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Home > OSHA & ANSI Safety Products > Fall Protection

3m Fall Arrest Systems

Safewaze Fall Protection Systems
Miller Fall Protection Systems
3m Fall Arrest Systems

3m Fall Arrest Systems


OSHA Construction Safety Fall Protection / Personal Fall Arrest Equipment

A personal fall arrest fall protection system consists of three devices
  • anchor point & connector
  • full body harness
  • connecting device
Anchorage point / Anchor Connectors
An anchorage point is often times referred to as a tie off position.  The anchorage point can be part of the structure or a fall protection anchor like a cross arm strap, concrete anchor, D bolt anchor, hook anchor, I beam trolley or I beam anchor, roof top anchor, and horizontal or vertical lifelines.  An anchorage point can also include the structure itself.  For example rebar, scaffolding, lift bucket, I beam.  When the anchor point is part of the structure it is commonly referred to as an anchorage point.  When the anchor point is a fall protection / fall arrest connector, it is commonly referred to as an anchorage connector.
  • Each anchorage point and connector must be able to support 5,000 lbs per worker
  • Should a fall occur, the anchorage point must be high enough to where a worker will not come in contact with a lower level of the structure.
  • Any anchorage connector should be positioned in a way that, if a fall were to happen, a resulting "swing fall" does not happen.
Full Body Harness
Full body fall protection / fall arrest harnesses come in a variety of styles and have many options including;  amount of D rings, placement of D rings, materials, colors, back supports and other accessories, leg and waist connection types, three point or five point.
  • The only acceptable type of OSHA fall protection / fall arrest body wear is a full body harness
  • Full body harnesses should be selected on the type of work, environment, size of the user (height and weight) and applications necessary
  • Side D rings are meant for positioning only, and are not acceptable as the only means of connection to a connecting device
  • Front D rings are generally used for retrieval, decent, confined space systems, and positioning.  Just like side D rings, a front D ring is not an acceptable means to connect to the connecting device
Connecting Device
A connecting device is used to connect the full body harness to an anchorage point and / or anchor connector.  Examples of connecting devices are; fall limiter, retractable lifeline, rope grab and rope, cable grab and cable, shock absorbing lanyard (single or double legged 100% tie off lanyard), etc. 
  • A potential fall distance must be calculated to determine the type of connecting device that should be used.  As a rule of thumb a fall limiter or retractable lifeline should be used for applications with a potential fall of 18 1/2 feet or less.  A shock absorbing lanyard, self retracting lifeline or fall limiter can be used for distances greater than 18 1/2 feet.
  • Just like the full body harness, the connecting device should be chosen based on the type of work, environment, size of the user (weight and height), and applications necessary to be filled.
  • A shock absorbing lanyard generally expands up to 3 1/2 feet during a fall arrest situation. 
  • A shock absorbing lanyard is to only be connected to the back D ring of a full body harness
  • Never tie knots or change any physical characteristics of any fall protection / fall arrest system device.

Fall Protection Applications Guide

Positioning & Restraint
Positioning systems are designed to allow a worker hands free operation while maintaining position.  Restraint systems are designed to limit workers access to reaching areas where fall hazards exist.  Positioning and fall restraint systems are not designed to be used in lieu of a fall protection / fall arrest system, a backup personal fall arrest system must be used in conjunction with all positioning and restraint systems. A positioning and / or restraint system includes:
  • anchorage point and / or anchorage connector
  • full body harness
  • positioning connecting device such as a positioning belt, side D ring harness, positioning lanyard
  • restraint systems generally incorporate rails, guards, walls, etc.
Suspension Systems
A suspension system is designed to allow a worker to suspend from the fall arrest system.  Suspension applications are seen widely in the staging industry, window washing, painting, and are often used in conjunction with retrieval or descent systems.  Normally a suspension fall protection system would include:
  • anchorage point and / or anchorage connector
  • full body harness
  • connecting device
  • suspension device (often times incorporated into the full body harness)
Retrieval systems are used in applications that include confined space applications and in situations where descent is not possible.  Retrieval systems allow a worker to be raised from above.  Typically a retrieval system incorporates the following:
  • anchorage point and / or anchorage connector
  • full body harness
  • connecting device with retrieval system incorported or as a standalone system


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