The lifespan and effectiveness of a safety harness greatly depend on the manufacturing quality and the materials used for its production. Some harnesses are specifically designed to be ultra-durable and can last between 5 and 10 years. To ensure a harness’s durability, it is essential that its design complies with certain regulations.
Standards and Legislation
It is crucial to use harnesses that comply with current standards and regulations. Different standards govern different types of harnesses:
EN 358 Standard
The EN 358 standard sets out the requirements for harnesses used for work positioning, focusing mainly on belts and lanyards.
EN 361 Standard
The EN 361 standard regulates fall arrest harnesses, particularly regarding fall prevention devices.
EN 363 Standard
The EN 363 standard governs fall arrest systems.
EN 813 Standard
The European standard EN 813 applies to safety harnesses equipped with thigh belts and belts with side and sternal attachments.
Inspection, verification, and attachment
To ensure that a harness is compliant and in good working order, several steps must be followed.
It is recommended for the user and the employer to verify the compliance of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). The main characteristics of compliant harnesses, such as size, weight, comfort, and attachment points, should also be regularly checked and monitored.
Safety harness inspection
In order to extend the lifespan of safety harnesses, it is important to handle and store them with care. Moreover, a regular and meticulous inspection of all equipment is necessary. This inspection should include checking the hardware, seams, labels, strap materials, etc.
Any faulty equipment must be immediately replaced. In case of doubt, it is recommended to refer to the manufacturer and not to use the equipment in question.