Winch Safety Should Be Take SeriouslyWritten by Elizabeth Puckett | 1 Comment »
Here are some quick safety tips for operating a winch. Print them off and keep them in your dash or email them to a friend who needs to learn more about taking winch safety more seriously. Before you head to a fun day of off-roading, or if you have a serious 4X4 event to dominate, make sure you know how to safely use your winch in case you find yourself in a pinch.
Learn to Use Your Winch
This is the first and most basic safety tip that will keep you safe while using your winch. Proper operation is key to avoiding accidents and injuries. Thoroughly read over the owner’s manual for your model to learn to operate all features — each winch will come with a different set of instructions.
Inspect the Winch
From time to time, it is important to check your winch for function BEFORE you are relying on it on the spot. Check to make sure all bolts are tightened to spec, do a visual for any damaged parts, and do a test cycle in a controlled situation.
While Winching, Make Sure You Have Cleared the Area
When the winch is in operation, don’t let people stand in the area. Also, do not step over the cable or rope, and don’t let anyone do so either. Because cable failure is always possible, a person could be seriously injured if it snaps while under load. Stay away from the cable under load to avoid injury or death.
Check the Cable Frequently
Cable, straps, and rope should all be checked very frequently to ensure reliability and safety. If fraying or any kind of damage is spotted, replace it before the next use – do NOT take your chances with a damaged rope.
Have Proper Working Conditions
When using your winch, make sure the area is well lit, free of flammables, and clear of any objects that could cause you to trip and fall. Make sure you are also dressed appropriately for the job, don’t wear loose clothing or jewelry that could get caught in the gears — and keep hair longer than ear length pulled back! Always use leather gloves when handling wire/rope.