Beam Clamp Safety: 5 Tips
Never used beam clamps before? Before you start, you may want to read through a few pointers first. Here are some safety tips to remember:
1. Check the gear. Don’t take anybody’s word for it. If it’s your gear, it’s your responsibility to inspect every inch of it. Be as thorough as you can and try not to miss anything. Look for signs of a faulty beam clamp, beam or hoist. Remember that you need to do this every time you use it. It doesn’t matter if you just used the equipment a few hours ago, checking the gear must always come first.
2. Know how to use it properly. A beam clamp fall protection tool is designed to keep you from falling, according to the fall protection information provided by OSHA. However, no matter how well designed or well built the beam clamp is, it won’t stand much of a chance of protecting you from a fall if you don’t know how to use it properly. If you’re using that tool for work, it’s likely that you’ve undergone safety training, so make sure you remember what you learned and put that into practice in the field. Practicing helps too, so it may not be a bad idea to take a couple dry runs until you feel comfortable with the equipment.
3. Inspect the structure. Before you suspend the beam clamp from any particular structure, make sure it’s been excellently put together and that it can handle your weight. Also, find out if it’s sturdy enough to handle an extra beam. If you’re not sure though, don’t attempt to climb the structure. Always find out first if it’s safe or not.
4. Pick the right one. Different loading needs call for different kinds of beam clamps. Don’t pick randomly, thinking that just about any beam clamp fall protection tool will work. Overloading can lead your beam clamp breaking, causing unfortunate on-site accidents.
5. Hoist and beam clamp compatibility. Make sure your beam clamp goes well with your hoist. If the safety hook doesn’t fit right into the eye of the beam clamp, then you’ll need to find another one that does. Don’t try to force the safety hooks through the eye since that will only damage your beam clamp.
Be sure to keep these 5 safety tips in mind whenever you use a beam clamp. Remember that it’s not enough to just have the right tools, you need to know enough to protect yourself too.