Is fall protection required on flat roofs?


A question we receive from time to time is whether or not roof fall protection is required on flat roofs? We aim to answer that for you here.


If the project’s duration is for only a few hours long, in ideal weather conditions and if tasks are performed at the height of a single-story home, then ladders (that follow the specifications as defined in the National Code of Practice for the Prevention of Falls in General Construction) are considered sufficient fall protection.


While we can understand this approach from a legal perspective, we believe the real question is that if you have the option, "why wouldn’t you use fall protection?" is a better question to be asking. After all, a fall from a roof edge, even a relatively short distance such as two metres, can still result in life-altering injuries. Not a risk we recommend taking.


And if you are the worksite operator in charge of the job, the health and safety of your workers falls squarely on your shoulders both in a moral and legal sense. From a pure operations perspective, even minor falls, that may not even result in injury, can still cause disruption and negatively affect morale, slowing down your project even further. This is why no matter what the legality is, we highly recommend utilising fall protection measures such as roof safety rails which are always a great idea. It not only protects those who are working at height but it also minimises the risk of your workers on the ground who can be exposed falling equipment and tools while the job is completed.



How high must the roof be on the worksite to require fall protection?


If the roof you are working on exceeds two meters in height, then fall protection measures are a legal requirement and not adhering to these laws can result in extreme penalties.


The final question you can ask is "how do we best protect our workers?"


The answer is that Unique Safety Rails can help you fully equip your site with the appropriate roof safety rails to ensure everyone is working within a safe construction site.


Unique Safety Rails can help you install and remove the safety rails when your project is completed. During the initial phases, we will create a quote for you, plan the delivery and arrange for the installation of the best suited fall protection measures.