Fall protection PPE inspections are an important part of worker safety. Just as you wouldn’t drive a car with a flat tire, you should not use PPE that is in need of repair or replacement. Here are some general factors to verify when inspecting your PPE (personal protective equipment) prior to use. If you have any questions regarding Fall Protection PPE Inspections please contact FPS at 888-596-5367.
Full Body Harness
First start with the hardware which includes the D-rings, buckles, keepers and back pads. Inspect for damage, distortion, sharp edges, burrs, cracks and any type of corrosion. Next, check the webbing of the harness. Look for any cuts, burns, tears, abrasions, frays or excessive soiling and discoloration. Stitching should also be visually inspected for any pulling or cuts. Finally verify the labels are securely held in place and legible.
This inspection is very similar to a harness inspection. Begin with the hardware (snap hooks, carabiners, adjusters, keepers, thimbles, and D-rings) looking for any damage, distortion, sharp edges, burrs, cracks, corrosion and proper orientation. Next the webbing exactly as done with the full body harness (cuts, burns, tears, abrasion, frays, excessive soiling & discoloration) as well as the stitching. Move on to the synthetic rope and inspect for any pulled or cut yarns, burns, abrasions, knots, or excessive soiling and discoloration. If there is a wire rope inspect for broken wires, corrosion, kinks, or any separation of strands. Lanyards with any type of energy absorbing component will need to be checked for any elongation, tears or excessive soiling as well. Lastly, verify all labels are securely held in place and easy to read.
Hooks, Carabiners & Anchorage Plates
Inspect any hooks or carabiners for cracks, sharp edges, burrs, deformities and locking operation. Also look for any corrosion that effects the operation and or strength. Lastly, make sure any markings are legible. With anchorage plates check fasteners for corrosion, tightness, damage and distortion. If there are any welds, inspect for corrosion, cracks and damage.
First, check the impact indicator for any signs of activation. Next, inspect all screws & fasteners for damage and ensure they are tight. Move on to the housing of the unit and look for any distortion, cracks or other damage. Check the anchoring loop for any additional distortion or damage. The lifeline will need to be inspected for cuts, burns, tears, abrasions, frays, excessive soiling or discoloration or broken wires. The locking action should be tested for proper lock up of the brake mechanism. Inspect the spring tension by pulling the lifeline out fully and allowing it to retract fully, there should be no slack. Check the hooks and carabiners for any physical damage, corrosion, orientation and markings. If there is a reserve lifeline be sure to inspect that one as well. Finally, verify that all labels are legible and securely in place.
For a complete checklist on fall protection PPE inspections provided by 3M Fall Protection download here.