When using rigging equipment, you must pay special attention to safety. After all, lives depend on it. Plus, OSHA takes its regulations seriously and constantly monitors work ethics, trying to identify crane violations. So, to minimize rigging accidents and negative consequences, you should learn all the potential risks.
Continue reading to discover the 5 main rigging safety factors to avoid potential accidents.
One of the most important rigging equipment factors that influence safety is the working load limit. This represents the maximum load a piece of equipment can handle, and going above that limit will only endanger your workers and your project.
If you can’t find equipment suitable for your lifting needs, you can always have it custom-made, whether an alloy sling rigging chain or turnbuckles. However, you should mind the working load limit in this case too. It’s better to be safe than sorry, especially when using rigging equipment.
When using equipment for lifting, it’s impossible to always calculate the weight precisely. This is where the safety factor of rigging equipment comes in. It’s a ratio that represents an additional weight above the working load limit that a piece of rigging equipment can handle.
For instance, if the safety factor is 6:1, the equipment will fail if you apply a force 6 times as much as the specified working load limit. You might wonder why this factor exists? Well, there are 3 main reasons - unexpected drops, equipment wear and tear, and uneven loading.
Many people underestimate the power of weather, and so do crane operators too. If the weather changes abruptly and brings heavy winds and rains along, you should consider the risks that come with continuing to use the equipment.
For instance, you need to stop using the ringing equipment if there is wind with speed above 20 mph or low visibility due to fog and rain. If not, you are endangering your workers and going against OSHA regulations. You should also learn how the equipment materials react in extreme temperatures, as this will help you identify possible risks when using rigging.
Rigging equipment inspections are necessary throughout the entire year. A certified inspector should look at the equipment and try to identify any possible risks (damage, wear, and tear, corrosion, missing hardware, etc.).
An inspector will evaluate not only the equipment itself but also pathways and platforms, ropes and chains, and the area surrounding the equipment. It’s advisable to conduct inspections before using the equipment, during the project, and periodically - preferably once a year.
Operating heavy lifting equipment is not an easy feat. Even though it might look simple on the outside, it’s a task that requires knowledge, skill, and experience. Unskilled operators are one of the leading rigging safety risks.
You want to collaborate with knowledgeable equipment operators with the required certifications and skills. They must possess a relevant and updated license for the type of crane they are operating. Operating rigging equipment without a license is against the law and a significant risk for accidents.
Sadly, even though equipment manufacturers have people’s lives in their hands, there are still low-quality products on the market. To minimize the potential risks from low-quality rigging equipment, always collaborate with reputable manufacturers.
Not only that, but make sure you get suitable equipment for your project. For instance, you will need equipment made of moisture-resistant materials if you plan to work in a damp environment.
Take the burden off your contractors’ shoulders, and choose safe and reliable equipment! At Southeast Rigging Inc., we have over three decades of experience in the industry. With our high-quality, reliable, and safe products, we are the leaders in rigging and material handling hardware.
We provide chains, wire ropes, blocks, rigging hardware, custom lifter, general cordage, and much more. We are also proud to provide certified training, inspection, testing, and repair. We provide high-quality products and impeccable customer support for all workers and investors looking to upgrade their equipment. Give us a call to learn how we can minimize safety risks and help your projects grow.