All You Need to Know About Destructive Testing

Destructive testing may seem like something you don’t need to worry about, trusting your equipment will stick by you. However, you need to know that you and your crew are always safe when using any type of Lifting & Rigging equipment, be it:  Wire rope, Fibre rope, or Lifting Chain while on the job. Making sure your equipment has been Tested to meet the required loads your rigging can handle is vital.

Let’s look at:

  • Who may need this type of testing as well as who performs it
  • What exactly it is and encompasses
  • When it is done
  • Where the testing takes place
  • Why destructive testing is required


The people who regularly use any form of rigging (Wire rope, Fibre rope, Lifting chain and other fittings) need to know that the equipment they are using complies with the relevant Safety Factors as defined in the Australian Stands for that Rigging. People who use these products are usually in the offshore energy industry such as oil or gas, transportation, or the construction or mining industries.


Destructive testing is a form of tensile testing that applies a load to an item until a complete failure (or destruction) occurs. The details of this test are then recorded. This allows the users of the item being tested to understand how it will react when put under stress and at what point it will actually fail, plus how it acts when it does fail. In this way, they know what to expect when using the wire rope, fibre rope, chain, or fittings while on the job.


Destructive testing can be carried out for a number of reasons, some are listed as follows:

  1. When a new item has been designed and the engineer or designer needs to know it will break/fail at the load that it has been designed for.
  2. If the client or end user needs to check what the fatigue life of an existing item is, i.e. a rigging component that has been in use for a significant amount of time, and the client needs to check if its use over time has weakened the item more than their acceptable levels or more than the standard allows
  3. In order to comply with some Third Party inspection bodies (i.e. DNV-GL), the components used need to have a section destruct tested and recorded prior to being used in lifting applications
  4. At time of manufacture, the manufacturer will have a section of the item destruct tested and recorded to make sure that the breaking load complies with their requirements.


This type of testing is performed in a controlled environment. Usually at approved testing laboratories. This is so that the trained personnel that carry out the testing remain safe and so that the results of the tests are recorded accurately. The facility will record all of the data and present the certificate of testing to the client stating said results. 


Probably the most common reason for Destructive testing is to make sure the rigging and lifting components meet their specific equipment standards (Australian Standards, DNV-GL, EN, International etc…). These standards dictate certain safety factors that Lifting and Rigging equipment must meet before it can be used for lifting, pulling or other applications.

To make sure that the equipment being used meets these safety factors, Destruction tests are carried out on the items to understand where the breaking load is. From there the working load limit (WLL) can be calculated for that item.

For example, Wire rope has a safety factor of 5:1 as per Australian Standard 1666.1 & 2 – 2009.

Our 13mm 6×36 EIPS Galvanized Wire rope has a minimum breaking load of 12.02 Tonne

Applying the safety factor of 5:1 to this would indicate that this 13mm Wire rope has a WLL of 2.4 Tonne

Keep in mind this does not include any other factors that need to be accounted for (Swage Factor, Angle of lifting, etc…) as stated in the standard.

The Team at Franklin Offshore Australia is well trained in providing destructive testing on wire rope, fibre rope, chain, and fittings no matter the industry in which they are being used. We are able to carry out destruction testing up to 700 Tonne, and offer NATA Endorsed certification for all equipment tested.

If you require testing on the equipment you use, call +61 (08) 9410 6000 today or email us to arrange your testing.


destructive testing