Tech Talk Blog

Rooftop Horizontal Lifelines: Tip-Over Post Design Protects Workers and Roofs

RoofSafe AnchorInstalling a rooftop horizontal lifeline often eases worries about OSHA compliance, but without exercising proper care, permanently attaching a fall protection system creates the potential for leaks and roof damage.  Although the horizontal lifelines offered by various manufacturers look similar, there are significant differences, most notably in anchor post design.  Your choice of manufacturer has a direct bearing on the size and number of penetrations required during rooftop lifeline installation.  Proper anchor post design can also limit roof damage in the event of a fall. When it comes to lifeline applications for flat and low slope roofs, we recommend Capital Safety’s RoofSafe™ tip-over posts and here’s why….

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Rooftop Guardrail Versus Horizontal Lifelines—Selecting the Proper Fall Protection System

When it comes to rooftop fall protection, a wide range of options ranging from guardrail to horizontal lifelines can ensure worker safety and OSHA compliance. Choosing from multiple strategies means we can tailor a system to meet your specific needs and budget, but this range of choice can cause client confusion too.  This post discusses two of the more common approaches to rooftop fall protection–guardrail and horizontal lifeline systems.

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Rooftop Fall Protection Options

The rooftop maintenance season is now in full swing.  In the eyes of OSHA, your building’s roof is a raised work platform of four feet or more, and as such, all of the unprotected leading edges pose fall hazards.  That said, every rooftop is unique.  The “ideal” rooftop fall protection system installed next door may not suit your specific needs due to differing maintenance requirements.  This post offers a brief introduction to common rooftop fall protection solutions and their many uses.

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Introduction to Commercial Roofing Materials and Installing Fall Protection Systems While Minimizing Leaks

When it comes to exploring rooftop fall protection options, the first item of consideration is the roof itself.  Your fall protection company will want to know if you have a steep or flat roof and the nature of the roofing materials.  If you don’t know the answers to these questions, the engineer charged with performing the site assessment can make these determinations using a supplied picture or when they arrive to assess the fall hazard; however, the ability to describe your roof in an email or phone call always gives your safety engineer a head start.  Let’s take a closer look at the styles of commercial roofs and the challenges they pose during the installation of fall protection systems.

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Winter Weather and Rooftop Fall Protection

With the onset of winter, one might think that there is less of a need to think about fall protection.  In much of the country, the arrival of snow and ice means there is less activity on rooftops.  With proper planning, facilities managers can knock out the vast majority of their regularly scheduled rooftop maintenance during the warmer months.  Although the change of seasons should lessen the demand for new fall protection system installations, every winter we hear from clients with unanticipated emergencies that require safe rooftop access.  We also receive inquiries from clients with buildings in areas of the country known for large accumulations of snow and ice. When you combine routine nasty winters, aggressive wind patterns and a quirky roofline, you end up with a recipe for slips, trips, and falls.

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The Hierarchy of Rooftop Fall Protection

True or false: there exists a “best practice” to mitigate all rooftop fall hazards.  On the surface, one might think this is a false statement because every rooftop poses unique challenges.  The use of the word ALL in our opening statement probably sends up some red flags too.  If you agree with this statement, pat yourself on the back and take a bow because you are correct.  That said, there is a twist—our rationale for agreeing with this statement may come as a bit of a surprise.  To understand our logic here, we need to start with a key point:  there is a difference between a best practice and a “best solution” when it comes to fall protection.

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Did You Know?

Diversified Fall Protection offers Horizontal Lifeline Kits for rooftop applications?