Basic safety levels for workplaces and construction sites in the United States are mandated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, better known as OSHA (pronounced “oh-sha”). But aside from complying with federal guidelines and avoiding penalties, companies who either have workers performing tasks more than 6 feet above the ground or move objects via cranes should have a strong understanding of rigging in order to protect any company’s most valuable asset: its workers. There are two major components of rigging and lifting safety: equipment and training.
When using chain slings or other lifting equipment, it’s extremely important to make sure the system is rated for the weight of the load. Because a system, as the saying goes, is only as strong as its weakest link, it’s important that every single aspect — including connectors — are created specifically for industrial purposes and are in good repair.
Rigging can also protect people as they work high above the ground, ensuring they don’t fall. Guardrail and safety net systems are set in place to catch people (or falling objects that could injure anyone standing below the work area) at a reasonable distance. Personal fall arrest equipment directly secures an individual worker, using an anchorage, body wear (usually a harness of some kind) and a connector.
Some safety equipment can actually create additional hazards if workers aren’t trained to use them correctly. Some rigging certification courses you might consider for your workers include crane safety and fall protection training. OSHA may even require certain training courses, so it’s important that you find an approved provider to work with.
Do you try to go beyond minimum safety regulations and implement industry best practices on all your work sites? Would you consider investing in rigging certifications or crane training courses for your workers? Join the discussion in the comments.