Being in the fall protection equipment industry, we at times see workers acquiring gear in different ways. One way is if you have a type of community locker at your job site. This is where everyone throws their equipment into the same place at the end of the day, and at the beginning of the next day you grab whatever you think might fit you. We leave that up to the company to decide on whether that's a good practice or not. Personally, at Malta Dynamics we think employees should have their own fall protection equipment where they can inspect it before each use. There are opportunities to share gear and if it passes inspection, then you could be ok.
A lot of times when there is a community locker situation everyone is throwing their gear in a bucket, locker or the bed of a truck. Someone just grabs the equipment and throws it on. They aren't going through the proper inspection process or checking to see if it fits properly. We always recommend your employees having their own personal fall protection equipment.
We have seen fall protection equipment on sale on various places such as Facebook Marketplace. We also see it for sale on television shows where people buy pallets of Amazon returns that include fall protection equipment. It's really smart to be extremely careful. Some things that look brand new could be used. Most of the time you do not know the life of that piece of equipment before it gets to you. It's a good idea to be very careful any time you are using equipment that someone has used previously. Until you aren't the person using it anymore you should definitely have a Competent Person inspection performed on that piece of equipment, be informed and pay close attention.