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The Guardian Fall Team Blog

The newly constructed Saint Francis hospital required tie-back anchors that allowed future maintenance workers to access the building façade to perform tasks such as window washing. These tie-back anchors would allow the workers to suspend in a bosun’s chair from one tie-back anchor and while having a secondary fall arrest line connected to another, separate independent anchor.

At the King Street Bus Terminal in Seattle, Sound Transit required a horizontal lifeline to be placed along approximately 700 feet of canopy so that maintenance workers could safely clear drains and wash glass building exteriors. The horizontal lifeline systems were designed utilizing Guardian Fall Protection’s stainless steel Absorbinator.

More than forty feet above ground level, the SAS Global facility rooftop was in need of a fall protection solution that would provide safe access for both maintenance and inspection personnel.  

Western Washington University required a fall protection system for the Shannon Point Marine Research center located in Anacortes, WA. The fall protection system was to include horizontal lifelines capable of securing 2 users in fall arrest, or 4 users in fall restraint, and was to be designed and manufactured by a party with at least 10 years of continuous experience in manufacturing and successful in-service acceptability and performance.

The Greater Columbus Convention Center is a 1.7 million square foot facility located in downtown Columbus, Ohio. Overtime, the large, unique roof surface of this building has gathered sediment from harsh weather conditions and, as a result, needed to be cleaned. However, there were no fall protection systems installed on the rooftop that would grant safe, OSHA-compliant access to workers to do so.

The Hyatt Pensacola hotel located is under construction and scheduled for completion soon. The mid-rise building designers determined that window washing and building façade maintenance activities could be performed from a man-lift, which eliminated the need for permanent rooftop davits or tieback anchors. However, the designers did determine that fall protection anchors would be necessary to provide a permanent tie-off solution for the Personal Fall Arrest Systems (PFAS) of those looking to gain rooftop access.

The Ka’iwakiloumoku Hawaiian Cultural Center required a fall protection system for the maintenance, repairs, and inspections of the standing seam metal roof. The architect specified single anchor points were to withstand 5,000 pound load in any direction without detachment or fracture and were to be with a low clearance for the aesthetics of the roof.

Located in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle, Avalon Bay Communities operates a six-story apartment community with a courtyard, rooftop deck and green vegetation roof. The community contains 265 total units consisting of studio, one, and two bedroom apartments. The units in this community have large windows and glass railed balconies, all of which require frequent cleaning.

The Oak Hill Supportive Community facility required a fall protection system for maintenance, repair, and inspection of their rooftop. The facility’s architect had specified that the single anchor points incorporated in this fall protection system needed to withstand a 3,600 pound load in any direction without detachment or fracture and should also be capable of securing two workers in the event of fall arrest or four workers in the event of fall restraint.

General Partnership’s advanced treatment plant required a horizontal lifeline that would allow maintenance workers to safely access the plant’s rooftop vegetation and equipment.

The John E. Worthen Arena at Ball State University, home to the BSU Cardinals basketball and volleyball teams, was originally erected in 1991 and underwent a roofing renovation in 2012. In conjunction with this renovation of the arena, the University elected to have fall protection anchor points installed to provide safe means for maintenance worker access.

The contractor at Fort Stewart WIT Barracks needed forty single point standing seam metal roof anchors installed that met the strict specifications as set forth by the US Army Corps of Engineers.

McGraw Hall, built in 1872, recently needed a permanent fall protection system installed on their multi-peaked roof so that the roof could be safely renovated. The system called for permanent fall restraint anchors that would attach to the roof’s structure and support a continuous steel cable lifeline. This system needed to be OSHA and ANSI compliant while allowing for four users to work simultaneously.

UNC Wilmington required permanent fall protection on the Student Teaching Laboratory that would be able to accommodate four users simultaneously while being OSHA and ANSI compliant. The project required anchor points to be welded to the structural steel framing along the 7:12 pitched roof, and flashing of the roof-mounted anchors and supports.

In order to complete the new wood roofs on Buildings ‘J’ and ‘M’ at Bellingham Technical College, the school required a cable lifeline system that would allow for continuous pass through between several permanently attached fall protection anchors. This OSHA-ANSI compliant system needed to accommodate four users in the case of fall restraint or two users in the case of fall arrest.

American Bridge is a construction company whose projects include a significant proportion of larger bridges around the world. Having just recently upgraded their headquarters with a new metal roof, American Bridge was in need of a permanent fall protection system that would not puncture holes in the new roof membrane. The system needed to be OSHA and ANSI compliant and not detract from the overall appearance of the building.

Are you new to the world of fall safety? Or perhaps you need some help getting your workers to understand the importance of selecting and using safety gear correctly? It is safe to say, in our industry, having the right safety equipment on the jobsite is only half the battle – the other half is getting properly trained on that equipment.

The Competent Person Class, offered by our F.I.R.S.T Choice Training division, is designed to train its students in the best-practice methods of identifying and eliminating both existing and predictable fall hazards. Upon completing the two-day, 16-hour class, not only will you be able to demonstrate the required knowledge of a Competent Person, but will hopefully have a new found passion for safety in the work place.

Equipment inspection is one of the most important procedures in the world of fall protection. No matter how well designed or high performing the equipment, if it is damaged it will not do what you need it to. And damage cannot be found and remedied unless equipment is inspected thoroughly.

Fall protection product inspection is a key component of safe work. Your life is on the line when working at heights, so ensuring equipment is functioning properly is a step that should never be ignored.

Proper equipment inspection is key to staying safe on the job. Each element of inspection must be done with intention and care, and proper records must be maintained in order to ensure equipment is in peak operating condition.

The acquisition of knowledge is only effective if that knowledge is both practiced and passed to others. To be trained is to both acquire knowledge and skills and to put those skills into practice. Effective training employs various approaches, including lecture, demonstration, and direct hands-on engagement.

On behalf of the F.I.R.S.T. Choice Training Department, a division of Guardian Fall Protection, we are proud to offer quarterly advice on the best practice approaches to selecting and using fall protection equipment.

This past week, Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) conducted their first ever fall safety “Stand-Down.” During this time, employers in the construction industry were encouraged to find time in their days to stop work, spending this time instead to educate and train workers in workplace fall safety, including inspecting equipment, developing rescue plans, assessing and eliminating fall hazards, and more.

In the construction industry, worker safety unquestionably plays a central role. And, because falls from heights are one of the most frequent causes of injury, it is understandable that OSHA and ANSI have developed extensive requirements for the fall protection industry.

As we all know, complying with the standards set by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is a central focus of the work we do in the fall safety industry. OSHA, as well as other regulating bodies, shape and set the requirements that all the equipment we make and sell must meet. And OSHA’s influence doesn’t stop after our products leave the warehouse.

Ladder safety is one of those things that many people know about. It’s a common subject of discussion on job sites; and yet, ladder safety remains to be the area of fall protection that is most often neglected, ignored, and overlooked in our industry today. OSHA statistics note that the majority of all falls happen from heights of twenty feet or under. We know that a large majority of those falls happen from ladders AND that 80% of all falls from ladders happen at the transition point from the ladder to or from the next working surface. Just knowing this information alone, it’s clear that this is an area of fall protection that deserves attention.

Last month, OSHA revealed its Top Ten most-cited violations for 2010. Scaffolding once again topped the list with 8,371 violations. The good news is, this is down from last year’s 9,093. A look at OSHA’s Top Ten reveals that scaffolding violations routinely end up near the top every year. Since these are such common violations, it might be useful to have a quick refresher on OSHA Scaffolding Requirements in construction.

The first step in any fall protection plan for a worksite is identifying the potential fall hazards. Safety equipment is important, but failure to identify potential fall hazards is not only an OSHA violation that could cost the company thousands, it also makes the worksite more dangerous and can cost lives.

March 23rd, 2011

Before you put on any sort of fall protection, OSHA requires that you inspect it. While this is often mentioned, there’s little talk of exactly how you should inspect your equipment. A lot of this may be common sense, but it never hurts to get a refresher.