Rigging Safety


Rigging looks like an easy operation that doesn’t seem to require any particular skill or experience.  Don’t be fooled.  Many people have lost fingers or hands, or suffered more serious injuries because they thought they knew the art of RIGGING.

To avoid injuries on the job, follow these rules:

Get your signals straight.  Appoint one member of the crew to act as a signal person and instruct the crane operator not to accept signals from anyone else.  The signal person must not order a move until getting an “all ready” from each crew member.   Each worker must be in the clear before giving an “all ready” to the signal person.  If you must hold on to the chain, sling, or choker to maintain tension, be sure your hands and feet are out of the way of pinch points before giving an “all ready.”  ALWAYS CHECK FOR OVERHEAD POWER LINES.

Protect your hands.  If it isn’t possible to release the chain, sling, or choker, be sure you hand is clear of pinch points.  Keep your hand far enough away so that a frayed wire or splinter on the cable can’t catch your glove and jerk you hand into a pinch point.

Watch out for rock and roll.  It’s almost impossible to position the hook exactly over the load’s center.  Watch out for swing or roll.  Anticipate the direction of the swing or roll.  Never place yourself between material, equipment or other stationary objects and the load.  Stay away from stacked material that may be knocked over by the swinging load.

Stay out from under the load.  Never get under a suspended load.  Keep out from under the crane’s boom.

Set it down carefully.  When it’s necessary to guide a load, use a tag line or hook.  If you have to walk with a load, keep it as close to the ground as possible.  Inspect the spot where the load is to be landed.  Remove unnecessary blocks or other objects that might fly up when struck by the load.  When lowering or setting a load, keep your feet and all other parts of you body in the clear.  Set the load down easily and slowly.  If it rolls on the blocking, it will shift slowly and you’ll be able to get away.