There are a variety of types of rigging equipment and rigging supplies that are needed within the construction industry, general industry, longshoriing operations, and shipyards. This includes additional equipment that might be required for a specific type of job.
Consider the following partial list of lifting gear and other items:
- Hook rigging
- industrial chain slings
- Lifting chains
- Lifting slings
- Marine rope
- Round slings
- Web slings
- Wire rope
- Wire rope slings
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires specific training and certifications in order to work within the above mentioned industries. This training is vital in order to save lives, prevent dangerous falls, and other types of accidents and illnesses.
There are three steps to OSHA’s process:
- Step One: Plan
- Step Two: Provide
- Step Three: Train
Depending on the type of job performed and the equipment needed for this job, such as rigging equipment, there are several types of mandatory training and certifications:
- Crane training
- Fall arrest training
- Material handling
- OSHA fall protection training
While there may be some overlap with the information learned when preparing for these certifications, this will reinforce the knowledge necessary to safely and accurately handle heavy rigging equipment and other machinery.
When working at elevations of six or more feet, for example, employers must provide the appropriate fall protection and equipment. This includes the correct type of ladders, scaffolds, and safety gear. Except in rare occasions, OSHA’s federal regulations limit fall or arrest distances to six feet.
There are two primary types of fall arrest systems. The first is a general fall arrest system, such as a net. The second type is a personal fall arrest system, such as a lifeline.
If someone is working at an elevation of over 25 feet, and there aren’t temporary floors or scaffolds in place, then safety nets can and should be used.
When testing both types of fall arrest systems, OSHA states that the testing weight should be 295-to-305 pounds. It’s also important to note that for each individual, an anchorage’s tie-off point needs to support a total of 5,000 pounds.
Other OSHA fall protection requirements pertain to elevations for specific industry work sites:
- General industry: Four feet
- Shipyards: Five feet
- Construction industry: Six feet
- Longshoring operations: Eight feet
There are additional testing requirements that apply to slings. For normal service use, slings need to be inspected on an annual basis. If these slings are used for heavy-duty or severe service, then they should be inspected on a monthly or quarterly basis.
As a result of employers and workers adhering to workplace safety mandates as set forth by OSHA, both worker illnesses and injuries have decreased. In 1972, for example, there were 10.9 incidents for every 100 workers. In 2011, this number was reduced to 3.4 incidents for every 100 workers.