Fall protection horrors: why recertification is vital

Here at Safesite, we inspect and recertify hundreds of fall protection systems each year.

Having your systems inspected and recertified regularly is a vital part of keeping the people who access your roof safe from injuries and possibly even death.

Most people understand the importance of keeping your systems in good condition – after all, what’s the point of having them if you know they won’t keep anyone safe – but we encounter far too many systems which wouldn’t do the job if it came down to it.

The only surefire way to minimise the chance of system failure is to have that system regularly inspected and recertified.

Below are some examples of systems we’ve come across that wouldn’t pass muster, and could put someone’s life at risk. These are perfect examples of the danger hiding on some roofs throughout the UK, and the importance of recertification.


There are two fixing points for a reason. It might feel sturdy from a casual examination, but that single fixed point may not be able to deal with someone falling against the system.



Another faulty guardrail. Despite what some might think, guardrails are not there for show. They have to be able to withstsand a force should someone lose their footing and fall into them.  With these loose fitting, there’s no guarantee that will happen.



Can you tell what’s wrong with this picture? This deployed lifeline wouldn’t be any good to anyone if the situation called for it. Anyone who clips on to this is asking for trouble and anyone experienced in working at height would run the other way at first sight.



Perhaps the only thing worse than not getting your systems properly recertified is trying to fix them yourself!  This ‘repaired’ guardrail isn’t worth the cost of the scrap metal.

At Safesite, we offer KeeGuard modular guardrail, which makes it easy and straightforward to remove and repair damaged sections quickly, rather than having to replace the entire system or cut out a section and weld in a replacement.



Sometimes the problem isn’t that the system itself is deployed or damaged, but that it probably didn't even fulfil the purpose of having fall protection in the first place. The guardrail in this picture above looks like it might work fine… unless you decide to fall slightly to the left of it. This system is no good until that glaring hole is resolved.


Safesite carries out a full inspection and recertification service which will pick up on these problems and provide a solution to keep anyone accessing your roof safe.

Remember: not knowing your system wasn’t safe to use is not a defence if a health and safety investigation lands on your doorstep. If you are responsible for the safety of people accessing your site, then ensuring regular recertification comes under your remit.


Click here to watch our short infographic video explaining why you should have your fall protection equipment inspected and recertified annually.


For more information, call 01293 529977 or use our online contact form.


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