163.003-27 Production tests and examination.§ 163.003-27 Production tests and examination.
(a) General. Each ladder produced under Coast Guard approval must be tested in accordance with this section and subpart 159.007 of this chapter. Steps that fail testing may not be marked with the Coast Guard approval number and each assembled ladder that fails testing may not be sold as Coast Guard approved.
(b) Test No. 1: Steps. Steps must be separated into lots of 100 steps or less. Steps of different types must be placed in separate lots. One step from each lot must be selected at random and tested as described in § 163.003-21(c)(2) except that supports are placed under the step at the points where it would be attached to suspension members in an assembled ladder. If the step fails the test, ten more steps must be selected at random from the lot and tested. If one or more of the ten steps fails the test, each step in the lot must be tested. No step that has any residual deflection after the test may be used in a ladder represented by the manufacturer as Coast Guard approved.
(c) Test No. 2: Ladders. Assembled ladders must be separated into lots of 20 ladders or less. One ladder must be selected at random from the ladders in each lot. The ladder selected must be at least 3 m (10 ft.) long or, if each ladder in the lot is less than 3 m long, a ladder of the longest length in the lot must be selected. The ladder must be tested as prescribed in § 163.003-21(c)(3) except that only a 3 m section of the ladder need be subjected to the static load. If the ladder fails the test, each other ladder in the lot must be tested.
(d) Independent laboratory. Each production test must be conducted or supervised by an independent laboratory. However, if a test is performed more than 4 different times per year, laboratory participation is required only 4 times per year. If the laboratory does not participate in all tests, the times of laboratory participation must be as selected by the laboratory. The times selected must provide for effective monitoring throughout the production schedule.
(e) Visual examination. The visual examination described in § 163.003-21(b) must be conducted as a part of each production test.[CGD 74-140, 46 FR 63291, Dec. 31, 1981, as amended by USCG-2014-0688, 79 FR 58286, Sept. 29, 2014]