Whats New in the ANSI Z359 Fall Protection Code - Part 1

The ANSI Z359 Fall Protection Code has been going through some significant changes recently. Changes have been occurring rapidly in fall protection technology over the past few decades. As OSHA has been slow to recognize these changes in technology (for example OSHA is still stuck in the 70’s and does not even recognize the fact that Self-Retracting Lanyards exist), ANSI has stepped up to the plate to lead the pathway to increased safety.

The ANSI Z359 Fall Protection Code Committee (of which I am a member) has embarked on a multiyear effort to update the existing Z359 code, which was originally released in 1992.

The original Z359 Code, Z359.1, was a single document that covered many different pieces of equipment such as Harnesses, Energy Absorbing Lanyards, and Self-Retracting Lanyards. The new Z359 Code will have a series of individual standards for each category of equipment. After all the new individual equipment codes have been released, the original Z359.1 Code will become an obsolete or historical document.

The first of these new standards was released in 2007 and then again in 2009. The Z359 committee is scheduled to release about one new standard per year as we move forward.

I will summarize these new ANSI Fall Protection standards in the next few blog postings. Stay tuned!

Thanks for reading!

As always- Stay safe, and I am here if you need me…..

Arnold Timothy Galpin, P.E.

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