An FLS Guide to Fall Protection Equipment from Abtech Safety
Abtech Safety Ltd are a UK manufacturer of fall protection and fall arrest equipment for use in several applications. They specialise in height safety, access, confined space systems and rescue equipment. Frontline Safety are an official Abtech supplier. The following guide will help to explain some of the applications that their kit may be used in.
What’s the Difference Between Fall Arrest and Fall Restraint?
The type of kit you require comes down to needing either fall arrest equipment or fall protection equipment? What is the difference between fall arrest and fall restraint?
Fall protection or restraint equipment prevents your workers from accessing an area where there is the danger of falling. E.g. workers can be issued with a harness, anchor point and a suitable lanyard so the length of line is fixed. The idea of this method is to stop them from reaching certain areas of risk, such as an edge.
Fall arrest equipment goes one step further than restraint and would be used when working in a high-risk fall area is unavoidable. This may be at the edge of a raised platform or building. Stopping a fall before contact is made with a surface can be done using a fall arrest systems. Some equipment may have a built-in shock absorber which helps to reduce any impact or shock faced by the wearer.
The systems and equipment needed in fall arrest or protection applications will depend on the work you’re carrying out and the environment around you. Appropriate measures should be taken by your employer to ensure the correct equipment is selected and adhere to the HSE’s Work at Height Regulations 2005.
Abtech Safety offer three different types of lanyard to connect a person to an anchorage point. There are restraint lanyards for fall protection, shock-absorbing lanyards for fall arrest and a combination of both.
Fall Arrest Systems
Abtech Safety offer various fall arrest devices including a winch with a retractable lifeline on a reel. The lifeline will provide a light tension so that the wearer can freely move around the working area at a necessary distance. A person who has experienced a fall can be retrieved by winding in the lifeline.
Fall arrest devices come with webbing, galvanised cable, fibre rope and have a number of connections to help with different applications. Swivel indicators allow the connection to turn repeatedly whilst the wearer is working, so that twisting of the lifeline is prevented. Swivel anchor eye connections are a bolt that has a loop on the end. A firm connection between a structure and anchor eye can be made with ropes and cables. An indicator hook has a coloured band which is visible at the top of the hook after a fall or shock has occurred.
What Connectors Are Available?
Again, choosing a connector type will depend on the type of activity you’re carrying out. We’ve summarised each of Abtech’s connector types below:
As always, this will depend on your application. Technical tasks like abseiling, rescue, ascending and descending can make use of the Access Elite or Access Pro. These will also be suitable for use with breathing apparatus. For general work where there is a risk of falling or requires fall arrest then you should look at Abtech’s rescue harness, single-point and two-point harnesses. There are several attachments available on each of these harnesses. The Access Elite and Two-Point Harness suit three different chest sizes and the rest are universal.
Are There Other Products Available to Complement the Fall Protection Range?
Abtech offer a whole range of fall arrest, protection, work positioning and edge protection products. This includes pole straps, rope rats, work-positioning belts and bosun’s seats. You can protect your lines with edge rollers and edge protectors.
If you require further information on any of the Abtech Safety range then don’t hesitate to contact our Sales Team. They are on hand to provide you with additional product information and up to date stock levels. Email us at [email protected] or call us on 0141 771 7749.