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Fall Positioning Systems

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Fall Positioning Systems

A fall positioning system is defined as a body belt or body harness system rigged to allow a person to be supported on an elevated vertical surface and work with both hands free while leaning. 

Note: Body belts are not permitted at Virginia Tech. The system may permit a fall of up to 2 feet, but no more.

Individual wearing fall positioning system

Fall positioning systems shall only be used with Environmental Health & Safety review and approval.

Positioning systems shall conform to the following:

  • Anchorage for positioning systems must be capable of supporting at least twice the potential impact load of an employee's fall, or 3,000 lbs., whichever is greater.
  • Connecting assemblies must have a minimum tensile strength of 5,000 lbs.
  • Only locking-type snap hooks shall be permitted.
  • Restraint lines shall have a minimum breaking strength of 3,000 lbs.
  • The system must be inspected before each use for wear, damage, and deterioration. Defective components shall be removed from service immediately.
  • Any system component subjected to impact loading shall be immediately removed from service and shall not be used again for employee protection.
  • Personnel using positioning systems must be trained in the limitations, proper hook-up, anchoring and tie-off techniques, methods of use, inspection, and proper storage.

When the temporary anchor point systems used on campus are used for positioning/restraint, specific training on the proper use and limitations of the system must be completed. Information on Weightanka mobile anchor points is available from the Division of Campus Planning, Infrastructure, and Facilities and Environmental Health & Safety.

Contact Information

Robin McCall-Miller, Occupational Safety Program Manager