Difference between Passive and Active Fall Protection
An efficient fall protection system is a huge requirement for all the organization to avoid any fall hazard in the workplace. Now to prevent such incidence, there are many steps that can be taken, such as an active and passive fall protection system along with a fall protection training will be helpful to avoid work related hazards.
There are various types of fall protection system under OSHA fall protection, here are the details:
Passive Fall Protection Systems: A passive fall protection system is non-dynamic, stagnant and doesn’t move from its place. They are more adaptive and change according to their usage. The best part of passive fall protection system is that it does not require any active participation from the worker as well as it doesn’t require any personal usage of protective equipment.
Netting, guardrails and handrails are some of the examples of a passive protection system. Such type of protective system is ideal for architectural designs. Such kind of equipment is supposed to be used where falling hazards cannot be rectified through engineering controls.
Active Fall Protection Systems: For the usage of passive system of fall protection, an efficient participation of the worker as well as the help of special equipment are necessary. Active fall protection system are dynamic, and there are two types of active fall protection system being used in general, fall restraint and fall arrest systems. Both the system is used to secure the worker to an anchorage point with a lanyard.
Fall restraint systems: Fall Restraint systems help a worker by preventing them from falling. In this system, the operator is connected to a body holding device with a reliable anchor, and the anchor prevents the worker from reaching the point from where the risk of falling starts. So in general, a fall restraint method or a work restraint system, overall help a person by stopping them from falling into a first place.
When it comes to the hierarchy of controls, fall restraints are often preferred against fall arrest systems.
Fall arrest system: While fall restraint system is used to restrain a worker from falling at the first place, on the contrary, a fall arrest system is used to protect an employee after they fall. The fall arrest systems are used to stop the fall before the worker hit the surface.
In this system, a body holding device is connected to the body of the worker along with an anchor to arrest and restrict the fall by preventing the employee from colliding with the ground and at the same time. It limits the forces of the body.
A fall arrest system is beneficial when the worker is supposed to work near a fragile surface, unusual building, narrow ledge or an unusual roof shape. Working on such surfaces carries a great chance for the worker to fall from the building and a fall arrest system will help in eliminating the fall hazard.
No matter what system you choose, a proper fall protection training along with a reliable fall protection system is a must to avoid fall hazards.