Take a Comprehensive Approach to Fall Protection
Falls from heights and working surfaces are among the leading causes of serious work-related injuries and deaths. Fall protection safeguards employees and company assets from preventable accidents. As part of our roof consulting services, the Technical Assurance team can perform routine rooftop fall protection hazard assessments to help keep your facilities OSHA compliant and maintain safe rooftop working environments. Our two-pronged approach includes both roof condition and fall protection hazard assessments in order to provide a comprehensive understanding of the entire roof system for clients – from both life safety and serviceability standpoints.
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Why Are Rooftop Fall Protection Hazard Assessments Necessary?
OSHA 1910.28(b)(1)(i) requires employers to provide fall protection for employees performing work at heights of 4 feet or more.
The ANSI Z359 fall protection and fall restraint standards address fall protection equipment and systems for an array of fall hazards. IWCA I-14.1 outlines a set of standards to protect workers in the window cleaning industry.
Fall protection will help safeguard valued employees, contractors and partners working on your roof systems.
Legally Protect Company Assets
These solutions will also protect you, the building owner, safety manager or facility manager from serious and extensive legal implications that come with workplace injuries.
Our Approach to Fall Protection Hazard Assessments
At Technical Assurance, we believe that the condition and serviceability of your roof and fall protection system(s) compliance go hand in hand. Our two-pronged approach includes assessing both systems in order to create a comprehensive understanding of how to address maintenance, remediation and/or replacement of the roof comprehensively. The benefits to this approach include:
Time and Cost Efficiencies
- OSHA requires that the fall protection system components be assessed on an annual basis, which means a qualified professional is already spending time on the roof on a regular, annual basis. Incorporating an assessment, regular maintenance and/or preventative maintenance into this same visit by the same qualified professional creates operational efficiencies that impact the condition, life cycle performance and life safety of the roof system, ultimately lowering the assessment costs for the building owner.
- The roof condition assessment may reveal defects or other roof related issues that require repair and/or replacement, which can be performed in tandem with any fall protection hazard remediation efforts.
- Within a roof asset management program, the fall protection data is stored within the same centralized ON-PNT database with the other building system data. This allows the fall protection systems to be included in the annual capital and/or O&M planning and budgeting processes.
Roofing Best Practices
- Focus on good roofing practices when considering fall protection for proper integration of the systems. The performance of the roof can become compromised if it is not considered when dealing with the remediation or installation of fall protection systems.
- The age and condition of a roof system could impact the fall protection system remediation recommendations.
- The access and use of rooftop equipment could negatively impact both the roof and fall protection systems. When equipment maintenance is required, coordination in heavily trafficked areas is necessary in order to minimize damage.
The Role of Fall Hazard Assessments
As part of our roof consulting program, we perform regular visual hazard assessments of existing fall protection equipment. These assessments are not intended to serve as a certification or recertification of fall protection components or equipment. This assessment is solely intended to meet annual evaluation requirements.
1. Identify fall hazards (in immediate and surrounding areas).
- Access – Ladder ascent/descent
- Perimeter Edges – Unprotected leading edges
- Equipment Access – HVAC and air handling systems, solar panels
- Openings – Roof hatches, skylights, and access ladder openings
- Navigation – Parapet walls, pipe racks, pitched roofs
2. Inventory existing fall protection systems and equipment
3. Assign risk values to hazards and prioritize accordingly.
4. Propose solutions.
Inventory and Hazard Assessment
Visual assessment of existing fall protection equipment, and review of existing conditions and suspended access needs to determine if the current systems are in compliance with ANSI 1264.1 and OSHA 29 CFR 1910 Subpart D.
Catalog all fall protection hazard assessment and equipment inventory per building.
The rooftop fall protection hazard assessment report will provide recommendations, design options and estimations of probable cost for hazard remediation with new systems.
Post Report Meeting
Once the report is complete and distributed to the Owner for review, a meeting will be scheduled to review and discuss all findings, recommendations and priorities listed in the report.
Submission of a final report to the Owner.
Collect Assessment Data in One Centralized Location
ON-PNT® allows facility owners to manage building system inventory, condition assessments and ongoing system data within one central location. Fall protection hazard assessment data is also stored within this platform, giving you a comprehensive solution for managing all building system data. This data can give you invaluable insight when it comes time to prepare annual budgets and make decisions about projects to prioritize.
Types of Fall Protection Solutions
A passive restraint system is perhaps the most basic form of fall protection. Passive restraint fall protection systems create barriers that prevent workers from reaching hazardous areas where falls might occur. Examples of passive restraint solutions include:
- Warning line systems
Active fall protection systems require action on the part of the user and are intended to stop workers before they fall by controlling range of motion. These include:
- Safety lanyards
Hazards surrounding the following active and passive restraints identified during our assessment include, but are not limited to:
- Ballasted and Permanently Mounted Railing
- Skylight or Opening Screen/Cover
- Exterior and Interior Mounted Ladder
- Crossover Platform
- Ladder Port or Dock
- Ladder Climbing Safety System
- Horizontal Lifeline
- Cable System
- Roof and/or Wall Anchors
Request a Consultation and Assessment
If you are already partnered with the Technical Assurance team for roof consulting and asset management, we can easily incorporate this service into your plan. If not, request a consultation to see how you can benefit from our unique approach to roof management and regular fall protection hazard assessments.
Download Our Free White Paper: Commercial Roof Asset Life Cycle Management
In this white paper, we’ll be discussing commercial roof life cycle management and how you can properly manage your roof assets with the help of Technical Assurance. We’ll cover the following:
- What is Life Cycle Management?
- Investing in Buildings vs. Spending on Buildings
- The Solution: A Sustainable Life Cycle Management Program
- The Importance of Regular Assessments and Ongoing Repairs
- Triaging Repair and Replacement Projects
- Proactive Assessments and Maintenance