Roger Ohman III is the director of engineered solutions at Crosby.
Does OSHA require the use of latches on hooks?
It depends. There is no specific language that states you must always use a latch. OSHA 1910.181(j)(2)(ii) Derricks states, “Safety latch type hooks shall be used wherever possible.” 1910.184(c)(6) states, “Slings shall be securely attached to their loads.”
Using a latch would be one way of securely attaching a sling to its load. Other methods may be to use a shackle, or to “mouse” the hook using wire, but a latch is likely much more convenient.
U-Bolt style wire rope clips are one of the most commonly used accessories in the world of rigging. They can be found in many lifting and non-lifting applications. They have the advantage of being a quick installation and allows adjustment of the wire rope.
Some common applications include winch lines, crane hoist lines, suspension cables, barrier cables, guy wires and many more. However, it is critical that the user know there are differences between a forged steel wire rope clip and a malleable cast iron clip.
Recently, an operator of an overhead crane had been using a chain sling attached to the hook of a crane and was setting it up into a single choker hitch to pick up and turn over a steel frame that was lying horizontally on two sawhorses.
The hook on the sling did not have a safety latch.
According to ASME B30.10, a latch is a mechanical device used to close the throat opening of a hook.
The purpose of the latch is simply to reduce the possibility of the rigging becoming detached from the hook, primarily in slack conditions. The use of a hook with a latch does not preclude the inadvertent detachment of a slack sling or a load from the hook.