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.

Chicago Kee Guard Rooftop Installation

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.

OSHA Standard Interpretation - Do I follow OSHA or local building code in Chicago?

The strictest rules must be followed. Where local codes are in effect, they are generally more specific and more stringent than applicable OSHA regulations. Compatibility with OSHA regulations is seldom an issue. (source)

OSHA 1910.5(c)(1) - What OSHA code applies in Chicago?

If a particular standard is specifically applicable to a condition, practice, means, method, operation, or process, it shall prevail over any different general standard which might otherwise be applicable to the same scenario. (source)

IBC 1015.2 - Where is guardrail required in Chicago?

Guards shall be located along open-sided walking surfaces, including mezzanines, equipment platforms, aisles, stairs, ramps, and landings that are located more that 30 inches measured vertically to the floor or grade below at any point within 36 inches horizontally to the edge of the open side. (source)

IBC 1015.2 - At what height do I need fall protection or guardrail in Chicago?

Guardrails are required on any elevated walking surface above 30 inches. (source)

OSHA 1910.29 - What can a guardrail be made out of in Chicago?

Guardrails, as long as they comply with all applicable standards, may be made out of any material. (source)

IBC 1015.3 - How tall does rooftop guardrail need to be in Chicago?

Guards can not be less than 42 inches tall. (source)

OSHA 1926 Subpart M App B - How far apart can guardrail posts be in Chicago?

Guardrail posts may not be spaced more than eight feet apart. (source)

OSHA 1910.29(b)(2) - Do I need a mid-rail in Chicago?

Midrails must be installed between the top edge of the guardrail system and the walking/working surface when there is no wall or parapet wall at least 21 inches high. (source)

OSHA 1910.29(k) - When do I need a toeboard in Chicago?

Toeboards are required when there is danger of items falling from an elevated walking-working surface onto workers below. (source)

IBC 1607.8.1.1 - What are the load requirements for rooftop railing in Chicago?

Handrails and guards must be designed to resist a concentrated load of 200 pounds. (source)

OSHA 1910.29(b) - Can I use a non-penetrating guardrail in Chicago?

Yes, as long as it complies with all other guardrail standards. (source)

IBC 1014 - Can guardrail serve as handrail in Chicago?

Guardrails and handrails serve two different purposes and have different requirements. A handrail may be attached to a guardrail, but they are not one in the same. (source)

IBC 1015.2 - If my rooftop is lower than 22 feet but I have mechanical equipment close to the edge, do I need rooftop railing in Chicago?

Guards must be located along open-sided walking surfaces, including equipment platforms, that are located more that 30 inches measured vertically to the floor or grade below any point within 36 inches horizontally to the edge of the open side. (source)

IBC 1015.7 - If my rooftop is lower than 22 feet but I have a roof hatch close to the edge, do I need rooftop railing in Chicago?

If you have a roof hatch located within 10 feet of the roof edge, the roof access or roof edge must be protected by guardrail. (source)

OSHA 1910.28(b)(3) - When is protection required when falling through a hole in Chicago?

Employees must be protected from falling through holes, including skylights, that have more than a 4 foot drop, by personal fall arrest systems, guardrails, or covers. (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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