KeeGuard Rooftop Railing for Chicago, IL

Fall Protection Systems and Requirements in Chicago

Keeping People and Places Safe with Fall Protection Systems
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Versatile Fall Protection for Your Buildings to Keep Your Workers Safe at Height

Like most large cities in the United States, Chicago, Illinois has some specific requirements for rooftop fall protection. Office buildings and warehouses are not the only ones requiring fall safety protection, rooftop decks have been and continue to be an icon in Chicago neighborhoods, which will now require improved fall protection.

Understanding and meeting those requirements can seem overwhelming, but we are here to help. Illinois developed their own extension of OSHA in 2009 as part of their Illinois Department of Labor, and the program covers state and local government workers. As of October 19, 2015, all public sector employers fall under Illinois OSHA’s jurisdiction. As of January 1, 2015, all private sector employers must follow Federal OHSA’s jurisdiction.

We want to partner with you and help you understand exactly what fall protection requirements you need to meet and the best methods for implementing fall protection solutions.

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Understanding Chicago Fall Protection Requirements

When operating in a large city like Chicago, you will need to meet federal OSHA requirements as well as the local building code. To help you, we’ve outlined the most important federal and local Chicago requirements for fall protection systems in Chicago.

Chicago Building Code 13-124-320 - Where must guards be installed in a building in Chicago?

At all edges of every floor, balcony, mezzanine intended for human occupancy which is at a height of two feet or more. This includes windows and doorways having a sill of two-feet or less. In addition, all sides of every open area exceeding three feet in depth, except the side providing access. (source)

Chicago Building Code 13-124-330 - What Types of Guards Must be Used?

Guards may be formed by walls, balustrades, grills or railings not less than three feet, six inches in height. Guards whose top rail also serves as the handrail shall have a height of not less than 34-inches and not more than 38-inches. This is true, except for single-family, two-family dwellings, and within individual dwelling units in other Class A-2 occupancies. (source)

Chicago Building Code 13-124-335 - What Are the Allowable Openings for Open Guards?

Open guards shall have balusters or ornamental patterns such that a four-inch-diameter sphere cannot pass through. A sphere eight-inches in diameter from a height of 34-inches to 42-inches cannot pass through the opening. (source)

Chicago Building Code 13-124-335 - What Are the Allowable Openings for Stairs?

The triangular opening formed by the riser, tread, and bottom rail at the open side of the stairway shall not allow a sphere larger than six inches in diameter to pass through the opening. (source)

Chicago Building Code 13-124-335 - What is the Regulation for Elevated Walking-Working Surfaces?

Any elevated walking surface for access to and use of electrical, mechanical or plumbing systems or equipment shall have guards with balusters or be of solid materials such that a sphere of 21-inches in diameter cannot pass through any opening. (source)

Chicago Building Code 13-124-335 - Are there Special rules for Residential Restrained Care Facilities?

Residential Restrained Care Facilities in Class B occupancies shall have balusters and horizontal intermediate rails (or other construction) which will not permit a sphere with a diameter of 21-inches to pass through any opening. (source)

Chicago Building Code 13-124-335 - How Do You Protect Assembly Seating Areas in Chicago?

In assembly areas, guards at the end of aisles where they terminate at a fascia of boxes, balconies, and galleries shall have balusters or ornamental patterns such that a four-inch diameter sphere cannot pass through any opening up to a height of 26-inches above the adjacent walking surface. From a height of 26-inches to 42-inches above the adjacent walking surface, a sphere eight-inches in diameter shall not pass. (source)

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We pride ourselves on not being "just another company trying to sell you something". We take safety seriously and we want to partner with you to make sure you receive the right fall protection solution that meets compliance requirements, protects your workers while they work at height, and reduces liability for your company.

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