A new safety innovation for rigging and handling

In the great Aussie spirit of invention, four scaffolders with extensive experience in the field have come up with a great new innovation in rigging safety aids, the TAG-EX.

When working on a construction or maintenance site, a dogman, rigger or scaffolder will need to catch on to a tagline, the rope that must be attached to any rigged load in order to control its movement by hand.

One of the biggest safety risks in rigging is placing yourself under any suspended load, and this practice is so dangerous that most companies have strict life-saving rules that prevent workers from doing so… in theory.

Sometimes in the course of their duties riggers cannot avoid getting under a suspended load, or at least in the load shadow (the area under a load into which that load could fall and cause damage if dropped), and it’s usually because they need to catch onto the tagline to guide the lifted load into landing position.

This creates many problems for safety administration, and sometimes results in dismissals, aside from the very real risk of crushing injuries in the rare event of a dropped load incident.

Rising Fast is a new company, founded in 2013 by working scaffolders Shaun Cottone, Aaron Ellis, Peter Ellis and Matthew Smith.

The TAG-EX is a tagline extension arm, a mechanical extension that allows a dogman or directed worker to get a hold on the tagline without having to walk into the load shadow.

Rising Fast director Shaun Cottone said he could see this problem occurring on a daily basis, and that on asking the person at risk why they had walked under the load, the inevitable reply would come: “How else can I get the tagline?”

Wanting to make a difference and improve safety by looking after his mates on site, Cottone invented the TAG-EX, an extension designed for clipping on to the side of a lifting cage.

The TAG-EX is 100 per cent Australian made and owned.

It is a permanently or temporarily attached mechanical arm used to protect riggers, dogman, scaffolders and any other workers working with suspended loads. It is attached to any lifting device or object that has the potential to be lifted.

TAG-EX folds out in the deployed position from the stowed position to provide an attachment point for the tagline, at a much safer distance from the load when suspended and allows the worker to freely grasp and handle the tagline while remaining outside the line of fire of falling objects and the suspended load.

TAG-EX can also be used to walk the load when at ground level, when used with a mobile crane. It can be used to control the load as a steering arm to position the load when landing, manipulate the load in tight spaces, push and pull the load and general handling of the load all while being at a safe distance from the suspended load keeping the dogman or rigger safe from pinch points and crushes.

TAG-EX can be attached permanently to such items as lifting cages, stillages, gas bottle trolleys, generation equipment, man cages, sea containers, skip bins and many other types of lifted load.

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