Rigging gear can pose a risk to workers: loose binding wires may create a range of hazards. If wire ends are caught on clothing, the rigger could be pulled off balance. Similarly, the rigger’s glove can become caught in open loops, and exposed skin areas, such as the neck and the face, can be wounded, torn or lacerated.
In addition to preparing loads for material movement, riggers can be involved in the unloading process as well. One step in this process may involve removing banding straps used to hold the load together.
Cutting bands may release tension in the bands, causing them to snap apart. The resulting movement of the band ends can cause injury to both the rigger and to others working nearby.
Binding wire should always be kept tight and free of loose ends. Binding wire should be inspected daily.
Before cutting any banding material, riggers should consider and evaluate the potential risks.
Nearby workers should be warned to stand clear of the area. Riggers should wear eye protection and gloves.
If rigging gear fails, the result can be fatal for anyone under or near the falling load. A suddenly released load may propel material in all directions, far beyond the immediate impact area.
A rigging gear safety program requires periodic inspections. Tags, serial numbers and color markings can help riggers identify which equipment is safe to use for a particular load.
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