How often should you inspect your rigging equipment?

When was the last time you inspected your rigging equipment? Keeping your workers safe and ensuring your operations continue to run smoothly are among the most important reasons for ensuring you regularly carry out inspections on your tools and machinery.

It can mean the difference between equipment breaking down at the worst possible time, leading to accidents and injuries and causing significant delay and increased costs.

Should you do your own inspections?

Making sure your lifting and rigging equipment is inspected by a qualified and experienced person is critical to ensure the safety of your workers. It can also help determine how faulty equipment was damaged and reduce the likelihood of repeat issues, effectively reducing replacement or maintenance costs.

Inspections should be completed in compliance with Australian standards. For peace of mind you may want to consider outsourcing your periodic inspections with a qualified provider that has extensive knowledge of the applicable standards. Anyone inspecting lifting and rigging equipment is required by law to be suitably trained. This includes, being able to identify the standard each piece of equipment relates to and what is written within the standard, especially anything related to inspections, testing and markings. Dogging and rigging tickets isn’t enough to deem a person competent to inspect and certify equipment.

All of your equipment needs to be fully certified and traceable, so keeping accurate records of your lifting equipment and inspections is essential. Documentation of procedures and competency standards must also be maintained.  

Additionally, occupational safety and health administration (OSHA) inspections should be carried out to ensure all rigging is OSHA compliant. These inspections should take place after installing equipment to ensure everything is up to code and in proper working order. 

Visual and frequent inspections of your rigging equipment

You should check all rigging equipment upon initial receival from the supplier. For products such as hooks, slings and other hardware, check the tagging or markings on the products to ensure the rated capacity meets your specifications and lifting requirements.

A visual inspection of essential rigging equipment (like slings and wire ropes) should be carried out before every use, even if it’s multiple times throughout the day, as damage to rigging equipment can occur from a single lift due to shock loads, severe angles, sharp or rough edges and exposure to chemicals or heat. Slings and hooks are subjected to extreme pressure every time they are used, so over time their strength and integrity will deteriorate. 

Best practice periodic inspections

Thorough periodic inspections should be completed by a qualified safety inspector. All equipment is evaluated to ensure there are no safety or functionality concerns with the rigging equipment. 

The frequency of these inspections depends on the equipment being used. Some pieces of equipment will experience more wear and tear than others. Periodic inspections of your lifting and rigging equipment should occur at least every 12 months (at a minimum) and monthly to quarterly inspections for more severe operating environments.

You should consult with a certified safety inspector to determine how often these inspections should be carried out. 

Some periodic inspections like slings, require you to keep records and documentation of the inspections. Failure to maintain inspection records is one of the most common issues we see that can prevent a business from being completely OSHA compliant.

Need expert inspections for your rigging equipment?

At Rigging Rentals, we offer a range of inspection, testing and repair services for all types of lifting and rigging equipment. All of our inspections are carried out by qualified inspectors in accordance with Australian and international standards. Get in touch with us to find out more.