FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the advantages of a turnkey fall protection solution?

Our clients typically tell us they prefer having a single source capable for performing all aspects of a project from start to finish. They don’t want to deal with or don’t have the resources to manage and coordinate multiple contractors. FLS provides a dedicated project manager on every project who oversees all aspects of the project. FLS has in-house engineering, design and fabrication capabilities, along with our experienced team of certified technicians ensure consistent quality, total compliance and minimal impact to ongoing operations.

Who is authorized or certified to design and install a permanent fall arrest system?

Permanent fall arrest solutions should be designed, engineered and installed under the supervision of a qualified person. A qualified person is typically a degreed structural engineer with extensive experience in the design of fall arrest systems. If the fall arrest system is a manufactured product, additional certifications from the manufacturer are typically required.

How do you determine if my building is strong enough to support a fall arrest system?

Most buildings were not designed with a fall arrest system in mind. Many times a roof or ceiling supported fall arrest systes will apply loads to the structural members on their weak axis. A qualified person, who is also a structural engineer, will analyze the loads applied to the building and design bracing necessary to resolve the loads into the structure.

OSHA says 5,000 lbs. per person per anchor point for fall arrest. Does this mean a three user horizontal lifeline has to support 15,000 lbs.?

No, the 5,000 lb. rule applies mostly for improvised anchorage points in the field when determined by a competent person who typically is not an engineer. Engineered fall protection systems can be designed using a safety factor of two. Simplistically, this means an engineer calculates the actual loads and then applies a safety factor of two or doubles it for design purposes.

I have an old horizontal lifeline that was installed years ago. Can it be recertified?

Probably not. Many older or “homemade” lifelines lack certain components of today’s lifelines. If the answer is no to any of the following questions, it will be unlikely for the lifeline to be recertified.

  • Is there a lifeline tension indicator or method of determining tension
  • Does the lifeline have a built-in energy absorber?
  • Are the ends of the lifeline mechanically terminated with a swage?
  • Is the lifeline cable and components made of stainless steel?

How close to the edge of a flat or low sloped roof can one be before needing fall protection?

There is no safe distance from an unprotected leading edge such as a roof.

What is harness suspension trauma?

Harness Suspension Trauma is a condition which occurs when someone hangs in a harness for too long. According to most industry experts, potentially fatal effects can occur in as little as 15 minutes of suspension. This is a hotly debated topic in the fall protection and rescue industry as there is limited medical research or real world examples of this condition.

What is the maximum tool and body weight of a user in a harness?

Typically, 310 lbs. Some manufacturers have product available for users up to 420 lbs. Be careful in selecting equipment for over 310 lbs. While a harness may be capable of supporting the additional weight, also ensure the anchorage point and deceleration device (lanyard) are also rated to the higher capacity.

I need someone to come out and take a look at my facility. What do I do?

Step one is to contact your designated territory manager based on the map on our contact page. After contacting the territory manager, he or she will discuss options with you for next steps, including a site visit.

There are a lot of portable fall protection solutions. How do I choose the right one?

A careful evaluation of the job task, space constraints and many other criteria are part of the considerations in choosing a portable fall protection solution. Keep in mind that a lot of the portable fall protection solutions are customizable to fit specific applications. Contact your territory manager for more information.

What is FLS’ warranty?

Products carry the manufacturer’s standard warranty. FLS offers a lifetime warranty on all engineered systems manufactured by FLS.

What is the difference between inspection and recertification in fall protection?

Inspection is typically a visual process performed prior to use and on a periodic basis. Recertification is a process which typically involves engineering review of the original design, load testing and other activities in order to “certify” a system.

What does FLS manufacture in-house?

FLS manufactures our FlexRail system and all of the structural connections used to support a fall protection system. We also manufacture ladders, platforms, guardrails and other steel structures used in our fall protection solutions. A fast growing part of our business that a lot of people are not aware of are our aluminum maintenance platforms. FLS manufactures aluminum maintenance platforms used predominantly in the aviation industry. These platforms vary from small 2 step work stands to full C-130 wing and fuselage phase maintenance platforms.

How long does a typical fall protection project take?

A fall protection project can typically take anywhere from 8 to 12 weeks to complete. We usually allow 1-2 weeks to perform a design site visit, 3-4 weeks to complete engineering and design drawings and 4-6 weeks for fabrication and installation.

  • How Can We Help?

    Our fall protection experts are available to answer your questions. Complete this form or call 1-800-353-9425.

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  • How Can We Help?

    Our fall protection experts are available to answer your questions. Complete this form or call 1-800-353-9425.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.