Self-Retracting Lifeline Accidents
What is a Self-Retracting Lifeline (SRL)?
Self-Retracting Lifelines are a specific kind of lanyard that attach to most harnesses and utilize a breaking mechanism that allow individuals to safely move around a recommended working environment.
OSHA defines SRLs as a “Deceleration device,” under 29 CFR 19150151(b): “Deceleration device” means any mechanism, such as a rope grab, ripstitch lanyard, specially woven lanyard, tearing or deforming lanyard, or automatic self-retracting lifeline/lanyard, which serves to dissipate a substantial amount of energy during a fall arrest, or otherwise limit the energy imposed on an employee during fall arrest.
How are Self-Retracting Lifelines different from other Shock-Absorbing Lanyards?
The breaking mechanism in SRLs have a shorter activation distance and a shorter overall arresting distance than most standard shock-absorbing lanyards. This reduces the risk of a worker hitting the ground or any obstructions at a lower level. SRLs also allow for greater horizontal and vertical mobility, when used properly.
How can Self-Retracting Lifelines malfunction?
Several factors can contribute to a SRL malfunction:
- Improperly trained employees; which can result in the wrong equipment being selected for a task or the equipment being used incorrectly.
- Unsafe working conditions allowing equipment deterioration.
- Failure to inspect equipment regularly.
These factors can also contribute to a number of other fall hazards found in the workplace. If you or a loved one has been injured due to a SRL malfunction, you may be entitled to a recovery. An experienced fall protection attorney can help you understand your options moving forward, as these accidents are often serious and time-sensitive.
Accidents resulting from an SRL malfunction can leave the operator with catastrophic injuries. Simmons and Fletcher, P.C. has been serving work injury victims since 1979. Our attorneys are versed in proper fall protection, understand how complex the process of proving negligence can be, are not intimidated by large insurance companies who try to get you to settle for less than you deserve. If you know someone who has been injured due to the negligence of an employer, call 800-298-0111 for more information today.
Paul Cannon has practiced personal injury trial law since 1995. He is Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law (2005). He has earned recognition as a Super Lawyer by Thompson Reuters in 2017 & 2018, and as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer by the National Trial Lawyers Association in 2017. He is a Shareholder, trial lawyer and online marketing manager at Simmons and Fletcher, P.C. His legal writings have been published by the Texas Bar Journal, Business.com, Lawyer.com HG Legal Resources, Lawfirms.com, and others. He has been asked to give education talks and media interviews on dog bite law.