As reliable as your fall protection equipment often is, unfortunately, they’re heavily susceptible to damage when exposed to the elements. Therefore, how you store your fall protection equipment is key to your protection during a climb. To ensure that you’re as safe as you can be on the job, learn how to properly store fall protection equipment.
Keep Them off the Ground
When it comes time to pack up your tower climbing safety harness, lanyards, and retractable lifelines, it’s important to remember to hang them up. Hanging these items allows them to breathe and dry out—you want to make sure they’re not wet and susceptible to mold. Since all these items need to maintain their strength for repeated use, you need to lay them flat and unfolded during storage. This will ensure that no part deteriorates more than others and that they don’t become susceptible to being torn.
Avoid Exposure to Harsh Elements
As you go to hang your equipment, it’s also important to pay attention to where you hang them. Exposure to harsh conditions, such as sunlight and heat, can trigger a premature deterioration process within the materials and lead to damage. Once equipment becomes damaged in this way, it’s best to discontinue use as it could be too weak to keep you safe. As a result, you must store your fall protection items in a dark, cool area.
Keep them Clean
Be sure to also take some time to clean your equipment before you store it. Any dirt, dust, or grime left on their surfaces from the day’s work can fester in storage and begin to eat away at the fibers. Over time, this also weakens your fall protection items and makes them less reliable during a climb.
Ask Manufacturing Questions
Since fall protection equipment is available in a variety of brands, made by several manufacturers, they often require different care methods. As such, it’s key that you know the manufacturer’s guidelines for your particular items to best store them. This information also comes in handy when you’re inspecting these items as you’ll know what to look for.