Skylight Screen Necessity

Skylight Fall Protection Screen - EDGE Fall Protection

Roof skylights allow natural light to enter the building and reduce energy costs.  Also, natural light through skylights has a positive impact on the well-being of people in the building.  However, roof skylights are a fall hazard.  A worker working near or walking close to an unprotected skylight can accidentally fall into the skylight.  As a result, a fall into an unprotected skylight can mean injuries or fatalities (see OSHA’s Falls in Construction/Skylights Prevention Video).  One option to consider in preventing falls into a skylight is a skylight screen.  A skylight screen covers the skylight with a wire mesh framework.  This framework can take the weight of a person standing or falling on it.   Consequently, a roof skylight screen can prevent falls into a skylight.

Furthermore, OSHA requires employers to provide fall protection for workers.  OSHA’s Walking Working Surfaces in General Industry includes 29CFR 1910.28 (b)(3)(i):  Employers are to ensure that each employee is protected from falling through any hole (including skylights) which are 4 feet or more above a lower level by one or more of the following:  (1) covers (also referred to as skylight screens), (2) guardrail systems, (3) travel restraint systems, or (4) personal fall arrest systems.

Hence, the use of skylight screens as a structural barrier is one approach in preventing falls through skylights.  EDGE Fall Protection has the following skylight screen options:

Skyguard Skylight Screen offers a freestanding, non-penetrating design consisting of a tubular welded frame and metal shield cover.  This cover system needs no assembly.  Place the system over the top of the skylight.  Four rubber-tipped compression bolts secure the guard against the curb of the skylight to hold it in place.

Skylight Screen includes aluminum channels with a galvanized mesh screen.  Place the system over the top of the skylight.  This system involves a compression fit with no penetrations.

Metal Roof Skylight Screen has applications for standing seam, R-panel, and corrugated metal roofs.  This cover system is constructed of 4” x  4” galvanized mesh screen and custom sizing is available.

In conclusion, skylight safety screens are an important consideration for a proactive fall prevention system.  For more information about our products, reach out to the EDGE Fall Protection team.