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Fall Arrest Policy

Prior to using any Fall Arrest equipment, the Foreman and employees must review the Specific Fall Protection Plan together and sign the acknowledgement.  The site supervisor and/or competent person must inspect fall protection installations each day and/or when any change to the configuration has been made. Next, the employee is to inspect the fall protection equipment before each use, and check it off on the checklist for the specific Fall Arrest Equipment to be used. All Fall Arrest Equipment will be checked out from the Job Shack before use, noting its condition on the equipment inspection sheet before it is put into service. At the end of each shift, all Fall Arrest Equipment will be returned to the Job Shack or to its designated spot .

Fall Arrest
Anchor 1
S.R.D. and Pass Through Structural Member
Anchor 2

Utilize S.R.D. and Pass through adapter around a structural building member.


  • Note: Inspect all equipment prior to use.


  • Note: Anchorage point must be capable of supporting 5000 lbs. All work must be performed as close to overhead anchor as possible (within 1’ of vertical for every 2’ of safety line deployed).


Step 1: Wrap pass-through adapter around structural member with labels facing out. Install overhead.


Step 2: Attach S.R.D. (Self Retracting Device) to the small D ring.


Step 3: Attach S.R.D. to full body harness dorsal D ring.



Pass Through Adapter PDF   (Note that pass through adapters can be used for either restraint or arrest)

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S.R.D. and Structural Beam Clamp

Utilize S.R.D. and structural beam clamp overhead.


  • Note: Inspect all equipment prior to use.


  • Note: Anchorage point must be capable of supporting 5000 lbs. All work must be performed as close to overhead as possible. (within 1’ of vertical for every 2’ of safety line deployed)


Step 1: Install beam clamp to overhead structural beam.


Step 2: Attach S.R.D. (Self Retracting Device) to the D ring provided on the beam clamp.


Step 3: Attach S.R.D. to full body harness back D ring.

Beam Clamp PDF   (Note that beam clamps can be used for either restraint or arrest)


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Anchor 3
S.R.D. with Roof Anchor

Utilize S.R.D. with roof anchor.


  • Note: Inspect all equipment prior to use.


Step 1: Attach roof anchor to roof deck. Fill all holes in anchor with approved fasteners.


Step 2: Install S.R.D. into cradle and secure.


Step 3: Attach S.R.D. to body harness dorsal D ring.


Roof Anchor PDF   (Note that roof anchors can be used for either restraint or arrest)

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Anchor 4
Horizontal Life Line with S.R.D.

Temporary / Portable Horizontal Lifeline Systems

Portable horizontal lifeline systems are specified when the need for fall protection is temporary in nature or when employees access areas that require infrequent service.  Typical applications for temporary horizontal lifelines include construction sites, structural steel erection, bridge work, and pipe rack installations just to name a few.


Remember–temporary work at heights is still subject to OSHA regulations.  Fall protection is required for tasks performed at 4 feet or higher in general industry and 6 feet or higher in construction.

By connecting a portable steel cable or reinforced nylon rope to a series of portable anchor points or stanchions, workers can work safely and efficiently at heights without compromising mobility or range of motion.


When used in combination with personal protective equipment, a temporary horizontal lifeline acts in a manner similar to a permanent HLL: the fall protection system can arrest a fall, limiting the amount of force that is transferred both to the worker and the stanchions.


Portable horizontal lifeline systems offer ease of installation and provide an excellent mix of unencumbered movement and temporary fall protection that maximizes worker productivity.

Always refer to manufacturers limits.

Design Considerations


Because most temporary / portable HLL systems are pre-engineered solutions, the emphasis here is less on design considerations and more on safe use of the system.  Great care must be taken to ensure that the stanchions or anchor points are securely attached to suitable support structure.  Each anchor point must be secure enough to withstand the forces generated by a fall and all work areas protected by the temporary HLL must be carefully assessed to ensure that workers do not strike pipes, equipment, or other surfaces below before a fall can be arrested.  Refer to manufacturer’s instructions when multiple users are attached to a temporary horizontal lifeline to ensure the HLL is designed to handle the additional loads.  As a pre-engineered fall protection system, a temporary horizontal lifeline is only as safe as the workers who use it. 

OSHA Regulations


Employers must ensure that each horizontal lifeline:

  • Is designed, installed, and used under the supervision of a qualified person; and 1910.140(c)(11)(ii)

  • Is part of a complete personal fall arrest system that maintains a safety factor of at least two. 1910.140(c)(12)


Anchorages used to attach to personal fall protection equipment must be independent of any anchorage used to suspend employees or platforms on which employees work. Anchorages used to attach to personal fall protection equipment on mobile work platforms on powered industrial trucks must be attached to an overhead member of the platform, at a point located above and near the center of the platform. 1910.140(c)(13)   Anchorages, except window cleaners' belt anchors covered by paragraph (e) of this section, must be:

  • Capable of supporting at least 5,000 pounds (22.2 kN) for each employee attached; or 1910.140(c)(13)(ii)

  • Designed, installed, and used, under the supervision of qualified person, as part of a complete personal fall protection system that maintains a safety factor of at least two. 1910.140(c)(14)

  • Travel restraint lines must be capable of sustaining a tensile load of at least 5,000 pounds (22.2 kN). 1910.140(c)(15)

  • Lifelines must not be made of natural fiber rope. Polypropylene rope must contain an ultraviolet (UV) light inhibitor. 1910.140(c)(16)


Personal Fall Arrest Systems: System performance criteria. In addition to the general requirements in paragraph (c) of this section, the employer must ensure that personal fall arrest systems: 1910.140(d)(1)(i)

  • Limit the maximum arresting force on the employee to 1,800 pounds (8 kN); 1910.140(d)(1)(ii)

  • Bring the employee to a complete stop and limit the maximum deceleration distance the employee travels to 3.5 feet (1.1 m); 1910.140(d)(1)(iii)

  • Have sufficient strength to withstand twice the potential impact energy of the employee free falling a distance of 6 feet (1.8 m), or the free fall distance permitted by the system; and... 1910.140(d)(1)(iv)

  • Sustain the employee within the system/strap configuration without making contact with the employee's neck and chin area. 1910.140(d)(1)(v)


If the personal fall arrest system meets the criteria and protocols in appendix D of this subpart, and is being used by an employee having a combined body and tool weight of less than 310 pounds (140 kg), the system is considered to be in compliance with the provisions of paragraphs (d)(1)(i) through (iii) of this section. If the system is used by an employee having a combined body and tool weight of 310 pounds (140kg) or more and the employer has appropriately modified the criteria and protocols in appendix D, then the system will be deemed to be in compliance with the requirements of paragraphs (d)(1)(i) through (iii). 1910.140(d)(2).   The employer must ensure that:

  • On any horizontal lifeline that may become a vertical lifeline, the device used to connect to the horizontal lifeline is capable of locking in both directions on the lifeline. 1910.140(d)(2)(ii)

  • Personal fall arrest systems are rigged in such a manner that the employee cannot free fall more than 6 feet (1.8 m) or contact a lower level. A free fall may be more than 6 feet (1.8 m) provided the employer can demonstrate the manufacturer designed the system to allow a free fall of more than 6 feet and tested the system to ensure a maximum arresting force of 1,800 pounds (8 kN) is not exceeded. 1910.140(d)(3)

  • Body belts. Body belts are prohibited as part of a personal fall arrest system.

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Anchor 5
Leading Edge S.R.D.s

General Information


Many personal fall arrest systems rely on lifeline materials to perform under less than ideal conditions. But there are some applications where use of the wrong product—for example, where a lifeline contacts with a sharp edge—could have catastrophic results.

Product testing and certification organizations in the U.S. and around the world, including the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) and CE in Europe, have been re-examining how lifelines in fall protection systems perform when subjected to these “sharp edge” applications. They’ve also placed a new focus on “leading edge” applications. Through this analysis, they have concluded that these two environments are unique in fall protection and involve increased risks due to the lifeline cutting, fraying or

becoming otherwise compromised.

Understanding Leading and Sharp Edges

Sharp Edge:

A sharp edge is one that, for practical purposes, is not rounded and has the potential to cut most types of lifelines. The ANSI standard for sharp edges, for example, involves testing the fall arrest device’s lifeline over a piece of steel bar with a radius of no more than 0.005” (5 one thousands of an inch). If the lifeline is cut or severely damaged, the device fails the test and does not comply with ANSI.

Leading Edge:

To visualize a leading edge, imagine a worker installing steel decking on a new building. Now imagine the worker’s fall protection system is anchored at foot level behind him. As the worker moves out and away from the anchor point while installing the decking, the worker is exposed to a potential fall over the edge of the building or the edge of an elevated platform.

Unique Risks of Leading and Sharp Edge Applications


In sharp edge applications the primary risk is the lifeline can be frayed or severed.


Examples of other related risks with falls over leading edges include:

• Increased Fall Distance:

When workers are attached at foot level, as they often are in

leading edge applications, they will fall farther than they would if they were anchored at shoulder height or above. The previous image (see Image A) demonstrates the sequence of events that happen when a worker falls off a leading edge, and why a worker needs additional clearance. The required clearance when anchored at foot level varies by product so make sure to reference the product instructions.


Lock-up Speed:

Self-retracting lifelines react to a fall when the lifeline accelerates out of the housing at a certain velocity, generally about 4.5 feet per second. When self-retracting lifelines are anchored at foot level, the lifeline does not achieve the required

acceleration during a fall until after the user’s D-ring passes over the leading edge and below the level of the anchor. This means the user has already fallen about 5 feet before the self-retracting lifeline device will engage to arrest the fall.


Increased Fall Arrest Forces:

Falling further means the impact on the body through the fall protection system will potentially be higher when the fall is arrested. This is why many leading edge and sharp edge rated products contain additional energy-absorbing devices.


Increased Potential for Swing Hazards:

If a worker falls, and is off to one side, he may swing like a pendulum. While this in and of itself is dangerous, the danger is compounded if the worker is on a sharp edge and the lifeline saws back and forth across that edge.

Design Constraints:

Products not specifically designed for foot level tie-off—the type of anchoring most often used in these applications—will generate forces far exceeding accepted safety parameters in the event of a fall.


In August 2012, ANSI released a new standard—ANSI Z359.14 on Self Retracting Devices (SRDs).


To address leading edge or sharp edge applications for self-retracting devices (SRDs). The Z359.14 standard includes significant changes to the design and testing of leading edge (LE) SRDs. It provides a baseline for manufacturers to test their products against, in order to ensure they are safe and compliant.

It also requires manufacturers to provide new information in product user instructions and on product markings. Always refer to manufacturers limits.

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