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Blog / Ground Based Barriers: Fittings v Fabrication

21 August 2018

Guardrails and handrails are a popular solution to keeping people safe from hazards. But what is the best option for you?

In any area where there are people, it is vital they are protected and kept separate from hazards such as heights, perimeter edges or water. Guardrails and handrails serve as a barrier between the public or contractors and hazards.

The two main types of handrail design are fittings and fabrications. Fabricated guardrails are built off-site, and require a lot of preparation and design work which requires many draft versions. The prefabricated structures are then delivered to the site and must be installed by a skilled fitter with the required training and permits, creating many health and safety issues.

Fabricated structures are also prone to rusting, as the required drilling compromises the anti-corrosion coating, turning the barriers - installed to protect people from hazards - into hazards themselves.

When corroded, handrails themselves can become a hazard.

So what is the alternative? When it comes to ease of installation, flexibility and durability, fittings are clearly a better solution than fabrication.

Safesite now supplies ground based barrier solutions made from Kee tubular fittings, which can meet virtually any design requirement thanks to their modular nature.

With Kee fittings, there’s no need for skilled labour or special work permits, as the structure only requires a general arrangement drawing, and anyone can fit the railing thanks to the use of simple hexagonal set screws locking the fitting to the tube.

Because there is no cutting or welding of components, the integrity of all coatings is left intact. A typical Kee Klamp® structure lasts up to seven times longer than a fabricated one.

When a section of railing does begin to fail, or becomes damaged, it’s a simple matter of removing the section and fitting a replacement, no hot works or special permits required.

We also offer Kee Access®, a DDA alternative which offers the same great benefits as standard Kee Klamp® systems, whilst meeting all requirements of the Equality Act 2010.

Kee Access®

Kee Access® offers a smooth handrail with size 7 tube with an outside diameter of 42.4mm, which can be powder coated in a choice of RAL colours to meet the visibility and “not cold to the touch” requirements of the DDA.

Due to these many benefits, we feel it is clear Kee Klamp® and Kee Access® fittings are the superior choice to fabricated systems, offering a strong and durable solution to separating people from hazards.

For more information on Kee Klamp® and Kee Access® fittings, give us a call on 01293 529977 or use our contact form.