Devices which contain a lanyard for attachment between a full body harness and a suitable anchorage device. In these devices, the lanyard can be of practically any length, and will retract (under a spring loaded mechanism) back onto a drum in the casing of the device. In the case of a fall, a braking device (or similar) will cause the drum to lock, arresting the fall of the user in as short a distance as possible.
Retractable lanyards are subject to a drop test similar to that used for lanyards (using a solid 100 kg test mass, measuring arrest distance and arrest force). However, the drop height for this test is fixed at 600 mm, irrespective of the total length of the device. A clip is applied to the lanyard at 600 mm to prevent it being retracted back into the case, and allow a clear freefall. The lanyard should not deploy beyond a maximum length of 1.4 metres (essentially arresting the fall within 2 metres from the point of release), with a maximum arrest force of 6 kN.
Locking After Conditioning
In the case of mechanical devices, additional testing is required to ensure they are not adversely affected by environmental conditions. Devices are checked for their locking function (by dropping a mass of at least 5 kg) following conditioning to high temperature (50°C, 85 % relative humidity for at least 2 hours), low temperature (-30°C for at least 2 hours) and water (sprayed at 70 litres per hour for at least 3 hours). Optional testing following submersion in diesel oil or dust can also be included.
Whole products are subjected to tensile tests. Textile lanyards are subject to a 15 kN tensile force and metal to 12 kN. Tensile forces are applied and held for at least 3 minutes, to ensure the breaking strength of the product is in excess of the force specified by the standard.
Metallic components used in fall protection equipment are subjected to a neutral salt-spray test intended to prove a minimum resistance to environmental corrosion (specifically rust). Products are held within a sealed chamber, which is filled with a salt-water mist, which can induce rust in unprotected metals. Products are subjected to either 24 or 48 hours exposure and examined for rusting and function afterward.