How Expandable Metal Barricades Can Help You Meet OSHA Barrier RequirementsArticle published on Feb 24, 2021
To the general public a "barrier" may seem like a self explained term, (and therefore an "expandable barrier" is equally self explained). However, according to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) there are many different barrier types which serve a wide variety of safety needs.
For instance as you navigate the complex directory of OSHA regulations for your particular industry needs, you may come across terms like "awareness barrier", "traffic barrier", "warning lines", and more. With definitions varying from purpose to purpose, it can be very complicated to navigate and it's always best to confirm your safety plan with an expert. But for general purposes, in this post we'll discuss some of the ways expandable metal barricades can help you meet OSHA requirements for physical barriers.
What is a physical barrier?
In most cases, a barrier is defined as "a physical obstruction that blocks or limits access."
When are barriers required?
Barriers are required in a wide variety of instances. Traffic proximity is of course a common situation when barriers are required, and certain electrical, robotic, or mechanical equipment requires "machine guarding" so that workers are aware not to come too close as well.
Fall protection is another common use for barriers. For instance when there is a ledge or wall opening 39 inches or more above the surface below it, some sort of physical barrier is required.
What are the features and benefits of expanding metal barriers which help workers meet barrier regulations?
Expandable: With so many uses for barriers and barricades in industrial settings, it's especially useful when a barrier can adapt and expand for a variety of openings and widths. The expandable design of these barricades means it can be stretched to fill small and large spaces alike. It also means that it can be expanded and collapsed as needed when personnel or equipment must temporarily pass through.
Collapsable: When it's collapsed, a locking device secures it in place. This same device can be used to lock the barrier in it's expanded position as well. This means that expanding metal barriers like these can be safely stored out of the way when they're no longer needed.
Portable: Even though the steel construction makes this barrier fairly heavy, (roughly 29 pounds), wheels make it conveniently portable. This is important for keeping the floors and passageways clear to prevent trip and fall hazards when the barrier is no longer needed.
Interlocking: Hooks and casters along the sides of these barricades provide the ability to interlock from one barricade to another, just like a standard steel barricade might do. This means the expandable steel barricades can be used to enclose large areas, even if spaces with even irregular boundaries.
Locking Casters on the Wheels: When expandable barricades are needed in their expanded composition for long periods of time, locking casters along the wheels help maintain the extended position as well as the barrier boundaries.
Safety Colors: Yellow is a standard high visibility color, especially as far as OSHA is concerned. Yellow and black is considered a good color combination for warning of nearby hazards or increasing precaution. In many cases OSHA may require the use of safety colors in addition to the use of barriers.