Rope and Sling to Provide Glow Sling Exclusively to UK Market

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Lifting and rigging equipment supplier Rope and Sling Specialists Ltd. (RSS) has secured exclusive distribution rights in the UK for an innovative range of slings featuring reflective strips, manufactured by Miller Weblift. Exclusivity on the product, called Glow, has been granted to RSS until December 31 2018.

The reflective Glow sling concept will be officially launched in the New Year but will be seen at the upcoming LiftEx trade show, which takes place 14-15 November at the MK Arena in Milton Keynes, where both RSS and Miller Weblift will be exhibiting. The first batch has already been manufactured and will be available to customers in advance of the event, organised by the Lifting Equipment Engineers Association (LEEA).

The slings, initially available in 3t and 4t capacity, are produced with reflective yarn, suited to use in low-light conditions, prevalent in tunnels, rail, oil and gas, and other major marketplaces. In fact, it was onsite—indeed, underground—at a major London-based infrastructure project that the product’s founder, Tony Teeder, major account manager London and south at RSS, had the light bulb moment.

Teeder, who is based at the company’s Heathrow depot, said: “I was with representatives of Miller Weblift and the tunnels project where we were working at the time and in my line of sight were both a safety harness and a synthetic sling. I considered the benefits of replicating the reflective stripes on the harness on slings for use in darkened areas. Upon further investigation, it emerged that, first, there was no reason why it couldn’t be done and, second, it wouldn’t conflict with any standards, guidelines, or protocols that the lifting industry must adhere to.”

The origins of Glow are thusly in the rescue harness, marketed as RGH5 Glow by RidgeGear, a Miller Weblift sister company, in 2016. Roger Hamilton-Smith, area sales manager at Unitex UK Ltd, the firms’ parent, said: “Slings are the natural next phase to implement the glow effect and RSS represented the perfect platform from which to move forward with the project. Following a number of extensive joint trials between the companies, we arrived at the final product, which captures Tony’s vision whilst delivering on the quality for which we are renowned.”

Three reflective stripes, which do not negatively impact the strength of the rigging product, run the full length of the sling. Hamilton-Smith explained that adding the reflective yarn gives the slings “a vivid glow property,” making them easily identifiable in low light conditions, leading to inherent safety advantages.

Teeder added: “I’ve never known anything like it in the marketplace before. I’ve seen the finished product and was immediately impressed by the appearance and functionality on projects that have to operate around the clock or away from natural light. It’s potential game-changing for the lifting industry and I’m looking forward to delivering the Glow slings initially to my tunnels contacts but then further afield in due course.”

Steve Hutin, managing director at RSS, said: “Credit to Tony for thinking outside the box and challenging one of the industry’s leading manufacturers to explore the breadth of the reflective yarn. I expect the product to be warmly received at LiftEx; we’re honoured to be exclusively partnering with Miller Weblift as we deliver it to market.”

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