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Fall protection


What is fall protection?

The term fall protection includes certain practices and devices that are designed to prevent falls from occurring due to the circumstances. Different types of fall protection are used depending on the area of work. In this category you will find Personal Protective Equipment against falls (PPEgA) such as:

  • Safety harnesses

  • Fall arresters

  • Anchor Points and much more

What you need to know About fall protection

Hierarchy of height safety measures

When working at height, always follow the hierarchy of height safety measures:

  • Avoidance: If possible, avoid unnecessary work at height.

  • Permanent Access: Use Catwalks and scaffolds when available

  • Working plattforms: Always work at height using aerial work platforms when possible

  • Collective safety measures such as scaffolds, guardrails or safety nets have priority over personal protective equipment

Main types for use of personal protective equipment against falls from a height

There are three main types of application of personal protective equipment against falls from a height:

  • Restraint systems

  • Holding systems

  • Fall arrest systems

Measures to be taken when working at height

  • Never work alone

  • Be aware of the available fall space

  • Plan rescue measures before the work

Guidelines for personal protective equipment against falls from a height

Personal protective equipment (PPE) against falls from a height must include:

  • Anchor Point according to EN 795

  • Full Body harness according to EN 361

  • Fall Arrest device/lanyard that:

    • catches the fall

    • reduces the impact force to max. 6 kN

    • limits the braking distance

    • prevents collision with objects

  • Safety helmet according to EN 12492 + EN 397

The possible consequences of a fall for the person involved include:

  • The person falling can be injured by hitting objects or structural equipment

  • The impact force that occurs can cause injury

  • Prolonged free hanging in the harness can cause problems

 

Adjustment and fitting of the harness

Prolonged hanging in the harness can cause suspension trauma.

Hanging in the harness after a fall creates pressure points that can restrict blood flow. Proper adjustment and fitting of the harness can prevent suspension trauma.

Important: The chest part must not be loaded, the body weight must rest on the seat part.

An improperly adjusted harness can lead to orthostatic shock, which means that blood collects in the lower half of the body and thus the vital organs are not supplied properly.

The danger of orthostatic shock can be avoided by:

  • Correct Fitting of the safety harness

  • Quick release from the suspended Position with the required equipment

Rescue of the injured person

As a general rule, rescues may only be performed by persons trained to do so.