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Glossary

The fall protection industry is full of complex terminology that can be perplexing. The Rigid Lifelines® glossary provides definitions to a variety of fall protection industry and Rigid Lifelines® fall protection systems vocabulary.

ANSI -
Acronym that stands for the American National Standards Institute. Founded in 1918, ANSI oversees the implementation of thousands of directives for the U.S. marketplace. ANSI issues the nationally recognized Fall Protection Code ANSI Z359, written by the ASSE Z359 Fall Protection Code Committee.

Arresting Force -
The force that slows a falling worker to a complete stop. The arresting force is usually provided by an energy absorber such as a "rip stitch" lanyard or self-retracting lanyard (SRL).

Arm Reach -
The distance between the face of the column and the center of the track.

Ceiling Mounted Monorail -
A ceiling installed horizontal fall arrest system that utilizes a rolling trolley that moves back and forth inside of an enclosed track or rail.

Drift -
When a trolley exhibits undesired movement along the track or cable after a fall event. The movement is caused by the momentum from the fall.

Enclosed Track -
Refers to a fall protection system rail that has been manufactured by rolling metal through sequential dyes to form an enclosed shape. The shape captures the trolley within a defined path, which protects the trolley from environmental factors.

Energy Absorbing Lanyard -
A type of safety lanyard that absorbs energy by “ripping” stitched webbing. The stitching is designed to “rip” at 900LBs of force.

Fall Arrest -
A type of fall protection device or system that decelerates a worker to a stop after a free fall.

Fall Arrester -
A slang term used by workers to describe a fall arrest system or some component thereof.

Fall Arrest Harness -
A body support designed to contain the torso and distribute the forces of the fall arrest over the upper thighs, pelvis, chest, and shoulders.

Fall Arrest System -
An active fall protection system that stops a person’s fall that has already occurred and prevents impact at a lower level.

Fall Protection -
The backup system planned for a worker who could lose his or her balance at a height; its purpose is to eliminate or control potential injury. Fall protection can be passive (guardrail) or active (fall arrest).

Fall Protection Harness -
An umbrella term used to describe personal protection equipment designed for use as part of fall arrest, fall restraint, or work positioning system. The location of the harness connector (like a dorsal D-ring) is a common differentiator between the various styles of fall protection harnesses.

Fall Protection System -
A general term that covers all methods of protecting workers from falls from height.

Fall Restraint -
A type of fall protection with a fixed length lanyard that keeps a worker’s center of gravity from reaching a fall hazard.

Fall Restraint System -
An active fall protection system that prevents a person from reaching a fall hazard. A fall restraint system would typically be provided by a fixed-length lanyard and a body harness or body belt. Typically, the lanyard acts as a “leash” and prevents the worker from reaching the fall hazard.

Fold-Away Fall Protection System -
A horizontal fall arrest system made up of two or more swinging cantilevered arms that support an enclosed track or rail with a rolling trolley attachment point. These systems can be mounted to walls, building columns, or freestanding support structures. They can also be folded out of the way when not in use.

Freestanding Monorail -
A horizontal fall arrest system with single or multiple ground level supports. These systems are engineered with structural braces that accommodate an enclosed track with a rolling trolley attachment point.

Horizontal Fall Arrest -
A style of fall arrest that involves using a horizontal system designed to stop a fall from height. Other styles of fall arrest include vertical and immobile points.

Horizontal Lifeline -
A generic term used to describe various types of horizontal fall protection systems.

Industrial Fall Protection -
Used to describe approaches to protecting workers from falls in the industrial workplace.

Maximum Arresting Force (MAF) -
The highest force that occurs during the deceleration.

OSHA -
Acronym that stands for Occupational Safety & Health Administration. OSHA was formed in 1971 following Congress’s implementation of the OSH Act in 1970. OSHA’s mission is to prevent work-related deaths, injuries, and illnesses by issuing and enforcing regulations geared toward promoting safety.

Rolling A-Frame Fall Protection System -
A gantry style horizontal fall arrest system that provides mobile fall protection over an open path. These systems are designed with four legs and a beam that supports an enclosed track or rail with a rolling trolley attachment point.

Portable Monorail -
A horizontal fall arrest system engineered with a cantilevered structure that supports an enclosed track or rail with a rolling trolley attachment point. The system is easily repositioned with a fork truck or other small vehicle.

Safety Lanyard -
Component of a fall protection system that lessens fall forces generated during a fall. Safety lanyards come in different styles and lengths. The two most common types of safety lanyards include “rip stitch” energy absorbing and self-retracting lanyards.

Swing Arm Fall Protection System -
A horizontal fall arrest system that utilizes an enclosed track or rail with a rolling trolley attachment point that is mounted underneath a single swinging cantilever arm. Swing arm systems can be mounted to walls and columns, or they can be mounted to the floor in a freestanding configuration.

Swing Fall Hazard -
A type of fall hazard encountered when the potential exists for an individual to walk away from their overhead attachment point and fall. That distance causes them to swing back toward the attachment point and hit an obstacle.

Traveling Bridge Fall Protection System -
A horizontal fall arrest system made up of two runways and a bridge. The bridge is attached to the runways with a pair of end trucks. The end trucks have wheels on them that allow the bridge to move the entire length of the runways. The bridge contains a rolling trolley attachment point. A dual-axis of movement is provided by the bridge and runways which allows the fall arrest attachment point to be centered over the user’s head at all times, thereby eliminating swing falls.

Wall Traveling Fall Protection Systems -
A horizontal fall arrest system designed with a tie rod supported arm that contains a rolling trolley attachment point. The entire assembly travels along runways attached to a support wall.

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