10 Sep Product Review: Buckingham Manufacturing Step Bolts
Do 5000lb Step Bolts Exist?
One of the biggest sources of frustration in the climbing industry is the use of step bolts as anchor points. Everyone agrees that regular step bolts should not be considered 5000 lb anchors, but they are right in front of us and sometimes the easiest source of anchorage depending on the job that we are doing. However, we know not to attach our fall arrest lanyards to step bolts because there is a good chance that while the lanyards are tensioned the bolt could bend and/or the large gate on the lanyard could slip off the end of the bolt.
Yes! 5000lb Step Bolts Do Exist!
Buckingham Manufacturing has developed a great solution. They produce and distribute 5000lb rated step bolts with a captive eye specifically for a fall arrest lanyard. These have been in their catalogs for years now (they were developed in the 90’s) and some electric utilities are utilizing them, however they have not caught on in a major way in the telecommunications and wireless industries.
My question here is, WHY NOT?
These 5000lb rated step bolts provide the solution we are looking for especially on transmission towers and monopoles. This is something that I hope people will start pushing as requirements for new towers and maybe even to retrofit on existing towers in order to provide climbers with more confidence and a fully rated fall arrest anchor point for the entire route up a tower.
What reason is there not to have these on as many towers as possible?
I would love to hear your feedback.