InspectAPedia tolerates no conflicts of interest. We have no relationship with advertisers, products, or services discussed at this website. Our page top photo shows an odd guardrail along a tiny walking space - the DIY owner-installer never considered that someone a housepainter might actually need the railing to be secure and functional. The result was a serious injury.
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InspectAPedia tolerates no conflicts of interest. We have no relationship with advertisers, products, or services discussed at this website. Our page top photo shows an odd guardrail along a tiny walking space - the DIY owner-installer never considered that someone a housepainter might actually need the railing to be secure and functional. The result was a serious injury. Types of guardrailings vs. That study and other sources cite an array of standards that address some but most-likely not all of the considerations in building or testing a safe guardrail or deck rail system.
By in the U. After an above-ground swimming pool was removed, the owners continued to use the deck in our photo left. Deer netting was installed across the open edge of the deck - and it worked fine until someone fell thorough it.
The torn remains of the deer netting can be seen on the left side of this photograph. Under the IRC, the infill or balusters must resist a concentrated horizontal load of 50 pounds applied to a square foot area.
The baluster requirement is easily met with standard fastening techniques, but meeting the IRC guardrail requirement is difficult without adding steel hardware.
The majority of residential decks, which rely on notched posts lag-screwed into the band joist, do not meet the pound requirement. Dynamic testing such as the forces exerted when a person is falling and grabs onto a railing may be important for further consideration.
This abstract is a brief summary of the referenced standard. It is informational only and not an official part of the standard; the full text of the standard itself must be referred to for its use and application. ASTM does not give any warranty express or implied or make any representation that the contents of this abstract are accurate, complete or up to date. There is not an explicit discussion of cable railings and guardrails in the OSHA language, as you'll see in the citation below.
My OPINION is that because of the tension required to provide secure cable railings the time, cost and trouble of installing a cable system instead of a more rigid system may be inconvenient at some jobsites even if OSHA would approve the system. Where workers on a construction site are exposed to vertical drops of 6 feet or more, OSHA requires that employers provide fall protection in one of three ways before work begins:. Many times the nature and location of the work will dictate the form that fall protection takes.
If the employer chooses to use a guardrail system, he must comply with the following provisions:. Our photograph above shows a glass panel guardrailing atop a balcony as well as a glass guard along the stairwell itself. I'm doubtful that the balcony glass guard meets the requirements of the IBC and note that there is no top railing along the glass guard enclosure. There is a "handrailing" along the glass guard on the stairs themselves: I forgot to measure the handrailing height - it may be a bit high for some stair users.
I'm building a glass guardrailing around my deck overlooking a lake. Do I need a railing along the top of the glass or is the glass strong enough to meet code? At left we illustrate a glass guardrailing as well as a glass stair rail at right in the photo installed in a shopping mall in New York City. Note the position of the stair-user's right hand red arrow- click to enlarge any image suggesting that while the railing along the top of the glass guards at both balcony and along the stair may serve to meet the code requirements below, the position of the rail along the top of the stair guard may be too high for comfortable use by people walking on the stairs.
According to the ICC, a top rail, at a height of 42" above the walking surface is required along a glass guardrail will be required unless the glass panels themselves will meet the structural strength required by IBC Considering the safety factor cited fromthe IBC for the top rail it is unlikely that glass panels will meet that requirement. Wagner Companies ret. The top rail should continue to meet the guardrailing load requirements even should a glass panel itself fail, fall, or break.
Note that you may be required to use laminated, tempered or safety glass for glass guards in your area. Check with your local building official by providing the plan and design specifications for your glass guardrailing system as obtained from your professional engineer or architect. Note that the above is only discussing the top rail along a glass guardrail or stair guard. In addition to a top rail, along a stair guard or ramp that is enclosed by glass "guards", a handrailing will be required at a height between 34" and 38".
Partial quote from the ASTM abstract: These test methods are intended to provide information from which applicable design data can be derived for the performance of metal railing systems and rails installed and fastened to structural elements of concrete, masonry, wood, and metal as well as related products. Components are to be manufactured by the pultrusion process. The values given in parentheses are mathematical conversions to SI units that are provided for information only and are not considered standard.
It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. Partial quote from the ASTM abstract: This specification presents the standard procedures for establishing the performance rating of wood-plastic composite WPC deck boards and guardrail systems guards or handrails.
The purpose of this specification is to establish the basis for code recognition of these products or systems in exterior applications where combustible construction is allowed. In the same manner, guards and handrails are additionally analyzed through concentrated load tests, and one- and two-family dwelling requirements.
Note Concentrated test load for guards - A psf [pounds per foot] load shall be applied … at critical locations … such as midspan of top rail, top rail alongside a post and at the top of a post.
Washington, D. Recommended procedures for the safety performance evaluation of highway appurtenances. Abstract: When the handrail assembly broke away from a wooden deck attached to the rear of a private residence, the victim fell 12 feet to the lawn and sustained injuries rendering him a quadriplegic.
Although the local building code required the handrail to withstand a lb load applied in any direction at any point on the handrail, no guidance was given to the do-it-yourselfer who built the deck and railings to assure him that the final construction would produce an acceptable railing. The authors conducted testing and a statistical analysis of railing strength comparing the construction method used by the builder of the accident railing to another construction method utilizing a commercially available handrail bracket.
The test program demonstrates that the strength of the wood used to build handrails can vary greatly and that a controlled method of building a handrail is necessary to ensure the integrity of a product intended to be consumer customized and assembled. It is necessary to have acceptable methods of railing construction because the failure of a railing joint can be life threatening.
Joseph Loferski and Frank Woeste, P. Try the search box just below, or if you prefer, post a question or comment in the Comments box below and we will respond promptly. OSHA estimates that there are 24, injuries and as many as 36 fatalities per year due to falls from stairways and ladders used in construction.
Nearly half of these injuries are serious enough to require time off the job, lost workday injuries and 13, non-lost workday injuries occur annually due to falls from stairways and ladders used in construction.
These data demonstrate that work on and around ladders and stairways is hazardous. More importantly, they show that compliance with OSHA's requirements for the safe use of ladders and stairways could have prevented many of these injuries. Contact information: Triodyne Inc. See our book review of this publication. Tel: Email: info carsondunlop. Carson Dunlop Associates' provides extensive home inspection education and report writing material.
The text is intended as a reference guide to help building owners operate and maintain their home effectively. Field inspection worksheets are included at the back of the volume. Just ask us! Share this article. Search the InspectApedia website. Galow can be reached by email: ericgalow gmail. Galow specializes in residential construction including both new homes and repairs, renovations, and additions.
Standard Guardrails, California Building Code, provides description of how guard rails should be constructed. ANSI A This book is unique in that it is entirely devoted to falls. Of use to primary care physicians, nurses, insurance adjusters, architects, writers of building codes, attorneys, or anyone who cares for the elderly, this book will tell you how, why, and when people will likely fall, what most likely will be injured, and how such injuries come about. Bakken, H. Harvey Cohen,A.
Hyde, Jon R. Harvey Cohen, Jon R. Abele, Alvin S. Hyde, Cindy A. Fitch et al. The adhesion and friction forces of the confined biopolymer were monitored as a function of time, shearing distance, and driving velocity under a large range of compressive loads pressures. Study of frictional values of car tires involved in collisions on snow or ice covered roadways. OSHA regulations govern standards in the construction industry and in the workforce Quoting from OSHA whose focus is on workplace safety and so excludes discussion of falls and stair-falls in private homes: OSHA estimates that there are 24, injuries and as many as 36 fatalities per year due to falls from stairways and ladders used in construction.
St ASTM E935-13e1
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Standard Test Methods for Performance of Permanent Metal Railing Systems and Rails for Buildings
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