Rooftop Safety

Roof Hatch Safety

Discover a Range of Roof Hatch Safety Solutions That Can Eliminate a Potential Fall

hatch safety - Creating Safe Rooftop Access

When opening a hatch to gain access to the roof, more often than not, you are carrying with you tools and equipment for the project at hand. Our solutions help you access the roof with ease while ensuring a safety solution is in place while the hatch is open, eliminating the risk of a potential fall related injury.

A modular aluminum ladder that is quick and easy to assemble. This ladder can be installed on the underside of a hatch as it comes complete with stiles that can be extended when the hatch is open.

Hatch Guardrail System

A guardrail system that is attached (both fixed or non-penetrating) to the frame of the hatch, and tailored to meet your specific hatch design. Arrives in pre-made modular components making it easy to assemble on-site.

For Entering and Exiting a Roof Hatch

Allows users to support themselves past their roof hatch. The horizontal rungs provide a sturdy, solid grip for entering and exiting a roof hatch. Install the Hatch Grab System to the exterior of your roof hatch to provide secure and safe access to your rooftop.


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A roof hatch provides easy access to the roof of the ICI (industrial, commercial, institutional) building, acting like a door. You essentially open the door by climbing up from the hatch ladder to step onto the roof. Depending on why you are accessing the rooftop, you may also want to use this entry point to pull up tools and materials onto the roof.

When ascending the hatch ladder, you could be at an unsafe height, and want to ensure three points of contact at all times. This may require you to review if the ladder has extendible stiles to help with stepping off of the hatch ladder onto the rooftop safely.

Once you are on the roof, oftentimes the hatch door remains left open while work is being done. This is to ensure easy and quick access to enter back into the building, or maybe there is an older hatch in place, and as such, there is a risk that it could become jammed when closed. Leaving the hatch door open creates an opening on the rooftop, ultimately creating a fall hazard that wasn’t there to begin with.

The other common risk associated with roof hatches is that the hatch ladder is often installed on the inside of an outside wall, meaning that once you are on the roof you could be only a foot or two from the edge of the roof and immediately at risk of a fall.

Distractions are also a concern, as it’s quite easy to be focused on the task at hand and forget that there is a hatch opened behind you. Especially if it was opened by someone else while you were working.

When working at heights, the codes vary depending on where you are located. The applicable safety requirements focus on fall protection when near a fall hazard, even if the opening is a small one (like a hatch door).

Yes, there are custom capabilities when designing your roof hatch.

Skyline Group offers various roof hatch safety solutions that are modular, either as a penetrating or non-penetrating system, for creating a safe perimeter around the roof hatch. When looking at a simple and less intrusive installation process, the non-penetrating guardrails make for a quick and easy installation. Skyline Group is able to assist in selecting the right HatchBarrier system for your specific needs, which includes detailed instructions for installation.

The inspection requires someone to ensure that the roof hatch safety system has been installed as per the installation guide, and remains as such. There is no required maintenance, other than the recommended routine inspections.

The penalties do not relate to not using a specific solution. The standards and regulations are focused on creating a safe environment while working near and around a fall hazard like an opened roof hatch. That being said, if an injury occurs, the building owner and/or site lead can be criminally held liable per the Westray Law (Bill C-45).

When reviewing the process an employee takes to climb to the rooftop via the hatch, our safety specialists review the following:

  • What is the condition of the ladder? 
  • When you start your climb from inside the building, is the environment safe and free from a fall hazard? 
  • When climbing, can you maintain three points of contact?
  • When stepping onto the roof, how close are you to the edge of the roof?
  • If the roof hatch door remains open, are there safety measures to ensure the fall hazard is mitigated? 
  • Would a HatchBarrier or a RoofBarrier be best placed to remove the fall hazard?

Case Studies

Our Roof Access and Safety Solutions can be seen accross North America.

French Fry Production Plant Improves Roof Safety: A Case Study
A Culture of Safety at BC Hydro: A Case Study
SaskPower’s Rooftop Safety Journey: A Case Study
roof railing


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