Rigging Slings and Other Construction-Based Equipment


There are a wide variety of slings, such as web slings, used for rigging purposes in the construction and related industries. Sling types can be endless or single, as well as 2-leg, 3-leg, and 4-leg. Web slings and other types of slings are composed of different types of material, which are effective for multiple purposes.

Socket and Clip Fittings

A sling’s load limit will determine the type of socket and clip fittings that are used. These fittings need to bear 75% to 100% of the rope’s breaking load. When determining the size of wire rope that is needed, it’s important to note that this is measured in strands times the number of wires. A 6 x 25 rope, for example, will have 6 strands and 25 individual wires.

Slings and Temperature Guidelines

When metal mesh slings are uncoated, they can tolerate temperatures up to 550 degrees Fahrenheit. If any grade of metallic-core wire rope sling is being used at specific temperatures, it’s important to follow the sling manufacturer’s guidelines, however. More specifically, this pertains to temperatures above 400 degrees Fahrenheit and temperatures below minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

New Requirements for Identification Labels

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) now requires that wire rope slings have permanently affixed identification tags and/or labels. In prior years, companies did not require these labels to have permanently affixed tags or labels as outlined by OSHA 1910.184.

Sling Inspection Regulations

Slings should be inspected regularly in order to adhere to strict safety regulations. When subjected to normal service usage, slings should be inspected every year. However, when slings are subjected to severe service usage, they should be inspected monthly or quarterly.

OSHA Protection Guidelines

In order to prevent falls and protect workers, OSHA has a well-tested and specific process in place:

  • To plan
  • To provide
  • To train

Employers need to ensure the safety of their workers. When working with rigging, employees need to receive training and complete fall protection and rigging certifications. Workers obviously need to have the right types of fall protection and job equipment. Workers are not only safer when employers provide these essentials, they are better prepared to perform their jobs. This includes having the right types of ladders, scaffolds, and safety gear for each specific type of job.

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