A worker at risk of falling certain distances (see Guardrails) must be protected by guardrails or, if guardrails are not practical, by a travel-restraint system, fall-restricting system, fall-arrest system, or safety net. This document covers fall protection equipment (the components of a fall protection system). The personal fall protection systems document discusses the different systems that can be used. If your workplace uses fall protection systems, please also see the documents on fall arrest planning and anchor systems.
Personal fall protection equipment consists of many components, including anchor points, energy absorber, locking and snap hooks, rope grabs, lanyards, full body harness, and lifeline. An example is shown in the image below.
Please Note: Standards are updated frequently. The Standards referenced in regulations may be out of date. To see the most current revisions go to the Canadian Standards Association (CSA).
The Construction Projects Regulations specifically address the following components in more detail:
Lifelines and Lanyards
Only one person may use a vertical lifeline at a time. The vertical lifeline must extend to the ground, or have a positive stop that prevents the rope grab or other similar device from running of the end of the lifeline.
Horizontal lifelines must be designed by a professional engineer using a standard or custom design. The design must show how the system is arranged including the anchor or fixed support system, indicate the components used, state how many workers can be safety attached to it, set out instructions for installation or erection, and show the design loads for the system. The system itself must be installed or erected, and maintained, according to the engineer's design. Before each use, the system must be inspected by a professional engineer or a competent worker designated by a supervisor. The constructor must keep the design at the project while the system is in use.
Use the information in the resources tab to learn about other components of fall protection and fall prevention.
O. Reg. 213/91
Part II GENERAL CONSTRUCTION
26.1 (1) A worker shall be adequately protected by a guardrail system that meets the requirements of subsections 26.3(2) to (8).
(2) Despite subsection (1), if it is not practicable to install a guardrail system as that subsection requires, a worker shall be adequately protected by the highest ranked method that is practicable from the following ranking of fall protection methods:
1. A travel restraint system that meets the requirements of section 26.4.
2. A fall restricting system that meets the requirements of section 26.5.
3. A fall arrest system, other than a fall restricting system designed for use in wood pole climbing, that meets the requirements of section 26.6.
4. A safety net that meets the requirements of section 26.8.
(3) The components of any system listed in subsection (2) shall be designed by a professional engineer in accordance with good engineering practice, and shall meet the requirements of any of the following National Standards of Canada standards that are applicable:
1. CAN/CSA-Z259.1-05 : Body Belts and Saddles for Work Positioning and Travel Restraint.
2. CAN/CSA-Z259.2.5-12 : Fall Arresters and Vertical Lifelines
3. CAN/CSA-Z259.2.2-98 (R2004) : Self-Retracting Devices for Personal Fall-Arrest Systems.
4. CAN/CSA-Z259.2.3-99 (R2004) : Descent Control Devices.
5. CAN/CSA-Z259.10-06 : Full Body Harnesses.
6. CAN/CSA-Z259.11-05 : Energy Absorbers and Lanyards.
7. CAN/CSA-Z259.12-01 (R2006) : Connecting Components for Personal Fall Arrest Systems (PFAS).
8. CAN/CSA-Z259.14-01 (R2007) : Fall Restrict Equipment for Wood Pole Climbing.
(4) Before any use of a fall arrest system or a safety net by a worker at a project, the worker's employer shall develop written procedures for rescuing the worker after his or her fall has been arrested.
[O. Reg. 145/00, s. 12; 85/04, s. 5; 443/09, s. 1; 345/15, s. 5]
26.9 (1) This section applies to a lanyard or lifeline that is part of a travel restraint system or a fall arrest system.
(2) The following requirements apply to a lanyard or a lifeline:
1. It shall not be used in such a way that it is likely to be cut, chafed or abraded.
2. It shall not be subjected to extreme temperature, flame, abrasive or corrosive materials or other hazards that may damage it.
3. The free end of the lanyard or lifeline shall be kept clear of equipment and machinery.
(3) Only one person at a time may use a lanyard.
(4) The connecting ends of a lanyard shall be wrapped around a protective thimble and adequately fastened with a swaged fitting or eye splice supplied by the manufacturer of the lanyard.
(5) A horizontal or vertical lifeline shall be kept free from splices or knots, except knots used to connect it to a fixed support.
(6) Only one person at a time may use a vertical lifeline.
(7) A vertical lifeline shall,
(a) extend to the ground; or
(b) have a positive stop that prevents the rope grab or other similar device from running off the end of the lifeline.
(8) The following requirements apply to a horizontal lifeline system:
1. It shall be designed by a professional engineer in accordance with good engineering practice.
2. The design may be a standard design or a custom design.
3. The design shall,
i. show the arrangement of the system including the anchorage or fixed support system,
ii. indicate the components used,
iii. state the number of workers that can safely be attached to it,
iv. set out instructions for installation or erection, and
v. show the design loads for the system.
4. The system shall be installed or erected, and maintained, in accordance with the professional engineer's design.
5. Before each use, the system shall be inspected by a professional engineer or a competent worker designated by a supervisor.
6. The constructor shall keep the design at the project while the system is in use.
[O. Reg. 145/00, s. 14; 242/16, s. 5]
26.10 - 26.11 Repealed. [O. Reg. 85/04, s. 10]