Community Atmosphere-Biosphere INteractions EXperiments

tower safety
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General Info

Contact PROPHET:

Lakeside Lab: 231-539-7291
Tower: 231-539-7287

Tower Climbing Guidelines and Regulations

  1. No person shall enter the tower lab facility or ascend this tower without permission of Mary Anne Carroll, Steve Bertman, Paul Shepson (PROPHET Director and Co-Directors) or Knute Nadelhoffer or Karie Slavik (UMBS Director and Associate Director). This person shall be given only if:
    1. it is essential for scientific purposes to ascend and
    2. the applicant gives evidence of adequate knowledge of safety equipment and tower and
    3. the applicant demonstrates knowledge of all relevant safety issues
  2. Nothing can be attached to or placed on the tower without permission from Mary Anne Carroll and the PROPHET Steering Committee. Permission will be granted subject to safety considerations and compatibility with tower use.
  3. No one shall be on the tower if there is thunderstorm activity in the area.
  4. All workers are to be tied in while on the tower.
  5. Climbing external framework is not permitted.
  6. Nothing should be deliberately dropped from the tower.
  7. Any signs of deterioration should be reported to Mary Anne Carroll immediately, including signs of corrosion, tilt, sway, rotten staging, etc.
  8. Guests may ascend the tower only if observed by a trained individual, who will instruct the guest and make certain that safety rules are followed.

Specific Instructions Associated with Use of Safety Equipment On or Around Tower

All persons working on the tower are to be knowledgeable of safe use of the facility as follows:

  • Consult your doctor if there is any reason to doubt your fitness to safely absorb the shock from a fall arrest. Age and fitness seriously affect a worker's ability to withstand falls. Pregnant women or minors are not approved to use safety equipment and therefore cannot be permitted on the tower.
  • Do not alter or intentionally misuse this equipment: your safety may depend on it. Use caution when using equipment around moving machinery and electrical hazards. Use caution when using this equipment around sharp edges and chemical hazards.
  • Hardhats must be worn by anyone on or under the tower
  • Avoid contact with electrical wires
  • The Helmet chinstrap must be securely fastened and worn at all times to help the helmet protect against off-center blows.
  • Do not remove the chinstrap from the helmet.
  • Inspect your helmet and report any cracks, frayed straps, notice any signs of wear, damage, abuse or environmental degradation.
  • If working on, ascending, or descending the tower, you are required to take responsibility for proper use of OSHA-approved safety equipment, including the following:
    1. Full body harness
      • Inspect your harness before each of take appropriate steps if you find any frayed straps, signs of wear, damage, abuse or environmental degradation, check all buckles to assure proper and secure connections before each use.
      • Lanyards (and other fall protection devices) should be attached to the back D-ring of the harness.
      • Side, front, and chest D-rings should be used for positioning only.
      • Never attach non-locking snaps to a D-ring
      • Shoulder D-rings should be used for retrieval only.
      • Do not use harness for towing or hoisting
      • Check for obstructions below your work area to make sure potential fall path is clear.
      • Keep synthetic material protected from hot sparks, open flames or other heat sources
      • Maximum workload for harness is 310 lbs.
      • Use only lanyards containing locking snap hooks.
      • Always visually check that each snap hook freely engages D-ring or anchor point and that its keeper is completely closed.
      • Tie off in a manner that limits free fall to the shortest possible distance (six feet maximum).

      • How to wear full body harness:
        1. Hold harness by back D-ring. Shake harness to allow all straps to fall insto place.
        2. If waist and/or leg straps are buckled, release straps and unbuckle at this time.
        3. Slip straps over shoulders so D-ring is located in middle of back between shoulder blades.
        4. Connect waist strap. Waist strap should be tight, but not binding.
        5. Pull buckle portion of leg strap between legs and connect to opposite end of leg strap. Repeat with second leg strap.
        6. After all straps have been buckled, tighten all friction buckles so that harness fits snugly but allows for full range of movement
        7. If harness contains a chest strap, pull strap around shoulder strap and fasten in midchest area. Tighten to keep straps taut.
        8. To remove harness, reverse procedures.
        9. Manufacturer recommends reconnecting the waist strap after removing harness. This gives worker a starting point when next attempting to put harness on.
        10. Manufacturer recommends hanging the harness by back.
    2. Lanyard
      • Before each use of this or any fall protection equipment, carefully inspect it to assure that it is in serviceable condition. Check for worn or damaged parts; ensure all hardware (i.e. snap hooks, swedges, thimbles, etc.) are present and secure and are not distorted, or have any sharp edges, burrs, cracks, or corrosion. Make sure self-locking snap hooks or carabineers work properly. Inspect rope/webbing/wire rope for wear, cuts, burns, frayed edges, breaks or other damage.
      • Do not use hooks or connectors that will not completely close over the attachment object.
      • Do not know lanyard in any manner, and do not hook lanyard back into itself (choker style). Snap hooks and carabineers shall not be connected to each other.
      • Always connect the energy absorber end of the lanyard to the body support (harness).
      • Connect the lanyard end to the anchorage or anchorage connector - or wire rope grab.
      • Connect lanyard to harness first and then to wire rope grab or anchorage point.
    3. Static wire rope grab
      1. Disassemble wire rope grab by depressing center button and removing both detent pins.
      2. Inspect all of wire rope grab, connection hook, and belt or harness for wear or damage. The inner wedge and handle shall be securely fastened and operate freely. All fasteners and springs shall be inspected for wear or damage. Detent pins shall open and close freely.
        • Check action of locking wedge: does it engage and lock?
        • Check lanyard connection lever for freedom of motion; there should be no binding or sticking.
        • Check lever spring: is it in place and undamaged?
        • Check all labels and warnings: are they in place and readable?
        • Check detent pins: do the buttons spring back up when pushed down? Do pins easily slide through body?
      3. Engage wire rope grab body onto cable in the "up" position and install upper wedge/handle assembly into wire rope grab body, between cable and upper detent pin.
      4. Push bottom side of wedge/handle assembly into wire rope grab body and align hole in handle with lower hole in body. Install lower detent pin as shown and make sure the pin is securely locked. Check locking action by lifting up on handle and releasing: sleeve shall lock onto cable. If operation is incorrect, move device and repeat steps 2-4. Do not use if device will not operate correctly.
      5. Attach proper strength lanyard (four foot maximum) directly to wire rope grab O-ring. Pull on lanyard to check grabbing action prior to each use: it must lock firmly onto vertical line. Attach free end of lanyard to fall arrest D-ring on appropriate body support - fully body harness.
      6. The rope grab is designed to stay in place on the cable. To reposition, grab handle and pivot upward. Move rope grab up or down lifeline while holding handle up.
      7. The wire rope grab should be positioned on the lifeline at or above connection level on the body support. Position the rope grab as high as possible to limit free fall distance. Rope grab can be repositioned further up lifeline by pulling connected lanyard up line. A small amount of weight (10 lbs) may be required on the bottom end of lifeline to simplify repositioning. NOTE: Federal law limits free fall distance to a minimum of six (6) feet.