Tech Talk Blog

Guardrail versus cable based lifelines: Which fall safety product is right for you?

For any company with a rooftop, fall protection is essential to keep workers safe during inspections, maintenance or repairs. As a matter of law, OSHA’s General Duty Clause requires employers to provide workplaces free from recognized hazards likely to cause death or serious physical harm.
It’s clear fall protection is something every company should be paying attention to, but understanding the importance of fall safety is just the first step. With so many fall protection systems to choose from, some employers are left wondering what is the best option to protect employees at heights?
In this blog post, we review two of our most popular safety systems: roof guardrails versus cable based lifelines, comparing their pros and cons head-to-head.

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When Customized Guardrail is an Ideal Fall Protection Solution

Commercial and industrial grade HVAC units used to keep personnel and sensitive electronic equipment cool can sometimes be incredibly tall. This creates a situation in which there is no safe way to access the top of the units for maintenance work.

Per OSHA 1910 – accessing the top of these HVAC units – or for that matter, ANY equipment taller than 4 feet – requires fall protection to protect a worker who is on top of the equipment.

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Rooftop Guardrail vs. Horizontal Lifelines–What’s The Best Option?

A while back, we did a post titled “Why A Horizontal Lifeline May Be The Wrong Solution.”  The teaser title was click bait, but if you took the time to read the article, you came away with a simple explanation:  horizontal lifelines aren’t appropriate for low fall clearance applications where the worker can impact the ground before the system arrests the fall.  Today, we’ll compare and contrast two common solutions for rooftop applications–guardrail and horizontal lifelines.

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Skylight Guardrail Fall Protection

Skylight Without Fall ProtectionDuring rooftop safety assessments, we often ask our clients to point out known fall hazards.  The most frequently mentioned rooftop fall hazard is the building’s leading edge.  From here, some clients mention roof elevation changes or access hatches, but most struggle to identify additional fall hazards that may trigger OSHA violations.  Sometimes the most innocuous feature—for example, a skylight—is the most troublesome omission because folks fail to see the potential dangers posed by areas that appear safe. 

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Roof Fall Protection For Data Centers

Today’s digital economy is driven by data centers, and in many areas of the country with large pockets of data center activity, new facilities aren’t going online fast enough to keep up with demand. The data center boom has made the transfer of information more efficient, but it is also exposing maintenance personnel and contractors to new fall hazards that require a creative approach to remediation.  Here’s why….

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HVAC Fall Protection Systems

Commercial and industrial grade HVAC units keep personnel and sensitive electronic equipment cool, but maintenance on units taller than 4 feet requires fall protection per OSHA 1910.  Our recent installation of HVAC guardrail systems at a local airport illustrates the benefits of partnering with a fall protection company that can provide custom, application specific solutions.

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Did You Know?

Falls are among the most common causes of serious work related injuries and deaths?