Questions and Answers on Rope Rescue Equipment

When should I retire my equipment?

 A product must be retired when:

  • It is over 10 years old and made of plastic or textiles
  • It has been subjected to a major fall or load
  • It fails to pass inspection
  • Its reliability is in question
  • Its entire history is not known (e.g. found or second-hand product)
  • When it becomes obsolete due to changes in legislation, standards, technique or incompatibility with other equipment, etc.

Destroy retired equipment to prevent further use. 

Access Rescue Provides Inspection Services

Legislative Compliance requires inspection and documentation of all PPE and Rescue Equipment. This must be completed by a Competent Inspector. We utilize our comprehensive PPE-management system to ensure, in part:

  • All PPE meets Ministry of Labour Requirements for your Industry and Scope of Work.
  • All PPE is in good-repair and operational within manufacturer's specifications, communiques and directives.
  • All PPE is compatible with auxillary equipment being used for work.
  • All inspections are complete and documented. 

Contact Us for an Inspection

What is the lifetime of my Petzl equipment?

 For plastic or textile products, the maximum lifetime is ten years from the date of manufacture (See: How can I find out the age of my Petzl PPE?.)

The lifespan of metal products is not limited.
Warning: An unusual event may require you to retire a product after only one use. This may involve the type and intensity of use, or the environment in which it is used: aggressive environments, sharps, extreme temperatures, chemicals...

What is PPE?

 PPE is Personal Protective Equipment, equipment worn or carried by the user.
PPE is classified in three categories:

Category 1: minor hazards, light mechanical impacts, solar radiation 

 Category 2 : serious hazards 

Category 3 : major or deadly hazards


 PPE helps protect a person from deadly or serious health hazards. It includes all equipment designed for protection from long falls: rope clamps, descenders, harnesses, lanyards, webbing, slings, ropes, energy absorbers, carabiners, pulleys, swivels, rigging plates, ice axes, snow stakes and pitons. It excludes anchor points that are an integral part of a structure.

How can I find out the age of my Petzl PPE?

All our PPE products are identified by a serial number. This number may be marked in a number of ways: laser, engraving, label, etc. It allows us to identify our products.  To find out the year of manufacture, refer to this detailed serial number in the following manner: Example for recent PPE: 09 365 AB 1 234

  • 09 corresponds to the year of manufacture
  • 365 corresponds to the day of manufacture in that year
  • AB is the code of the person who inspected the product
  • 1234 is the individual product number

How should I store my equipment?

Clean and dry your equipment, if necessary. Store your equipment in a temperate, dry place protected from UV rays and chemicals.

What is the inspection process of PPE?

In addition to the inspection before each use, an in-depth inspection of your PPE must be carried out by a competent inspector. The frequency of the in-depth inspection must be governed by applicable legislation, and the type and intensity of use. Petzl recommends an inspection at least once every 12 months. To help maintain product traceability, do not remove any markings or labels.  

How can I label or identify a sling?

The chemical make-up of markers, paints, adhesive tapes, and stickers may be incompatible with nylon or polyester. These chemicals can weaken the fibers and alter the structure and strength of textile products.
As a precaution, Petzl recommends using the identification label, or the end of the non-load bearing excess webbing, to mark a product.

Check Out "Choosing a Carabiner"