Fall protection: essential to green roof maintenance

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Fall protection is essential to maintaining a green roof

Breathtaking structures leave a strong impression and stay in the memory long after one has passed that area. For a moment or two, green roof buildings seize the attention of many preoccupied pedestrians scurrying on a busy road. They provide a breath of fresh air in an otherwise very pragmatic city, and this is because aesthetics and functionality come together in such piece of architecture. Green roof maintenance, therefore, is deemed crucial in keeping these two together at all times.

The trend in architectural ecology

Recent trends in architecture, like green roofs, incorporate methods that address environmental concerns. Green roofs refer to buildings whose top coverings are designed to accommodate vegetation. They are primarily constructed to manage rainfall runoff during stormy weather. Additionally, according to EPA’s Reducing Urban Heat Islands: Compendium Strategies, energy use is reduced because they absorb heat. Summers become a little cooler and winters become a little warmer because these roof gardens act as good insulators. They likewise lessen air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.

Green roofs, however, are not an absolutely new concept in architecture. The Hanging Gardens of Babylon were in fact the earliest recorded green roofs. They were built in 500 BC. In the 1960s, the modern technology for constructing green roofs was developed by Germany. Their re-emergence in recent times constitutes a part of the global initiative towards ecology, biodiversity, and sustainability.

green roofs

Getting the most out of green roofs

To obtain all the benefits of a green roof, inspection and cleaning have to be done several times a year depending on how intensive a roof garden is. Each time maintenance work on the green roof is done, a worker must be able to rely on an efficient fall protection system to secure him while working at heights. Fall protection should allow for greater freedom of movement, and green roof workers should feel safe and confident at any given height.

Fall protection for green roofs

Green roofs are denser and deeper than your regular roofs simply because of the requirements of vegetation. Aside from the basic roof deck, you should have insulation, a growing medium, and a waterproofing membrane that normally has three layers (www.greenroofs.com). Fall protection should adapt to this condition. The anchor points of a horizontal lifeline system, like LinkedPro should be easily accessible even when placed in such a depth. This can easily be done by increasing the height of the anchor point using extension pieces. The worker can hook up to the extended lifeline system and safely walk the entire roof with optimum freedom of movement.

Green roofs work

Another reliable fall protection solution are guardrails. Without any need for safety know-how or personal protection gear, they guarantee the highest level of safety and security, providing workers with maximum mobility that maintenance work requires. Roof edges are securely fenced and workers may pass by them without fear of falling. The entire roof garden becomes a safe access area for any one at any given time.

100% safe when working at heights!

Green roofs can only continue to feed the aesthetic and ecological sense of people if workers maintain them regularly. People who preserve them should feel 100% safe when working at heights. For this reason, a safe fall protection system is not an option but a necessity in green roof maintenance.

More information

If you would like more information about our LinkedPro Horizontal Lifeline solution, request our LinkedPro brochure. For advice about the most suitable fall protection solution for green roof maintenance, it’s best to contact us directly.

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