Industry news — What should you do if you think your equipment is not safe?

What should you do if you think your equipment is not safe?

Daily inspection before each use should be taken seriously so even a small defect can be investigated in advance of work commencing. Look for anything that is abnormal or out of place. Excessive pitting, weld splatter, wear and gouges are all common signs that rigging gear might not be safe to use. If an issue isn’t immediately apparent and it presents itself whilst in operation, stop immediately and locate the cause of the problem. It might be that a chain is seizing or a hoist isn’t operating as smoothly as the previous day. Regardless of how small the issue might seem, don’t ignore it and allow the problem to become worse.

Remove from Service

If a decision is taken to remove an item from service, a procedure should be followed so someone else doesn’t pick it up, neglect to notice the problem, and put it to use. It should be clearly marked with the problem visibly displayed.

Isolate

Remove the item from the rigging store or lifting site. It’s advisable to have a lockable bin clearly marked ‘Out of Service Lifting Equipment’ so there is no chance the piece of kit can be mistakenly applied until it has been disposed of or inspected by a competent person.

Inform

Make it known to a supervisor or person in charge of lifting equipment that an item has been removed from service. They will have their own protocol to follow with regards to further investigation, inspection and/or disposal. They might also have a need to source a replacement piece of equipment. If they are surprised by the extent of the damage, they might look at all similar products and investigate the issue.

Contact Ranger for Advice

Contact Ranger for consultation. It might be that we need to complete a repair or recertification, and/or return to the site to suggest procedures are corrected if it is clear misuse is the cause of damage.

What should you do if something goes wrong with your lifting equipment?

If it has resulted in an accident, the first thing to do is contact SafeWork in your state, the national workplace health and safety regulator. They offer advice on improving work health and safety, provide licences and registration for potentially dangerous work, investigate workplace incidents and enforce work health and safety laws in Australia.

If there is a serious injury or illness, a death or a dangerous incident, you must report it to SafeWork immediately and notify your insurer within 48 hours.

You must also:

  • Provide first aid and make sure the worker gets the right care;
  • Record it in the register of injuries;
  • Help the worker recover at work by identifying and offering suitable employment, staying connected and planning with your worker, their doctor, and your insurer.

Daily inspection before each use should be taken seriously so even a small defect can be investigated in advance of work commencing. Look for anything that is abnormal or out of place. Excessive pitting, weld splatter, wear and gouges are all common signs that rigging gear might not be safe to use. If an issue isn’t immediately apparent and it presents itself whilst in operation, stop immediately and locate the cause of the problem. It might be that a chain is seizing or a hoist isn’t operating as smoothly as the previous day. Regardless of how small the issue might seem, don’t ignore it and allow the problem to become worse.

Remove from Service

If a decision is taken to remove an item from service, a procedure should be followed so someone else doesn’t pick it up, neglect to notice the problem, and put it to use. It should be clearly marked with the problem visibly displayed.

Isolate

Remove the item from the rigging store or lifting site. It’s advisable to have a lockable bin clearly marked ‘Out of Service Lifting Equipment’ so there is no chance the piece of kit can be mistakenly applied until it has been disposed of or inspected by a competent person.

Contact Ranger for Advice

Contact Ranger for consultation. It might be that we need to complete a repair or recertification, and/or return to the site to suggest procedures are corrected if it is clear misuse is the cause of damage.

Once that procedure is underway, alert Ranger. We can complement SafeWork’s involvement with an accident investigation, material analysis and / or preventative measures. We employ methods such as metal analysis, non-destructive testing (NDT) and root cause analysis.

Investigations (Why and How)

We can’t turn back time so once an accident has happened the important thing is making sure we understand why it occurred so it doesn’t happen again. That involves answering two questions: why did something go wrong? How did it go wrong?

The process will involve itemising the equipment involved, talking to the operator, examining the load, looking at the drop site, etc. Inevitably, the more serious the incident, the longer this will take.

Root Cause Analysis and Testing

As the investigation unfolds, it will lead to root cause analysis and testing. A factor is considered a root cause if removal thereof from the problem-fault-sequence prevents the final undesirable event from recurring; whereas a causal factor is one that affects an event’s outcome, but is not a root cause.

Testing may be required to eliminate or prove a theory related to a piece of equipment. Depending on circumstances, equipment involved may or may not be subject to testing.

e-Testinspect

Ranger Lifting’s e-Testinspect offers full traceability of all height safety and lifting equipment. Tailored for the Australian market, e-Testinspect works in accordance with relevant standards and encompasses both NATA and LEEA methodology for best practice.

Learn more about our e-Testinspect system  >Access e-Testinspect

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