Harnesses save workers after crane collapse.
Big Blue crane collapse - GIF
Mobile crane collapses while installing billboard, with possible dozer assist - GIF
Cranes collapse while rescuing tractor trailer - GIF
Crane collapses while lifting jumbo jet - GIF
Multiple cranes collapse - video and photos
While those guys got whipped around quite a bit, I actually found this GIF reassuring.
I also found something called Harness Hang Syndrome, or more formally: Suspension Trauma. If you're suspended from a harness for a long enough time (as little as 15 minutes), you'll faint. And fainting while being suspended vertically increases the risk of a certain type of cerebral hypoxia, which deprives your brain of oxygen, and can kill you.
This is addressed with something called "trauma straps". These are essentially additional straps attached to a harness, that allow a suspended worker to push against the straps with his feet, to assume a standing position.
That is why fall protection training is important before just strapping on a harness and going up high. The other important thing is have a plan for what to do if there is a fall and how to rescue the person who is hanging there.
I attended a training session given by a guy who was in charge of the guys doing the setup/teardown for events in a large event center. Those guys walk-the-beam in the event hall... Large I-beams for the ceiling that are 35 feet off the ground. They had safety cable strung up there for tie-off, they did extensive training for walking the beam, how to rescue a guy, and had quite a plan and equipment for doing it. It was quite educational.
Proper equipment and used properly is highly important to make sure you go home in one piece....
If you do have to do something that's up high, take the time to get some training and get the right equipment, its worth it.
And just as important is the certification test date. Like milk in the dairy case those fall arrestor straps have an expiration date for a reason
I bought a tub pallet of them at an auction the bid was cheap enough so even if I couldn't resale them to a contractor I knew then I could always deploy them and use them as straps for other things.
I took them over to the guy who culled through all of the harnesses and fall arrester straps casually tossing about half of them in a pile and laying the others in a pile he planned on buying. We found one that looked like it had never even been out of the box but it was 10 years out of certification and had evidence of water or something had soaked it once upon a time, so he and I tried to stretch it out we finally cut the canvas jacket off it the strap was so deteriorated it came apart in several pieces
Never try to tell me it can't be done
When I have to paint I use http://kbs.justoldtrucks.com/
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