Fall Protection Harnesses Designs

Looking for a fall protection harness that’s both stylish and functional? Then look no further. In this post, we cover the different fall protection harness designs and how they are used best.

Why use a fall protection harness?

A fall protection harness is a type of personal protective equipment (PPE) that is used to prevent or arrest a person from falling. Harnesses are commonly used in occupational safety and health settings, as well as in recreation and adventure activities. They are also used by emergency responders, such as firefighters and search and rescue workers.

Fall protection harnesses are designed to distribute the forces of a fall evenly across the body, minimizing the risk of injuries. When properly used, fall protection harnesses can be highly effective in preventing serious injuries or even death.

The different types of fall protection harnesses

Most people think of a full body harness when they hear the term “fall protection harness,” but there are actually many different types of fall protection harnesses available on the market today. Here is a brief overview of some of the most popular types of fall protection harnesses:

  • Full Body Harnesses: As the name implies, a full body harness covers the entire body and is typically used in vertical applications where workers are at risk of falling from height. Full body harnesses distribute the force of a fall evenly across the body to minimize injuries, and they are equipped with attachment points for lanyards, deceleration devices, and other fall arrest components.
  • Half-Body Harnesses: As the name implies, these harnesses only provide coverage for the upper half of the body. They consist of a chest strap and shoulder straps that connect to a central point on the back of the harness. Half-body harnesses are typically used in applications where workers will not be exposed to high levels of fall potential (i.e., working on scaffolding at ground level).
  • Chest Harnesses: Chest harnesses attach around the chest and shoulders and are often used in conjunction with full-body harnesses. They help to keep the wearer in an upright position and prevent them from being pulled upside down in the event of a fall.
  • Bosun’s Chair: A bosun’s chair is a type of fall arrest device that consists of a seat and two suspension lines. It is used by workers who need to be suspended in mid-air while they work, such as when painting or repairing buildings or bridges. Bosun’s chairs must be used with a full body harness to provide adequate fall protection.
  • Work Positioning Harness: A work positioning harness is similar to a full body harness in that it covers the entire body and has attachment points for lanyards and deceleration devices. However, work positioning harnesses also have additional loops or D-rings that allow workers to be securely positioned horizontally while working. These loops can also be used to support tools or materials.
  • Self-Retracting Lanyards: Self-retracting lanyards (SRLs) are fall arrest devices that automatically lock when pulled taut, and they can be used with any type of fall protection harness. SRLs are available in both webbing and wire rope versions, and they can be equipped with various connectors to attach them to different types of anchor points.
  • Positioning Harnesses: These harnesses are designed for workers who need to be supported in an upright position for extended periods of time (i.e., linemen working on power poles). Positioning harnesses typically include a belt around the waist, shoulder straps, and leg loops that allow workers to be safely secured in an upright position.
  • Lanyards: Lanyards are lengths of rope or webbing that connect the fall protection harness to an anchor point. They come in a variety of materials, such as nylon, polyester, and Kevlar, and they can be equipped with shock absorbers to reduce the force of a fall.

Available in a variety of sizes, designs, and materials, fall protection harnesses are an essential part of any safety plan.

How to choose the right fall protection harness

When working at heights, it is extremely important to choose the right fall protection harness for the job. There are many different designs and manufacturers of fall protection harnesses, so how do you know which one to choose? Here are some factors to consider:

  • The type of work you will be doing: Are you working on a construction site? Or in a warehouse? The type of work you will be doing will dictate the type of harness you need.
  • The height you will be working at: The higher the height, the more weight capacity your harness needs to have.
  • Your weight and height: Your harness needs to fit properly in order for it to work properly. Make sure to try on different sizes and styles before purchasing one.
  • The weather conditions: If you will be working in extreme weather conditions, make sure to choose a harness that is designed for that particular climate.

How to use a fall protection harness

Most fall protection harnesses have shoulder, chest, and waist straps, and usually leg loops too. To don the harness, step into the leg loops and pull the waist strap up over your hips. Then, slip your arms through the shoulder straps and buckle the chest strap in the center of your chest.

Be sure to adjust all of the straps for a snug, comfortable fit. Once you’re all buckled in, give a tug on each strap to be sure they’re all secure. You should feel snug but not constricted — you should be able to breathe easily and move around without restriction.

How to inspect a fall protection harness

A fall protection harness is a critical piece of safety equipment that should be inspected regularly. Here are some tips on how to properly inspect a fall protection harness:

  • Inspect the harness for signs of wear and tear, such as fraying or ripped straps.
  • Check all buckles and snaps to ensure they are secure and not damaged.
  • Make sure that all D-rings and other attachment points are securely fastened and not bent or broken.
  • Check the webbing to ensure that it is not damaged or excessively stretched.
  • If you notice any damage, defects, or wear and tear, replace the harness immediately.

When to retire a fall protection harness

Most fall protection harnesses have a safe service life of five to six years from their date of manufacture. However, this can vary depending on the make and model of the harness, as well as how often it is used and in what conditions.

To ensure that your fall protection harness is always up to the task, it’s important to regularly inspect it for signs of wear and tear. You should also retire your fall protection harness if it sustains any damage, such as cuts or holes in the webbing, or if any of the hardware is damaged or missing.

The benefits of using a fall protection harness

A fall protection harness is a device that is worn by a worker to prevent them from falling. The harness is attached to a lanyard or other safety device that will stop the worker from hitting the ground if they fall. Fall protection harnesses are an important part of any fall prevention system.

Fall protection harnesses offer many benefits over traditional safety belts and belts with chain lanyards. Some of the advantages of using a fall protection harness include:

Increased Comfort: Fall protection harnesses are designed to distribute the force of a fall evenly across the body, which reduces strain on any one particular area. This makes them much more comfortable to wear for extended periods of time than safety belts or chains. With increased comfort comes increased compliance – workers are more likely to actually wear their fall protection if it’s comfortable.

Increased Safety: Fall protection belts and chains only provide coverage for certain parts of the body (typically just the waist), leaving large areas exposed in the event of a fall. Fall protection harnesses, on the other hand, provide 360° coverage around the whole body, dramatically increasing your chances of surviving a fall. Safe industry standards dictate certain sizes, weights, and conditions that must be met before equipment can be used.

Fall protection harnesses provide workers with a sense of security and peace of mind knowing that they are protected from serious injury in the event of a fall.

In Closing

There are many fall protection harness designs available to choose from, and it is important to choose the right one for your preferences and work tasks.

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Nick Klamecki, Author
About Nick Klamecki, Author

Nick Klamecki is a certified Fire and Workplace Safety expert with 15 years experience in product research and testing. He has a degree from U.C. Davis, is an active outdoorsman and spent years ensuring the safety of special needs children. Nick researches and tests workplace, industrial and safety products and provides advice on their safe use. Learn more about Nick here or connect with him on LinkedIn | Medium