Fabric Construction Panel Manufacturer
A Wisconsin-based manufacturer of specialty fabric panels for construction applications contacted Dakota Safety for passive fall protection systems for their production facility.
The client’s factory includes a number of spray booths where their fabric panels are painted or coated in the production process. These booths’ lighting and exhaust systems are accessible only through their roofs; the exhaust systems in particular require frequent maintenance, as filters need to be replaced regularly. Because the tops of the booths are roughly 9 feet off the factory floor, they presented a significant fall hazard.
The construction of the booths and the layout of the facility made the use of active fall prevention difficult and impractical—there was nowhere to effectively anchor a safety harness system that meet the requirements. The booths themselves are simple metal walls, bolted together and supported by structural beams. In some instances, the booths’ roof edges had no structural support in some sections—the metal panels came together to support each other, but the beams were only present along the opposite side of the booth.
Dakota Safety visited the facility on 2 occasions, took measurements of the booths and developed a custom solution using the Kwik Guard modular railing system. Ladders were created from Kwik Guard fittings to provide access to the top of the booths, with safety gates at the top of the ladders. All components had a standard galvanized steel finish.
Various steps up and down in roof height, and the presence of equipment such as ventilation shafts and sprinkler pipes, gave each booth a unique geometry, and each booth required a unique safety rail setup.
Additionally, because of the booths’ inconsistent structural support, special considerations had to be made. We devised a way for the guardrails to rest on top of the booths themselves and attach to the structural beams where possible, and if no structural beams were present, special extensions to the floor were used to support the rail system on the roof of the booth.
Following our complete installation instructions, the client was able to install the safety railing themselves. Partway through installation, it was discovered that some alterations would be required. Working with the client, we made a few quick and easy adjustments, and the client was able to complete installation without difficulty.