Setting Up a Sling Anchor for Fall Protection

Are you looking for a safe and reliable way to protect yourself while working at height? If so, then you need a fall protection sling anchor. In this blog post, we’ll show you how to set up a fall protection sling anchor, so you can stay safe while working in potentially dangerous conditions.

What is a fall protection sling anchor?

A fall protection sling anchor is a device that is used to connect a fall arrest system (FAS) to an anchorage point. A fall arrest system is a device that is used to stop a person from falling, and an anchorage point is a fixed object to which the FAS can be attached. Fall protection sling anchors are typically made of metal, and they can be permanently or temporarily installed.

Permanent sling anchors are typically used in industrial applications, while temporary sling anchors are often used in construction or other applications where there is a need for a temporary anchorage point. Sling anchors can be used with a variety of FASs, including fall arrest lanyards, shock-absorbing lanyards, and retractable lanyards.

There are four main sling anchor types:

  • Lanyard and energy absorbing lanyard
  • Self-retracting lifeline/lanyard
  • Anchor strap
  • Anchor plate

Most fall protection sling anchors are made from steel, but there are also aluminum versions available. Steel is stronger and will have a higher MBS (Minimum Breaking Strength), but aluminum is lighter and will be easier to carry.

Regardless of the material, all sling anchors have two things in common: they must be able to support at least 5,000 pounds (2,268 kg) of force and be proof tested at 2x the rated capacity before use.

Why do you need a fall protection sling anchor?

A fall protection sling anchor is a critical component of any fall arrest system. It is the point where the system is attached to a permanent structure, and it must be strong enough to support the weight of a person in the event of a fall.

How to set up a fall protection sling anchor

In order to set up a fall protection sling anchor, you will need the following materials:

  • One length of webbing at least twice the length of the drop.
  • One locking carabiner

One non-locking carabiner Instructions:

1. Find a sturdy object to use as your anchor point. This could be a tree, a pole, or a piece of machinery.

2. Wrap the webbing around the anchor point and thread it through the locking carabiner. Pull the webbing tight and cinch it in place with the carabiner.

3. Clip the non-locking carabiner to your harness.

4. Test the anchor point by gently pulling on the webbing. If it feels secure, you’re ready to work!

What are the benefits of using a fall protection sling anchor?

A fall protection sling anchor provides a safe and secure point of attachment for Fall Protection Devices (FPDs). It is important to always use an anchor that is compatible with the specific FPD being used. There are many benefits to using a fall protection sling anchor, including:

  • Reduced likelihood of workers being injured in a fall.
  • Reduced likelihood of damage to equipment or property.
  • Anchors can be easily moved and reused as needed.
  • Anchors can be installed in a variety of locations.

How to use a fall protection sling anchor

When you’re working at heights, a fall protection sling anchor can be a lifesaver. But how do you use one properly? Here’s a quick guide:

1. Find a suitable anchor point. This could be a tree, pole, or other sturdy structure.

2. Wrap the fall protection sling around the anchor point. Make sure it’s tight and secure.

3. Attach your lanyard or other safety devices to the fall protection sling.

4. Test the connection to ensure it’s strong and secure before starting work.

What are the safety precautions to take when using a fall protection sling anchor?

When using a fall protection sling anchor, always take the following safety precautions:

  • Inspect the sling and anchor points before each use.
  • Never use damaged or defective equipment.
  • Be sure the sling is properly sized for the application.
  • Do not exceed the working load limit or the safe working load of the sling.
  • Do not use knots to secure the sling in place – always use a proper anchor hitch.
  • Be sure the anchor point is properly rated and capable of supporting the loads involved.
  • Never tie off to a sharp edge – use a blunt edge protector to avoid damage to the sling.
  • Keep your body positioned away from potential fall hazards while securing the sling in place.

How to inspect a fall protection sling anchor

It is important to inspect your sling anchor before each use to ensure that it is not damaged and will work properly.

Here are some things to look for:

  • Check the tag to make sure the sling anchor has not exceeded its service life. The service life of a fall protection sling anchor is typically 10 years from the date of manufacture.
  • Inspect the entire anchor for signs of wear, damage, or other defects.
  • Check all welds and stitching for cracks, breaks, or other damage.
  • Make sure that all parts are securely fastened and tightened.
  • Verify that the MBS rating is still legible and has not been tampered with in any way.

How to maintain a fall protection sling anchor

There are three key points to remember when maintaining a fall protection sling anchor:

1. Inspect the entire system regularly and check for wear, tear, and damage.

2. Replace any worn or damaged parts immediately.

3. Keep the system clean and free of debris.

In Closing

A sling anchor must be set up properly for it to work in keeping you from falling. If you are unsure as to how to do it, consult with a safety professional before using your sling or fall safety harness.

NEXT UP: Types of Steel Fall Protection Anchors

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Leon Ashcraft
About Leon Ashcraft

Leon Ashcraft is a Safety Instructor and consultant in Colorado with focus on OSHA, environmental health and safety, transportation safety, oil & gas, rescue operations and construction safety. Learn more about Leon here or connect with him on Twitter | LinkedIn | Medium