Fall Protection Harness Inspection

All fall protection wears out and must be inspected before each use by the authorized person. Many accidents and fatalities have occurred because equipment was not inspected.

Before any fall protection harness is used, its condition needs to be inspected for damage or wear that might keep it from functioning as designed.

No item should be used if any damage is discovered that would cause the user to question the item’s integrity.

Below is a step-by-step guide for a pre-use inspection of your fall protection harness. These are general inspection requirements that are not intended to replace manufacturer requirements and are not a substitute for formal, documented, hands-on fall protection training.

If you have a concern about the integrity of your equipment or a question about training or inspection, call our Equipment specialists at 1-800-755-8455.


Check all webbing looking for any cuts, tears, holes, abrasions or soiling. Depending on you’re your harness application you might need to check for welding slag, overspray, and chemical and UV damage.

Grasp the webbing with both hands and bend up into a “∩” for a better view of the webbing’s condition.


Inspect the stitch patterns for completeness. If any stitching is missing or coming undone, remove the harness from service. Remember that two looses ends may be showing—the beginning and end of the stitch pattern—this is normal and not an indication of damage.


Inspect the D-ring, metal keepers, buckles, and adjustment buckles for deformity, corrosion, function, and any other conditions that may affect the hardware’s integrity.

Make sure D-rings pivot freely and their attachments don’t have unusual wear.


If a harness has been used to arrest a fall, it should be immediately discarded. Most harnesses come with indicators that signify the harness has seen impact. It might be plastic designed to break, loose D-rings with an exposed alert color, or popped stitches on the back strap.

If you aren’t sure where the impact indicators are on your harness call one of our Equipment Advisors at 1.800.755.8455.

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