How do you wear a safety harness properly?
- Inspect the safety harness
- Put on the safety harness
- Adjust the safety harness
Falling from heights is one of the leading causes of injury in the workplace. That’s why it’s imperative to have the proper personal protective equipment for this job. A safety harness is a fall restraint system that allows the wearer to attach themselves to an anchor. This way, they won’t hit the ground in the event of a fall. To get the most out of your safety gear, you need to learn how to wear a safety harness. Keep on reading to learn more.
Inspect The Safety Harness
Before you wear a safety harness, the first thing you should do is perform an inspection. This helps you spot worn-out and damaged parts early so you can prevent injuries during a fall. A few minutes of checking can be a lifesaver. Other than that, consult your manufacturer’s manual about when to replace the safety harness.
To inspect the harness, here are some things you can do:
- Hold the D-Ring located at the back of the body harness.
- Shake the safety harness gently to untangle the straps. In some cases, you might need to untangle each strap manually.
- Unfasten the buckles and loosen the straps.
- Inspect if the impact indicators are still present. If these have been damaged or removed, you can’t wear the harness. Call a technician to have the equipment inspected first. Otherwise, you need to replace it.
- Check for signs of damages all over the safety harness.
- Buckles: Ensure that the components of the buckles are not deformed or chipped.
- D-Rings: Inspect for corrosion, distortion, and damage.
- Straps: Make sure that the fibers of the straps are in good condition. Check for fraying and loose stitching.
- Loops: Check for cracks and broken loops.
Keep in mind that a damaged safety harness might not be able to arrest your fall correctly. In this situation, it’s better to have your equipment replaced than increase the risk of injury.
Put On The Safety Harness
If the safety harness is in good condition, you can proceed to put it on. Remember that an improperly worn harness is as good as not wearing one at all. For more detailed instructions, you can check your manufacturer’s guidelines.
Here are the steps to wearing a safety harness:
- Prepare the safety harness by holding it by the D-ring located at the topmost backside part. This allows you to straighten the untangled straps. Shake it if needed.
- Put on the safety harness by inserting your arms through the straps one at a time. You know that you’re wearing it correctly if the D-ring is at the center of your upper back. You will also see the chest buckles in front of you. Make sure that the webbing is not twisted when wearing the harness.
- Fasten the buckles on the leg straps. This will depend, as some safety harnesses have a tongue, parachute, or quick-connect buckle. Make sure to tighten the straps, so they fit snugly on your thighs. A good practice is to insert two fingers between your leg and the strap to ensure that it’s not too loose or tight.
- Fasten the waist straps and make sure that it’s snug. Not all safety harnesses have this, so confirm it with the instruction manual if you should have one.
- If you don’t have a waist strap, the only thing left is to connect the chest strap and tighten it.
Adjust The Safety Harness
Now that you have your safety harness on, the only thing left is to adjust it. Ensure that you get a snug fit but not too tight that you can’t move properly.
Here are some tips for adjusting your safety harness:
- Try moving around so you can spot loose straps.
- Make sure that the chest strap is sitting directly across the center of your chest. This can keep you from falling out of the harness if you fall headfirst. Tighten it if it’s loose, but check that you can still breathe and move comfortably.
- Tuck the ends of the straps in the loop keepers to prevent them from causing an accident. This way, the straps won’t snag on equipment in your surroundings.
- Tuck any loose pieces of clothing—such as shirttails or drawstrings.
- Ask someone to help you adjust the safety harness if you’re having trouble.
- Remove items from your pockets so you won’t lose anything valuable during a fall.
Other than the quality of the safety harness, another thing you should pay attention to is how to wear it properly. This way, the equipment can protect you when you accidentally fall from heights.
If you need additional instruction on how to wear a safety harness, you can send a message here at Dels Apparel. We offer fall arrest systems and other safety gear that you might find useful for your site. Click here for more details!