Roof Fall Protection Systems: Benefits of Portable Guardrails

roof fall protection systems

Roof Fall Protection Systems: Benefits of Portable Guardrails

As a safety manager, each decision you make is critical for ensuring a safe workplace for your employees. You not only need to keep up to date with current OSHA laws, but determine the best methods for keeping your workers safe. One of the best ways to do that is by installing roof fall protection systems, specifically a non-penetrating system.

According to OSHA, “nearly 6.5 million people work at approximately 252,000 construction sites across the nation on any given day,” and thousands of fatalities occur annually. The highest number of fatalities and injuries occur because of falls from heights. OSHA warns that failing to use a roof fall protection system is a major cause of these injuries. They recommend installing a roof railing that meets the specifications laid out in the OSHA guidelines. Having a rooftop fall protection system is not just critical for safety – it’s required by law.

When deciding whether to use permanent or non-penetrating roof fall protection systems, it is important to look at the benefits of each system. Today, we’re going to take a look at the four major benefits of using portable guardrails instead of permanent ones.


The main reason companies prefer non-penetrating roof fall protection systems over permanent systems is that they keep rooftops intact. There is no need to drill or sacrifice the integrity – or the warranty – of your roof. Durable, non-penetrating guardrail systems are designed with cast iron bases that hold rails safely in place. Since the bases are spaced feet apart, the system is durable, safe, and OSHA-compliant, while at the same time keeping the roof’s integrity in place.

On the other hand, a permanent roof protection system requires workers to drill into the roof to connect the fall protection system to the surface, often causing leaks and nullifying the warranty. Plus, installation of permanent systems requires an extensive amount of time, and re-installation requires breaking through the rooftop surface and resealing.

Quick Installation

One of the conveniences of working with non-penetrating roof fall protection systems is how easily and quickly you can install them. With two installers, you can set up hundreds of feet of guardrails in less than two hours. A good, portable system will come with easy-to-read instructions that guide workers through a speedy installation. A quick installation means the work crew can get right to work, focusing on the task in front of them. This efficient use of time results in the company saving not just time, but money as well. Quick installation also benefits you when you have a job with strict time constraints.

Ideal for New Construction Sites

If you have temporary construction on your property, quality, non-penetrating, roof fall protection systems are ideal to protect your worksite. Because non-penetrating guardrails install quickly, setup won’t cut into the valuable time you need to finish the construction job. And since the system is non-penetrating, you can easily remove and reconfigure as necessary once the job is done.

No Need for Tools

A well-designed non-penetrating roof fall protection system is designed so that you won’t need tools to install it. The pieces connect, snap, and then finally secure with the locking mechanism. All of this is accomplished without a single tool. The combination of a cast iron base and the unique way the rails lock into it makes the guardrail system OSHA-compliant, despite the fact that no additional tools are necessary. It is also more convenient for installers to work without having to carry tool bags onto the site when they set up the guardrail. All they need is what’s included in the package, which makes the job much easier.

Investing in a roof fall protection system is an important part of keeping workers safe. Its ease of installation and compliance with OSHA guidelines will save you time and money, and give you peace of mind every time an employee or contractor goes up on your roof. For more information about roof fall protection, contact BlueWater today.

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