Hunters should always use a Fall-Arrest System (FAS)/Full Body Harness during ascent and descent and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. This is the simplest answer to the question of when should a hunter wear a fall arrest system. But the real story and theory behind it is much deeper, so let’s explore.
Like we used in the old days, single-strap belts and chest harnesses are no longer advised and should be avoided. Failure to use a FAS can lead to catastrophic damage.
Tree stands let hunters observe wildlife better and limit the amount of human scent on the ground in many hunting settings.
According to published research, unsafe climbing behavior can catch up with hunters the longer they hunt. According to the 3-point rule, the hunter should always keep three points of his or her body in touch with the stand or ladder. Single-strap belts and chest harnesses are no longer advised or should be avoided. And should not be worn.
A fall arrest system should be utilized only when other fall protection measures, such as engineering controls (for example, a raised platform), safety nets, guard rails, or travel restraints, are not available or feasible.
What is the Purpose of a Fall Arrest System?
The term “fall arrest system” refers to collecting equipment, components, and systems used to arrest (halt) a fall if a worker is working at a height. Most tree stand falls happen while a hunter climbs up or down a tree.
What are the Main Components of a Fall Arresting System?
Check that the fall arresting system has all the necessary components. A full-body harness, a self-retracting lanyard, an energy-absorbing lanyard or lanyard, an energy absorber, and an appropriate anchor point or horizontal lifeline, as well as a deceleration device, a lifeline, or a suitable combination of these.
When Should a Hunter Wear a Fall Arrest System?
While hunting valuable whitetails and other game animals, hunters frequently use tree stands to gain a wider visibility range. Risky climbing can catch up with hunters as they hunt longer. In the event of a slip, a fall arrest system restricts the distance and/or power of the fall and prevents the worker from striking the ground or a surface.
What Should You Do If Your Fall Arrest System (FAS) Fails?
Don’t freak out. Your FAS will arrest you.
Make a call for assistance.
Return to the platform as soon as possible.
If you can’t get onto the platform or the ground, use the suspension relief strap to avoid suspension stress. Push yourself away from the tree to move your legs. If you don’t have a suspension relieving strap to keep your blood circulating.
What is the Fall Arrest System’s (FAS) Three-Point Contact Rule?
Always try to maintain contact with one hand and two feet, or two hands and one foot, either climbing or descending. It can reduce your risk of slips and falls by maintaining three points of contact while climbing.
Inspect your tree stand carefully to ensure it is secure and undamaged. Wear a full-body fall arrest system at all times, and don’t hang your stand any higher than required. Ensure that you always maintain the three points of contact with your hands and feet when climbing up and down a ladder.
Always double-check your FAS. If it displays indications of wear and tear, toss it and replace it. We hope you now have a thorough understanding of when should a hunter wear a fall arrest system.