This GBCA Safety Toolbox Talk discusses OSHA’s capacity requirements for two point (swing stage) suspended scaffolds. Click below to download the Toolbox Talk as a handout (includes Sign-In Sheet).

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Suspended Scaffolds – Capacity

Adjustable suspension scaffolds are designed to be raised and lowered while occupied by workers and materials, and must be capable of bearing their load whether stationary or in motion. This toolbox covers OSHA’s capacity requirements for two point (swing stage) suspended scaffolds.

Scaffolds and scaffold components must be capable of supporting, without failure, their own weight and at least 4 times their maximum intended load. [29 CFR 1926.451(a)]

Each suspension rope, including connecting hardware, must be capable of supporting, without failure, at least 6 times the maximum intended load applied to that rope while the scaffold is operating at the greater of either [29 CFR 1926.451(a)(4)]:

  • The rated load of the hoist, OR
  • 2 times the stall load of the hoist

 

All suspension scaffold support devices, such as outrigger beams, cornice hooks, and parapet clamps, must:

  • Rest on surfaces capable of supporting at least 4 times the load imposed on them by the scaffold operating at the greater of either [29 CFR 1926.451(d)(1)]:
    • The rated load of the hoist, OR
    • 1½ times the stall capacity of the hoist.
  • Be supported by bearing blocks. [29 CFR 1926.451(d)(5)(ii)]
  • Be secured against movement by tiebacks installed at right angles to the face of the building or structure by opposing angle tiebacks installed and secured to a structurally sound point of anchorage (structurally sound points of anchorage include structural members, but not vents, electrical conduit, or standpipes and other piping systems).
    [29 CFR 1926.451(d)(5)(iii)]

No more than two employees should occupy suspension scaffolds designed for a working load of 500 pounds (non-mandatory).
[29 CFR 1926 Subpart L Appendix A (2)(p)(2)]

No more than three employees should occupy suspension scaffolds designed for a working load of 750 pounds (non-mandatory).
[29 CFR 1926 Subpart L Appendix A (2)(p)(2)]

Scaffolds shall be altered only under the supervision and direction of a competent person.
[29 CFR 1926.451(f)(7)]

 

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