Roof Edge Protection – Meet Health and Safety Regulations with Sure-Foot Guardrail

14th October, 2015

Roof Edge Protection – Sure-Foot Guardrail systems have been designed to provide highly effective and easy to install collective fall prevention.

All roof work carries risks because it involves working at height, with more than half of construction injury deaths attributed to this cause, so it is essential to put in place strong measures to safeguard staff involved in this type of work, including providing roof edge protection systems.

Sure-Foot Guardrail systems from Roof-Pro are highly adaptable and suited to various different types of roof edge – providing fall protection for all the teams and contractors who need to work on the roof in the course of a construction project.

Here is a look at how installing Guardrail systems can help to ensure you comply with health and safety regulations and legal obligations, providing you with confidence that you are keeping your people safe.

roof edge protection systems roof-pro Health and Safety Regulations for Working at Height

There are a number of different laws relevant to working at height, including the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007 as well as more general health and safety at work laws.

A key requirement is to carry out risk assessments for all types of working at height and use safety equipment where indicated to prevent falls. There are a variety of equipment types, loosely grouped under two headings:

Personal Fall Protection – Designed to restrain or prevent an individual from falling, typically involving a cable and/or harness.

Collective Fall Protection – Designed to provide protection for all individuals in the area the protection has been installed, typically using a guardrail of some kind, either temporary or permanent.

While personal fall protection is essential in some situations, it does critically depend on individuals knowing how (or remembering) to correctly attach themselves to the equipment. Carelessness, inexperience or lack of supervision can all undermine the effectiveness of this approach.

By contrast, collective fall protection mechanisms do not require any knowledge or experience to be effective, depending only on the mechanical design and strength of the equipment, resulting in a much more reliable (i.e. safer) level of protection.

For this reason, HSE recommends the use of collective fall protection in preference to individual measures, wherever possible.

Collective Roof Edge Protection from Sure-Foot

Sure-Foot Guardrail systems have been specifically designed to provide collective roof edge protection which:

• Fully meets health and safety requirements
• Can be temporary or permanent
• Deal with a range of different roof edge situations
• Meets a variety of important standards such as wind stability
• Are modular, enabling fast assembly on site
• Are flexible, enabling a wide range of configurations to be achieved

We supply 4 different types of guardrail system designed to deal with 3 different roof edge conditions. The method of fixing can be either mechanical, involving penetration of the roof surface, or weighted, which is non-penetrative.

roof edge protection systemsWeighted Systems

Our non-penetrative systems are the Freestanding Guardrail System and the Folding Guardrail System. Both types utilise a counterbalance design involving a 20kg foot made of non-slip PVC. Individually, the counterweights are easy to carry and put in place, but create a substantial structure when several are lined up to create a full guardrail. The foot attaches to a pre-galvanised height-adjustable vertical steel strut which inclines inwards, away from the roof edge. Vertical struts are connected together with horizontal steel tubing to create the required length of guardrail.

A variety of additional components are available to enable, for instance, turning a corner without requiring a break in the guardrail. This design can be used either as a temporary guardrail (e.g. when specific maintenance work is being carried out) or as a permanent guardrail for roofs with fragile waterproof membrane surfaces which must not be damaged.

The Folding Guardrail design is similar to the Freestanding Guardrail design, but allows the rail to folded flat if required.

Fixed Systems

Our mechanically fixed systems are the Parapet Guardrail System and the Topfix Guardrail System. Both are designed to provide additional protection for roof edges that have a parapet which is not high enough to provide full protection.

The Parapet Guardrail System involves vertical struts which are clamped over a roof edge parapet (adjustable between 30 and 55cm) and then connected with horizontal steel tubing. The Topfix System attaches directly to the top of the parapet. Both systems are height-adjustable to achieve the correct safe height for the situation.

Since health and safety are the key aims of all our guardrail systems, they have been extensively tested and checked to fulfil key standards in this area including:

• BS EN 13374: 2004 Class A / BS EN 14122-4: 2004

• HSE INDG 284 “Working on roofs”

• HSG33 “Health and safety at work”

• BS6399: Part 2 1995 Wind code

For further information click here to contact us today.