Table of Contents
How to maintain your height-safety equipment in the best conditions?
Employees working at heights need the proper equipment to prevent fall accidents. To ensure the quality and working of this equipment, you must follow the care instructions for the entire period it is being used. If not, you may have to replace the equipment faster than expected, leading to futile expenses.
Further, it also puts your employee’s life at risk when working at heights without knowing if the equipment will arrest their fall.
To keep your employees safe and your company secures, follow these tips to maintain your height-safety equipment in the best conditions.
Read the user manual.
Every manufacturer makes their tools differently, employing new research to improve their tools than their competitors. There might be something new with your tool that you might not know.
So, read the user manual for the tools first. Don’t overlook it regardless of the number of times you have used similar equipment or machinery. This ensures not only appropriate handling but also the workers’ safety.
Get a good-quality storage bag.
Invest in a good-quality storage bag to keep the equipment after work. It will prevent them from lying around at the site, being exposed to chemicals and fumes.
Keeping them in a storage bag protects them from UV radiation, dust, sharp edges, and other potential causes of damage. You can transfer the equipment from the bag to a cabinet or another space, but ensure ventilation in the area.
Chemicals are a NO NO
Exposure to chemicals or corrosive products can damage and weaken your equipment. Keep your safety harnesses and webbing products out of reach of petroleum or other solvents.
Of course, the equipment will get dirty while working on the ground, and it should be cleaned with a damp sponge or cloth only to rid it of the extra sand, dirt, or debris.
Dry your harnesses
When water sits on any metal height safety equipment, it rusts or loses strength over time. So, you must ensure they are not in contact with water for long.
If they get dirty, use damp rags to clean them. If you use them in places with high moisture content or water, dry them before putting them in the storage bag.
Do not use any artificial means for drying. Let them dry independently; maybe turn the fan towards them to aid the drying.
Ensure optimal temperature
While storing harnesses, you must dry them beforehand. Else the water can rust the metal of the equipment. Now you would like for it to dry as quickly as possible, but you must not store it in a place with a temperature over 50 degree Celsius.
A clean, dry place below 50 degrees is optimal; otherwise, the temperature affects the performance of the tools.
Check your detergent
The fabric parts of the equipment have to be washed periodically to prevent any further damage by debris or dirt. A particular fabric is used for this equipment, and their care instructions depend from manufacturer to manufacturer.
A pH-balanced detergent with balanced bleach or abrasives is required to protect the fabric. Regular detergent can weaken the fabric of your height safety equipment.
Allow authorized access only.
Nobody, in their sane mind, intentionally tampers with equipment, especially people concerned with the workers’ safety at great heights.
But sometimes, people who do not know the equipment can handle them. This leads to staining them with mud, dirt, and water and not taking care of them.
All the effort that you take to ensure good handling goes in vain. So, authorize people who know the tools to access them. They know how to work with the tools and will care for them.
Separate the equipment
Metal equipment is supposed to be kept separate because the metal pieces will rub onto the equipment if they are kept together in storage.
It also protects the metal equipment from coming in contact with others, saving the potential damage that can be caused to the metal. Separating them is a small task, but it increases the lifetime and durability of the height-safety equipment.
Keep them away from the dryer.
The below 50-degree Celsius rule is universal for all equipment. Because you want to dry them faster, you will put them in the clothes dryer with or without the clothes. Do not do that.
Any way of artificially drying the equipment will lead to damage, except for wiping with a damp cloth. Leave the equipment dry and let it dry naturally without using external practices.
Perform checks and maintenance.
Your equipment may be used occasionally, or some can be kept away for future use. But don’t let them catch dust in one corner until the subsequent use.
Instead, perform regular checks on your old equipment. Make sure you test its strength whenever you need to use it again.
Don’t give workers old equipment that has been in storage for a long without performing any checks. Otherwise, it may lead to major health concerns.
Train your employees
The maximum engagement with height safety tools or any equipment for that matter is done by the employees. They trust it and use it to earn their bread and butter.
So, they should be trained to use and handle the equipment with care properly. You can also use demonstrations for what to do and how to call for help if their gear fails.
Repairs by the manufacturer only
If there is some wear and tear with your equipment, which requires repairs, send it back to the manufacturer instead of doing it yourself. If you do it yourself, you might aggravate the problem, leave it halfway, put yourself in danger, and do everything you shouldn’t have.
Your equipment is made with special techniques, processes, and skilled professionals. If you attempt to fix it yourself, it will not end well.
Height safety equipment maintenance is paramount for your employees who are risking their lives working at heights. You are responsible for investing in proper equipment, keeping them operational, and integrating them with your rooftop and other places to make access easier.
It is not difficult to take care of equipment; you need to do the basics. Further, slight maintenance also reduces the expenses on new equipment and ensures the workers’ safety.