1910.29(b) – states the specific requirements for the minimum and maximum height of guardrail systems.

  1. For guardrails, the General Industry regulations are now aligned with the Construction rules.  The requirement for the top rail is 42-inches, plus or minus 3-inches.  Additionally, the new rule states that openings between top and midrail can be no greater than 19-inches.
  2. The rails must be capable of withstanding a force of at least 200 lbs. applied in a downward or outward direction within 2-inches of any point along the top edge of the rail.  At this loading, the top rail may not deflect to a height of less than 39-inches above the walking-working surface.
  3. Midrails, screens, mesh, intermediate vertical members (no more than 19-inches apart), solid panels or other equivalent members, must be capable of withstanding without failure, a force of at least 150 lbs. in any downward or outward direction, and any point along the intermediate member.
  4. Also prohibits the use of steel or plastic banding for top rails or midrails in guardrail systems, due to the potential of sharp edges. However, steel or synthetic rope is permitted.

Provided by Ken Kempa