In past Tech Talk articles, we have discussed the ABC’s of fall arrest systems—anchorage, body harness, and connecting device. As this acronym suggests, the starting point for any fall arrest system is the anchor point. Fall arrest anchorage can take many forms, but in this post, we’ll explore common solutions for indoor facilities housing machinery or equipment requiring routine maintenance and inspection. For the purposes of this post, we will make a number of assumptions to form a hypothetical, yet real world, fall arrest scenario:
- Indoor working environment
- Work area is clearly defined and contains multiple pieces of equipment requiring periodic maintenance
- Overhead structural beams are present
Single Point Anchors are often utilized for applications similar to the one just described because they are cost-effective and easy to use. Circling back to our ABC acronym, a worker wearing a body harness can connect to a self-retracting lifeline suspended from a single point anchor overhead as shown in the photo below:
If you look carefully at the picture above, you’ll notice the single point anchors are mechanically attached to structural steel beams running above the intended work area. For some applications, our clients don’t want to invest the resources to permanently install single point anchors throughout their plants, or the maintenance and required maintenance and inspection work is too infrequent to justify the cost of installing permanently attached single point anchors. In these cases, assuming we have appropriate overhead structure, our Connect Safe Portable Truss Anchor* is another option.
If you are wondering how the anchor is positioned overhead or have questions about truss requirements, installation is fast and easily completed as shown in the tutorial below:
Anchor Placement Notes:
Truss anchorage locations must be approved by a safety engineer or a qualified person and must meet all of the requirements outlined in the Connect Safe Portable Truss Anchor Installation Manual. Key points to remember:
- May not be at the end of a truss.
- May not be between the first and second panel point.
- Must be located between two panel points
- Should be as close to a panel point as possible
The Connect Safe Portable Truss Anchor is simple to install and use, but you’ll need to verify that your overhead structure is suitable for a fall arrest application. As a starting point, you’ll want to verify the following:
- Bracing shall be straight, undamaged, and meet the original design intent.
- The span and loading of the truss affects the allowable concentrated load that may be applied to the truss. It must be capable of withstanding a concentrated load of 900 pounds with a safety factor of two (2) for certified anchorages and 5000 pounds for non-certified anchorages.
- No more than one user is permitted at a time per truss.
- Do not attach to a truss that is smaller than 18” in height
- An acceptable truss must be designed according to the Steel Joist Institute (SJI) and be a K, KCS, LH, or DLH series truss.
It is vital that the truss system is inspected by an engineer or qualified person for structural integrity which includes (but is not limited to) corrosion, end connections, size, load capacity, welds, existing loading, bracing, span, or any other unsafe conditions.
|Kit Number*||Self-Retracting Lifeline||Body Harness|
*All Portable Truss Anchor Kits Include an OSHA Compliant Truss Anchor, 12' Telescoping Installation Pole, and Instruction Manual
Contact Your Local Grainger Rep For Pricing and Availability
|PTAR11W||11' DBI / SALA Rebel Web SRL||Not Included|
|PTAR20W||20' DBI / SALA Rebel Web SRL||Not Included|
|PTAM12W||12' Latchways Web SRL||Not Included|
|PTAM23W||23' Latchways Web SRL||Not Included|
|PTAR11WH||11' DBI / SALA Web SRL||DBI / SALA Delta Harness|
|PTAR20WH||20' DBI / SALA Rebel Web SRL||DBI / SALA Delta Harness|
|PTAM12WH||12' Latchways Web SRL||MSA Workman Harness|
|PTAM23WH||23' Latchways Web SRL||MSA Workman Harness|
Obviously, portable truss anchors aren’t right for every application, but under the right circumstances, they are a viable alternative to permanently attached single point anchors. Best of all, our new portable truss anchoring system is OSHA compliant and meets all ANSI safety standards. To learn more, visit our portable truss single point anchor page or contact Diversified Fall Protection for further assistance.
*Connect Safe Portable Truss Anchor – Patent Pending
Diversified Fall Protection designs, manufactures, and installs OSHA Compliant fall protection systems, including horizontal lifelines, rigid trolley beam fall arrest systems, vertical lifelines, and rooftop guardrail. To learn more about our turnkey approach to fall protection, please contact us for expert assistance with your safety needs.