Custom rooftop guardrail in Calgary

Custom rooftop guardrail in Calgary

The narrow access to this roof area made safer and compliant thanks to a custom rooftop guardrail


Rooftop guardrails are most often used to protect mechanical units positioned to close to the roof edge or ladder access to the roof itself. This installation in Calgary, AB highlights another common application for rooftop guardrails: narrow pathway between two roof levels. But this one has a special twist: the way between the two roof levels brings visitors to climb on top of a high parapet, making standard roof surface level guardrails insufficient. Here’s how we created a compliant solution for this building owner.


Initial Situation: An Uncertain Compliance

When we were asked to take a look at this situation, a corrective solution was already in place. Another roof guardrail system has been modified to accommodate the customer height situation. The posts were extended and welded together, and the compliance to standard was highly uncertain. Needless to say, this made the building owner nervous enough to look for another solution.


The Area to Protect: A Narrow Pathway on Top of the parapet

A circulation path was installed on this rooftop to ensure that visitors always follow the best way around. In between the two roof levels, the path got narrower between a large HVAC unit and the roof edge. In some area, the path on the roof-level surface disappears completely, forcing visitors to climb on the 13” high parapet wall and walk on distance of 8’ a few inches from the void. Each side of this narrow path also needed to be protected. This pathway was the only access to this side of the Calgary building.


The Solution: A Custom Rooftop Guardrail

In collaboration with a local distributor, a custom guardrail has been engineered to meet this specific situation’s criteria. The base system is the VSS Compact, chosen for the compactness of its weight base and post. The path on top of the parapet needed a 42” guardrail, but was too narrow to accommodate weight bases. Therefore, these posts needed to be on the roof level surface and lengthen of the height of the parapet. These special posts were then strengthened to ensure compliance to the capacity required by the NBC (National Building Code).


The End Situation: A Durable and Compliant Rooftop Guardrail

The circulation on this Calgary building is now safer thanks to a custom rooftop guardrail designed specifically for this building’s architectural challenges. What’s more, the durable anodized aluminum finish and recycled rubber bases of the Delta Prevention VSS Compact ensure a very long service time to this roof fall protection system.

If you have a similar situation on your building or want a full-roof survey performed, click here to contact our team of experts.