Working at heights involves many dangers, and on average, falling in Australia kills about 26 workers and injures 7,700 more each year. When you or your employees need to work at heights, using the right roof anchors is essential to avoid accidents. You usually use roof anchors with other personal protective equipment (PPE) to ensure safety at height, such as belts or fall protection systems. Both temporary and permanent anchor points are available in the Australian market. If you mount the anchor point correctly, it protects you or your employees from the risk of falling. We must remember that the system features a design to guarantee the ideal security for people's lives. Given the roof fixing points' versatility, the materials must be of the best quality, such as steel, concrete, tile, or belt. They should be in strategic places to facilitate access to critical areas.
Types of roof anchor points
Construction systems are fall protection systems that meet OSHA's fall requirements, and the engineers certify them. They are ready for use at the time of purchase and do not require any additional workplace testing. However, they do require regular inspections to ensure the right mounting and maintenance. Non-technical systems are not subject to technical checks to meet OSHA requirements until you use them on-site. If your roof anchor points are not engineered systems, you will need a technician to test them and demonstrate your anchor points' safety.
They are generally best for metal roofs and are easy to install. You can fix them directly to the ceiling with screws and rivets. They are adequately safe, and you can use them as safety or protection against falls.
As the name suggests, these adhere to cementitious materials. They have a chemical fastener and torsion anchor fixing. They are strong enough to protect workers from falls and to be accidents.
Surface mount for rappelling
If you want to go down the side of the building, surface mounting is a good option. Typically, it sticks to the metal cladding and is adequately strong to fall and land on the sides of tall buildings.
Buildings without permanent anchors require the use of a temporary anchor. They attach to the roof of the building to ensure protection against falls during work. Although they are strong enough for falls, they are not ideal for plastering.
Reusable anchor points
These are permanent multifunctional anchors for protection against falls and rappelling. To use them again, they need maintenance to ensure they meet safety standards for use. They require regular inspections and certification to ensure safe use. The building roofing materials dramatically determine the type of anchor points you will need. If you are not using the correct anchor point for a particular material, the fall arrest system can fail.
Factors to consider when choosing the right roof anchor points
If it is a horizontal lifeline
Horizontal lifelines are a part of the Personal Fall Arrest System. They enable many workers to work at the same time using the same anchor point. Most employees can only connect to one anchor point at a time. It may not be realistic for each employee to use their anchor point in a workplace with many employees. That's where horizontal life cycles come in. They give freedom of movement to many workers while protecting them. If a group of people is working rather than a few employees, we advise you to consider a horizontal lifeline.
Suppose the design is strong enough, following OSHA Chapter M29 CFR requirements. In that case, it can accommodate multiple workers simultaneously (5,000 pounds per designated worker) is a rule of thumb. Still, it is essential to note that for OSHA regulations a safety factor of 2 is vital. An engineer cannot design or recommend an anchor point for you that does not meet the section requirements (5000 pounds if calculations show that the anchor point will withstand twice the maximum force during a fall).
If the anchor point is permanent
The permanent attachment points feature stainless steel or galvanized material and are permanently attached to the structure. They are in the increase for the recent years, especially in the construction of new homes. Many people building homes prefer permanent anchor points as points of sale. Permanent anchor points are inexpensive, easy to install, and vital even after the construction phase.
Anchoring point portability
Portable anchor points are necessary for situations where temporary access to an elevated structure or roof is essential. These non-intrusive, mobile weight anchor systems are easy and quick to install using standard tools. They are excellent for temporary solutions or jobs where permanent anchor points are not the best option.
The roofing materials also affect the installation of the anchoring points on the roof. Note that those featuring a design for metal roofs may not be suitable for brick ceilings. Make sure that the anchor points feature a configuration for utilization with roofing materials in place. You have to determine whether the fall protection system needs permanent or temporary installation.
Standing seam roofs
If you plan to work on a high standing seam roof building, builders probably don't want you to drill through the roof to mount permanent anchor points. Regarding this, non-penetrating anchors and clamp anchor points are the best to use.
- Assess the Workplace: First, examine the area and check for potential hazards. Observe safety precautions to avoid danger.
- Select a temporary anchor point: Select an anchor location and job type. You need to know what type of anchor is for installing metal, concrete roof, brick, etc.
- Check the roof structure: for example, if your workplace is on a metal roof, you need to know the profile. An inspection of the roof structure is necessary to select the correct installation location.
- System design: after the roofing and the anchor point evaluation is complete, we recommend creating a system design. When working with temporary anchor points, avoid the fall protection system, and work to prevent the fall instead. Employees need proper training on the fall protection they will be using. You need to include a rescue system, but you don't have to depend on it entirely. Therefore, it is imperative to limit falls.
- Correct implementation of the plan: Create an agenda and involve all roof workers in the process. You need to know the system to ensure the proper use of safety devices to prevent accidents. You need to understand your role in reducing risk in the workplace. And there should be a supervisor to verify that all workers are working according to the project's design.
The best Roof Anchor Points in Australia
3M DBI-SALA 2100133 Single Point Anchor for Steel, Wood, and Concrete Roofs
It is excellent for using a self-retracting pay line, shock-absorbing lanyard, or slider for greater versatility. In the event of a fall, the anchor column tilts to distribute the forces, which improves the operator's safety and the roof structure. It is excellent for a Saylinie or EZ-Line horizontal rescue system mounted between two anchorages provides a secure anchorage point for two workers. The D-ring can be rotated 360 degrees for maximum protection and mobility. What is more, it is a universal anchoring for concrete, metal, and wood roofs. However, it should be for industrial/professional use only and not for sale or consumer use.
3M Protecta Compliance In A Can, Roofers Kit, 5-Point Harness, Reusable Roof Anchor
Each of the 3M Protecta kits contains a complete configuration, including an anchoring device, frame support, and connection component, for ease of compatibility and job security. It is easy to install the anchor point on flat or tilted wooden roofs with nails. Moreover, these belts contain durable and long-lasting materials that guarantee quality, reliability, and economic and reliable safety. The lightweight system is easy to control on the lifeline, and the PRO seat belt limits force to a safe level during a fall for safety. The fall protection kit includes a reusable AJ730A anchor, 1191995 FIRST harness, 1340005 rope tensioner, 50 ft 1204001 element, and bucket. Nevertheless, it should be for industrial or professional use only and sale or consumer use.
Miller by Honeywell RA35-1 Removable Single Point Flat Roof Anchor
This is a removable roof anchoring or single point flat roof which includes hardware and rotating D-ring. It uses roof anchors to connect temporary connections reducing risks of falls from the top. Additionally, it meets all the standards specified by OSHA, ANSI, and CSA.
Guardian Fall Protection 00255 Screw-Down Metal Roof Anchor
It features a design for use with retractable lifelines (up to 50 feet). It also allows for retractable 360-degree rotation. The reusable temporary fixing point attaches the zips to the raised seams. Besides, you can adjust the legs between 24 and 36 inches, depending on the seam spacing.
Frontline Fall Protection ROWT18 Roof Wood Truss Anchor
It is possible to mount the Frontline ROWT18 anchor point on multiple wooden beams at different angles. It comes with a maximum failing force: 1,800 lbs / 8 kN, maximum impact force: 900 lbs / 4 kN. More so, it is a lightweight anchor point weighing less than 1 pound with a maximum user capacity of 310 lbs. Furthermore, it complies with OSHA 1910.140, OSHA 1926.502 standards.
KwikSafety (Charlotte, NC) GATOR KIT Temporary Reusable Roof Anchor
KwikSafety Gator is an excellent articulated roof anchor, perfect for commercial and residential roofs. Gator is temporary roof support that you can use for wooden and metal roofs. Even without screws, nails, or fasteners, GATOR comes with 16 holes on each side (32 in total) for fixing wooden beams or steel roof anchors. It is ANSI tested and OSHA compliant, making it an excellent fall protection kit for roofs. The Gator reusable temporary anchors feature an adjustable D-ring to facilitate movement and access to fall protection harnesses, ropes, ropes, ropes, life ropes, and more compatible roof equipment.
It is weatherproof, so you don't have to worry about rust if you leave the anchor holder outside. The Gator, with a tensile strength of at least 5,000 pounds, features a design for single-use and has a maximum capacity of 140 Kg. Following ANSI Z359.18 and OSHA standards, the Gator reusable roof anchor is ideal for adding to a fall prevention kit or bucket. Besides, it is compatible with 3 "x # 10 screws. The TSUNAMI Vertical Lifeline (not for horizontal operation) has a maximum capacity of 310 lb and comes with perimeter seals of 5,000 lb, adjustable rope cable, and an absorber kit. The average breaking force is 1800 lbs and 900 lbs, respectively.
Furthermore, the seat belt on the 1D tire body carries 59-140 kg (130-310 kg). Ensure that all straps are aligned and connected, that the shoulder and leg straps attach securely, and the chest straps are on the chest's center. The tool wire clamp has a 2: 1 safety factor and can hold up to 10 pounds of tools. All products in the Gator package comply with ANSI / AXIS and OSHA standards. For work from a height of more than 1.8 meters, an individual requires a fall protection system consisting of lower levels, usually a body harness, notification device, shoulder harness and anchor construction, arborist, window cleaning, gutter cleaning, roofing, search and rescue.
Guardian Fall Protection 00656 CB-18 CB Galvanized Roof Anchor
It is for use on wooden pallets, metal bridges, or concrete featuring a durable galvanized surface. It is excellent for vertical lifelines, retractable lifelines or rope claws, or horizontal lifelines. The column extends beyond the roof base to keep the attachment point high enough to be accessible after roof completion. The round bar works with most commercially available flashing kits. It meets the applicable standards of OSHA 1910, OSHA 1926, Part M, ANSI Z359.18-17, and ANSI A10.32-1. It has an employee capacity range of 130-420 pounds with a minimum breaking strength of 5000 lbs.
KwikSafety (Charlotte, NC) THUNDER KIT Construction Roofing Bucket
KwikSafety's Thunder fall protection set offers the best value for money and valuable personal protective equipment. Each set features a 3D Thunder safety harness, a 6-foot BOA safety belt, a 10-pound Octopus work harness, and a 3-foot Gibbon shoulder harness. A real construction, roofing, and a roofing tool at a valuable price. All parts of the Thunder kit comply with ANSI / ASSE and OSHA standards. An individual requires a fall protection system to operate at the height of 1.8 meters and above the lower levels and generally consists of a body harness, warning device, lanyard, and anchor point.
Typically, this is necessary for construction, arboriculture, window cleaning, gutter cleaning, roofing, search, and rescue. KwikSafety's Thunder Full 3D seat belts support users in the load range from 59 to 140 kg and have multiple adjustment points. To ensure a comfortable fit, make sure that all straps are connected and aligned, that the leg and shoulder straps are securely attached and that the chest straps are on the center of your chest. The BOA lanyard measures 1.8m and has expandable strips with a maximum operating distance of 48m (1.2m). The user's capacity is 130-310 pounds (including employee weight, clothes, and tools) with a defined shock or personal energy absorption.
It comes with brushed steel and an insulating ring of 5,000 lbs tensile strength and door strength of 3600 lbs for easy use around structures. Moreover, it complies with ANSI standards with a safety factor of 2: 1 and can hold up to 20 pounds of tools. It features a Cross Arm Girth of a 3-foot long anchor through the net. The working capacity is 310 pounds with a minimum breaking strength of 5000 pounds.
3M DBI-SALA 2100138 Single Point Anchor for Standing Seam Roofs
For industrial/professional use only. NOT for consumer use.
It is excellent for using a self-retracting pay line, shock-absorbing lanyard, or slider for greater versatility. A Skyline or EZ-Line horizontal rescue system mounting between two anchorages provides a secure anchorage point for two workers. The energy-absorbing structure distributes forces in the event of a fall, which improves user safety and maintains the roof's structural integrity. The D-ring can be rotated 360 degrees for maximum protection and mobility. Roof anchors with vertical joints for aluminum, steel, or stainless steel, flat or with a low slope.
Frontline RO4W Multifunction 4-Way Roof Anchor
The anchor is firm, durable, and reusable, making it ideal for indoor and outdoor use. It has a tensile strength of 5000 lbs / 22 kN and a maximum user capacity of 130 to 420 pounds. You can use it in wood, metal, or concrete structures. Also, it meets the requirements of ANSI Z359.1-2007, ANSI A10.32-2012, OSHA 1926, and OSHA 1910 standards
In conclusion, all employees need to be safe in their working environment, and as an entrepreneur, it is illegal to have incompatible security systems. Unfortunately, choosing an anchor point is not straightforward: simply finding a strong anchor and attaching a rope to it as not all anchor points are created equal. The choice of roof fixing points offers the predominant safety and helps people working at heights to move freely and effortlessly. Sometime workers do not use full protection during high-speed maintenance work, as they find this impractical. It is mainly because the roof anchor points are not in the right places. Remember to follow the manufacturer's instructional manual when using a roof anchor point.