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How Do I Become a Fall Protection Instructor?

How Do I Become a Fall Protection Instructor?

Falls are the primary cause of fatalities in the construction industry.

  • It is a trainers responsibility to convey the importance of fall protection to both employers and employees.
  • Routine equipment checks on lifelines, harnesses, lanyards, and SRLs must be performed by employers.
  • Companies will pick trainers who can relate to other workers who work in fall protection.

Why Companies Need Fall Protection Training

The majority of deaths in construction are caused by falls. Falls were responsible for more than one-third of the 721 fatal construction accidents in 2011. Workers at heights of 6 feet or more are in danger of suffering fatal falls or significant injuries. Is it any wonder that companies are desperate to curb the problem? 

Many construction workers undertake duties at a height that needs fall protection. Everyone at a jobsite is impacted by a major accident or fatality that occurs there. A fall might happen in an instant, giving the worker little time to respond.

Fall prevention means the difference between life and death. Falls claim the lives of hundreds of workers every year. Employers may avoid such fatalities by organizing the work properly, providing the appropriate fall protection equipment, and finding a competent instructor to train all workers on safety procedures. Fall protection is required by OSHA in general industrial workplaces at heights of 4 feet, in shipyards at heights of 5 feet, and in the construction sector at heights of 6 feet.


Even a minor fall has potentially harmful effects. As a trainer, it is your duty to teach employers and employees alike the value of fall protection. Knowing everything there is to know about fall protection will help companies avoid injuries.

How To Prevent Falls

Trainers need to teach employers what is required of them according to OSHA. Employers are required to set up the workplace so that no one may fall off of raised workstations, above platforms, or into gaps in the floor or walls. Fall protection is required by OSHA. In addition, OSHA mandates the provision of fall protection when operating near hazardous machinery and equipment, regardless of the fall height.

Employers are required to take the following actions to stop employee falls:

  • Guard any floor opening that a worker could unintentionally enter, using a railing and toe-board or a floor hole cover.
  • Give every elevated open-sided platform, floor, or runway a guard rail and toe board.
  • Provide guardrails and toe boards, regardless of height, if a worker can fall into or onto hazardous machinery or equipment, such as an acid vat or a conveyor belt.
  • Provide safety nets, stair railings, handrails, safety harnesses, and other fall prevention equipment that may be necessary for specific tasks.

OSHA requires that employers:

  • Provide safe working environments free from recognized hazards.
  • Maintain clean and, to the extent practicable, dry flooring in work areas.
  • Do not charge employees for their choice and provision of necessary personal protective equipment. 
  • Inform staff members about occupational dangers in a language they can comprehend.

Fall Protection Equipment 

Workers are connected to the rest of the fall protection system via a personal fall protection harness. The safety of the worker is put at risk if it is destroyed. Pre-shift inspections are the greatest approach to getting to know fall protection harnesses. Workers should properly inspect their harnesses during this check. We will go into more detail about inspections later in the article. 

As a trainer it is vital that you know about the proper equipment that your trainees use. Workers must correctly put on their harness after inspecting them and confirming that it is safe to use. Donning is the term for this. Be careful that you correctly put on a fall harness and that the straps are not twisted. All buckles must be fastened, and any lanyards or lifelines must be connected to the proper connections. 

In their employment, employees are likely to use a wide variety of connection devices. It is the employers responsibility to provide workers with proper training on any equipment used. Once training is completed it is up to the worker to be knowledgeable about the appropriate connectivity options and how to use them at their workplace.

The most common connecting device used by employees is a carabiner. These link the lifelines to anchorage points and the worker’s harness to the lifelines. A locking mechanism to prevent the gate from opening unintentionally is required for a carabiner to comply with fall prevention standards.

Make sure your trainees know that during a shift, they must check the lifeline for any defects. Ensure that they are aware of the maximum number of workers that can attach to a single lifeline. There may be additional safety precautions at a job. These can be unique to the workplace and need extra training. Trainers are the first line of defense. Trainers confirm that employees receive the necessary training before starting their shift. This is especially, if workers are required to use equipment they are not acquainted with.

Rope Grabs, Lanyards, and Other Important Inspections

When equipment fails, it is typically because of improper maintenance or inspection. Inspections must be led by a trainer so that when the time comes, staff members may follow suit. A worker’s life could be saved in the few minutes it takes to check.

Employers are required by OSHA’s fall protection equipment inspection requirements to conduct routine equipment inspections on lifelines, harnesses, lanyards, and SRLs. This is to make sure their gear is current and in alignment with the necessary safety standards. A worksite competent person should physically examine fall protection equipment before each use and at least once a year, or more frequently as specified by the manufacturer.

Good fall protection requires good equipment. As a trainer, you must be familiar with the proper equipment and their inspection. Verify that workers know to check harness straps for any rips or tears. Additionally, they should be looking for any bends or cracks in the metal harness parts. Small flaws might cause failures in the harness even if it is not completely damaged. Lanyards are to be fastened to vertical lifelines using mechanical rope grabs. The majority of rope grabs use a mechanism that snaps onto the lifeline when the lanyard is abruptly pulled or dragged. Rope grabs need to be fitted correctly. To show the proper direction, the majority of grabs are marked with an arrow. Ropes should be examined for visible deterioration, such as frayed wires or thread.

As a trainer, make sure to stress to your trainees that a safety inspection should be carried out manually before each use. Teach employees to look for stitching that may be torn, burnt, or damaged while evaluating their harnesses, as well as stitching or rivets at any areas where the hardware is attached. All webbing, belt ends, buckles, and D-Rings should also be examined. 

What Companies Look For in a Trainer

When companies are looking to hire fall protection trainers there are specific qualifications they need to meet. In order to get the job, you need to make sure you not only meet expectations but exceed them. Companies will choose someone who has experience working at heights. The trainer must be able to connect with other employees who perform comparable work.

The risk of falling is the biggest concern for everyone who works at a height. As a trainer, you must be physically capable of performing these tasks. While you don’t need to be an expert, you must be able to put on a harness, climb a ladder, lift objects, and rescue a pupil if they become stuck during training.

Companies will choose someone who possesses the necessary skills and physical attributes. Rescue and fall protection operations require competence but also the ability to teach that competence to others. As a trainer, you must be physically capable of performing the necessary tasks. Lives hang in the balance; as a trainer, it is your responsibility to ensure that everyone is trained properly to avoid any accidents or injuries. 

Fall Protection Train the Trainer Course 

What does “train the trainer” mean? At Hard Hat Training, a trainer can enroll in our online course to learn more about fall protection training and improve their ability to teach. If you are looking to become a trainer, this would be the most thorough and economical approach to advance your expertise. It is also the perfect way to improve your teaching skills and reach more certified personnel. 

Professional, in-house fall protection training can be delivered by student trainers with the technical know-how and resource materials provided by the Train the Trainer Program. Our Train the Trainer courses are created for businesses that have staff members with subject-matter expertise who want third-party trainer credentials.

So how does it work? You will have electronic access to our DIY training kit. Once you have finished the Trainer Certification course and passed the test, you will have everything you need for training sessions. These materials can be customized and reused. To provide you with the finest training experience possible, we have improved our kits; they include accident profiles, videos, and other resources to assist students in remembering and using the material on the jobsite, avoiding mistakes or penalties. 

Training Tips for Trainers 

Training can be intimidating, especially if you are new or inexperienced. It is better for safety meetings if the entire team takes part. This makes it more interesting and increases the likelihood that the knowledge you’ve provided them will be remembered. Here are some suggestions for motivating everyone to participate:

  • Instead of just providing them with the facts, pose questions. Wait a short while after you offer a question to give folks time to consider it. Invite volunteers to respond after that.
  • Inquire about their own experience. The group will be able to better understand how this issue affects them. Has anyone in the room fallen from a ladder? What took place?
  • Ensure that everyone gets an opportunity to speak. Invite another crew member to speak if one is talking too much.
  • Never make light of or belittle somebody, especially if they are just trying to get information.
  • Be genuine. Don’t guess a question’s solution if you don’t know the answer. Make a note of the inquiry and pledge to respond.
  • Remain on topic. Inform the crew that their inquiries and remarks can be addressed later, either in private or in a later safety meeting, if they veer too far from the subject.