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Ensuring Workplace Safety: The Importance of Proper OSHA Chain and Sling Hoist Testing

In today’s industrial landscape, workplace safety is paramount. Proper testing and inspection of lifting equipment, such as hoists, chains, and slings used in heavy load handling operations, play a critical role in preventing accidents and ensuring the well-being of workers. In this article, we’ll delve into the world of OSHA lifting device testing, exploring the requirements, safety precautions, common problems, and the factors influencing sling safety.

Understanding OSHA Requirements

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) establishes guidelines that govern the use of lifting equipment, including hoists, chains, and slings. OSHA requires thorough testing and inspection of these components to ensure they’re in optimal condition. Lifting device testing is not just a regulatory obligation but a means to safeguard lives. OSHA does indeed require slings to be inspected daily before use.

Daily Sling Inspections: A Must

One of the fundamental aspects of lifting device testing is the daily inspection of slings before use. OSHA mandates that slings must be thoroughly examined for any signs of wear, damage, or deformities. This daily ritual acts as a frontline defense, identifying potential issues that could compromise the safety of lifting operations.

Safety Precautions for Sling Usage

When working with chains and slings, adherence to safety precautions is vital. Workers must be trained to understand the proper methods of handling and attaching slings to loads. Overloading, sudden jerks, and improper angles can all lead to catastrophic failures. Training programs and clear communication protocols are crucial in maintaining a safe working environment.

Common Problems That Halt Sling Usage

Even with proper inspections and precautions, issues may arise that warrant taking a sling out of service. Two common problems include:

    • Visible Wear and Tear: If a sling displays fraying, cuts, or any visible damage, it must be immediately removed from service. Ignoring such signs can lead to sudden failures during lifting operations.
    • Inadequate Load Identification: Each sling has a specific weight capacity. Failure to accurately identify the load’s weight and choosing the appropriate sling can lead to overloading and potential accidents.

Factors Influencing Sling Safety

Sling safety depends on various factors:

    • Sling Angle: The angle at which the sling is used affects its capacity. Angles significantly deviating from vertical can reduce the sling’s lifting capacity, potentially leading to failure.
    • Sling Material and Type: Different slings are designed for specific purposes. Understanding the characteristics of various sling materials (chain, wire rope, synthetic) and configurations (single leg, double leg, multiple leg) is crucial for safe hoisting.
    • Environmental Factors: Harsh environments, such as extreme temperatures or exposure to corrosive substances, can compromise sling integrity over time.

Manufacturing Statistics: The Consequences of Improper Testing

The importance of proper hoist testing is evident in manufacturing statistics. Studies show that a significant percentage of chain and sling hoist failures can be traced back to inadequate testing and inspections. These failures not only result in injuries but also cause financial losses for companies due to halted operations, equipment damage, and legal implications.

In the world of lifting operations, the stakes are high, and safety is non-negotiable. OSHA’s regulations regarding lifting devices, hoists, chains, and slings testing exist to ensure that workers are protected, and operations run smoothly. By adhering to the recommended inspection frequencies, practicing safety precautions, addressing common problems, and considering the factors that influence lifting device safety, companies can mitigate the risk of accidents and create a secure working environment.

For more information on OSHA testing requirements or on how you can provide an easy, efficient, accurate, and portable testing solution, visit https://pridetool.com/products/ or contact us today.


Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Standard Number: 1910.184,


Chain and Sling Hoist Workplace Operational Safety

In every business, effective safety procedures and processes ensure employee and customer safety, and should always be a first priority. In this article, we will cover safety precautions, hazards, and guidelines related to chain hoists and lifting slings. We will also address common questions such as safety precautions when using a chain hoist, the hazards associated with chain hoists, safety in lifting slings including basic slinging, and sling safety guidelines.

Chain Hoist Safety Precautions

When using a chain hoist in industrial settings, it’s crucial to prioritize safety to prevent accidents and injuries. Here are some essential safety precautions to follow:

    • Inspection: Before each use, inspect the chain hoist for any signs of damage or wear. Check the chain, hooks, and other components for cracks, corrosion, or deformities.
    • Weight Limits: Always adhere to the manufacturer’s recommended weight limits for the hoist. Overloading the hoist can lead to equipment failure and accidents.
    • Proper Training: Ensure that operators are properly trained to use the chain hoist. Operating the hoist requires skill and understanding of safety protocols.
    • Secure Attachments: Make sure the load is properly attached to the hook and that the hook is securely fastened to the hoist. Improper attachment can lead to load drops.
    • Clear Area: Clear the area beneath the hoisted load to prevent anyone from walking or working underneath it.
    • Even Load Distribution: Ensure that the load is evenly distributed on the hook. Imbalanced loads can cause the hoist to tip or fail.
    • Communication: Maintain clear communication between the operator and any workers involved in the lifting operation. Use signals or radios if needed.
    • Avoid Swinging Loads: Prevent swinging of the load, as it can lead to collisions and accidents. Control the lifting and lowering process carefully.

Hazards of Chain Hoists

Chain hoists, while highly efficient, come with potential hazards that need to be recognized and mitigated:

    • Load Drops: Insufficiently secured loads can detach from the hook, causing damage and endangering workers below.
    • Equipment Failure: Overloading the hoist or using damaged equipment can lead to hoist failure, dropping the load unexpectedly.
    • Slipping or Snagging: Chains can slip or snag during lifting operations, causing accidents or damaging the load.
    • Inadequate Training: Operators without proper training might make errors in operating the hoist, leading to accidents.
    • Electrical Hazards: Electric chain hoists pose electrical shock risks if not used or maintained correctly.

Lifting Sling Safety and Basic Slinging

Lifting slings are vital components of material handling. Understanding basic slinging techniques is crucial for safe operations:

    • Selecting the Right Sling: Choose the appropriate sling material (wire rope, chain, synthetic) based on the load, environment, and lifting method.
    • Inspecting Slings: Regularly inspect slings for signs of wear, damage, or deterioration. Replace damaged slings immediately.
    • Proper Angles: Maintain proper angles between the sling legs and the load to ensure even weight distribution.
    • Securing the Load: Ensure the load is stable and balanced before lifting. Use padding or protective materials to prevent damage to the load and the sling.
    • Avoid Sharp Edges: Sharp edges can damage slings. Use edge protectors to prevent cutting or abrasion.
    • Sling Protection: Protect slings from chemicals, heat, and other harmful elements that could compromise their strength.

Safety Guidelines for Slings

Following safety guidelines is essential when using lifting slings:

    • Capacity Limits: Adhere to the manufacturer’s weight ratings and capacity limits for the chosen sling.
    • Avoid Knots: Knots can significantly weaken slings. Never tie knots in lifting slings.
    • Clear Communication: Establish clear communication between the lifting team members to coordinate movements and actions.
    • Use Proper Hardware: Ensure that hooks, shackles, and other hardware used with slings are suitable for the task and properly rated.
    • No Sling Overloads: Never overload slings or use them in ways they weren’t designed for.
    • Proper Storage: Store slings in a dry, cool area away from direct sunlight, chemicals, and moisture.

Let’s face it. Safety is everyone’s concern both in the work place and at home. Many of these guidelines may seem to be common sense, but too often employees find themselves trying to do too many things at one time or are in hurry to get a project done.  These distractions can make employees forget these basic guidelines and can lead to potential property and equipment damage, and worse – employee injuries.

Take time to review these guidelines with your employees and set them up with a safe work environment and processes to follow. For questions about this article or to discuss how Pride Tool can assist with your hoist testing program, visit https://pridetool.com/products/ or contact us at pride@pridetool.com.

New Talent and Equipment at Pride Tool

Cincinnati’s Leading Machine Shop Is Positioned to Serve the Industry’s Fabrication Needs.

Cincinnati, OH (August 22, 2023); Cincinnati’s leading machine shop, Pride Tool, under the new ownership of Scott Schwarz, has updated equipment and enhanced the staff with additional CNC technicians to better serve the USA Manufacturing Industry.

The acquisition of Pride Tool by Scott Schwarz was completed in the fall 2022. “When I heard about the opportunity to acquire Pride Tool Co. Inc., I was immediately interested,” stated Mr. Schwarz a US Navy Veteran. “This shop was the perfect size and had all the right people and equipment. It felt like my perfect vision of the business I wanted to purchase.”

Mr. Schwarz utilized the first quarter of his ownership to analyze the business, assess operational efficiencies, inspect existing equipment and tooling. His research led to investments in new horizontal milling capacity, fiber-laser cutting, press brake forming, and other vital equipment. He also evaluated staffing against similar businesses in the same industry and found that the Pride Tool team was highly. trained, capable and are poised to achieve great things. Additional investments in infrastructure, machine programming, and additional technical specialists will afford the greatest opportunity for Pride Tool’s success. The Cincinnati machine shop supplies B2B metal fabricated and machined precision parts for companies in a multitude of industries, including packaging, automotive, aerospace, medical, military, oil and gas, transportation, and others. Pride Tool also holds a patent for a testing apparatus which is designed into a custom lifting-device testing machine. The Pride Tool Test Stand is used for testing new and modified lifting devices such as chain hoists, lifting winches, and chains and slings. “Our Test Stands are an essential appliance anywhere there is a need to lift heavy objects utilizing hoists and slings. OSHA recommends regular testing of lifting devices,” said Mr. Schwarz. “We build two sizes of our Test Stands: a mobile 6-Ton unit, and our most popular 16-Ton unit. Customers tell us that our Test Stand is one of their best investments. It saves them thousands of dollars in outsourced testing and provides ultimate peace- of-mind knowing the equipment needed to test any device anytime is readily available.”

“I’m very excited to take the lead role at Pride Tool, and with the help of a great team here, we can do great things. With the post-COVID thinking around offshoring changing, we are seeing increased demand every month for machined parts and services. My industry operational excellence experience should prove to be invaluable in taking the company to the next level,” he continued.

Read more about the transformation at pridetool.com.

ABOUT Pride Tool: Founded in 1988, Pride Tool is a leading Machine Shop located in Cincinnati, Ohio that specializes in custom-manufactured and precision-made parts for local and North American manufacturing customers. With a 24,000-square-foot machine shop that houses over 80 specialized machines including laser cutters, welding stations, CNC machining centers, lathes, mills, and ID/OD/surface grinding equipment that employ state-of-the-art CAD/CAM modeling and MasterCam software with internal programming capabilities for CNC Machining and CNC Turning processes. Material expertise includes work with stainless steels, carbon steels, aluminum, brass, bronze, copper, exotics, super alloys, plastics, and all grades of tubing and piping.

Finding and Keeping Skilled Machinists – Recruiting the Best Talent in a Post COVID World

While COVID-19 changed a bit of the landscape with people becoming accustomed to working from home, the machining business is not exactly a profession equipped to be performed outside of the foundry. That does not prevent employees from desiring more flexible hours that afford them the ability to meet, mingle, and socialize with friends and family whose careers do offer work from home opportunities.

So how do you go about attracting top talent in the Machining & Fabrication industry?

  1. Get Involved with Local Vo-Tech Schools
  2. Support Local Scholarships
  3. Post Open CNC Machinist Positions, EVERYWHERE
  4. Empower and Promote Internally
  5. Employee Referrals

It is always a good idea to create a good relationship with local Vo-Tech schools. Offering plant tours, internships, and other activities are great ways to encourage youth into the work force. Offering or supporting scholarships at local schools is also a good strategic plan to cultivate potential future employees. While these are great seeds to plant, it will take time to harvest the fruits of your labor.

Next is the tried and true, if you build it they will come route. Post, post, post, everywhere and anywhere. Every job board from monster to LinkedIn. You also can’t forget the industry association boards, technical and local colleges, and local newspapers. All great places to ensure your job posting gets viewed. This is the hardest of all approaches and you rarely get the best applicants and little to no valid background data that can easily or readily be verified.

Empowering your workforce is always an effective way to build your company’s reputation. Who doesn’t want to work for a company that trusts and empowers its employees? This includes offering employee’s development opportunities that promotes employee engagement that also fulfills company goals.

It also requires full buy-in at the organizational level through a common leadership language. Break the mold by providing equitable access to development opportunities to all employees. Companies that reserve growth and training only for those deemed “high-potentials” quickly result in poor morale and participation.

Now that you have an empowered workforce, it is time to reward them by encouraging them to be brand ambassadors. There is also no one better at identifying the skill gaps than your current employees doing the work. Collaborate with your teams at every opportunity, especially when you need to fill positions.

For managers and HR professionals, this is an excellent time to identify emerging skills among other team members. Instead of replacing outgoing employees with new employees, help lift employees to grow and fill higher-level positions. This is where empowerment and trust are built. It also encourages team members to be more likely to activate their own professional networks to refer their contacts to join the company.

Recruiting doesn’t need to be hard when your employees have been professionally and personally helped to grow in the company. Keep your teams involved in the recruitment process so that they feel comfortable reaching out to their valuable connections.

We recommend all of the above to keep your workforce motivated, positions filled, and culture warm and inviting. All these attributes will create the type of environment anyone would find hard to resist. Lastly, be sure to always promote from within when filling positions. You never know when your next new hire can be filled with the help of a current teammate!

Common Rigging Problems and How to Prevent Them

One of the most frequent mistakes in rigging is failing to properly inspect and maintain the lifting equipment. Therefore, it is essential for rigging professionals to understand the do’s and don’ts of rigging heavy loads for lifting.

Rigging crews play a pivotal role where heavy equipment needs to be lifted and moved. From construction sites to manufacturing facilities, these crews face unique challenges that require careful consideration. In this blog post, we’ll explore the world of rigging, focusing on how the appropriate use of chain and sling hoists can not only safeguard the crew and equipment but also boost efficiency and cut costs. Let’s dive in!

Rigging is a necessary activity in industries such as construction, manufacturing, shipbuilding, and even entertainment. Whether it’s lifting steel beams, assembling machinery, or setting up stages for concerts, rigging professionals ensure that heavy objects are moved safely and effectively.

As long as heavy objects need to be lifted, rigging expertise will be in demand and the demand for skilled riggers remains steady across industries. Riggers who stay up-to-date with safety regulations and master the use of advanced equipment, like chain and sling hoists, will find themselves with valuable and sought-after skills.

Riggers are responsible for securing loads, attaching lifting equipment, and ensuring that the entire lifting process is executed seamlessly. Their knowledge of different types of hoists, slings, and chains is crucial for maintaining safety and efficiency.

A rusty chain or a frayed sling might seem minor, but they can lead to disastrous consequences during a lift. Lifting heavy equipment is inherently risky, making regular inspection and maintenance a critical function. Without the right precautions, there’s a potential for dropped loads, damaged equipment, and even injuries or fatalities. This is where proper training and equipment come into play.

Inadequate training and poor communication can lead to rigging failures. Ignoring load limits, improper sling angles, and using damaged equipment are all recipe for disaster. The good news is that these failures are preventable.

The most important rule during rigging and lifting operations is to follow protocols diligently. This includes conducting pre-lift meetings, ensuring everyone is clear about their roles, adhering to load limits, and maintaining constant communication.

OSHA mandates regular hoist testing to ensure that lifting equipment is in optimal working condition. Hoists should be load tested at 125% of their rated capacity and undergo periodic inspections. Adhering to OSHA’s requirements not only ensures compliance but also safeguards the crew and equipment.

Mastering the art of rigging is a blend of expertise, attention to detail, and commitment to safety. By understanding the unique challenges rigging crews face, acknowledging the risks, and following best practices—especially when it comes to using chain and sling hoists—these crews can ensure smoother operations, protect their team members, and contribute to the overall success of their projects. See our prior articles on Proper OSHA Chain and Sling Hoist Testing and Chain and Sling Hoist Safety Precautions for more details on how to keep crews, customers, and equipment safe.

Remember, every lift is an opportunity to prioritize safety and efficiency through proper rigging techniques and equipment usage. For information on cost effective equipment to assist in monitoring chain and sling hoist’s reliability. Visit https://pridetool.com/products/6-ton-hoist-test-stand/ or contact Pride Tool at pride@pridetool.com.

How welding and social media are the perfect couple

The Perfect Couple – Welding & Social Media!

The powerful tools used in welding to marry together metal plates can be compared to the power behind effective social media communications and how it unites businesses with their customers.

The imagery born from a photo shoot of welding projects is absolutely mesmerizing! This makes for exciting and highly impactful posts on social media, especially for professional welders when done correctly.

Many articles have been written on the topic. According to BakersGas.com, “Two-way communication and a strong marketing strategy will engage your customers or clients and keep them interested… “.

With endless opportunities from YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and even a personal blog, professional welders can build a network by showcasing their work, sharing expertise, and demonstrating their unique strengths. Each platform provides the ability to upload amazing photographs of projects as well as engaging video footage.

While the exciting photos and videos collected will attract industry professionals and the general public alike, you can’t go wrong. Enhancing word-of-mouth advertising and staying top of mind in the mind of potential clients is the most cost-effective way to improve sales.

So, keep your camera batteries charged, and have a member of the team with a steady hand (or gimble) available when you are ready to begin your next welding project. You never know when that eye-catching image or footage will be just the ticket a potential customer needs to partner with you.

As you can see, Welding and Social Media are undeniably a perfect couple when growing business in industrial manufacturing, machining, and fabrication.

Empowering Employees to Improve Business Processes and Bottom Line

For many companies, the thought of empowering employees to improve the business processes and increase the bottom line is impossible.

For at least one Machine Job Shop in Cincinnati, Ohio, this is exactly what they are doing. Professional CNC Machinists, CNC Programmers, Carbide Saw Grinders, and Welders in the industry are getting more and more difficult to find and retain. To attract more professionals in the field, Pride Tool empowers employees to do their best. Trusting employees and earning their respect, while providing the tools needed to get their job done are the keys to starting the process.

Start by empowering your employees. It requires that employers trust in the employee’s ability to perform the work. Help employees make good decisions. Train employees to understand the impact of their decisions, so that they are willing to take measured risks. It is extremely important to use mistakes as learning opportunities for improved decisions in the future.

The common reasons why companies do not empower their employees are:
  • Poor leadership and management
    • Lack of clear goals and objectives
    • Lack of trust in employees
    • Fear of losing control
    • Resistance to change
  • Inadequate communication and training
  • Inadequate systems and processes in place to support the empowerment
  • Limited resources and budget

The first step in empowering employees is believing they can handle the work. Once managers show they trust their employees and provide clear goals and objectives employees are encouraged to act. To reinforce their effectiveness, it is important that employees must have the proper training and an open channel of communication for proper decision-making. These actions allow employees to be independent thinkers and to develop an entrepreneurial mindset.

When employees are empowered, they are engaged. When employees are engaged, their hands-on knowledge of how processes actually flow is price-less. Developing improvements that can have a significant impact on strengthening a company’s bottom line is greatly improved.

Employing employee empowerment is a simple matter of building mutual trust with your employees. When you provide the right tools with clear instruction, guidance, and training as needed, you demonstrate your confidence in their ability to succeed. The better the company does, the better everyone does. Once you have trust, empowerment is easy. You can see the culture of the company change and with it the profit margins increase while the cost ratio decreases. What more can you ask for?

Scott Schwarz Owner / President of Pride Tool

This makes it sound easy, it really isn’t. What worthwhile venture isn’t entangled with some level of challenge? Employee empowerment and the results it can produce are definitely worth the investment.

Try it in your business. Small steps starting with communication and training could open the keys to the kingdom!

Let us know how you are improving your business processes and if employee empowerment has fueled your progress.

Pride Tool Announces Accreditation from Better Business Bureau

Cincinnati, OH (July 17, 2023) – Pride Tool, a Metal Fabrication and Machine Shop located at 10200 Wayne Avenue in Cincinnati, announced today that it has met the Standards for trust required by the Better Business Bureau and is now a BBB Accredited Business.

“Receiving the BBB Seal validates Pride Tool’s commitment to quality and honesty behind every transaction we make. We are excited to receive this BBB accreditation as proof that we strive to always maintain an unwavering commitment to our customers.” Stated Scott Schwarz President/Owner, of Pride Tool.

For 35 years, Pride Tool has worked to instill trust in its customers. BBB Accreditation means Pride Tool has adhered to – and contractually agrees it will continue to adhere to – BBB’s Standards: build trust, advertise honestly, tell the truth, be transparent, honor promises, be responsive, embody integrity, and safeguard privacy.

The BBB Seal tells the community about Pride Tool’s elite status as part of a select group of local business leaders that not only support BBB’s mission but also make it their own to build a marketplace built on trust by doing ethical business and treating the public in a fair and honest manner.