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Fall Protection: Safety Harness Guidelines

wearing a safety harness-picture of safety harness

Learn about wearing a safety harness and steps that could save your life.

Harness styles vary. Refer to the manufacturer's operation manual or instructions enclosed with your harness. See How to select a body harness (PDF).

 Steps to take when attaching a body harness:

  • Hold the harness by the D-ring and shake to allow all straps to fall in place.
  • Slip the straps over shoulders so the D-ring is located in middle of the back between shoulder blades.
  • Pull the leg strap between legs, connect to the opposite end, and repeat with the second leg strap.
  • For belted harnesses, connect the waist strap after the leg straps (the waist strap should be tight but not binding).
  • Connect the chest strap and position in the mid-chest area and tighten to keep the shoulder straps taut.
  • After all straps have been buckled, tighten all buckles so the harness fits snugly but allows full range of movement.
  • Pass the excess strap through loop keepers.

Friction Buckle

  • Pass webbing under the buckle, over knurled bar, and back down between knurled bar and frame.
  • Pull web end to tighten.

    picture of a friction buckle

Mating Buckle

  • Pull the center bar buckle completely through the square link.
  • Allow the center bar buckle to fall into place on top of the square link.
  • Pull the loose end of the strap to tighten the adjustment of the harness.
  • Slide keepers to hold any excess webbing.

    picture of a mating buckle

Tongue Buckle

  • Insert the loose strap of webbing through the tongue buckle, placing the buckle tongue through the appropriate grommet.
  • Push remaining webbing through the keeper to retain the loose end.

    picture of a tongue buckle