700-26
FALL PROTECTION

POLICY & PROCEDURE

Subject:

FALL PROTECTION

Index: SAFETY

Number: 700-26

Effective Date:

10/15/2012

Supersedes:

N/A

Page:

1 of 25

Staff Contact:

Nancy A. Carlson

Approved By:

Denis Law

1.0 PURPOSE:

To establish procedures for safe fall protection while complying with Washington State Department of Labor and Industries regulations.

2.0 ORGANIZATIONS AFFECTED:

Public Works Maintenance, Facilities, Parks Maintenance, Housing Repair, Maplewood Golf Course, Police, Fire, and all others whose work requires entry into a confined space, boom trucks, roofs, elevated platforms or areas where fall protection is necessary.

3.0 REFERENCES:

WAC 296-155-24505

Exhibit A, Fall Protection Procedures

4.0 POLICY:

It is the policy of the City of Renton to provide its employees, and others working for the City, with a means to safely work in locations with a fall hazard potential of a distance equal to or greater than 10 feet, such as confined space, boom trucks, roofs, or elevated platforms.

5.0 DEFINITIONS:

5.1    “Anchorage” means a secure point of attachment for lifelines, lanyards, or deceleration devices which are capable of withstanding the forces specified in the applicable sections of chapter 296-155 WAC.

5.2    “Approved” means, for the purpose of this section, tested and certified by the manufacturer, or any recognized national testing laboratory, to possess the strength requirements specified in this section.

5.3    “Body belt” means a Type 1 safety belt used in conjunction with lanyard or lifeline for fall restraint only.

5.4    “Full body harness” means a configuration of connected straps to distribute a fall arresting force over at least the thighs, shoulders and pelvis, with provisions for attaching a lanyard, lifeline, or deceleration devices.

5.5    “Full body harness system” means a Class III full body harness and lanyard, which is attached to an anchorage meeting the requirements of chapter 296-155 WAC, Part C-1; or attached to a horizontal or vertical lifeline, which is properly secured to an anchorage(s) capable of withstanding the forces specified in the applicable sections of chapter 296-155 WAC.

5.6    “Catenary line” - see horizontal lifeline.

5.7    “Competent person” means an individual knowledgeable of fall protection equipment, including the manufacturers recommendations and instructions for the proper use, inspection, and maintenance; and who is capable of identifying existing and potential fall hazards; and who has the authority to take prompt corrective action to eliminate those hazards; and who is knowledgeable of the rules contained in this section regarding the erection, use, inspection, and maintenance of fall protection equipment and systems.

5.8    “Connector” means a device which is used to couple (connect) parts of the personal fall arrest system and positioning device systems together. It may be an independent component of the system, such as a carabineer, or it may be an integral component of part of the system (such as a buckle or D-ring sewn into a body belt or body harness, or a snap hook spliced or sewn to a lanyard or self-retracting lanyard).

5.9    “Continuous fall protection” means the design and use of a fall protection system such that no exposure to an elevated fall hazard occurs. This may require more than one fall protection system or a combination of prevention or protection measures.

5.10    “Control zone” means the area between the warning line and the unprotected sides and edges of the walking/working surface.

5.11    “Deceleration device” means any mechanism, such as a rope grab, ripstitch lanyard, specifically woven lanyard, tearing or deforming lanyards, automatic self-retracting lifelines/lanyards, etc., which serves to dissipate a substantial amount of energy during a fall arrest, or otherwise limit the energy imposed on an employee during fall arrest.

5.12    “Deceleration distance” means the additional vertical distance a falling employee travels, excluding lifeline elongation and free fall distance, before stopping, from the point at which the deceleration device begins to operate. It is measured as the distance between the location of an employee's body belt or body harness attachment point at the moment of activation (at the onset of fall arrest forces) of the deceleration device during a fall, and the location of that attachment point after the employee comes to a full stop.

5.13    “Drop line” means a vertical lifeline secured to an upper anchorage for the purpose of attaching a lanyard or device.

5.14    “Failure” means load refusal, breakage, or separation of component parts. Load refusal is the point where the ultimate strength is exceeded.

5.15    “Fall arrest system” means the use of multiple, approved safety equipment components such as body harnesses, lanyards, deceleration devices, droplines, horizontal and/or vertical lifelines and anchorages, interconnected and rigged as to arrest a free fall. Compliance with anchorage strength requirements specified in the applicable sections of chapter 296-155 WAC, Part C-1 shall constitute approval of the anchorage.

5.16    “Fall protection work plan” means a written planning document in which the employer identifies all areas on the job site where a fall hazard of 10 feet or greater exists. The plan describes the method or methods of fall protection to be utilized to protect employees, and includes the procedures governing the installation use, inspection, and removal of the fall protection method or methods which are selected by the employer. (See WAC 296-155-24505)

5.17    “Fall restraint system” means an approved device and any necessary components that function together to restrain an employee in such a manner as to prevent that employee from falling to a lower level. When standard guardrails are selected, compliance with applicable sections governing their construction and use shall constitute approval.

5.18    “Fall distance” means the actual distance from the workers support to the level where a fall would stop.

5.19    “Free fall” means the act of falling before a personal fall arrest system begins to apply force to arrest the fall.

5.20    “Free fall distance” means the vertical displacement of the fall arrest attachment point on the employee's body belt or body harness between onset of the fall and just before the system begins to apply force to arrest the fall. This distance excludes deceleration distance, and lifeline/lanyard elongation, but includes any deceleration device slide distance or self-retracting lifeline/lanyard extension before they operate and fall arrest forces occur.

5.21    “Hardware” means snap hooks, D rings, bucklers, carabineers, adjusters, or O rings, that are used to attach the components of a fall protection system together.

5.22    “Horizontal lifeline” means a rail, rope, wire, or synthetic cable that is installed in a horizontal plane between two anchorages and used for attachment of a worker’s lanyard or lifeline device while moving horizontally; used to control dangerous pendulum like swing falls.

5.23    “Lanyard” means a flexible line of webbing, rope, or cable used to secure a body belt or harness to a lifeline or an anchorage point usually 2, 4, or 6 feet long.

5.24    “Leading edge” means the advancing edge of a floor, roof, or formwork that changes location as additional floor, roof, or formwork sections are placed, formed, or constructed. Leading edges not actively under construction are considered to be "unprotected sides and edges, and positive methods of fall arrest or fall restraint shall be required to protect exposed workers.

5.25    “Lifeline” means a vertical line from a fixed anchorage or between two horizontal anchorages, independent of walking or working surfaces, to which a lanyard or device is secured. Lifeline as referred to in this text is one which is part of a fall protection system used as back-up safety for an elevated worker.

5.26    “Locking snap hook” means a connecting snap hook that requires two separate forces to open the gate; one to deactivate the gatekeeper and a second to depress and open the gate which automatically closes when released; used to minimize roll out or accidental disengagement.

5.27    “Low pitched roof” means a roof having a slope equal to or less than 4 in 12.

5.28    “Mechanical equipment” means all motor or human propelled wheeled equipment except for wheelbarrows, mopcarts, robotic thermoplastic welders and robotic crimpers.

5.29    “Positioning belt” means a single or multiple strap that can be secured around the worker’s body to hold the user in a work position; for example, a lineman’s belt, a rebar belt, or saddle belt.

5.30    “Positioning device system” means a body belt or body harness system rigged to allow an employee to be supported on an elevated vertical surface, such as a wall, and work with both hands free while leaning.

5.31    “Restraint line” means a line from a fixed anchorage or between two anchorages to which an employee is secured in such a way as to prevent the worker from falling to a lower level.

5.32    “Roll out” means unintentional disengagement of a snap hook caused by the gate being depressed under torque or contact while twisting or turning; a particular concern with single action snap hooks that do not have a locking gatekeeper.

5.33    “Roof” means the exterior surface on the top of a building. This does not include floors or form work which, because a building has not been completed, temporarily become the top surface of a building.

5.34    “Roofing work” means the hoisting, storage, application, and removal of roofing materials and equipment, including related insulation, sheet metal, and vapor barrier work, but not including the construction of the roof deck.

5.35    “Rope grab” means a fall arrester that is designed to move up or down a lifeline suspended from a fixed overhead or horizontal anchorage point, or lifeline, to which the belt or harness is attached. In the event of a fall, the rope grab locks onto the lifeline rope through compression to arrest the fall. The use of a rope grab device is restricted for all restraint applications. (Refer to WAC 296-155-24510 (1)(b)(iii)).

5.36    “Safety line” - see lifeline.

5.37    “Safety monitor system” means a system of fall restraint used in conjunction with a warning line system only, where a competent person as defined by this part, having no additional duties, monitors the proximity of workers to the fall hazard when working between the warning line and the unprotected sides and edges, including the leading edge of a low pitched roof or walking/working surface.

5.38    “Self-retracting lifeline” means a deceleration device that contains a drum wound line that may be slowly extracted from, or retracted onto, the drum under slight tension during normal employee movement, and which after onset of a fall, automatically locks the drum and arrests the fall.

5.39    “Shock absorbing lanyard” means a flexible line of webbing, cable, or rope used to secure a body belt or harness to a lifeline or anchorage point that has an integral shock absorber.

5.40    “Single action snap hook” means a connecting snap hook that requires a single force to open the gate, which automatically closes when released.

5.41    “Snap hook” means a self-closing connecting device with a gatekeeper latch or similar arrangement that will remain closed until manually opened. This includes single action snap hooks that open when the gatekeeper is depressed and double action snap hooks that require a second action on a gatekeeper before the gate can be opened.

5.42    “Static line” - see horizontal lifeline.

5.43    “Strength member” means any component of a fall protection system that could be subject to loading in the event of a fall.

5.44    “Steep roof” means a roof having a slope greater than 4 in 12.

5.45    “Unprotected sides and edges” means any side or edge (except at entrances to points of access) of a floor, roof, ramp or runway where there is no wall or guardrail system as defined in WAC 296-155-505(7).

5.46    “Walking/working surface” means for the purpose of this section, any area whose dimensions are 45 inches or greater in all directions, through which workers pass or conduct work.

5.47    “Warning line system” means a barrier erected on a walking and working surface or a low pitch roof (4 in 12 or less), to warn employees that they are approaching an unprotected fall hazard(s).

5.48    “Work area” means that portion of a walking/working surface where job duties are being performed

6.0 PROCEDURES:

EXHIBIT A
FALL PROTECTION PROCEDURES

Fall hazards of 10 feet or more exist in the work area and include, but are not limited to, climbing reservoirs, entering vaults, chambers, pump/lift stations and manholes or confined spaces. The fall protection work plan will be available on the job site for inspection by the Department of Labor and Industries or any member of the staff that wish to review the plan. This procedure and plan was written with the intent of covering the general work practices of the City of Renton Public Works, Park Maintenance, Housing Repair, Facilities, and Golf Services Division when entering confined spaces or encountering fall hazards of 10 feet or more.

This Fall Protection Procedure shall be available at every job site with fall hazards of 10 feet or greater and that is available for inspection.

Table of Contents

A.    COMPETENT PERSONS    9

B.    FALL PROTECTION SYSTEM CONSIDERATIONS    9

C.    FALL RESTRAINT, FALL ARREST SYSTEMS    10

D.     GUARDING OF LOW PITCHED ROOF PERIMETERS    15

E.    LEADING EDGE CONTROL ZONE    17

F.    SAFETY MONITOR SYSTEM (SMS)    18

G.    ASSEMBLY, MAINTENANCE, INSPECTION AND DISASSEMBLY OF THE FALL PROTECTION SYSTEM TO BE USED    19

H.     INSPECTION GUIDELINES AND CONSIDERATIONS    19

I.    PROCEDURES FOR THE HANDLING, STORAGE, & SECURING OF TOOLS & MATERIALS    21

J.    PROVIDING OVERHEAD PROTECTION    21

K.    REMOVAL OF INJURED WORKERS    21

L.    PROTECTIVE STRUCTURES AND EQUIPMENT    21

M. MANHOLES    22

N. COVERS AND GUARDRAILS    22

O.    TRAINING    22

P.    EMERGENCY    23

Q.    WORK PLAN    23

SITE SPECIFIC FALL PROTECTION WORK PLAN    25

A.    COMPETENT PERSONS

The city will provide a Competent Person designated by his or her department who shall be knowledgeable regarding fall protection equipment, including the manufacturer’s recommendations and instructions for its proper use, inspection, and maintenance; who is capable of identifying existing and potential fall hazards; who has the authority to take prompt corrective action to eliminate those hazards; and who is knowledgeable of the rules contained in this section regarding the erection, use, inspection, and maintenance of fall protection equipment and systems when a fall hazard is present. The Competent Person(s) shall:

1.    Not supervise more than eight exposed workers at one time;

2.    Warn the employee when it appears that the employee is unaware of a fall hazard or is acting in an unsafe manner; and

3.    Stop work and take immediate corrective action when hazards or dangerous behaviors are observed.

4.    See Competent Person Policy No. 700-25 for more details.

B.    FALL PROTECTION SYSTEM CONSIDERATIONS

Below are guidelines for worker protection where fall arrest or fall restraint systems are used. Some of this material may be suitable for adding to the written fall protection work plan (see Section Q) specified in WAC 296-155-24505. Also reference WAC 296-24-88050, Appendix C, Personal Fall Arrest System.

1. Selection and use considerations: The kind of personal fall arrest system selected should match the particular work situation, and any possible free fall distance should be kept to a minimum. Consideration should be given to the particular work environment. For example, the presence of acids, dirt, moisture, oil, grease, etc., and their effect on the system, should be evaluated. Hot or cold environments may also have an adverse effect on the system. Wire rope should not be used where an electrical hazard is anticipated. As required by the standard, the employer must plan to have means available to promptly rescue an employee should a fall occur, since the suspended employee may not be able to reach a work level independently.

Where lanyards, connectors, and lifelines are subject to damage by work operations such as welding, chemical cleaning, and sandblasting, the component should be protected, or other securing systems should be used. The employer should fully evaluate the work conditions and environment (including seasonal weather changes) before selecting the appropriate personal fall protection system. Once in use, the system's effectiveness should be monitored. In some cases, a program for cleaning and maintenance of the system may be necessary.

2. Testing Considerations: Before purchasing or putting into use a personal fall arrest system, the supervisor should obtain from the supplier information about the system based on its performance during testing so that the employer can know if the system meets this standard. Testing should be done using recognized test methods. Not all systems may need to be individually tested; the performance of some systems may be based on data and calculations derived from testing of similar systems, provided that enough information is available to demonstrate similarity of function and design.

3. Component compatibility considerations: Ideally, a personal fall arrest system is designed, tested, and supplied as a complete system. However, it is common practice for lanyards, connectors, lifelines, deceleration devices, and body harnesses to be interchanged since some components wear out before others. The employer and employee should realize that not all components are interchangeable. For instance, a lanyard should not be connected between a body harness and a deceleration device of the self-retracting type since this can result in additional free fall for which the system was not designed. Any substitution or change to a personal fall arrest system should be fully evaluated or tested by a competent person to determine that it meets the standard, before the modified system is put in use.

C.    FALL RESTRAINT, FALL ARREST SYSTEMS

When employees are exposed to a hazard of falling from a location 10 feet or more in height, the City will ensure that fall restraint, fall arrest systems or positioning device systems are provided, installed, and implemented according to the following requirements.

1.     Fall restraint protection shall consist of:

a. Standard guardrails as described in chapter 296-155 WAC, Part K.

b. Safety belts and/or harness attached to securely rigged restraint lines.

    (i) Safety belts and/or harness shall conform to ANSI Standard:

•    Class I body belt

•    Class II chest harness

•    Class III full body harness

•    Class IV suspension/position belt Saf-T-Climb Fall Prevention System with an 18” chain with 3/16” links and waist belt restraint system consisting of approved notched carrier rail locking sleeve, safety belt and lanyard attachments, to be used on elevated water reservoirs and other like structures.

•    Tripod and winch which comply with WAC 296-155-245-1 through WAC 296-155-14510.

•    Full body harness which complies with WAC 296-155-24510(3).

•    Approved descent and retrieval system consisting of tripod, winch and full body harness.

(ii)     All safety belt and lanyard hardware assemblies shall be capable of withstanding a tensile loading of 4,000 pounds without cracking, breaking, or taking a permanent deformation.

(iii)     Rope grab devices are prohibited for fall restraint applications unless they are part of a fall restraint system designed specifically for the purpose by the manufacturer, and used in strict accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations and instructions.

(iv)     The employer shall ensure component compatibility.

(v)     Components of fall restraint systems shall be inspected prior to each use for mildew, wear, damage, and other deterioration, and defective components shall be removed from service if their function or strength have been adversely affected.

(vi)     Anchorage points used for fall restraint shall be capable of supporting four times the intended load.

(vii)     Restraint protection shall be rigged to allow the movement of employees only as far as the sides and edges of the walking/working surface.

c.     A warning line system and supplemented by the use of a safety monitor system to protect workers engaged in duties between the forward edge of the warning line and the unprotected sides and edges, including the leading edge, of a low pitched roof or walking/working surface.

d.     Warning line and safety monitor systems are prohibited on surfaces exceeding a 4 in 12 pitch, and on any surface whose dimensions are less than 45 inches in all directions.

2. Fall arrest protection shall consist of:

a. Full body harness system.

(i)     An approved Class III full body harness shall be used.

(ii)     Body harness systems or components subject to impact loading shall be immediately removed from service and shall not be used again for employee protection unless inspected and determined by a competent person to be undamaged and suitable for reuse.

(iii)     All safety lines and lanyards shall be protected against being cut or abraded.

(iv)     The attachment point of the body harness shall be located in the center of the wearer's back near shoulder level, or above the wearer's head.

(v)     Body harness systems shall be rigged to minimize free fall distance with a maximum free fall distance allowed of 6 feet, and such that the employee will not contact any lower level.

(vi)     Hardware shall be drop forged, pressed or formed steel, or made of materials equivalent in strength.

(vii)     Hardware shall have a corrosion resistant finish, and all surfaces and edges shall be smooth to prevent damage to the attached body harness or lanyard.

(viii)     When vertical lifelines (droplines) are used, not more than one employee shall be attached to any one lifeline.

Note: The system strength needs in the following items are based on a total combined weight of employee and tools of no more than 310 pounds. If combined weight is more than 310 pounds, appropriate allowances must be made or the system will not be deemed to be in compliance.

(ix)     Full body harness systems shall be secured to anchorages capable of supporting 5,000 pounds per employee except: When self-retracting lifelines or other deceleration devices are used which limit free fall to two feet, anchorages shall be capable of withstanding 3,000 pounds.

(x)     Vertical lifelines (droplines) shall have a minimum tensile strength of 5,000 pounds (22.2 kN), except that self-retracting lifelines and lanyards which automatically limit free fall distance to two feet (.61 m) or less shall have a minimum tensile strength of 3,000 pounds (13.3 kN).

(xi)     Horizontal lifelines shall be designed, installed, and used, under the supervision of a qualified person, as part of a complete personal fall arrest system, which maintains a safety factor of at least two.

(xii)     Lanyards shall have a minimum tensile strength of 5,000 pounds (22.2 kN).

(xiii)     All components of body harness systems whose strength is not otherwise specified in this subsection shall be capable of supporting a minimum fall impact load of 5,000 pounds (22.2 kN) applied at the lanyard point of connection.

(xiv)     D-rings and snap-hooks shall be proof-tested to a minimum tensile load of 3,600 pounds (16 kN) without cracking, breaking, or taking permanent deformation.

(xv)     Snap-hooks shall be a locking type snap-hook designed and used to prevent disengagement of the snap-hook by the contact of the snap-hook keeper by the connected member.

(xvi)     Unless the snap-hook is designed for the following connections, snap-hooks shall not be engaged:

(A) Directly to the webbing, rope or wire rope;

(B) To each other;

(C) To a D-ring to which another snap-hook or other connector is attached;

(D) To a horizontal lifeline; or

(E) To any object which is incompatibly shaped or dimensioned in relation to the snap-hook such that unintentional disengagement could occur by the connected object being able to depress the snap-hook keeper and release itself.

(xvii)     Full body harness systems shall be inspected prior to each use for mildew, wear, damage, and other deterioration, and defective components shall be removed from service if their function or strength have been adversely affected. Because of the design of some personal fall arrest systems, additional considerations may be required for proper tie-off. For example, heavy deceleration devices of the self-retracting type should be secured overhead in order to avoid the weight of the device having to be supported by the employee. Also, if self-retracting equipment is connected to a horizontal lifeline, the sag in the lifeline should be minimized to prevent the device from sliding down the lifeline to a position that creates a swing hazard during fall arrest. In all cases, manufacturer's instructions should be followed.

b. Catch platforms.

(i)     A catch platform shall be installed within 10 vertical feet of the work area.

(ii)     The catch platforms width shall equal the distance of the fall but shall be a minimum of 45 inches wide and shall be equipped with standard guardrails on all open sides.

3. Positioning device systems. Positioning device systems and their use shall conform to the following provisions:

a.     Positioning devices shall be rigged such that an employee cannot free fall more than 2 feet (.61 m).

b.     Positioning devices shall be secured to an anchorage capable of supporting at least twice the potential impact load of an employee's fall or 3,000 pounds (13.3 kN), whichever is greater.

c.     Connectors shall be drop forged, pressed or formed steel, or made of equivalent materials.

d.     Connectors shall have a corrosion-resistant finish, and all surfaces and edges shall be smooth to prevent damage to interfacing parts of this system.

e.     Connecting assemblies shall have a minimum tensile strength of 5,000 pounds (22.2 kN).

f.     D-rings and snap-hooks shall be proof-tested to a minimum tensile load of 3,600 pounds (16 kN) without cracking, breaking, or taking permanent deformation.

g.     Snap-hooks shall be a locking type snap-hook designed and used to prevent disengagement of the snap-hook by the contact of the snap-hook keeper by the connected member. Required by this standard for all connections, locking snap-hooks incorporate a positive locking mechanism in addition to the spring loaded keeper, which will not allow the keeper to open under moderate pressure without someone first releasing the mechanism. Such a feature, properly designed, effectively prevents roll-out from occurring.

h.    As required by the standard WAC 296-24-88050 (5)(a) the following connections must be avoided (unless properly designed locking snap-hooks are used) because they are conditions which can result in roll-out when a non-locking snap-hook is used:

•    Direct connection of a snap-hook to a horizontal lifeline.

•    Two (or more) snap-hooks connected to one D-ring.

•    Two snap-hooks connected to each other.

•    A snap-hook connected back on its integral lanyard.

•    A snap-hook connected to a webbing loop or webbing lanyard.

•    Improper dimensions of the D-ring, rebar, or other connection point in relation to the snap-hook dimensions which would allow the snap-hook keeper to be depressed by a turning motion of the snap-hook.

i.     Unless the snap-hook is designed for the following connections, snap-hooks shall not be engaged:

(i)     Directly to webbing, rope or wire rope;

(ii)    To each other;

(iii) To a D-ring to which another snap-hook or other connector is attached;

(iv) To a horizontal lifeline; or

(v)     To any object which is incompatibly shaped or dimensioned in relation to the snap-hook such that unintentional disengagement could occur by the connected object being able to depress the snap-hook keeper and release itself.

j.     Positioning device systems shall be inspected prior to each use for wear, damage, and other deterioration, and defective components shall be removed from service.

k.     Body belts, harnesses, and components shall be used only for employee protection (as part of a personal fall arrest system or positioning device system) and not to hoist materials.

4. Droplines or lifelines used on rock scaling operations, or in areas where the lifeline may be subjected to cutting or abrasion, shall be a minimum of 7/8 inch wire core manila rope. For all other lifeline applications, a minimum of 3/4 inch manila or equivalent, with a minimum breaking strength of 5,000 pounds, shall be used.

5. Safety harnesses, lanyards, lifelines or droplines, independently attached or attended, shall be used while performing the following types of work when other equivalent type protection is not provided:

a.     Work performed in permit required confined spaces and other confined spaces shall follow the procedures as described in the City Confined Space Program.

b.     Work on hazardous slopes, or dismantling safety nets, working on poles or from boatswains chairs at elevations greater than six feet (1.83 m), swinging scaffolds or other unguarded locations.

c.     Work on skips and platforms used in shafts by crews when the skip or cage does not occlude the opening to within one foot (30.5 cm) of the sides of the shaft, unless cages are provided.

6. Canopies, when used as falling object protection, shall be strong enough to prevent collapse and to prevent penetration by any objects which may fall onto the canopy.

7.    Free fall considerations: The supervisor and employee should at all times be aware that a system's maximum arresting force is evaluated under normal use conditions established by the manufacturer, and in no case using a free fall distance in excess of 6 feet (1.8 m). A few extra feet of free fall can significantly increase the arresting force on the employee, possibly to the point of causing injury. Because of this, the free fall distance should be kept at a minimum, and, as required by the standard, in no case greater than 6 feet (1.8 m). To help assure this, the tie-off attachment point to the lifeline or anchor should be located at or above the connection point of the fall arrest equipment to harness. (Since otherwise additional free fall distance is added to the length of the connecting means (i.e. lanyard).) Attaching to the working surface will often result in a free fall greater than 6 feet (1.8 m). For instance, if a 6-foot (1.8 m) lanyard is used, the total free fall distance will be the distance from the working level to the body harness attachment point plus the 6 feet (1.8 m) of lanyard length. Another important consideration is that the arresting force that the fall system must withstand also goes up with greater distances of free fall, possibly exceeding the strength of the system.

Elongation and deceleration distance considerations. Other factors involved in a proper tie-off are elongation and deceleration distance. During the arresting of a fall, a lanyard will experience a length of stretching or elongation, whereas activation of a deceleration device will result in a certain stopping distance. These distances should be available with the lanyard or device's instructions and must be added to the free fall distance to arrive at the total fall distance before an employee is fully stopped. The additional stopping distance may be very significant if the lanyard or deceleration device is attached near or at the end of a long lifeline, which may itself add considerable distance due to its own elongation. As required by the standard, sufficient distance to allow for all of these factors must also be maintained between the employee and obstructions below, to prevent an injury due to impact before the system fully arrests the fall. In addition, a minimum of 12 feet (3.7 m) of lifeline should be allowed below the securing point of a rope grab type deceleration device, and the end terminated to prevent the device from sliding off the lifeline. Alternatively, the lifeline should extend to the ground or the next working level below. These measures are suggested to prevent the worker from inadvertently moving past the end of the lifeline and having the rope grab become disengaged from the lifeline.

D.     GUARDING OF LOW PITCHED ROOF PERIMETERS

General provisions: During the performance of work on low pitched roofs with a potential fall hazard greater than 10 feet, the City shall ensure that employees engaged in such work be protected from falling from all unprotected sides and edges of the roof as follows:

1. By the use of a fall restraint or fall arrest systems, or

2. By the use of a warning line system erected and maintained as provided in subsection (3) of this section and supplemented for employees working between the warning line and the roof edge by the use of a safety monitor system.

3. Mechanical equipment shall be used or stored only in areas where employees are protected by a warning line system, or fall restraint, or fall arrest systems. Mechanical equipment may not be used or stored where the only protection is provided by the use of a safety monitor.

4. Exceptions.

a. The provisions of subsection (1)(a) of this section do not apply at points of access such as stairways, ladders, and ramps, or when employees are on the roof only to inspect, investigate, or estimate roof level conditions. Roof edge materials handling areas and materials storage areas shall be guarded as provided in subsection (4) of this section.

b. Employees engaged in roofing on low-pitched roofs less than 50 feet wide, may elect to use a safety monitor system without warning lines.

5. Warning lines systems.

a. Warning lines shall be erected around all sides of the work area.

(i)     When mechanical equipment is not being used, the warning line shall be erected not less than six feet (1.8 meters) from the edge of the roof.

(ii)     When mechanical equipment is being used, the warning line shall be erected not less than six feet (1.8 meters) from the roof edge which is parallel to the direction of mechanical equipment operation, and not less than 10 feet (3.1 meters) from the roof edge which is perpendicular to the direction of mechanical equipment operation.

b.     The warning line shall consist of a rope, wire, or chain and supporting stanchions erected as follows:

(i)     The rope, wire, or chain shall be flagged at not more than six foot (1.8 meter) intervals with high visibility material.

(ii)     The rope, wire, or chain shall be rigged and supported in such a way that its lowest point (including sag) is no less than 36 inches (91.4 cm) from the roof surface and its highest point is no more than 42 inches (106.7 cm) from the roof surface.

(iii) After being erected, with the rope, wire or chain attached, stanchions shall be capable of resisting, without tipping over, a force of at least 16 pounds (71 Newtons) applied horizontally against the stanchion, 30 inches (0.76 meters) above the roof surface, perpendicular to the warning line, and in the direction of the roof edge.

(iv) The rope, wire, or chain shall have a minimum tensile strength of 200 pounds (90 kilograms), and after being attached to the stanchions, shall be capable of supporting, without breaking, the loads applied to the stanchions.

(v)     The line shall be attached at each stanchion in such a way that pulling on one section of the line between stanchions will not result in slack being taken up in adjacent sections before the stanchion tips over.

c.     Access paths shall be erected as follows:

(i)     Points of access, materials handling areas, and storage areas shall be connected to the work area by a clear access path formed by two warning lines.

(ii)     When the path to a point of access is not in use, a rope, wire, or chain, equal in strength and height to the warning line, shall be placed across the path at the point where the path intersects the warning line erected around the work area.

6. Roof edge materials handling areas and materials storage. Employees working in a roof edge materials handling or materials storage area located on a low pitched roof with a ground to eave height greater than 10 feet shall be protected from falling along all unprotected roof sides and edges of the area.

a. When guardrails are used at hoisting areas, a minimum of four feet of guardrail shall be erected on each side of the access point through which materials are hoisted.

b.     A chain or gate shall be placed across the opening between the guardrail sections when hoisting operations are not taking place.

c.     When guardrails are used at bitumen pipe outlet, a minimum of four feet of guardrail shall be erected on each side of the pipe.

d.     When safety belt/harness systems are used, they shall not be attached to the hoist.

e.     When fall restraint systems are used, they shall be rigged to allow the movement of employees only as far as the roof edge.

f.     Materials shall not be stored within six feet of the roof edge unless guardrails are erected at the roof edge.

E.    LEADING EDGE CONTROL ZONE

1. When performing leading edge work, the employer shall ensure that a control zone be established according to the following requirements:

a.     The control zone shall begin a minimum of 6 feet back from the leading edge to prevent exposure by employees who are not protected by fall restraint or fall arrest systems.

b.     The control zone shall be separated from other areas of the low pitched roof or walking/working surface by the erection of a warning line system.

c.     The warning line system shall consist of wire, rope, or chain supported on stanchions, or a method which provides equivalent protection.

d.     The spacing of the stanchions and support of the line shall be such that the lowest point of the line (including sag) is not less than 36 inches from the walking/working surface, and its highest point is not more than 42 inches (106.7 cm) from the walking/working surface.

e.     Each line shall have a minimum tensile strength of 200 pounds (90 kilograms).

f.     Each line shall be flagged or clearly marked with high visibility materials at intervals not to exceed 6 feet.

g.     After being erected with the rope, or chain attached, stanchions shall be capable of resisting without tipping over, a force of at least 16 pounds (71 Newtons) applied horizontally against the stanchions 30 inches (0.76 meters) above the roof surface, perpendicular to the warning line and in the direction of the roof edge.

2. When positive means of fall restraint or fall arrest are not utilized, a safety monitor system shall be implemented to protect employees working between the forward edge of the warning line and the leading edge.

F.    SAFETY MONITOR SYSTEM (SMS)

1. A safety monitor system (SMS) may be used in conjunction with a warning line system as a method of guarding against falls during work on low pitched roofs and leading edge work only.

2. When selected, the employer shall ensure that the safety monitor system shall be addressed in the fall protection work plan, include the name of the safety monitor(s) and the extent of their training in both the safety monitor and warning line systems, and shall ensure that the following requirements are met.

3. The safety monitor system shall not be used when adverse weather conditions create additional hazards.

4. A person acting in the capacity of safety monitor(s) shall be trained in the function of both the safety monitor and warning lines systems, and shall:

a. Be a competent person (requires City Competent Person Training) .

b. Have control authority over the work as it relates to fall protection.

c. Be instantly distinguishable over members of the work crew.

d. Engage in no other duties while acting as safety monitor.

e. Be positioned in relation to the workers under his or her protection, so as to have a clear, unobstructed view and be able to maintain normal voice communication.

f. Not supervise more than eight exposed workers at one time.

g. Warn the employee when it appears that the employee is unaware of a fall hazard or is acting in an unsafe manner.

5. Control zone: Workers shall be distinguished from other members of the crew by wearing highly visible, distinctive, and uniform apparel readily distinguishing them from other members of the crew only while in the control zone.

The employer shall ensure that each employee working in a control zone promptly comply with fall hazard warnings from safety monitors.

G.    ASSEMBLY, MAINTENANCE, INSPECTION AND DISASSEMBLY OF THE FALL PROTECTION SYSTEM TO BE USED

The correct procedures for the assembly, maintenance, inspection, disassembly, and use of the fall protection system to be used include, but are not limited to, the following: follow all manufacturer’s directions, and suggested procedures. Put on all equipment before ascending or descending. Clip onto horizontal lifelines immediately after mounting roofs. After each use all equipment shall be thoroughly checked for damage, wear, or malfunction. Defective equipment shall immediately be reported to the supervisor and removed from service until appropriate repair or replacement.

H.     INSPECTION GUIDELINES AND CONSIDERATIONS

To maintain their service life and high performance, all belts and harnesses shall be inspected prior to each use for mildew, wear, damage and other deteriorations. Visual     inspection before each use is just common sense. Periodic tests by a trained inspector for wear, damage or corrosion should be part of the safety program. Inspect your equipment daily and replace it if any of the defective conditions in this manual are found.

As stated in WAC 296-24-88050(6), personal fall arrest systems must be regularly inspected. Any component with any significant defect, such as cuts, tears, abrasions, mold, or undue stretching; alterations or additions which might affect its efficiency; damage due to deterioration; contact with fire, acids, or other corrosives; distorted hooks or faulty hook springs; tongues unfitted to the shoulder of buckles; loose or damaged mountings; nonfunctioning parts; or wearing or internal deterioration in the ropes must be withdrawn from service immediately, and should be tagged or marked as unusable, or destroyed.

1. Belt Inspection:

a.    Beginning at one end, holding the body side of the belt toward you, grasp the belt with your hands six to eight inches apart. Bend the belt in an inverted "U". The surface tension resulting makes damaged fibers or cuts easier to see.

b.    Follow this procedure the entire length of the belt or harness. Watch for frayed edges, broken fibers, pulled stitches, cuts or chemical damage.

c.    Special attention should be given to the attachment of buckles and D Rings to webbing. Note any unusual wear, frayed or cut fibers, or distortion of the buckles or Dees.

d.    Inspect for frayed or broken strands. Broken webbing strands generally appear as tufts on the webbing surface. Any broken, cut or burned stitches will be readily seen.

e.    Rivets should be tight and immovable with fingers. Body side rivet base and outside rivet burr should be flat against the material. Bent rivets will fail under stress. Especially note condition of D Ring rivets and D Ring metal wear pads (if any). Discolored, pitted or cracked rivets indicate chemical corrosion.

f.    The tongue, or billet, of the belt receives heavy wear from repeated buckling and unbuckling. Inspect for loose, distorted or broken grommets. Belts using punched holes without grommets should be checked for torn or elongated holes, causing slippage of the buckle tongue.

2. Tongue Buckle: Buckle tongues should be free of distortion in shape and motion. They should overlap the buckle frame and move freely back and forth in their socket. Roller should turn freely on frame. Check for distortion or sharp edges.

3. Friction Buckle: Inspect the buckle for distortion. The outer bars and center bars must be straight. Pay special attention to corners and attachment to points of the center bar.

4. Sliding Bar Buckle: Inspect buckle frame and sliding bar for cracks, distortions, or sharp edges.

Sliding bar should move freely. Knurled edge will slip if worn smooth. Pay special attention to corners and ends of sliding bar.

5. Lanyard inspection: When inspecting lanyards, begin at one end and work to the opposite end. Slowly rotate the lanyard so that the entire circumference is checked. Spliced ends require particular attention. Hardware should be examined under procedures also detailed below, i.e., Snaps, D Ring and Thimbles.

6. Steel: While rotating the steel lanyard, watch for cuts, frayed areas, or unusual wearing patterns on the wire. Broken strands will separate from the body of the lanyards.

7. Webbing: While bending webbing over a pipe or mandrel, observe each side of the webbed lanyard. This will reveal any cuts or breaks. Swelling, discolorations, cracks, charring are obvious signs of chemical or heat damage. Observe closely for any breaks in stitching.

8. Rope: Rotation of the rope lanyard while inspecting from end to end will bring to light any fuzzy, worn, broken or cut fibers. Weakened areas from extreme loads will appear as a noticeable change in original diameter. The rope diameter should be uniform throughout, following a short break-in-period.

I.    PROCEDURES FOR THE HANDLING, STORAGE, & SECURING OF TOOLS & MATERIALS

The correct procedures for the handling, storage and securing of tools, materials, equipment and the fall restraint system include, but are not limited to, the following: All equipment, tools, materials and fall restraint systems shall be stored in a protective environment to prolong its integrity. All tools shall be raised and lowered in a bucket that shall be tied off to a fixed anchorage point in proximity to the work.

J.    PROVIDING OVERHEAD PROTECTION

For workers who may be in or pass through the area, a hard hat area, below the work site, includes, but is not limited to hard hats. An on-site safety monitor, usually the Lead Worker, is to be designated for each overhead hazard hard hat area. They shall remain at the access point of the ascending/descending worker. The area shall be barricaded or ribboned off to protect a passerby.

K.    REMOVAL OF INJURED WORKERS

Includes, but is not limited to, the following: evaluate the condition, administer first aid, if injury warrants call 911. If injury occurs in confined space follow confined space guidelines. If it is before 3:30 pm, call the Renton Maintenance Dispatcher and have them contact Valley Communications at 911 to dispatch the emergency services needed to the scene. Evaluate the injured worker’s condition. If the condition is not life threatening or if there is a back problem, do not move the injured worker, wait for the emergency medical personnel. As required by WAC 296-24-88050 (5)(h) when personal fall arrest systems are used, the employer must assure that employees can be promptly rescued or can rescue themselves should a fall occur. The availability of rescue personnel, ladders or other rescue equipment should be evaluated. In some situations, equipment that allows employees to rescue themselves after the fall has been arrested may be desirable, such as devices that have descent capability.

L.    PROTECTIVE STRUCTURES AND EQUIPMENT

For protective structure and equipment you must make sure a cage well, or ladder safety systems provided if:

The length of the climb is less than 24 feet and the top of the ladder is more than 24 feet above ground, floor or roof. Make sure a ladder with a single length of climb that is equal to or greater than 24 feet is either: equipped with a ladder safety device or uses multiple ladder sections and meets all of the following:

1.    Each section is provided with a cage or well

2.    The length of climb of any ladder section is not greater than 50 feet

3.    Each ladder section is offset from adjacent sections

4.    Landing platforms are provided at maximum intervals of 50 feet

If a vault is equipped with fixed ladders you do not need fall protection until the height of the ladder reaches 24’.

Exemption: During construction activities, a self-retracting lifeline with landing platforms provided at a maximum intervals of 150 feet may be used instead of a ladder safety device or multiple ladder sections.

M. MANHOLES

Every manhole floor opening shall be guarded by a standard manhole cover which need not be hinged in place. While the cover is not in place, the manhole opening shall be constantly attended by someone or shall be protected by removable standard railings.

N. COVERS AND GUARDRAILS

1.     All open vats and tanks into which workers may fall shall be guarded with railings or screen guards.

2.     All open vats and tanks where workers are employed shall have a platform or walkway 36 to 42 inches below the top of vat or tank or where walkway is flush with top of vat or tank, a standard safeguard of 36 to 42 inches high shall be constructed.

3.    Every tank over 5 feet deep, excepting where agitators are used or where products may be damaged by ladders, shall have a ladder fixed on the inside so placed as to connect with means of access from the outside. Rungs shall have a clearance of at least 6 inches measured between the rung and the side of the tank.

O.    TRAINING

The City will provide Fall Protection (Restraint and Fall Arrest) training every five years to all affected employees. Fall Protection training shall be documented and shall be available upon request. Thorough employee training in the selection and use of personal fall arrest systems is imperative. As stated in the standard, before the equipment is used, employees must be trained in the safe use of the system. This should include the following: Application limits; proper anchoring and tie-off techniques; estimation of free fall distance, including determination of deceleration distance, and total fall distance to prevent striking a lower level; methods of use; and inspection and storage of the system. Careless or improper use of the equipment can result in serious injury or death. Supervisors and employees should become familiar with the material in this Appendix, as well as manufacturer's recommendations, before a system is used. Of uppermost importance is the reduction in strength caused by certain tie-offs (such as using knots, tying around sharp edges, etc.) and maximum permitted free fall distance. Also, to be stressed are the importance of inspections prior to use, the limitations of the equipment, and unique conditions at the worksite which may be important in determining the type of system to use.

1.    Instruction considerations:

Supervisors should obtain comprehensive instructions from the supplier as to the system's proper use and application, including, where applicable:

a.    The force measured during the sample force test;

b.    The maximum elongation measured for lanyards during the force test;

c.    The deceleration distance measured for deceleration devices during the force test;

d.    Caution statements on critical use limitations;

e.    Application limits;

f.    Proper hook-up, anchoring and tie-off techniques, including the proper D-ring or other attachment point to use on the body harness for fall arrest;

g.    Proper climbing techniques;

h.    Methods of inspection, use, cleaning, and storage; and

i.    Specific lifelines that may be used. This information should be provided to employees during training.

2.     Retraining. The City will provide “Retraining” when we have reason to believe that any affected employee who has already been trained does not have the understanding and skill required by subsection (1) of this section, the employer shall retrain each such employee. Circumstances where retraining is required include, but are not limited to, situations where:

a.    Changes in the workplace render previous training obsolete; or

b.    Changes in the types of fall protection systems or equipment to be used render previous training obsolete; or

c.    Inadequacies in an affected employee's knowledge or use of fall protection systems or equipment indicate that the employee has not retained the requisite understanding or skill. WAC 296-155-24505 Fall protection work plan.

3.     Fall protection training will train the employees to :

a.    Identify fall hazards;

b.    Understand and describe the method of fall arrest or fall restraint to be provided;

c.    Understand correct procedures for assembly, maintenance, inspection and disassembly of the fall protection system to be used;

d.    Understand correct procedures for handling, storage and securing of tools and materials;

e.    Understand the methods of providing overhead protection for workers who may be in, or pass through the area of a work site;

f.    Understand and demonstrate methods of prompt safe removal of injured workers; and

g.    Understand and demonstrate the ability to inspect fall protection devices and system to ensure compliance with WAC 296-155-24510

P.    EMERGENCY    

In case of an emergency, call 911 and notify of the problem, location, and specific need. After Emergency Services have been notified and in route the supervisor should be notified.

Q.    WORK PLAN    

The City has developed a written fall protection work plan including each area of the work place where the employees are assigned and where fall hazards of 10 feet or more exist. This shall be used in all instances and turned into the Department head when complete. For confined space entry the completed form shall be attached to the permit for that entry and kept on file as usual.

The fall protection work plan shall:

1.    Identify all fall hazards in the work area.

2.    Describe the method of fall arrest or fall restraint to be provided.

3.    Describe the correct procedures for the assembly, maintenance, inspection, and disassembly of the fall protection system to be used.

4.    Describe the correct procedures for the handling, storage, and securing of tools and materials.

5.    Describe the method of providing overhead protection for workers who may be in, or pass through the area below the work site.

6.    Describe the method for prompt, safe removal of injured workers.

7.    Be available on the job site for inspection by the department.

SITE SPECIFIC FALL PROTECTION WORK PLAN

WAC 296-155-24505

To be used for every site specific fall protection plan. Keep located at site for review, training and for the Department of Labor to review.

Date                        Supervisor                         

Job Site Address/Location                                        

____________________________________________________________________________________

Identify all fall hazards in the work area:    Describe the method of fall arrest or fall restraint to be provided:

Describe the correct procedures for assembly, maintenance, inspection and disassembly of the fall protection system to be used:

Describe the correct procedures for the handling, storage, and securing of tools and materials:

Describe the method of providing overhead protection for workers who may be in, or pass through the area below the work site:


Describe the method for prompt, safe removal of injured workers:


All Work Plans Will Be Kept On File For a Period Of 5 Years.