Fall arrest system for safety in rail maintenance
Working at heights is deemed by many organizations as a high-risk work activity. This is very evident at Queensland Rail (QR) maintenance workshops where workers regularly need to access areas at heights while undertaking service and maintenance activities on the fleet of QR track machines.
With a strong internal safety culture where ‘Safety Comes First. Always,’ QR is on the front foot when looking for improved ways to keep its workforce of over 6000 – across multiple sites – safe every day.
So, when the need arose at one of QR’s larger maintenance workshops for a mobile working at height solution that can be moved around the busy workshop across multiple tasks, QR turned to Beaver Technology Services (BTS).
The Mini Restricted Space Cube (M-RSC) from BTS provides the QR workshop in Banyo, Queensland with a practical overhead fall arrest mobile anchor with a working height of around 7m that can be moved and positioned around different QR rail locomotives and carriages for everyday working at height activities.
BTS not only provided the M-RSC solution to the workshop but also got involved with site commissioning including user-based training on the proper use of the M-RSC within the Banyo workshop.
Darren Browne, senior safety facilitator who has been with QR for over 34 years stated that, with the implementation of the M-RSC, the site has allowed the maintenance workers to access the roofs of different track machines while always being connected safely.
With the use of the M-RSC for overhead work the erection of expensive scaffolding for temporary access works has all but ceased. Productivity has improved greatly for tasks related to working at height as the workers can easily move the M-RSC around different equipment using the site forklift.
Workers also can still use the services of the workshop overhead gantry crane to pick-up and drop-off individual components from the roof of the track machines while being on the roof and still be connected to the M-RSC. A workplace benefit that was not there before and, which also has resulted in improved process efficiency for those tasks.
Browne also commented that with the added feature of the rescue and recovery winch within the M-RSC, any worker that does find themselves over the edge of the machine can be quickly rescued and lowered down to the workshop floor for any first aid required.
M-RSC has provided QR Banyo site with a practical tool for its working at height activity around different types of track machines resulting in improved levels of site safety, workshop productivity and workflow efficiency.
The MRSC with self-retracting lifeline provides sites with an overhead anchorage point that can be moved around from application to application. The MRSC is suitable for situations where an overhead structure to attach an anchor point may not exist or is unreachable.
Available with an adjustable height, the MRSC provides for an overhead fall protection solution for a wide range of applications including working on top of earth moving machinery, maintenance and servicing of highway trucks and other larger plant equipment including generators and motors. The MRSC can be also used as an effective overhead fall protection anchor when loading and unloading of goods from the back of trucks in distribution and warehouse facilities as it can be moved to multiple locations within a facility.