One of the most versatile pieces of fall protection equipment is the double tie off lanyard, also known as the Y-lanyard. This new breed of lanyard has become a popular choice among safety professionals in recent years. The Y-lanyard attaches two lanyard legs to a shock absorber and snap hook, which can allow for workers to move horizontally from one area to another while being continuously attached.
Advantages of using Y-lanyards
- Ability to bypass obstructions while remaining attached
- Avoidance of attaching two separate lanyard snap hooks to a single harness D-ring
- A one-piece device with easy handling
- Has one shock absorber for both legs
- The second leg can be stowed to avoid dragging or hanging when attached
Why Double Tie Off Lanyards are so Important
Recently a high steel rigger fell to his death at the AT&T Center Arena in San Antonio, TX while striking a show at 2:00 AM. Witnesses said he had detached himself from the fall safety line while repositioning himself and lost his footing while moving around a beam. A late load-out can be dangerous as fatigue can play a factor in clarity of thought and situational awareness.
The rigger was identified as Dean Williams, 44, from Houston, Texas. He leaves behind a wife and 3 month old daughter.
Accidents like this can be avoided if you wear a double tie off lanyard.
Y-Lanyard Safety Features:
- Reduced Fall Risk - Lanyards are designed to reduce the impact from a fall. They come in a variety of features. They may be single or double leg, shock absorbing, self retracting, and fall restraint. By adding a second leg to the device, there is a reduced risk of falling.
- Constant Attachment - A worker using this device can be constantly attached to an anchorage point.
- Bypass of Obstructions - Since both legs of the double tie-off Y-lanyard are utilized, a worker can maneuver around obstacles easily without having to detached and risk falling.
Reminders on the Use of the Y Lanyard
- The snap hook at the Y lanyard's stem should always be attached to the harness attachment or D-ring.
- One should not try to extend the lanyard's reach by attaching a leg to the harness and the other end to the anchor. This will just result to greater fall distances that may cause serious injury or even worse, death.
- The leg of the lanyard that is not in use should only be connected to the harness' attachment points, which have only been approved by its manufacture for its intended use. This unused leg should not be parked in the harness D-rings. This can add to the body's load in case of an accidental fall.
- While in use, the y lanyard or any lanyard for that matter should not be passed between legs, around the neck or under the arms.
Serious injuries and death from falls can be minimized if employers will practice strict safety measures in a workplace. Falls can efficiently be prevented by means of double tie off lanyards that come with additional protection.
A man named Joe, who worked for the same roofing company for 25 years, fell through the skylight pictured above to his death. He was not wearing any fall protection and the skylight was not protected in any way. California's Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) put together this short video to honor Joe's life to remind us all that safety is not about statistics, but about real people who do not go home at the end of the day. On average 16 people die at work every day in the United States. That number is too high! This video will inspire you to work safer in any environment, but especially on roofs, working around unprotected skylights.
This Could Have Been Prevented with Skylight Fall Protection
As the video points out there are several types of fall protection available for protecting skylights.
The most popular skyilight fall protection option is the skylight screen. The skylight screen is designed to connect to the outside of the skylight and form a protective barrier when people trip or fall into the skylight. The screen will prevent the worker from falling through the skylight, saving their life and protecting them from a potentially fatal fall.
Another option for protecting a skylight is to use a guardrail system that forms a protective boundary around the skylight screen. Skylight guardrail, like Kee Dome, is designed to be non-penetrating so it will not cause any problems with the roof.
Further options, such as temporary weighted anchor points are available for the contractor who has to access the roof in many locations on a limited basis.
Connect with our solutions team to learn more about skylight fall protection solutions.
In order for a roof parapet to provide adequate fall protection, a roof parapet should be at least 42" in height. Unfortunately, many buildings get close to this height without quite meeting the height required by OSHA to provide fall protection. There are several solutions to help you raise the height of your parapet that are cost-effective and aesthetically pleasing.
Here are several solutions if you find yourself in a situation where your parapet does not meet the fall protection height requirement.
1. Raise the Parapet Height with a Railing
This is the simplest solution. If you can penetrate your roof parapet, there are several roof parapet railing solutions. We offer railings that attach to the top of the parapet or the outside of the building. Find our more about these types of railings on our roof parapet railing page.
2. Install a Non-Penetrating Full-Height Railing
If penetrating the outside of the wall is not an option, a freestanding, non-penetrating railing can be used to keep people back to from the roof edge. Find out more about KeeGuard, our non-penetrating roof railing.
3. Use Temporary Parapet Railing Clamps to Build a Railing
If you only require temporary access to a roof with a lower parapet, then parapet clamps are a cost-effective option. The clamps are designed to clamp onto the roof parapet. The railing is then formed by inserting 2x4s between the clamps to form a safe, temporary barrier. Click here to find out more about temporary parapet railing brackets.
Whatever the situation you find yourself in, reach out to our trained sales staff. They can recommend products and help you understand the benefits of the different parapet railing solutions that are available.
Safety is a big issue on construction sites. The ways in which serious accidents can occur are countless, thanks to the nature of construction. Federal OSHA’s statistics show that of the roughly 4,600 fatal work-related accidents in the U.S. in 2011, the most recent year for which data is available, 721 of them occurred on construction sites. This doesn’t even count the thousands of non-fatal accidents that can change an employee’s life forever.
What can safety professionals do to promote construction safety and prevent serious accidents from occurring on their job sites? Certainly having the support of management to have a safety-minded culture and having the proper safety equipment for employees to use are indispensable. Assuming those are already in place, here are some questions that the construction safety professional can ask to constantly improve safety on their job sites.
- What have I done today to make my job site safer?
- Are the employees working here today using the safety equipment that they have been provided?
- Have I talked to any workers in the past two days to learn another thing about safety on this job?
- Has anything changed on the job site since yesterday that introduces a new hazard that wasn’t here yesterday?
- Have I walked the job site today looking for unsafe behavior or equipment?
- Am I willing to take action against employees who continually behave in an unsafe manner in order to keep them and the people working with them safe?
- Have I talked to my boss lately about safety issues on this job site?
- When was the last time I checked the OSHA regulations to make sure there are no new requirements that affect my employer’s job sites?
- Do employees feel that they can come to me about safety concerns so that they don’t “drop a dime” on my employer with OSHA?
- Have I done what I promised others that I would do to take care of potential safety hazards on this job site?
Everyone says that safety is their number one priority on their job sites, but on at least 721 job sites in 2011 something went wrong. Even if employees have their own responsibility for safety on the job, it’s the safety professional’s job to make sure that those words get translated into action.
Employee safety should be a top priority in any company. Apart from the obvious heartache associated with worker deaths and injuries, workers who are injured on the job could sue the company for financial damages. They may also be less productive when they do return to work. Therefore, it is important that employers effectively communicate safety standards to every employee.
- Send An Email or Newsletter – if your employees have a company email address, make sure that everyone gets an email outlining safety standards at least once a month. Another way is mailing a newsletter to the address of every employee; you can include one with their paystub as well.
- Post Signage Throughout The Workplace – Place a sign where employees punch in, in break rooms, around equipment and wherever else employees frequently congregate. Be creative and use video and other mediums to help reinforce standards.
- Take Pictures Of Safe Actions – A picture is worth a thousand words! Make it perfectly clear what the expectations are by taking pictures of employees demonstrating these actions. Include these in your newsletters and emails.
- Hold Meetings (Toolbox Talks)- To ensure that everyone is getting the message, hold small-group meetings that are mandatory for all employees. Make Toolbox Talks a part of the daily routine to review and discuss safety standards.
- Require Appropriate Training- If you send people out untrained, you are communicating that safety doesn't matter. People learn more from the workplace culture than from the signs that are posted. Create a culture of safety in the workplace by properly training your employees.
- Safety Comment Cards- Encourage employees to hold each other accountable and spot unexpected hazards by providing safety comment cards. You could also include a form on your company’s Intranet to make it easier for people to access.
- Make It Part Of The Employee Review Process- If an employee is not being safe, it should be brought up at their next performance review. Likewise, you should reward people who are working safety.
- Don't Skimp on the Safety Gear Budget- Communicate priority in your safety budget. If you are buying the cheapest safety harnesses and glasses, no wonder people don’t want to wear them! Put an emphasis on safety by buying quality gear that people will want to wear.
- Routine Safety Checks- Supervisors should walk around the premises on a regular basis to do fall safety checks. No one should be exempt from the safety standards implemented by the company. Employees who break these rules should be warned and then sent home if the behavior does not change.
- Share Case Studies or Incident Reports- Put the reality behind the need for safety, by sharing events about real people who have been affected by insufficient safety measures.
These 10 tips can help your company establish coherent safety message and increase fall safety awareness in your organization. The good news is that these are easy tips to follow and implement in your company. While it may take some time for everyone to learn and follow the rules, putting some of these ideas into practice will help to create a safer work environment for everyone.