Testing A Tool Lanyards Safe Working Load

Categories: Tool Tethering Tags: Product Testing , Safe Working Loads

All structurally rated fall arrest lanyards should be subjected to both dynamic and static tests, these follow the models that are used to test harnesses and lanyards for PPE, incorporating the procedures set out in the article 11B of the Council Directive. Dropped tool prevention products should be tested using a 10kg mass. Dropped tool prevention products are typically only rated to 2kgs (you will find this mostly outside the EU); we recommend products have a SWL rating of 5kg. These tests need to be carried out across all products that have been given a “structural rating” i.e. Lanyards, belts, tethers, bags and holsters etc.

“It is vitally important that the karabiner is always loaded along its length and never across its width.”


The dynamic test involves fall arrest lanyards being attached to a solid 10kg load; this is dropped through a free fall distance of 4m (Fall Factor 2 test). The test mass is elevated vertically above the anchorage point. The tool safety item (e.g. tether, belt, or fall arrest lanyards) is secured to the anchorage point using a connector, a length of static rope, (ensuring that the length between the mass and anchorage point is 2m) is then attached to the tool safety product, using a separate connector. The mass is then released allowing it to free fall, generating an impact over a 4m travel velocity. There is no shock absorbing element fitted within the system, which would otherwise reduce the forces and lessen the impact. For heavy tool products (rated to 50kg) the test weight is increased to 100kg and the same fall distance 4m (Fall Factor 2 test). For the test to be considered a “pass”, the product must stay structurally intact with no signs of weakening or damage. This test is then repeated three times using the same item through all the tests to insure the products integrity.

Dynamic Dropped Object Test


The static test involves two tests. The first test is a direct pull of 0.55kN (just over 55kg) is applied and held for 3 minutes, in order to pass the test the product must not release the load. For heavy tool products (i.e. tools rated to 50kg) the test weight is increased to 55kN (550kg). The second test the item is then subjected to a destructive pull test to ensure the required safe working load.

Static Dropped Object Test