will incorporate either a flexible cable. easy to install. and very easy to use even in adverse weather conditions. Safety sleeves are very similar in design and function to rope grabs. Depending on the width of the ladder being used.

5 ft (2 m) intervals along the length of the ladder and incorporate splice kits. SALA Lad-Saf® Flexible Cable Ladder Climbing System Rigid Rail Systems are somewhat sturdier than their cable counterparts but are more expensive and more difficult to install. and will greatly reduce freefall distances. Some of the older systems still being used will incorporate round. all fixed ladder safety systems are less expensive. as the rails are manufactured and shipped in limited lengths. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-10 . his/her fall will be arrested at the next notch down from where the fall was initiated. SALA Railok® Rigid Rail System Regardless of the type of ladder safety system being used. Note: Beware of older systems that require the use of a body belt instead of a full body harness. as body belts must not be used for fall arrest anymore. A flat rail system such as the SALA Railok® utilizes a safety sleeve that locks off very quickly and functions much like a cable system. Potential users must be aware however. Cable guides are also installed at intervals along the length of the climb to ensure proper alignment and protect from vibration caused by wind loading. If a worker falls. In addition to being safer than ladder cages. a worker is much safer and is less likely to be injured compared to the use of a ladder with only a cage.One of the more popular cable ladder safety systems on the market today is the SALA Lad-Saf® system. The rails must be anchored at no greater than 6. easier to install and inspect. which uses a flexible solid core cable. This system incorporates rigid anchors at both the top and bottom of the ladder and requires a cable tension for smooth operation. that the use of a full body harness with frontal attachment hardware is mandatory with any cable or rigid rail system. tubular rails with notches at regular intervals.

A horizontal lifeline is a cable or rope that is connected between two fixed anchorages at the same level. but preferably they should be positioned above the worker to minimize free fall distance.Horizontal Lifelines and Rigid Rails Horizontal lifelines and horizontal rigid rails are two of the more complex systems used for fall protection. Systems should be installed at least at waist level. a tagline should be used to access the SRL. While. Industry standard dictates that they should be designed by a qualified person (professional engineer) experienced with their design requirements and who maintains a factor of safety of two. A self retracting lifeline can be used if the worker is also required to move up and down as well as along the length of the system. along the length of a railcar). In this case. A trolley will provide mobility for the lanyard or SRL and ensure that it is positioned directly above the worker to minimize swing fall. Both systems are designed and installed to provide horizontal movement and protection of workers (e. If an energy absorbing lanyard is used. Horizontal systems allow attachment of other connectors for fall arrest or fall restraint protection. or as complex as a trolley and self retracting lifeline.g. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-11 . then it should be as short as possible to minimize free fall distance. Movement Horizontal Lifeline Railcar Application Note: There are very limited standards with regard to the design and installation of horizontal systems for fall protection. A connector could be as simple as a energy absorbing lanyard. a horizontal rigid rail is a beam or track parallel to the ground that is supported by two or multiple points along its length.

the total fall distance. or multiple spans. or specially engineered anchorage brackets. The resulting forces on the end anchorages of a horizontal lifeline are much higher than would be expected from a vertical plane system. Furthermore. SALA Sayfglida System). EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT The SALA Sayfglida Permanent Horizontal Lifeline System has a Sayflink Sleeve that automatically bypasses all intermediate brackets allowing for unlimited horizontal protection. (e. the fall distance will be greater than expected for a conventional fall arrest system because of the additional sag from the lifeline. with intermediate supports that can be thousands of feet long.g. They include the span. SALA Sayfglida Permanent Horizontal Lifeline (Intermediate Anchor and Slider) © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-12 . they can often accommodate multiple workers. With appropriate factors of safety. Permanent horizontal lifelines often have engineered structures with foundations. Horizontal lifelines are primarily categorized as either permanent or temporary. Longer pre-engineered systems often have the means for workers to travel past intermediate supports without having to disconnect from the system. the number of workers attached to the system at any one time. There are a number of factors that must be considered when designing a horizontal lifeline. the pretension. Each system is designed and engineered by SES to ensure appropriate safety factors are maintained.Horizontal Lifelines are a very complex system of sub-components. the maximum arrest force and the inclusion or omission of an in-line energy absorber. They have single spans commonly up to 150 feet. the connecting sub-systems used. The lifeline is generally comprised of galvanized or stainless steel cable that should be 1/2” or greater in diameter.

Most systems accommodate multiple workers and can be of an unlimited length. Large fall distances are typical when using these systems so appropriate clearances must be maintained. However. the span between supports. Rigid rail systems require anchorage strengths similar to vertical plane fall arrest systems. Manufacturers' directions must be strictly followed when using temporary systems to prevent accidents.Temporary horizontal lifelines are portable and are easily installed and removed. the type and construction of the rail. SALA 7003020 Iron WingTM Portable Horizontal Lifeline Horizontal Rail Systems are primarily permanent in design and installation. They also do not sag like horizontal lifelines so there are fewer factors to consider. They are typically no longer than 60 feet in length and can normally accommodate up to 2 workers. bolted or clamped. Many temporary systems incorporate in-line energy absorbers to minimize the forces on the end anchorages. Some pre-engineered rigid rail systems allow for use on slight inclines and around curves. and often more costly than horizontal lifelines. In most cases. and the connection method must all be taken into account. the strength of the existing structure. (22.2 kN) are required. SALA 2103143 I-Beam Trolley Horizontal Rail System © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-13 . to an existing structure or building. In most cases only anchorages capable of supporting 5000 lbs. The lifeline is usually of a synthetic nature and has a simple method to tension the system. beam or track is either welded. the number of workers. a rail.

b. when climbing a ladder. when working in a granular substance. 3. 3 feet. all of the above. 2 feet. both a. c. The design requirements of a horizontal lifeline are much more complicated compared to a vertical plane fall arrest system. does not matter. e.Specialized Equipment Quiz (Circle the most correct answer. b. d. True or False ? NOTES: © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 5-14 . on a flat roof. A self retracting lifeline should not be used: a. d.) 1. c. The maximum length of lanyard that can be used with an automatic rope grab is: a. 2. and b. 6 feet.

A call was made to 911 and a decision was made by the volunteer fire department to respond rather than calling out the nearest metropolitan team approximately 45 minutes away. under pressure. Now a worker falls and he is literally left hanging. After arriving on the scene. Wherever feasible start the rescue from the ground up.e. Even though rescue budgets are being severely reduced. been hanging for over 45 minutes with only minor discomfort. rescue was not a big issue. although often overlooked. cut the worker’s lanyard prior to connecting to him. USA 1996 While working on the grating walkway of a billboard in rural Illinois. it’s always better to find out the anchor will not hold at ground level. Unfortunately.Section 6 – Rescue Basics Just the Facts… • • • • • • • Rescue is a necessary component of any fall protection program. The simplest form of rescue should always be the first (i. The worker was using a personal fall arrest system that successfully stopped his fall without any injury to the worker. ladders etc. rescuers rappelled down to the fallen worker and proceeded to retrieve the worker. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 6-1 . since the rescuers were rappelling to the worker. ≈ • Fatality Alert • Illinois. there is now a greater need than ever for a site to maintain the capability to perform a safe and efficient rescue. a worker stepped through a hole just cut by his partner.) In house rescue teams must be properly trained and practice regularly. Rescue personnel sustain over 75% of the injuries resulting from rescue operations. the ambulance rolled up scraped them off the ground and drove away. is a critical component of any fall protection program. A raising and lowering system used for non-emergency work must be backed up with a fall arrest system. The worker fell 30 feet when one of the rescuers. If a worker fell. In the past where workers were left to their skill and wit to prevent a fall. Self-rescue should always be available when there is the possibility of a lone worker being stranded at height. The worker had at that time. manlifts. and setting up appropriate anchorages. A common misconception is that because fall protection programs are being implemented the site will be safer and there will be less need for rescue. Rescue. they could not disconnect him from his existing fall arrest system (they had no raising capability).

and response time of the Rescue Professionals should be confirmed. is considered dangerous and generally frowned upon. then the abilities.) In-house rescue teams can be extremely effective. the rescue should be as simple and as safe as possible. putting the fewest workers at risk.Keep it Simple! High angle rescue operations may be conducted in a variety of ways. It is preferable if rescue operations are initiated from the ground level. if rescue teams are to be established. The typical “Hollywood style” rappel rescue. If the ‘911’ system is incorporated into the rescue plan. potential rescuers have been found to panic and overlook important aspects of their training. Their capabilities should never be taken for granted.e. the rescuer at ground level simply re-rigs and tries again. However. Such devices are relatively easy to use and do not require as much expertise as the rigging required in technical rope rescue. then one of these methods should be used. bucket truck. DBI L2090 RPD – Raising and Positioning Device © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 6-2 . Rescue personnel sustain over 75% of the injuries resulting from rescue operations. If anchor systems are poorly rigged and fail. (See Fatality Alert on the proceeding page. The rescuer should travel up to reach the casualty from below. as their response times are typically much shorter. Industrial sites may also rely on the local fire department to perform high angle and confined space emergency rescues. monthly). Systems used by inhouse rescue teams should include pre-rigged mechanical raising/lowering devices such as the Rollgliss® or DBI RPD units. In the heat of the moment. or extension ladder. If a fallen worker can be accessed using a scissors lift. rather than starting at a level above and moving down towards the fallen worker. As a result. When simple and practical procedures are used there is a much larger margin of safety and the requirements for training are reduced. but can cause others to fall apart. while exciting and adrenaline inducing. limitations. Pressure can be a great motivator for some. the rescuer at a high level may not get a second chance. it is of utmost importance that all members receive competent professional training and practice on a regular basis (i.

EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 6-3 . as well as an optional speed stop. Rescuers must raise fallen workers and manually disengage the lanyard or lifeline used for the fall arrest. Note: Lanyards and/or ropes should never be cut in rescue situations. The Rollgliss® also offers a friction design that increases the effective ratio to that of a belay for lowering applications. Rescue Lines (Rogliss®) Belay Line Casualty’s Lanyard The Rollgliss® raising and lowering device offers exceptional alternatives to technical rope rescue. Cutting the lanyard or lifeline may result in the accidental severing of adjacent rescue ropes and/or lifelines. redundant system. With a mechanical advantage of up to 5:1. An example of a recommended back-up system consists of a belay line or SRL that is totally independent of the primary means of rescue. raising individuals becomes an efficient and achievable task for any rescuer.Backup Rescuers should always be “backed-up” with a secondary. Other accessories are also available.

Self rescue/escape procedures are inherently dangerous and should not be attempted by untrained personnel. If limited training is provided and the zone beneath the potential descent is free of obstructions. this rescue device allows the worker to simply step off the platform and it then controls the speed of his/her descent (3-15 ft/sec). but have found their way onto industrial sites. This method involves the use of ropes and descending equipment much like those used for rappelling. and the amount of training provided. Automatic Descent In situations where the landing zone is obstructed it may be desirable to utilize a manual descent controller.Escape and Evacuation Workers must be trained in methods of escape and evacuation in work areas where environmental hazards exist. in most cases multiple manual devices or systems must be employed when more than one worker is stationed in the area. There are several methods of self-rescue/descent from heights. However. They can be categorized as either manual or automatic descent. Industrial descenders. the number of workers requiring rescue. fewer personnel are put at risk. because this type of device does not allow the worker to stop or slow down. stop descent even if the worker accidentally lets go of the device or looses consciousness. These devices should not be used if there are any obstructions vertically below the worker. These provide a much lower level of safety than others specifically designed for industry. Manual Descent © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 6-4 . such as the Rope Rider and Evac-pac. are derived from mountaineering. The type that should be used is dependent upon the zone beneath the work area. These hazards may be toxic chemicals or atmospheres. as it can be extremely dangerous. Figure 8 descenders. all of which requires extensive training. Once attached. or where the high possibility of fire or explosion exists. If workers can escape or rescue themselves from a hazardous situation. brake bars and Petzl Stops. then an automatic descender should be used.

or raise workers up along side a building for window cleaning or other repairs. when these systems are used in non-emergency situations the worker connected to the system must be provided with a back-up fall arrest system. they may periodically be used during routine maintenance or construction operations as well. Further. and a raising and lowering device may be required. with many devices set at up to 6:1. ready for use. Whenever Arrest (SRL System (Man-rated possible raising and lowering devices with Retrieval) Winch ) should be backed up with secondary fall arrest systems. There are a number of raising and lowering devices that are available from winches to rope and pulley systems. the mechanical advantage can be changed on a few of the better devices by simply adding quick fit pulleys or changing the location of the winch handle.Raising and Lowering Devices In some cases rescues are not as simple as hoped for. fall arrest systems include with Raising System vertical lifelines and rope grabs. A worker should try not to rely on the system that is supporting his weight to also act as the fall arrest system. Although raising and lowering devices are predominately used during rescue operations. Further they have built in clutching mechanisms so that when workers are raised. and Backup Fall Arrest © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 6-5 . Even though many of the raising and lowering devices have standard fall arrest brakes or lock off devices. when doing routine maintenance workers will be much more comfortable connecting the raising and lowering system to the front of the harness or to a boatswain’s chair or seat. a back up fall arrest system connected to the dorsal Dring must be used. The same rescue systems can be used to lower workers into confined spaces with no ladders for inspection. The mechanical advantage should be at least 3:1. For this reason as well. for industrial rescue. pre-rigged and man-rated rescue devices should always be used. However. or self retracting lifelines. if they are to get caught up they are not injured because the system Backup Fall Raising and Lowering slips at a predetermined force. These are devices that are simply taken out of a bag and installed to an anchorage system. Further. Typically. because of the potential for injury if the worker were to fall and allow the impact forces to be taken at Boatswain’s Chair the front of the harness.

Cut their lanyard while it is under tension. 2. A secondary redundant system is one which a. Rescue is required more now than before because a. The best way to detach a worker from their system after a fall is to a.) 1. provides backup in case the primary system fails. b. more workers are falling than before. none of the above. 3. raise them with a rescue system and unhook their snaphook. personal fall arrest systems leave workers hanging in the air. workers are using their systems improperly. b. raises the fallen worker. NOTES: © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 6-6 . c. d. b.Rescue Quiz (Circle the most correct answer. has no use. is used to raise or lower tools. c. pull them up to the platform by hand. workers are falling from higher places. c. d. d.

Note: It is important to run your fingers over the software to feel for damage that may not be visible with the naked eye (e. and clean environment. All other inspections and inspection steps should be performed as detailed by legislation and by the manufacturer for each specific piece of equipment. • A competent person should inspect all company fall protection equipment on a regular basis. Additionally. can be considered software. • If the equipment shows any sign of damage or unsafe condition it must be immediately retired. excess dirt or wear. dry. discolouration.g. Software: Equipment such as lanyards. Software should be inspected for loose. energy absorbers) or other evidence of excessive loading.Section 7 – Equipment Care and Maintenance Just the Facts… • Inspect all fall protection equipment prior to use. There should be no signs of deployment (i. There should be no burns. or other damage present. personal energy absorbers. care and maintenance of fall protection equipment. • Store all fall protection equipment in a cool. If there is any sign of an unsafe condition the equipment should be immediately taken out of service for factory authorized maintenance or retirement. synthetic slings and ropes. knots. harnesses. • Follow all manufacturers’ directions for inspection. See below right. All labels must be present and fully legible. ≈ Inspection All fall protection equipment should be inspected prior to each use. etc. torn or cut fibers or threads. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 7-1 . internal rope damage). a detailed yearly inspection should be performed by a competent person.e. • Keep all inspection and maintenance records in a fall protection logbook.

such as nuts.) Care and Maintenance All manufacturers’ directions and recommendations should be followed for proper care and maintenance of fall protection equipment. If there is any sign of damage or an unsafe condition the equipment should be immediately taken out of service for factory authorized maintenance or retirement. Please note that complex hardware equipment. • Fatality Alert • Alberta. dirt and grime should be removed. If inspected on a regular basis and properly maintained. Additional servicing and maintenance must only be performed by factory authorized service centers. snaphooks and D-rings. Excess grease. and wear spots. Some hardware. All hardware should be inspected for corrosion. cable and metalware integral to software. paint or grease present on any components. cracks. deformation. such as buckles. such as self retracting lifelines and automatic descent devices. bolts or cotter pins. etc. burrs. if stiff or sticking. hardware can remain in service for many years. any hardware that may come in contact with software should be free from grease or solvent. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 7-2 . Damage due to lifting or pulling equipment may not be noticed until it is too late.Hardware: Carabiners. Note: Fall Arrest equipment must not be used to lift or pull equipment or vehicles. Most software and hardware items can be washed regularly with mild soap detergent. There should be no excess dirt. can be oiled with a solvent such as WD-40. Investigators assume he fell the 27 feet to the ground. However. Equipment should not be taken apart or repaired in-house unless authorized by the manufacturer. water and a rag. All components should Hardware Inspection operate smoothly and all springs should work properly. rope grabs. There should be no damage or missing parts. should be returned to an authorized dealer or the manufacturer for recertification as required by the manufacturer. can be considered hardware. Canada 1998 A 49-year-old man employed at a fire tower was found dead at the bottom of a ladder. (Please refer to Chapter 5 and more specifically the Self Retracting Lifeline section for more information. Fall protection equipment was not readily available to the worker. The equipment should be left to drip dry out of direct sunlight. If the equipment has been used for anything other than its intended fall protection purpose then it must be immediately retired.

and inspected by one responsible individual. Smaller items should be tagged with a metal clip and ring. This equipment should be signed in and out. The serial number. dates of inspection. servicing.) will have manufacturer’s serial numbers for identification.0 DETAINLED INSPECTION AND MAINTENANCE LOG: DATE OF MANUFACTURE: MODEL NUMBER: DATE PURCHASED: INSPECTION DATE INSPECTION ITEMS NOTED CORRECTIVE ACTION TAKEN MAINTENANCE PERFORMED EQUIPMENT HIGHLIGHT All SALA equipment comes with a comprehensive User Instruction Manual that not only explains the correct use of the equipment. who is issued permanent equipment. Each individual. storage and logging. in a centralized and/or readily available location within the company or department. but also details proper inspection. and clean environment that is out of direct sunlight. or marked in a non-load bearing area (i. should also maintain a personal logbook for daily inspections.e. date of purchase. Many items (e. Protective bags that come with the equipment should be used. 9.). etc. All other manufacturer’s directions should be followed for proper storage of fall protection equipment. Equipment Tagging Storage Excess and transitory equipment should be stored in a designated locker or tool crib. dry. Approved By: Approved By: Approved By: Approved By: Approved By: Approved By: Approved By: Approved By: Approved By: DBI/SALA 2001 © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 7-3 . servicing performed and authorized signatures should all be kept. self retracting lifelines.g. the end of a rope or tongue of webbing on a harness. maintenance. The storage location should be a cool.Identification and Logging Records of all fall protection equipment should be maintained in a centralized logbook. etc. harnesses. All dedicated or permanently signed out equipment should be stored in a personal locker when not in use.

in a designated locker or centralized storage area. d. 2. d. c. All fall protection equipment should be inspected a. A dirty harness may be cleaned with a. in a pile outside by the work site. prior to use. c. b. water and mild soap detergent. Ajax. in the back of your truck. Fall protection equipment should be stored a. on a regular basis by a competent person. NOTES: © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 7-4 . d. b. c. both a.Equipment Care and Maintenance Quiz (Circle the most correct answer. b.) 1. and c. 3. only after it has been used to arrest a fall. paint thinner. de-greasing compound. in a box with all your other tools and equipment.

“Anchor” “Anchorage” “Anchorage Connector” “ANSI” “Attachment Point” “Body Belt (safety belt)” "Body Harness" “Body Support” "Buckle” “Carabiner” © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 A-1 . that provides a means for attachment of other components of the fall protection system. means a loop or “D” ring connected (integrally) to the body support. and is used to connect components of a personal fall protection system. means a harness or belt designed to support and/or restrain the worker where a fall hazard exists or a worker has fallen. waist. American National Standards Institute. means a secure means of attachment to which the personal fall arrest system is connected. pelvis. means a link with a gate that is normally closed or that automatically closes.Definitions: Appendix A . means any device for holding the body belt or body harness closed around the employee's body.Definitions means a secure point of attachment for lifeline or lanyard. which sets standards for equipment manufacturing. chest and shoulders with means for attaching it to other components of a personal fall arrest system. means a body support device consisting of a strap with a means for securing it about the waist and attaching it other components. means straps which may be secured about the employee in a manner that will distribute the fall arrest forces over at least the thighs. means a component or subsystem with means specifically intended for coupling the personal fall arrest system to an anchorage. American counterpart to Canada’s CSA.

overhand bricklaying) may take place without the use of guardrail systems.g. which serves to dissipate a substantial amount of energy during a fall arrest. etc. or safety net systems and access to the zone is controlled. electrical equipment. ripstitch lanyard. as a result of form or function. means an area in which certain work (e. is designated by the employer. A voluntary compliance board which sets manufacturing standards within Canada. means equipment (such as pickling or galvanizing tanks. degreasing units. and other units) which. is capable of identifying workplace hazards relating to the specific operation. is knowledgeable of applicable standards.. personal fall arrest systems.. and has authority to take appropriate actions means a device which is used to couple (connect) parts of the personal fall arrest system and positioning device systems together. by way of training and/or experience. means any mechanism. such as a rope grab. tearing or deforming lanyards. such as a carabiner. "Connector" "Controlled access zone (CAZ)" “CSA” "Dangerous equipment" "Deceleration device" © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 A-2 . or it may be an integral component of part of the system (such as a buckle or dee-ring sewn into a body belt or body harness. machinery. or otherwise limit the energy imposed on an employee during fall arrest. automatic self-retracting lifelines/lanyards. Canadian Standards Association. specially-woven lanyard.“Competent Person” an individual who. may be hazardous to employees who fall onto or into such equipment. It may be an independent component of the system. or a snaphook spliced or sewn to a lanyard or self-retracting lanyard).

and the location of that attachment point after the employee comes to a full stop. It is measured as the distance between the location of an employee's body belt or body harness attachment point at the moment of activation (at the onset of fall arrest forces) of the deceleration device during a fall. excluding lifeline elongation and free fall distance. a safety belt or a full body harness with a lanyard and/ or lifeline and an anchor. or other procedures acceptable to the Board. means a form of attachment point on body belts and full body harness meant for attachment of other components of a fall protection and positioning system. a safety net. due to falls. means any of the following when used to protect a worker from a fall or minimize the risk from falling: (a) (b) guardrails. a safety monitor with a control zone. before stopping. and their related equipment. a control zone. both human and monetary. “D Ring” “Fall Arrest System” “Fall Prevention System” means those systems and techniques that eliminate the possibility of a fall."Deceleration distance" means the additional vertical distance a falling employee travels. means a system that will stop a worker’s fall before the worker hits the surface below. means the methods used to minimize injury and the associated costs. from the point at which the deceleration device begins to operate. “Fall Protection” “Fall Protection System” (c) (d) (e) (f) © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 A-3 .

to which a worker attaches a personal fall protection system. means a body support device consisting of connected straps designed to distribute a fall arresting force over at least the thigh. means a barrier erected to prevent employees from falling to lower levels. that is used to secure a safety belt or full body harness to a lifeline or anchor. or a travel restriction system such as quardrails or a personal fall protection system to prevent a worker from travelling to an edge from which the worker could fall. "Free fall" “Free Fall Distance” “Full body harness” “Guardrail system" “Harness keeper” “Horizontal lifeline system” “Kernmantle” means a method of fabricating rope with an inner core (kern) and an outer sheath (mantle).“Fall Restraint System” means a work positioning system to prevent a worker from falling from a work position. means the distance from the point where the worker would begin to fall to the point where the fall arrest system would begin to cause deceleration of the fall. means a system composed of a synthetic or wire rope installed horizontally between two anchors. “Lanyard” © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 A-4 . Rope strength is divided between the kern and mantle with approximately 25% of the strength being in the mantle and 75% being in the kern. with provision for attaching a lanyard. lifeline or other components. means the act of falling before a personal fall arrest system begins to apply force to arrest the fall. means a flexible line of webbing. shoulders and pelvis. or synthetic or wire rope. means a loop intended to keep harness webbing properly adjusted and tight to other strapping of the harness allowing for a clean fit without loose ends which may create an additional hazard.

means those areas or surfaces to which an employee can fall."Leading edge" means the edge of a floor. or constructed. or suitable combinations of these. or formwork for a floor or other walking/working surface (such as the deck) which changes location as additional floor. connectors. "Lower levels" “MAF” means the Maximum Arrest Force. 1998. structures. balance etc. pits. floors. a body belt or body harness and may include a lanyard. means a body belt or body harness system rigged to allow an employee to be supported on an elevated vertical surface. such as a wall. It consists of an anchorage. or portions thereof. ground levels. roof. excavations. "Personal fall arrest system" "Positioning device system" “Primary system” © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 A-5 . equipment. maximum dynamic load that results from a falling worker’s sudden stop. but are not limited to.). water. roof. runways. material.rigged from one or more anchors. tanks. to which a worker’s lanyard or other part of a personal fall protection system is attached. platforms. ladder rungs. work platforms. means any factors both human and fabricated which keep the worker at or on their current work level (includes such things as the floor. the use of a body belt for fall arrest is prohibited. “Lifeline” “Load indicator” means a device which when strained under a load will deform indicating that the equipment has seen an impact from a fall. or formwork sections are placed. formed. deceleration device. stairs. and work with both hands free while leaning. means a system used to arrest an employee in a fall from a working level. lifeline. A leading edge is considered to be an "unprotected side and edge" during periods when it is not actively and continuously under construction. ramps. Such areas or surfaces include. As of January 1. decking. means a synthetic or wire rope.

A rope grab usually employs the principle of inertial locking. certificate... means a safety system in which a competent person is responsible for recognizing and warning employees of fall hazards. or both. by possession of a recognized degree. by friction. and removal of roofing materials and equipment. after onset of a fall. training. or professional standing.who. cam/level locking. means the hoisting. sheet metal. or retracted onto.“Qualified Person” someone ". means a deceleration device which travels on a lifeline and automatically. because a building has not been completed. and which. © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 A-6 . automatically locks the drum and arrests the fall. “Shock absorber” means a device intended to limit deceleration of a worker during fall arrest. but not including the construction of the roof deck. engages the lifeline and locks so as to arrest the fall of an employee. storage. temporarily become the top surface of a building. has successfully demonstrated his ability to solve or resolve problems relating to the subject matter. This does not include floors or formwork. including related insulation. application. means those systems in place to protect the worker from falling and/or the effects of a fall if the primary system fails. or who by extensive knowledge. which. the drum under slight tension during normal employee movement. and experience. work. and vapor barrier work. or the project". means the exterior surface on the top of a building. "Rope grab" "Roof" "Roofing work" "Safety-monitoring system" “Secondary system” "Self-retracting lifeline/lanyard" means a deceleration device containing a drumwound line which can be slowly extracted from.

bridges. “Total fall distance” "Walking/working surface" "Warning line system" "Work area" © Capital Safety 2008 mhb032808 A-7 . or trailers. or (2) The non-locking type with a self-closing keeper which remains closed until pressed open for connection or disconnection. or similar arrangement."Snaphook" means a connector comprised of a hook-shaped ember with a normally closed keeper. means that portion of a walking/working surface where job duties are being performed. formwork and concrete reinforcing steel but not including ladders. when released. which may be opened to permit the hook to receive an object and. whether horizontal or vertical on which an employee walks or works. runways. but not limited to. means a barrier erected on a roof to warn employees that they are approaching an unprotected roof side or edge. vehicles. body belt. and which designates an area in which roofing work may take place without the use of guardrail.500(b)(1) (1) The locking type with a self-closing. means any surface. ramps. (the use of non-locking snaphooks for any form of fall protection is prohibited) “Swing fall hazard” means the hazard to a worker of swinging and colliding with an obstruction following a fall when connected to a lanyard or lifeline that runs at an angle off vertical. roofs. Snaphooks are generally one of two types: 1926. or safety net systems to protect employees in the area. means the distance from the point where the worker would begin to fall to the point where the fall would be stopped. including. self-locking keeper which remains closed and locked until unlocked and pressed open for connection or disconnection. automatically closes to retain the object. on which employees must be located in order to perform their job duties. floors.

When it’s your life on the line or the lives of your employees. With the best product and services in the industry come the best instructors and consultants. recording or otherwise without prior written permission from Capital Safety © Copyright Capital Safety 2009 .com Email: inquiry@capitalsafety. home of the DBI-SALA and PROTECTA brands. Capital Safety provides a full line of fall protection and industrial rescue training and consulting globally. stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means. Enterprise Road. Real life experience gained from the field sets our trainers apart from the rest. No part of this publication may be reproduced. mechanical. Our trainer's experience and knowledge is a result of working in the safety industry for a variety of clients and practicing what they preach. photocopying.capitalsafety. Call us today! Contact Us Today Capital Safety Group Asia Pte Ltd 16S. Invest in the best fall protection education available to the industry by Capital Safety. Singapore 627666 Phone: 65-6558 7758 Fax: 65-6588-7058 Website: www. believes that every worker deserves to go home safely after work. compliance is not enough. Our training and consulting services represent that dedication to the safety and welfare of our clients. They bring this experience to every course they teach and every client consultation.com All rights reserved. Electronic. Training is provided both at the client's site and in our world class training facilities.Training & Consulting Services When lives are on the line why would you settle for anything less than the best!! Capital Safety.

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