What's the difference between different types of fall protection?

 
How does it protect?
Fall PreventionPrevents people from reaching the fall hazard by creating a barrier between the person and the fall hazard.
Fall RestraintPrevents people from reaching a fall hazard through a tie off system.
Fall ArrestStops a fall that is in progress through a tie off system.
Equipment Needed
Fall PreventionNo individual equipment
Fall RestraintCustom fitted equipment
Fall ArrestCustom fitted equipment
Training Needed
Fall PreventionNone
Fall RestraintYes, extensive and ongoing
Fall ArrestYes, extensive and ongoing
Inspection
Fall PreventionAfter Install and Annually
Fall RestraintEvery Use by the Individual
Fall ArrestEvery use by the individual
Maintenance
Fall PreventionAnnually
Fall RestraintMust be inspected and cared before and after every use.
Fall ArrestMust be inspected and cared before and after every use.
Potential for Injury
Fall PreventionNone
Fall RestraintMild
Fall ArrestHigh
Costs
Fall PreventionHigher up front costs.
Fall RestraintLower initial costs but hidden costs might be: training, equipment maintenance, and setup time.
Fall ArrestLower initial costs but hidden costs might be: training, equipment replacement, and setup time.
Burden to Laborer
Fall PreventionLittle to none.
Fall RestraintMust inspect and properly wear their equipment.
Fall ArrestMust inspect and properly wear their equipment.
OSHA Preference
Fall PreventionPreferred because there is the least risk.
Fall RestraintBetter than fall arrest.
Fall Arrest 
Example Products
Fall PreventionGuardrails and Skylight Screens
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Fall RestraintA harness and lanyard tied off at a set length from a weighted tie off point.
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Fall ArrestA harness and retractable tied off to an anchor point.
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  Fall Prevention Fall Restraint Fall Arrest
How does it protect? Prevents people from reaching the fall hazard by creating a barrier between the person and the fall hazard. Prevents people from reaching a fall hazard through a tie off system. Stops a fall that is in progress through a tie off system.
Equipment Needed No individual equipment Custom fitted equipment Custom fitted equipment
Training Needed None Yes, extensive and ongoing Yes, extensive and ongoing
Inspection After Install and Annually Every Use by the Individual Every use by the individual
Maintenance Annually Must be inspected and cared before and after every use. Must be inspected and cared before and after every use.
Potential for Injury None Mild High
Costs Higher up front costs. Lower initial costs but hidden costs might be: training, equipment maintenance, and setup time. Lower initial costs but hidden costs might be: training, equipment replacement, and setup time.
Burden to Laborer Little to none. Must inspect and properly wear their equipment. Must inspect and properly wear their equipment.
OSHA Preference Preferred because there is the least risk. Better than fall arrest.  
Example Products Guardrails and Skylight Screens
See more products
A harness and lanyard tied off at a set length from a weighted tie off point.
See more products
A harness and retractable tied off to an anchor point.
See more products
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