What are the basics of fall protection, often called the ABCs or ABCDs?

A: Anchorage  

Anchorage is a secure point of attachment for fall protection equipment and is the literal foundation of fall protection. Anchorage systems vary by industry, job, type of installation and structure. They must be able to support the necessary loads and provide a suitable safety factor. 

B: Body Wear  

A full body harness is the most common type of body wear. Harnesses distribute fall forces over the upper thighs, pelvis, chest and shoulders, and provide a connection point on a worker for the personal fall arrest system. 

C: Connector  

A connector, such as a shock-absorbing lanyard or a self-retracting lifeline (SRL), securely fastens a worker’s body wear (such as a harness) to the anchorage. 

D: Descent/Rescue  

These devices are used to raise or lower a fallen or injured worker to safety. Descent and rescue equipment can also be used to retrieve a worker from a confined space. This important component is often overlooked and requires appropriate advance planning. 

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