When working at heights it’s not only important to wear personal protective equipment, it’s also vital that you choose the right fall arrest equipment. Most injuries resulting from a fall are a result of using the wrong kind of equipment.
Choosing the right harness can make a big difference, not only in working comfort but also in avoiding injuries or worse. There are quite a number of body harnesses in the market today and it will do you good to first know how to choose the right ones.
Here are some key pointers you need to consider:
- Determine your work activity and your work environment. You would need a harness that is suitable to your specific industry. For example, when working in an industry filled with flammable gases, mists or vapors, the anti-static material of an ATEX-certified harness can prevent the risk of an electrostatic discharge that can cause an explosive atmosphere.
- Identify the user. Who is going to use the harness? Most harnesses use universal sizing to fit the average person, it is better to get one that perfectly fits the user. The length between the leg strap and the chest strap of a universal harness may not fit a small person. In this case, be sure to get ones that are easily adjustable.
- Consider comfort. One reason that body harnesses end up idly in storage is that users do not feel comfortable wearing them. Look for harnesses with comfortable and pliable padding. Stretchable webbings achieve perfect fit and comfort too. For example, a roofing company must consider a premium harness for its roofers to allow them to work comfortably outdoors.
- Consider the right number of attachment points. The number of attachment points depends on your work activity and the level and requirement for safety. Attachment points refer to the areas that are secured where fall arrest forces are distributed – back, chest, hip, and stomach.
Choose those that are guaranteed safe. To be sure about the safety guarantee of the harness, check the label and the manufacturer. Harnesses should be certified by international standards for safety and quality like ISO, EN, ANSI, and CSA.
You may need an expert to help you get the best harness. In such case, consult an expert. After all, harnesses must, above all, safeguard life.
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