OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 41 Work Requiring Rope Access

Section 813 Tools and equipment

In many cases, the greatest danger of occupational rope access work is the dropping of tools on workers below the work area. To guard against this, small tools such as hammers and drills, weighing up to 8 kg, must be securely attached to the rope access worker’s harness by lanyards. Alternatively, small items should be carried in a bucket or bag securely attached to the worker’s harness.

Tools should only be carried like this if they are not of such weight that they could cause a significant reduction in the factor of safety of either the suspension system as a whole or any part of it. Where a tool needs to be pressed hard against the work face, or where the reaction from the tool could unbalance the worker, a light anchor should be pre-drilled or clamped on to the work face and the tool attached to it.

Equipment weighing more than 8 kg should be fitted with a separate suspension system secured to an independent anchor. Anchors and suspension ropes used for equipment should be clearly identified to avoid confusion with those used to support workers.