May 2023

M id A tlantic Real Estate Journal — Owners, Developers & Managers — May 2023 — 15A

O wners , D evelopers & M anagers

E Partnership ensures OSHA-compliant load testing/certification for over 190 buildings ECS Mid-Atlantic and Clean & Polish Building Solutions join forces for safe building façade access CS Mid-Atlantic, an engineering firm with structural engineers

contractors working on fa- çades. When access is by rope descent, OSHA places the responsibility of providing anchorages on the building owner (OSHA 1910.27(b)(1) (i)). Anchors must be iden- tified, tested, certified and maintained by the building owner, including an annual visual inspection of anchor- age and certification at least every 10 years. Many anchor- age systems designed and installed by manufacturers require their anchors to be load tested every five years.

OSHA provides guidance as to the required anchor- age strength but defers to industry standards for the layout of roof anchors. OSHA also provides options allow- ing fall-protection systems that are “designed, installed and used under the supervi- sion of a qualified person.” Structural engineers, such as those at ECS, are con- sidered a qualified person. The takeaway is that OSHA subtly acknowledges that each building is different and there is no one-size-fits-all

system. When a fall-pro- tection system is carefully considered and designed by a professional, qualified per - son it has met the standard OSHA looks for. While C&P is the mouth- piece for safety and provides in-house training for their staff and clients, ECS pro- vides engineering expertise which elevates the position of a “qualified” person. To- day, ECS uses engineering staff to perform the annual inspections required by in- dustry standards and uses

licensed staff to provide de- sign and certification services for anchors. Additionally, ECS generates contractor- use plans on behalf of build- ing owners. A contractor-use plan provides the limitations of the fall-protection anchor system, locates acceptable tie-off anchor locations and the required safety measures needed to use them and helps the building owner to commu- nicate anchor restrictions to contractors using the anchors, including limitations set forth by industry standards. MAREJ

and specialty testing capa- bilities, and Clean & Polish Building Solutions (C&P), a building-exterior restora- tion specialist and one of the largest window-cleaning companies in the mid-At- lantic region, have teamed up to provide safe access to building façades using rope descent systems in Wash- ington, DC, and the mid- Atlantic region. Since 2015, nearly 200 buildings have completed OSHA-required load testing/certification from this partnership. In ad- dition, more than 1,200 an- nual visual inspections have been completed per OSHA requirements and many older buildings retrofitted with new anchorage. C&P promoted anchor- safety systems before the release of early façade-access safety standards, such as the International Window Clean- ers Association (IWCA) ANSI I-14 safety standard in 2001. ECS Mid-Atlantic met C&P more than a decade ago on a large portfolio project certify - ing anchorages on buildings nationwide for a large real estate owner. As registered professional engineers, ECS provides anchor certifica- tions, design services and annual inspections. ECS and C&P realized their interests in safe access aligned and partnered to bring additional safe oversight and profes- sional expertise to building owners with or without roof- anchor systems. In 2017, OSHA released the walking-working surfac- es and personal fall-protec- tion systems which brought roof-anchor safety to the forefront for many building professionals and owners. C&P and ECS were there to provide now-required testing and support. The OSHA requirements for fall protection are wide ranging and encompass any falls more than 4 feet in height as well as fall re- straints, anchor systems, guardrails, safety nets and/ or work positioning. While fall prevention is the safest option, utilizing roof anchors as part of a fall-protection system is often the only or most cost-effective option for


EVERY STEP OF THE WAY. From start to finish, our facilities consultants are experienced in due diligence, design, construction and operations to help you protect and maximize your investment.





Made with FlippingBook. PDF to flipbook with ease