Who can select an anchor point for a fall protection system?
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The selection and identification of an anchorage point is an integral part of the design phase of the active fall protection system, which must comply with applicable codes and regulations. In most Canadian provinces, the applicable standard for the design of active fall protection systems is CSA Z259.16. When it comes to selecting anchor points and designing fall protection systems, Engineering law defines the act of identifying a structure for public safety and worker use as an act reserved for engineers.
Therefore, the identification of an anchor point to secure a fall protection system must be performed by a professional engineer. A worker who has been trained in working at heights is not competent to select these anchor points.
The same is true for selecting fall protection equipment and developing and testing the rescue plan before work begins. Managers who have trained their workers must provide a high level of support and supervision to ensure the effectiveness of the fall protection system and minimize the risks associated with a fall.
Remember, when you allow a worker to be exposed to a fall on the job, you must provide :
Fall arrest systems that comply with CSA Z259.16 (including anchor points)
Fall arrest equipment as prescribed by the engineer
A pre-use and annual inspection program
A rescue plan that must be developed and tested before work begins.