Sometimes you just want a quick, simple definition without all the fluff, so we’ve created a fall protection glossary that does just that.
Do you use a fall arrest system? If you work at 10-feet or higher, you need it – no ifs, ands or buts. Fall protection is a combined system of plans and equipment workers use to protect themselves and their tools from slips or falls, prevent them happening in the first place and minimize worksite risk.
Read on to discover our fall protection glossary, and stay up-to-date on important safety terms.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: A
A way to securely attach your fall arrest system to the rest of your equipment.
A piece that connects and secures your fall arrest, prevention or protection system so it can withstand the forces of work and a potential fall.
Loops or d-rings that connect to the body, and allow the worker to attach other components of a fall protection system to it.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: B
A full-body harness is used to protect workers – it does this by distributing the fall’s force throughout the entire body, and ensures the worker’s body remains upright, even after a fall occurs.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: C
The Candian Centre for Occupational Health & Safety is a federal department corporation, and Canada’s national resource for workplace health & safety information. They promote the well-being – physical, psychosocial and mental health – of Canadians by providing information, training, education, management systems and solutions that support health, safety and wellness programs.
A confined space is an (often enclosed) area not meant for long-term human occupation, with limited exits and entries. Although these spaces are not usually built for humans, work needs to be done there – Some examples of these confined spaces include sewers, aircraft wing (a great example of a confined space that’s not necessarily enclosed), tanks and silos.
A piece of small equipment, or accessory that’s used to connect parts of a personal fall arrest system – These range from individual components, like a carabiner, or those of a larger system, like a d-ring on an absorbing lanyard.
DBI-SALA® products are trusted for the past 75 years, to help them get the job done well and get home safely. DBI-SALA® delivers fall protection solutions that enable workers to do their best work safely and comfortably.
Any device used to slow a fall, or absorb energy to lessen the impact of a fall.
The additional distance between the location of an employee’s attachment point when the fall occurs, between the attachment point’s location when the worker’s fall stops.
What tools do when dropped from heights – dropped objects don’t fall straight down, they tend to deflect in another direction (and can often harm innocent bystanders metres away, who are unrelated to the worksite).
D-RING (ATTACHMENT POINT)
An attachment point (can be on the front or back) that lets a worker connect pther components to their fall protection system, like a lifeline or deceleration device.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: F
Fall arrest is the range of fall protection that focuses on the safety of a person who has already fell.
Fall distance, or free-fall distance is the term given to the vertical displacement of the fall arrest attachment point on the worker’s fall protection equipment.
Refers to the systems and equipment that keep workers safe at heights.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: H
Attachment for tool belt to prevent dropping tools when working at heights.
A line held by anchorages, and lets worker attach a lanyard, SRL or other component for horizontal travel. These can be configured to arrest a fall, or for total restraint.
Any object, situation or act that could cause injury, ill-health or damage workers, the property and the environment – These aren’t always readily apparent, but many hazards can be managed or minimized. There are many different types of hazards, including:
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: I
This is an object’s ability to withstand strong forces or shock applied – for example, a worker’s safety harness and lanyard must be able to withstand the wear and tear that regular work gives.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: K
A connector (see below), or coupling link used to secure ropes, harnesses or other components of a fall arrest system.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: L
Device used to extend a worker’s reach and work at heights. Commonly-used across a variety of industries to ascend and descend.
A lanyard is a connection point to your harness, and can be constructed of rope, webbing or cable.
A leading edge is an under-construction and unprotected side of a surface (think a roof). Its location normally changes as work changes. Leading edges are normally sharp, abrasive and present hazards that you can minimize with fall protection.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: O
The Occupational Safety & Health Administration is a regulating US agency who’s responsible to make sure workplaces are safe, and work within the necessary regulations and safety standards.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: P
Protecta® Brand has comfortable features and fit, like shoulder pads, moisture-wicking back pads, and foam hip pads with mesh for extra breathability.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: R
RESCUE / RESCUE PLAN
Retrieval plan for worker’s at heights or in confined spaces – a rescue plan is an essential part of any fall prevention plan.
Risk is present at nearly every jobsite, and risk management refers to the act of minimizing and managing those risks so hazards, injuries, fatalities and high financial consequences are prevented.
A rope grab attaches to a safety harness, and typically is less costly than an SRL.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: S
A safety harness (also see body harness) is used to protect a worker if they fall while working at height, or in a confined space by catching them as they fall.
Webbing device used to extend or lessen forces on the worker if a fall occurs.
A self-retracting lifeline, or SRL is a deceleration device with a spring-loaded cable or line that will brake the worker if a fall occurs. They typically are a longer length, and are best applied when a standard shock-absorbing lanyard would not be able to stop the fall in time.
FALL PROTECTION GLOSSARY: T
Refers to the control of a worker’s movement by the connection to an anchorage and restrictive equipment that doesn’t adjust, so a worker is completely stopped when a fall occurs.
PAY ATTENTION TO FALL PREVENTION!
FIND MORE INFORMATION ON FALL PROTECTION EQUIPMENT, HOW TO CALCULATE FALL DISTANCE AND MORE ON OUR FAVOURITE SAFETY PRODUCTS FROM BRANDS LIKE 3M, MSA SAFETY AND HONEYWELL-MILLER BELOW.