Custom Designed Solutions
Bespoke Access Solutions are usually assemblies of stairs, steps, platforms, walkways and/ or guardrails. They are most commonly installed on roofs, to provide a safe means of access past an obstruction, such as a change in level or a piece of M&E plant.
They are fabricated or modular assemblies of aluminium, steel, PVC and/ or GRP. Generally, they are free-standing, i.e. not mechanically fixed to the substrate.
Applicable UK Standards & Guidance
Safety of machinery – Permanent means of access to machinery
- Part 1: Choice of fixed means and general requirements of access
- Part 2: Working platforms and walkways
- Part 3: Stairs, stepladders and guard-rails
Levels of Safety
Systems which are designed and installed in compliance with standards offer simple to use safe access past obstructions, with few restrictions and without the need for specific competencies or PFPE.
The maximum acceptable bearing pressure on the roof should be checked. If the weight of the system is such that this is an issue, then more and/ or larger feet pads should be used.
Wind loading on free-standing structures can be significant and should always be assessed by a competent designer.
Access systems are usually either fabricated or formed from modular kits. The designer should consider all aspects of the installation process when selecting and designing the system, including lifting operations, manual handling and falling objects.
There are few restrictions or specific requirements for the safe use of such systems, other than general safe practice when working in exposed maintenance areas.
The load capacity of the system should be checked if more than 2 or 3 persons will use it at the same time or if materials are to be carried and/ or stored on it.
Provision & Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER)
Regulation 6 requires that inspections of work equipment are made and that records of the inspections are maintained.
Workplace (Health Safety & Welfare) Regulations
Regulation 5 requires the employer and/or the person in control of premises must maintain the workplace and contents so that they remain safe and without risk to health and fully comply with the detailed requirements of the regulations.