Inspecting your fall arrest harness is first and foremost your responsibility and should be an essential part of your routine, you can break up the inspection into these steps.
– Each Harness must have an individual serial number and CE Marking on the label
– Confirm when the harness was last inspected and that there were no reported problems
– Check that the Harness has not exceeded its “working life”, you can do this by checking the manufacturing date or date of purchase and confirming that this has not exceeded 5 years.*
Check D Ring condition for:
– Excessive wear
– Fatigue / rust
Check back plate, fasteners, web tidies, adjusters and connectors for:
– Excessive wear
– Hold the harness up by the shoulder straps and ensure that the webbing hangs evenly
– Connect buckles and ensure harness is not distorted and hangs correctly
– Check webbing for signs of UV damage
– Check webbing for signs of chemical damage (staining is a good indication of chemical damage and can be identified if the harness appears brittle or hardened)
– Check the condition of the webbing by running through thumb and forefinger
In all cases software, must be free from: –
– Excessive abrasion
If you encounter any examples of the above issues or you are unsure that your harness fits to the standard defined above, replace it.
It is worth noting that proper care and cleaning of a fall arrest harness is just as important as the inspection itself.
– Do not use a drying room to dry webbing products
– Do not stand on a harness when donning/removing
– Do not use marker pen or solvents
– Store in a clean, dry place away from direct sunlight
– Clean using non biological detergent at a low temperature
– Before an inspection, make sure that the equipment is clean.
– Wash in warm soapy water with a sponge and hang to dry naturally.
– Never expose to heat and never use a drying room.
*please note: five year working life is a guideline and harness working life is subject to individual manufacturer specifications.
A harness is no longer considered safe and should not be used when:
When you unpack your harness, it is often easy to get confused with how to put it on or “don” your harness, with its bundle of straps, buckles and connectors, you initially may not know which way is up!
Follow our guide for a quick and simple method of donning your harness!
Step 1. Inspect your harness, this should always be the first stage of fitting your harness, for an easy step by step guide, follow our simple guide here
Step 2. Hold your harness by the D ring and shake out any kinks, ensuring the straps are not tangled or twisted.
Step 3. Hold the harness up by the shoulder straps and ensure leg straps hang free.
Step 4. Pass your arms through shoulder straps.
Step 5. Connect the chest buckle.
Step 6. Adjust the rear D so that it is between the shoulder blades and within the users reach. A rear D that is too high or too low will cause the body to take an undesirable position during a fall arrest situation.
Step 7. Pull the harness down at the back so the sub pelvic strap sits under the buttocks. DO NOT twist or cross the straps.
Step 8. Connect the leg buckles and adjust all webbing so that the harness fits comfortably without restricting free movement or pinching.
Step 9. Ensure you have all the correct PPE for the task at hand, e.g. does your hi viz vest work properly with your harness? Do you have any other safety concerns for the work you need to perform? Has all the equipment you have been issued with passed inspection? If you are not sure, don’t put yourself at risk.
If you are not sure, please ask!