Tech Talk Blog

Comparing Portable Guardrail Systems

base plate tileOther than price, what is the main difference between the portable guardrail offered by competing manufacturers?  After all, most non-penetrating rooftop guardrail consists of yellow, metal railing sections that are secured by a heavy bases resting on the roof surface.  Although portable guardrail systems may look very similar, the main differentiating factor comes where one might least expect it—base plate design.

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Rooftop Safety Railing Perimeter Planning Guide

LORGUARDFreestanding safety railing is one of the simplest forms of rooftop fall protection.  Unlike horizontal lifelines or single point anchors, which require worker tie-off, a rooftop guardrail system requires very little of its user.  Employees don’t need to wear a harness, connect to an anchor point, or receive training in the safe use of the system.  That said, you’ll need to do some planning prior to installing freestanding rooftop safety railing systems to ensure worker safety and OSHA compliance.  This post serves as a guide to determining baseplate and railing section requirements when installing our LORGUARD safety railing. 

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Design Contrast of the LORGATE Loading Dock Fall Protection System

LORGATE Loading Dock Fall Protection SystemFrom loading docks to ramped walls to raised access platforms, Diversified Fall Protection can design, fabricate, and install a guardrail system that protects your entire loading dock facility.  And according to OSHA’s 1910-regulation on general industry requirements, some form of fall protection is required along a leading edge where there is an elevation change of equal to or greater than four (4) feet – a dangerously typical predicament in loading dock environments. Enter the LORGATE, Diversified Fall Protection’s Loading Dock Fall Protection system.

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Portable Guardrail Provides Non-Penetrating Fall Protection System for Rubber Membrane Roof

The return of warmer weather means additional rooftop maintenance activity.  Repairing roof leaks, HVAC equipment and rooftop pipe rack systems place maintenance personnel at greater risk for falls. Each of these activities falls under OSHA 1910 (General Industry), which requires fall protection for personnel exposed to unprotected leading edges while working at elevations of four feet or more.  How you choose to protect your employees engaged in rooftop maintenance activities depends on a variety of factors, including the type of maintenance work performed, frequency of access, and the size of the intended coverage area.

Rooftop fall protection can take many forms, ranging from horizontal lifeline and rigid track systems to portable and permanently installed guardrail.  Our recent installation of 1,500 linear feet of portable guardrail for a client in the food processing industry is an excellent case study explaining when and where portable guardrail is an ideal solution for rooftop fall protection applications. 

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Portable Guardrail for Temporary Rooftop Fall Protection Applications

EHS managers are sometimes placed in the awkward position of balancing employee safety requirements with the company’s bottom line.  In short, how do we maintain worker safety in a cost effective manner?  To see this balancing act play out in real life, most of us need look no further than the rooftops at our workplaces.  The roof is a common location for HVAC equipment requiring periodic inspection and maintenance.  Depending on the location of your HVAC installations (e.g., units placed within six feet of an unprotected leading edge), you may require some sort of fall protection to be in compliance with OSHA safety standards.  In our hypothetical scenario, the HVAC system may only require inspection once or twice a year, which in turn may make investing in a permanently installed, custom engineered fall protection system seem like overkill.  Given these facts, what is the best way to ensure worker safety, OSHA compliance, and a sound bottom line?

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Portable Guardrail

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Safety Yellow Portable Guardrail

Although Diversified Fall Protection is perhaps best known for providing engineered, single source, turnkey fall protection solutions, we also manufacture portable guardrail from our plant in Cleveland, Ohio.

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Did You Know?

A fall from an unprotected loading dock can cause serious injury or death?