Chains or safety gates for safe access?

Company News

We’ve discussed in the past why self-closing safety gates are the HSE’s preferred option to chains, mainly because the chains are reliant on the user replacing them.  If this isn’t done then a hazardous void is created.

However, this isn’t the only benefit self-closing safety gates have over chains.

While providing a form of protection and safe access for ladders, guardrails, roof hatches, handrails and stairways, safety chains could potentially add to the risks as they can give a false sense of security.  If a chain is to be used it should ideally be constructed so that the complete structure is capable of withstanding a load applied to it.  Imagine for example what might happen if someone leans on a safety chain which is being used to provide safe access as part of a roof top edge protection system.  The chain could easily give way, potentially causing a serious fall risk.

Similarly if someone holds onto the chain as they ascend a ladder or access a roof via a roof hatch, the chain could break, resulting in the person falling backwards.

Below are some typical examples of where a safe form of access and egress is required to an area.

Fixed Ladders In Warehouses

Fixed ladders in warehouses  

Safe Access To Plant Areas

Safe access to plant areas

Roof Hatches With Safety Chains

     Safety chains on roof hatches

Self-closing safety gates are installed in the direction of a hazard, this guarantees complete safety for the user and overcomes the potential of creating a fall hazard as the following demonstrate.

Safe Access On Roofs

Safe access on roofs

Work Platform Safety

Work platform safety

Safe Access To Plant And Manchinery

   And finally, safe access to plant and machinery      

Mon, 07/04/2016 – 18:55

Self-closing safety gates offer greater benefits than chains when it comes to safe access and egress

Chains used for safe access

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