Falling, a hazard that workers are exposed to on a daily basis, is the leading cause of accidental death in construction. When working at heights, fall protection must be used to protect the worker. There are two types of fall protection: travel-restraint systems and fall-arrest systems.
What is it?
Fall-arrest is a fall protection system designed to stop a worker if he/she is falling and to keep them from making contact.
What to inspect
Prior to use, workers must inspect fall-arrest equipment. Look for:
- Loose or broken stitching
- Frayed material
- Signs of heat damage
- Signs of chemical damage
- Loose Parts
Remove any component of equipment from service if the integrity is compromised.
Plan for it
Suspension injuries are a real danger! Ensure that a fall-arrest response plan is in place and understood prior to using a fall-arrest system.
What to do should you fall
If you fall, a worker should:
- Try to make contact with someone (fellow employee, supervisor, subcontractor, etc.)
- Attempt to regain access to the structure from which he/she fell
- Wiggle your toes
- If possible, take the weight off the harness by placing feet onto a solid surface
- Do not panic