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  • 13 Dec 2018

    Protecting Workers with Mezzanine Safety Gates

     When installing a new mezzanine in your new facility, it is important to ensure safety is one of your top priorities.  As you can read in some of our previous posts, falls are one of the most common causes of injuries in the workplace (part of the “Fatal Four” workplace injuries that make up %64 of workplace fatalities).  For this reason, extra care must be put into the design of your mezzanine.  As a standard, if a mezzanine system is going to have any foot traffic on top of it, it will have hand railing around any edge that is open to the facility floor.  However, since the majority of the mezzanines we install are your for some type of storage, there needs to be a reliable way to safely load/offload materials.

    In order to keep our mezzanines as safe as possible, Panel Built has developed a variety of safety gates to fit in different applications.  In this post, we will go over some of our basic mezzanine safety gate options and when they will typically be used.  


     Mezzanine Swing Gates

    Swing-Gate-Mezzanine

    One of the most popular gates, our swing gates offer a lot of conveniences while still keeping the mezzanine safe and secure.  Our swing gates typically consist of two gate arms that swing inward, towards the mezzanine (it is important to note that the gate swings to the inside; outwards swinging swing gates can lead to falls off of the mezzanine due to workers reaching out over the edge opening/closing the gate).   However, single arm swing gates are also available, featuring both right-hand and left-hand swings.  The standard double arm swing gate with have a length of 6 feet, while a single arm swing gate with sit at 3 feet, but these lengths can, of course, be customized if necessary.   

    The gates have a latch system that ensures the gate systems stays closed when not in use.  Double swing gates will have the arms latched to one another, while a single arm swing gate will simply latch to the adjacent handrail. 

    Something to Keep in Mind…

    With the gate’s arms swinging inward, you must be sure that the area behind the gate is going to be clear and not obstructed by any materials or machinery. When the gate is closed, the arms will be in-line with the adjacent handrail.
     


    Sliding Gates

    Slide Gate MezzanineSlide gates are another one of our convenient gate options, allowing for quick loading and unloading of materials onto the mezzanine.  Essentially, our sliding gate can be seen at as handrail section that’s on wheels.  The section has wheels on the bottom to roll across the mezzanine floor and one on top in order to guide the section along the adjacent handrail when the gate is open (the gate section is slightly offset the adjacent handrail in order to accomplish this).   Sliding gates can be spring loaded to ensure they will close quickly after it is finished being used.  

    Something to Keep in Mind…

    Unlike the swing gate, the sliding gate does not take up additional space when it is opened.  In a case where a piece of equipment or materials sit behind the gate or if a gate is in a sort of “tight spot” on the mezzanine, a sliding gate might be the best options as it leaves you with plenty of room to operate. 


    Lift Out Gate

    Lift-Out-GateThe most simple of all of our gate designs, our lift out gate acts as an ordinary piece of handrail when it is not in use.  But, unlike its surround handrail pieces, it is not bolted to the mezzanine.  Instead, the lift out gate sits in pockets that are welded to the side of the mezzanine. 

    These pockets allow the lift out gate section to easily be lifted out of the pockets, opening up the area for the transfer of goods or materials.  Then when the loading/unloading is finished, the gate section can easily be lifted and slid back into place in the side-mounted gate pockets.  

    Something to Keep in Mind…

    While Lift Out Gates are very simple and typically one of our most affordable gate designs, the system will stay open until an employee is able to close of the railing again.  Also, the handrail piece itself will need to be placed in a new area, while the gate is in use.  Keep these two things in mind when making your gate choice.  


    Pivot Gate

    Safety-Pivot-GatePanel Built’s pivot gate system probably provides the highest overall level of protection out of our line of gates.   This is because our pivot gates allow for the mezzanine to be closed off at all times, even when the gate is in use.  When the gate is not being used, the far side of the gate will typically be lowered, creating a railing inline with the rest of the mezzanine’s railing system. 

    When materials or goods need to be loaded onto the mezzanine, an employee will pull down on the raised portion of the gate.  Lowering that end raises the other end, opening that portion of the gate for goods to be loaded.  However, since the employee side of the gate has been lowered, the area is still closed off.  This helps keep mezzanine falling accidents to a minimum, keeping a barrier between the employees and the edge of the mezzanine.  When the materials have been properly loaded, the employee can raise his side and safely retrieve the load, while closing off the other side of the gate. 

    Something to Keep in Mind…

    Pivot gates are typically regarded as highly safe, but out of all the gate designs, they will take up the most space on the mezzanine.  Take in the size of the gate (6’x6′) into account when designing a mezzanine system that will be using one.  This will help ensure employees have proper room around the gate to transport and maneuver the goods. 

     


    Overall, Panel Built’s mezzanine safety gates come in a variety of custom shapes and sizes.  In fact, we have previously custom designed completely new gate systems to meet unique applications.  Our main goal is to ensure the safety of our customers and assure them they can safely rely on our products.   If you have a question about our mezzanine safety gates or any of our other line of products, just give us a call at 800.636.3873 or send us an email at info@panelbuilt.com.  Or you can talk to us in our LiveChat in the bottom-right of the page! We are happy to help with any of your mezzanine project needs.  

Call For Modular Building Solutions 800.636.3873