Don’t be caught out with untested suspension points for your Christmas decorations!

Rails, beams and suspension points are used to raise, lower and suspend goods and people on buildings across the UK.  They are operated in a variety of places, from warehouses and factories, through to retail outlets, hospitals and even used to hang christmas decorations. Often installed where there is a need to minimise a worker’s fall from a significant distance, such as in overhead locations, for example train maintenance depots.

If a suspension point fails, it could have catastrophic consequences leading to serious injury or loss of life.  It should therefore come as no surprise that regular inspections are essential. The guidance to refer to here is LOLER (Lifting Operations Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998), which states that where the lifting equipment is used to lift persons, it should be tested at least every six months.  If the lifting equipment is not for personnel and is for christmas decorations for example, it should be tested at least every twelve months.  In both cases, this should include a thorough examination and axial load test.

For the owner of a building with rails, beams or suspension points, it is really important to ensure they are regularly inspected and tested to remain compliant.  The suspension point should display a Safe Working Load (SWL) sticker. If this is not the case, when our engineers visit for the first instance; they will determine a testing regime that is appropriate to the equipment and its environment.  Each piece of equipment is then tagged to determine the appropriate re-test frequency.

LOLER 1998 states that “Every employer shall ensure lifting equipment, which is exposed to conditions causing deterioration which is liable to result in dangerous situations, is thoroughly examined.”   Whilst our engineers will carry out testing and inspection on the equipment when required (6 or 12 months), we also advise that a competent person carries out a visual inspection on a regular basis, especially when the suspension points are located in hazardous environments.

When using rails, beams or suspension points, it is important that workers wear the appropriate PPE.  Our inspection engineers carry out a full review of PPE and offer advice on its suitability for use with a system.

Reasons to outsource testing of rails, beams and suspension points to Eurosafe Solutions

  • Our engineers are certified by leading fall protection manufacturers to inspect, test and certify.
  • They are IPAF trained and qualified in the use of Mobile Elevated Work Platforms (MEWP).
  • Our team are PASMA trained in the erection of temporary access towers.
  • IRATA trained in the use of Industrial rope access techniques.

For more information on inspection of suspension points, including rails or beams, contact Wayne . . .

wayne Reid BW

Wayne Reid (Test & Inspection Sales Director)

Telephone: 07903 536 104 E-mail: