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Farm and Agricultural Fall Protection

From combine repairs in the field to maintenance on silos and conveyors, un-remediated fall hazards can cause serious injury or death.

Many agricultural-related injuries and fatalities can be avoided with the implementation of a comprehensive fall prevention strategy, which includes a proper mix of fall protection equipment and training.

Whether you’re looking for overhead rigid rail, indoor or outdoor solutions, ladders and ladder safety equipment, or portable systems, Diversified can deliver turnkey fall protection solutions for farming and agricultural applications. Contact us for expert assistance with your fall arrest, fall restraint and fall protection requirements.

Fall Protection Solutions

Design Considerations

Many farm safety hazards are found in non-dedicated work areas. For example, tractors and combines are subject to field breakdowns.

Designated work areas, such as barns, likely have permanently installed fall protection systems to protect workers as they climb on top of combines to perform maintenance and repair tasks. However, a field repair requires the use of a mobile boom arm fall protection system attached to a secondary vehicle such as a flatbed truck.

The processing operations carried out on farms require fall protection systems as well. The vertical storage characteristics of grain silos and storage towers can lead to the buildup of pressure and heat, which, left unchecked, may result in an explosion.

Silos and towers also use fans and related equipment designed to keep the stored material from settling. Maintenance personnel use ladder systems to monitor the moisture, heat, gas, and pressure levels from the top of the silo.

In addition to the fall hazards presented by the ladder system, service personnel may fall from the top of the silo, or through the access panel into the storage area itself. Although most silos have internal escape hatches at their base, workers can suffocate while attempting their own rescue. When combined, explosion risks, fall hazards, and confined space issues can make silos and storage towers extremely dangerous work areas.

Conveyors used to fill grain silos present additional fall hazards. Employees must have a safe means to access elevated conveyor systems as well as fall protection for clearing clogs and jams. In many instances, a permanent ladder system equipped with a vertical lifeline is used to reach the conveyor, with a horizontal lifeline installed so workers can safely traverse the conveyor system.

Truck loading presents yet another set of fall hazards for agricultural workers. Fall protection for loading areas typically consists of L, U, or T-style rigid rail fall arrest systems. Special care must be taken to ensure that falls from trucks can be arrested before a worker comes into contact with the surface below. The typical trailer height (4 feet or 12 feet) must be taken into consideration to design a system that can safely arrest falls without allowing workers to strike the ground. If the loading area is not a concrete pad, calculations must be made to provide a foundation that will support the fall arrest system in the event of a fall.

Diversified Fall Protection has years of experience designing and installing fall protection systems specifically tailored for agricultural applications. Partner with DFP to keep your facility OSHA-compliant and your employees safe.

OSHA Regulations


  • 502(d) 'Personal fall arrest systems.' Personal fall arrest systems and their use shall comply with the provisions set forth below. Effective January 1, 1998, body belts are not acceptable as part of a personal fall arrest system. Note: The use of a body belt in a positioning device system is acceptable and is regulated under paragraph (e) of this section.
  • 502(d)(8) Horizontal lifelines shall be designed, installed, and used, under the supervision of a qualified person, as part of a complete personal fall arrest system, which maintains a safety factor of at least two.
  • 502(d)(9) Lanyards and vertical lifelines shall have a minimum breaking strength of 5,000 pounds (22.2 kN).


  • 1053(a)(18) Fixed ladders shall be provided with cages, wells, ladder safety devices, or self-retracting lifelines where the length of climb is less than 24 feet (7.3 m) but the top of the ladder is at a distance greater than 24 feet (7.3 m) above lower levels.
  • 1053(a)(19) Where the total length of a climb equals or exceeds 24 feet (7.3 m), fixed ladders shall be equipped with one of the following:
  • 1053(a)(19)(i) Ladder safety devices; or
  • 1053(a)(19)(ii) Self-retracting lifelines, and rest platforms at intervals not to exceed 150 feet (45.7 m); or
  • 1053(a)(19)(iii) A cage or well, and multiple ladder sections, each ladder section not to exceed 50 feet (15.2 m) in length. Ladder sections shall be offset from adjacent sections, and landing platforms shall be provided at maximum intervals of 50 feet (15.2 m).

Talk to a fall protection specialist

Tell us about your fall protection needs, and we’ll configure a system that rises to your challenges.