The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has a number of rules and regulations that govern the use of heavy equipment. Making workplaces as safe as possible is a main goal for a lot of companies. The good news is that injuries and illnesses for people at work are down. In 1972, there were 10.9 reported incidents for every 100 workers. In 2011, that number was down to 3.4. One key factor in making sure workers are safe in a job site is selecting the right rigging supplies.
If the job you are planning requires the use of rigging supplies and fall protection equipment, you need to determine what you will need to get the job done and keep everyone on the work site safe. This includes the people who are working for you and anyone who will visit the job site. Anytime you have a job where heavy equipment is used, you need to take a lot of care getting the right equipment.
Tips to Getting the Right Rigging Supplies:
- Start out with a list. If you have worked on similar jobs, you may have a good idea of what kinds of rigging supplies you will need. Draft a list of all of the items that you will need. It is always easier to prioritize your list when you have written it out. Put the most important items up at top of your list. If you are looking at your list and cost becomes an issue, you should buy the most important items and make sure you do not sacrifice quality. It is better to get better quality rigging supplies and not get all of the items on your list than to get inferior quality tools or equipment.
- Factor in the climate. When you are looking into getting different rigging supplies, you will need to consider the climate and weather at the project site. This may make a big difference in your equipment choices. If you are going to be working in a part of the country that is very hot or cold or has problems with hurricanes, blizzards or tonadoes, you will want to take those factors into account when you are looking at your rigging supplies options and needs. Weather can rerail even the best laid plans.
- What temperature will you be working at? This can also be a factor in determining what rigging supplies you will need. If you are looking at wire rope slings that are metallic, you should look into what temperatures it can withstand. Many will not function at the best level if they are subjected to temperatures below negative 40 degrees Fahrenheit or if it is heated to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. If you are using uncoated wire rope slings, they will most likely have problems if they are heated beyond 550 degrees Fahrenheit. If you have questions or concerns, you should talk to the manufacturer of the rigging supplies.
- Get the right equipment for your loads. You will need to investigate the load limits for any rigging supplies that you are planning to use for your project. The maximum weight that can be safety applied to any piece of equipment is referred to as the load limit. Different pieces of rigging equipment may have their own load limits. You will have to measure the weight of your task and make sure that every piece of equipment that is being used on that task can handle the weight. You have probably heard the saying, “you are only as strong as your weakest link.” This is all too true when it comes to rigging supplies. If this leaves you with questions or concerns, you should contact the manufacturer.
- Get rigging supplies that are durable. The durability of the rigging supplies is incredibly important. This is one of the reasons to get the best quality rigging supplies when you are getting what you need for the project you are about to start. If you get the best quality rigging supplies and equipment and you follow through with the right inspections and maintenance, you will have a very safe workplace.
With the proper rigging supplies and equipment, you can have a successful project and safe work site.