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Subchapter 7. General Industry Safety Orders
Group 1. General Physical Conditions and Structures Orders
Article 5. Window Cleaning
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§3284. Window Cleaner's Belts, Personal Fall Arrest Systems, Personal Fall Restraint Systems and Positioning Devices.

(a) Window Cleaner's Belts.

(1) General Requirements.

Window cleaner's belts shall be approved and kept in good repair and visually inspected for defects prior to each use. They shall be inspected at least twice a year by the employer and all parts showing defects or excessive wear shall be promptly replaced. The use of natural fiber or canvas terminal straps (runners) is prohibited.

(A) Each belt shall be numbered or given an identifying mark, and a record kept showing date of purchase, dates when terminal rope straps were renewed, and dated when entire belt assembly was inspected.

(B) Window cleaners using a window cleaner's belt shall attach one belt terminal to an anchor before stepping out onto the sill. During the operation of window cleaning, both belt terminals shall be attached to the anchors.

(C) The fittings on the waistband through which the terminal strap or rope passes, shall be so constructed that it will be impossible for the safety terminal to pass through them.

(D) Metal thimbles, or equivalent, shall be provided where ropes or straps are secured to eyes or rings.

(2) Belt Design.

(A) All window cleaner's belts shall be designed, built and labeled to conform to ANSI/ASME A39.1-1995, Safety Requirements for Window Cleaning which is hereby incorporated by reference.

(B) In no case shall load carrying members be constructed of leather.

Note: It is not the intent of this regulation to prohibit the use of window cleaner's belts that meet the requirements of ANSI A39.1-1969, 1987, or 1991 and are so labeled.

(b) Safety Belts and Harnesses.

(1) General Requirements. Lanyards shall be kept as short as reasonably practicable to minimize the possibility and length of a free fall. The length of the lanyard shall be as short as practicable. Care shall be used to see that the lanyard is attached to a verified anchorage in such a manner that will develop its full strength. Lanyards with knots, hitches, or bends shall not be used.

(A) Lanyards consisting of wire rope or rope covered wire shall not be used in window cleaning operations while standing on sills.

(B) Chest harnesses shall not be used in window cleaning operations.

(C) Body belts and their associated lanyards when subjected to a fall shall produce a stopping force of not more than 5 times gravity.

(D) Body harness and its associated lanyards when subjected to a fall shall produce a stopping force of not more than 8 times gravity.

(E) Belts and harnesses and their lanyards which have been subjected to impact loading shall be removed from service and destroyed.

(F) Belts and harnesses and their lanyard assemblies shall be visually inspected for defects prior to each use. They shall be inspected according to the manufacturer's recommendations by the employer at least twice each year. The date of the most current semi-annual inspection shall be recorded on an inspection tag which shall be attached to the belt. In addition, records shall be kept and maintained showing date of purchase, dates when attachments were renewed, and dates when the entire belt assembly was inspected and by whom.

(G) The free ends of the lanyards of synthetic materials shall be lightly seared and, in the case of round rope, shall also be seized (whipped).

(H) Belts having single pass, fixed or sliding bar, friction buckles shall not be used for window cleaning operations.

(I) Safety lines shall be capable of supporting a dead weight of 5000 pounds.

(J) Double-acting Snap hooks shall be provided on all lanyards to minimize the possibility of accidental disengagement. The snap keeper shall be restrained by the snap nose to absorb side loads.

(K) Rope lanyards shall be spliced directly to the belt through an integral rope loop, spliced to a dee ring or spliced to a snap hook for attaching to the dee ring. Splices to hardware shall be over suitable thimbles.

(L) Web lanyards used on belts without dee rings shall terminate in a sewn eye of sufficient size to accommodate the width of the belt, but no larger. To the free end shall be sewn a snap hook in accordance with the standard, which shall result in a finished lanyard capable of meeting the qualification tests indicated in Appendix (C).

(M) Safety belts and harnesses ordered or purchased after July 1, 1993 shall have a durable label permanently affixed stating that the belt or harness meets the testing requirements of Article 6, Appendix C. The durable label shall contain at least the following information:

1. Name or designation of manufacturer.

2. Model designation.

3. Date manufactured.

4. Serial number.

5. Test Specifications.

(c) All personal fall arrest systems, personal fall restraint systems and positioning devices used in window cleaning operations shall comply with Section 1670 of the Construction Safety Orders.


Authority cited: Section 142.3, Labor Code. Reference: Section 142.3, Labor Code.


1. Editorial correction filed 10-7-83; effective thirtieth day thereafter (Register 83, No. 41).

2. Amendment of subsections (a)(1) and (b)(2)(C) filed 9-12-85; effective thirtieth day thereafter (Register 85, No. 37).

3. Amendment of heading and section filed 3-9-93; operative 4-8-93 (Register 93, No. 11).

4. Amendment of section heading and subsections (a)(1), (a)(2)(A) and (a)(2)(B), repealer of subsections (a)(2)(A)1.-5., and new subsection (c) filed 3-31-2000; operative 4-30-2000 (Register 2000, No. 13).

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