The Ins and Outs of Roof Lifeline Systems: Which is Best for Your Job?

OSHA makes it clear that roof safety is non-negotiable: "Each employee on a walking/working surface (horizontal and vertical surface) with an unprotected side or edge which is 6 feet (1.8 m) or more above a lower level shall be protected from falling by the use of guardrail systems, safety net systems, or personal fall arrest systems." However, how you protect workers from falling can vary depending on the circumstances. Roof lifeline systems are one of your fall protection options.

regional map of US

How Regionality Affects Your Roof Fall Protection Plan

Roof fall protection is important no matter where you live, but rooftop risks vary depending upon your region and its weather conditions. How you train your employees, identify dangers, and manage those risks will vary, too.

OSHA lists numerous requirements that apply to all situations; for example: "The employer must ensure each employee on a runway or similar walkway is protected from falling 4 feet (1.2 m) or more to a lower level by a guardrail system.”

Rooftop worker utilizing a horizontal lifeline Rooftop worker utilizing a horizontal lifeline

When to Use Horizontal Lifelines

The Occupational Health & Safety Administration makes it abundantly clear—roof fall protection is non-negotiable. But even with OSHA’s strict requirements, you still have some options when it comes to fall protection systems. This is because every job site is different, and the risk of falling presents itself in different ways from site to site. For example, roof slope, holes and hatches in the roof, and where the leading edge is in relation to the work zone can present different challenges. Fortunately, with options like safety railings, horizontal lifelines, safety nets, and more, you’ve got a lot of choices when it comes to choosing the right fall protection systems for your workspace.

Architectural Series by BlueWaterArchitectural guardrail

Keep Your Campus Aesthetic and Maintain Safety with Custom Safety Railings

An attractive campus starts with beautiful buildings. Even a cursory glance at Architectural Digest’s 50 Most Beautiful Colleges in America makes it abundantly clear: campus architecture—whether classic or contemporary—plays a large part in school perception and culture. It’s no wonder universities and other institutions of higher education spend so much time and money maintaining and restoring their original buildings. Careful consideration is given to new construction and how it fits in, both with the landscape and the existing structures. Planners and designers want to create a unified appearance on campus, an admirable challenge on campuses that likely includes buildings erected over the course of several decades or centuries! Because of this, safety railings and rooftop fall protections might be the furthest thing from their minds.

Guard Rails & Lifelines: Providing the Right Fall Protection System for Your Roof

If you’re a safety manager, keeping your employees healthy and safe is a top priority. To serve that purpose (and to avoid hefty fines), staying compliant with the OSHA regulations on fall protection should be a top priority, especially on commercial rooftops. Fortunately, there are several OSHA-approved solutions available that make staying compliant simple. Since each situation is different, your fall protection system needs to match your individual requirements. Let’s take a look at the two main ways to keep your team out of harm’s way and how you can choose the right system for the job.

Training Seasonal Summer Workers on the Importance of Roof Fall Protection

Roof fall protection is important all year long. But when construction crews and facility managers often have bigger workloads during the warm summer months they hire seasonal workers to help them manage the increased demand. These workers are invaluable to the company and the project, but they may not be as experienced as your full-time employees—and they may not be as familiar with your company's fall safety precautions and the industry's regulations.

It's essential to bring your seasonal workers up to speed on OSHA regulations, and how to stay safe while working at height on a construction site or while doing maintenance work on an existing facility. Here's how to train these seasonal employees so your entire crew can enjoy a safe work environment.

Rooftop Worker Hanging Over a Leading Edge OSHA

What are Leading Edges? Protect Them with Guard Railings

Leading Edges: a regulatory term for a very real risk that every construction manager, laborer, or facilities maintenance worker understands too well. As a reminder, a leading edge is an unprotected edge and side of a floor, roof, or other walking/working surfaces which changes location as additional floor, roof, or formwork sections are placed. While a part of every job site (and theoretically, every building, period), they present a risk for even the most seasoned workers.

In this article, we’re exploring the different types of leading edges your team might encounter, along with other considerations, and how safety guard rails can protect them.

Avoid These 6 Common Mistakes When Utilizing Rooftop Guardrails

Avoid These 6 Common Mistakes when Utilizing Rooftop Guardrails

To keep your workers safe—and comply with OSHA's fall protection guidelines—you must provide rooftop guardrails for crews working at elevations of six feet or more. Recognizing the necessity for fall protection systems is the first step towards workplace safety, but OSHA compliance requires extra diligence, in-depth knowledge, and preventative troubleshooting.

From years of experience with OSHA's regulations, we know that certain aspects of safety rails can present unforeseen challenges for safety managers. To help, we've compiled a list of the six most common mistakes we have seen. Additionally, we provide some actionable solutions to these common mistakes—and hope to help provide better protection for you, your workers, and your equipment.

workers building a new facility

Don’t Forget About Rooftop Safety When Opening a New Facility

It's likely that your company will at some point need to add onto an existing facility or establish operations in a new location. Whether this is because of business growth, a change in demographics or tax law, or another consideration, it can be a frustrating and time-consuming process. But with sufficient planning, your transition can be safely and smoothly completed, with minimum stress and maximum efficiency.

Stay OSHA Compliant During Winter Roof Maintenance with Safety Guard Rails

Stay OSHA Compliant During Winter Roof Maintenance with Safety Guard Rails

When winter arrives, it's easy to think that having a roof fall protection system — like safety guard rails — isn’t a top priority. After all, outdoor work slows significantly in the colder months. The truth is, there’s plenty of reasons your workers may need to get out on the roof this winter, and you’ll want to play safe — no matter what the weather may bring.