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AS/NZ 1891.1:2007 and the tree climbing harness

AS/NZ 1891.1:2007 and the tree climbing harness

Richard Tregoweth - Saturday, December 18, 2010

If you are looking to find any form of Australia/New Zealand Standard on most tree climbing harnesses commercially available in New Zealand you will be sorely disappointed!

The only tree climbing, lower body harnesses to meet the requirements of the appropriate standard (AS/NZ 1891.1:2007), that Treetools is aware of, are the Aussie range of harnesses, Aussie Traverse and AussieMaster from Buckingham and the Aspiring Arborist harness from Aspiring Enterprises.

Most customers, when looking for the AS/NZ standard, are trying to get a handle on the life expectancy of the harness when used under New Zealand conditions.

In the case of AS/NZ 1891.1:2007 the service life of the harness is a maximum of ten years from date of manufacture, which is clearly stated on the harness. In contrast, harnesses with EN 358:1999 and EN 813:1997 Standards, retirement is typically 3-5 years.

The markings mandated by AS/NZ 1891.1:2007 are really quite useful. Common Marking requirements include:

1) Manufacturer's name, trade name or trademark
2) Serial Number
3) The words 'Only competent users should use this equipment'
4) The words: 'Manufacturers instructions must be followed'
5) Where the device has a specific application, a statement of this
6) The month and year of manufacture and the month and year by which the item must be taken out of service, which shall not be more than 10 years from the date of manufacture

Another specific marking for a lower body harness (arborist harness) is a statement regarding maximum allowable free fall - 600mm.

Have a look at the Aspiring harness label pictured below to see the AS/NZ Marking requirements in action.

Of course there is far more to AS/NZ 1891.1:2007 than Marking requirements - if you want the full details you'll have to purchase a copy of the applicable Standard.

Treetools would rather have this information freely available, so that climbers were well informed. Unfortunately, Standards New Zealand has very strict copyright regulations wrapped around publication of these documents so you'll have to spend the money if you want any more information - or you can drop in to Treetools and view our copy.

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