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When is fall protection for penetrations required?

Q: Could you please provide some guidance on the maximum size that a penetration can be before fall protection is required? We are located in Victoria.

A: Holes, penetrations and openings in roofs and other structures need to be made safe immediately after they are formed. This is because the risk from a penetration is not just that a person may fall through the penetration, but also relates to hazards posed by equipment, such as ladders, placed on or near a penetration of any size.

We are not aware of a maximum size that a penetration can be before fall protection is required in Victoria. However, you can obtain further information on the prevention of falls in general construction in Victoria by referring to the compliance code Prevention of Falls in General Construction, which can be accessed from www.worksafe.vic.gov.au.

We also recommend reviewing chapter W2 Working at Heights.

Please note: The answer is correct at the time of publishing. Be aware that laws may change over time. Refer to Working at heights for current advice.

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