Safety rope is a safety harness that is made out of a rope instead of the webbing. The safety ropes are meant to protect the user from injuries that may result from a fall. It is designed in a way that it can accommodate the weight of the user. The material of the rope used should be chosen carefully since it should be able ensure the safety of the user without causing any strains to the user.
Making of the harness does not require any other hardware apart from the rope itself. The rope is very strong and is able to withstand very heavy forces. However, necessary care should not be overlooked. Besides being very strong, there are a few factors that may affect its effectiveness.
- Strength-The safety harness must be able to support loading from different directions. Quite a number of recreational standards prefer a breaking strength as high as 3500lb.
- Redundancy- In case a sharp object cuts the safety harness; it should stay in place to ensure the user’s safety.
- Comfort- The period of suspension notwithstanding, the user should keep on breathing with no obstructions.
Nylon is the main material used for safety ropes. This is because nylon extends into long strands with ease, possesses remarkable elongation characteristics and is a good shock absorber. However polyester has also become a preference since it has very low stretch. The two have equal breaking strengths. Natural fibers such as cotton, manila or sisal should never be used since they easily rot. On the other hand, polypropylene or polythene should not be used as well since they are easily affected by abrasion and heat.
A rope can either be high stretch or low stretch. A rope that is supposed to be used for safety purposes such as a safety harness should be low stretch. Low stretch rope is the static version while the high stretch is dynamic. Ropes to be used for making a safety harness have a low stretch ratio of about 10 to 20. This is because; their core bundle is no spiral.
The rope should be resistant to cutting. Demonstrations carried out have revealed that low stretch rope after being cut through 88% of it, could be able to support a 600lb load. However, this should not rule out the need to keep the ropes away from potential cutting objects
- Dragging the rope increases chances of wear hence lowers the rope’s residual strength.
- The rope should be free from tension unless it is in use.
- In case of any cleaning, clean fresh water should be used for rinsing.
- Minimal exposure of the rope to the ultra violet rays since they can damage the rope.
- Sharp edges could be secured by padding them.
- Knots should be undone once the user is finished using them.
An inventory number and the date the rope was put to use are marked at both ends of the rope. The ends are also marked ‘A’ and’ B’ and the middle marked according to the manufacturer’s recommendation. The markings ensured that the wear occurs uniformly along the rope.
The rope history should be put in record. The record should read the date and use for which the rope was used as well as the ropes condition then and the name of the recorder. This helps in determining when the rope should be termed obsolete.
The rope is cleaned by clean fresh water of not hotter than 110 degrees Fahrenheit. The dirt is removed by scrubbing it off using a nylon brush. A heated room or a hose tower is recommended for drying in order to avoid direct sunlight.
The service life of the rope dependents on the lubricant used to help in the manufacturing process. The lubricant is of help during manufacturing process. However, it is the cause of the ropes predetermined obsolesces. Otherwise, the rope would have a longer shelf life.
How to make the safety harness
The rope safety harness does not require any other hardware apart from the rope only. It can be used on both conscious and unconscious patients. The Steps involved in making the safety harness out of a rope are as follows:
- Make a double loop resembling figure 8 on the rope’s end.
- Put the legs in the loops and pull them to a comfortable firm fix beneath the buttocks.
- A half hitch should be made just beneath the upper body.
- A bight is made in the standing piece and passed down and at the back of the half hitch.
- Bight is now passed at the front of the half hitch and all the way through the loop that was made by passing the bight at the back of the half hitch.
- The loose end of the rope is passed all through the bight. The standing piece is pulled upwards forming a complete loop from the small bight.
- Finally, the free end is tied to an anchorage.
Advantages of Rope Harness
- They do not need any other hardware or webbing, a nylon rope is all that is required.
- The harness ropes have a higher breaking strengths hence can support huge loads from various directions.
- Cleaning of the ropes is quite easy as it only requires brushing off the dirt and rinsing with water.
- The materials for making the ropes are relatively easy to acquire.
A safety harness is very crucial personal preventive equipment especially for people engaging in activities that may result in fatal falls. Having affordable and easy to set up safety harness should be the way to go as far as safety from vertical falls is concerned. Safety harness made out of rope comes in handy in ensuring safety from falls in a relatively less complex and affordable manner. The rope safety harness comes with so many more advantages and proves to be just effective.