Wear and Tear: Safety Equipment Maintenance

equipment picToo often the safety violations that result in accidents are not only because of lack of equipment or proper training, but the poor maintenance of the equipment itself. Inspection and maintenance of harnesses, extension cords and all electrical tools is a vital part of any construction safety program.

When considering the wear and tear of your fall protection equipment, experts advise considering the following elements: heat, chemical elements, exposure to sun, paint or solvents. Hardware should also be closely inspected. For instance, harnesses inspections begin at one end: safety experts advise to hold the body side of the belt toward you, grasping the belt with your hands six to eight inches apart. Bend the belt in an inverted “U.” Watch for frayed edges, broken fibers, pulled stitches, cuts or chemical damage. Check D-rings and D-ring metal wear pads for distortion, cracks, breaks, and rough or sharp edges. The D-ring bar should be at a 90 degree angle with the long axis of the belt and should pivot freely.

A complete list of the types of fall safety equipment and how to inspect them before use, (including harnesses, rope and web lanyards, and Retractable Lifeline Systems) are found on the OSHA web site.

Diversified Safety Services reminds its clients that failure to maintain protective equipment can result in hefty fines: There have been many examples of companies fined upwards of thousands of dollars for poor equipment maintenance if it results in an injury.

A safety audit is an excellent proactive start to ensure these sorts of violations do not occur and that regular inspections become an integrated part of your safety planning. For more information, contact Diversified Safety Services.

The following two tabs change content below.

Nina McGinley

Latest posts by Nina McGinley (see all)

About Nina McGinley