Fall Protection Characteristics of Safety Belts and Human Impact Tolerance

Abstract

Many fatal accidents due to falls from heights have occurred at construction sites not only in Japan but also in other countries. This study aims to determine the fall prevention performance of two types of safety belts: a body belt, which has been used for more than 40 yr in the Japanese construction industry as a general type of safety equipment for fall accident prevention, and a full harness, which has been used in many other countries. To determine human tolerance for impact trauma, this study discusses features of safety belts with reference to relevant studies in the medical science, automobile crash safety, and aircrew safety. For this purpose, simple drop tests were carried out in a virtual workplace to measure impact load, head acceleration, and posture in the experiments, the Hybrid-III pedestrian model was used as a human dummy. Hybrid-III is typically employed in official automobile crash tests (New Car Assessment Program: NCAP) and is currently recognized as a model that faithfully reproduces dynamic responses. Experimental results shows that safety performance strongly depends on both the variety of safety belts used and the shock absorbers attached onto lanyards. These findings indicate that fall prevention equipment, such as safety belts, lanyards, and shock absorbers, must be improved to reduce impact injuries to the human head and body during falls.

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Cite this paper

@inproceedings{Hino2014FallPC, title={Fall Protection Characteristics of Safety Belts and Human Impact Tolerance}, author={Yasumichi Hino and Katsutoshi Ohdo and Hiroki Takahashi}, booktitle={Industrial health}, year={2014} }