OSHA Quick Card
Fall Protection in General Industry

Raised platform with protected guardrail.

Falls are among the most common causes of serious work-related injuries and deaths. Employers must take measures in their workplaces to prevent employees from falling off overhead platforms, elevated work stations or into holes in the floor and walls.

To prevent employees from being injured from falls, employers must:

  • Guard every floor hole into which a worker can accidentally walk by use of a railing and toeboard or a floor hole cover.
  • Provide a guardrail and toeboard around every open-sided platform, floor or runway that is 4 feet or higher off the ground or next level.
  • Regardless of height, if a worker can fall into or onto dangerous machines or equipment (such as a vat of acid or a conveyor belt), employers must provide guardrails and toeboards to prevent workers from falling and getting injured.
  • Other means of fall protection that may be required on certain jobs include safety harness and line, safety nets, stair railings and handrails.

OSHA requires employers to:

  • Provide working conditions that are free of known dangers.
  • Keep floors in work areas in a clean and sanitary condition.
  • Select and provide required personal protective equipment at no cost to workers.
  • Train workers about job hazards in a language that they can understand.

You have a right to a safe workplace.
If you have questions about workplace safety
and health, call OSHA at 1-800-321-6742.
It's confidential.
We can help!

For more complete information:
Latino Sumit Background OSHA Occupational
Safety and Health
U.S. Department of Labor
www.osha.gov (800) 321-OSHA (6742)

OSHA 3257-12-10R