• Published: 3 Jun 2024

IADC - Fall from height whilst descending derrick ladder and harnessed

IADC fall from ladder
IADC fall from ladder

Cause & Consequence

  • Fall from height

Description of Incident

Injured person (IP) had just completed untying a double stand of drill pipe that was lashed to the derrick. IP

connected full body harness to the cable sleeve of the fall-arrest system and started to descend the derrick ladder

when his foot slipped on a rung, causing him to fall 6-7 ft. (approx. 2 m) to the intermediary platform below.


The installed fall-arrest system failed to stop IP’s fall over a 6-7ft. distance.The fall-arrest manufacturer’s technical specifications indicate that it may not stop a fall immediately and thata minimum clearance of 7ft. (2m) is required between the user’s feet and the surface below for the system to stop the fall of an average person.

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Good Practice Guidance

Always maintain three points of contact (with hands and feet), while ascending or descending a ladder and to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the use, inspection and maintenance of fall protection equipment.

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