Fall protection shafts: challenges, standards and an innovative fall protection system

Why is it so important to protect yourself against crashes?

Manholes represent work environments that pose particular risks. In addition to the risk of falls, workers in shafts often face challenges such as limited communication, limited visibility and tight spaces. Therefore, it is crucial to equip yourself with high-quality fall protection. The traditional use of fixed ladders is the most common, but does not take into account the possibilities offered by the system from HighStep Systems. Below is an overview of standards, basics, challenges and possible solutions with innovative fall protection systems.

DGUV work in shafts

The BG ETEM assesses the situation regarding occupational safety when working in shafts as follows. “For this work, according to DGUV Rule 113-004 “Working in containers, silos and confined spaces” (previously: BGR/GUV‑R 117‑1) among others. one Risk assessment, as well as special protective measures are absolutely necessary.”

Shaft ladders: What do the regulations say?

The DGUV regulations specify that shaft ladders must be robust, stable and meet safety standards. You must ensure that workers can get in and out of the shaft safely without the risk of falling. However, the HighStep Systems system offers a superior alternative that not only ensures safety but also improves effectiveness. According to the DGUV rule on working in containers, silos and confined spaces - including shafts, it must be ensured that shafts can be accessed or driven safely at all times. The fall protection system for HighStep Systems, which has been used successfully for working at heights for many years, is particularly impressive in this regard.

Why is appropriate fall protection in shafts essential?

  • Reducing accident risks: Proper fall protection minimizes potential accident risks, increasing worker safety.
  • Legal compliance: Compliance with DGUV regulations is not only ethically important, but also legally required to ensure employee safety.
  • Ensuring a safe work environment: Adequate fall protection creates a safe work environment in which workers can work effectively and without unnecessary risks, including in terms of communication and visibility.

The future of fall protection technology and rescue from shafts: new developments and trends.

HighStep Systems presents a pioneering solution for working at great depths, not only redefining safety standards but also significantly improving working comfort. This innovative technology takes a preventative approach and brings with it numerous benefits that are shaping the future of fall protection.

  1. Risk avoidance: HighStep Systems' approach is revolutionary. The system prevents potential risks of falling when descending, which significantly reduces the risk of (work) accidents.
  2. Minimized physical stress: Compared to traditional systems, HighStep Systems minimizes the physical effort of workers. This not only leads to higher work performance, but also reduces the risk of fatigue that could lead to accidents. How are efforts minimized? Riding the lift does not require any physical effort. Descending with the HighStep Easy or the climbing shoes is comparable to climbing stairs. Arm use is not necessary and the user can choose their own step height. In addition, a rest and work platform is always integrated into both systems and is part of the solution.
  3. Optimal safety at great depths: HighStep Systems ensures consistent safety, even at great depths. The system is designed to prevent falls and therefore offers the highest level of protection for employees.
  4. Low maintenance: In contrast to conventional systems, the permanently installed part “the HighStep rail” is maintenance-free. Only the portable “climbing devices” have to be checked every 12 months. This efficiency not only increases uptime but also significantly reduces operating costs.


The HighStep Lift

HighstepSystems Lift
HighstepSystems Lift

The HighStep Lift is the world's first mobile, battery-operated service lift for structures and masts of any kind. The lift enables efficient, safe and comfortable ascent and descent.

The HighStep Easy & Protector​

HighstepSystems Easy Protect, fall protection
HighStep Easy Protector

The basic model for climbing is the HighStep Easy, consisting of two independent pedals. To climb, the pedals are hooked into the rail while the user's foot is fixed to the pedal by a binding.


Revolutionary projects: Find out more about the groundbreaking applications and impressive projects in which our fall arrest systems brand plays a central role.

Protective equipment Fall protection

Gregor Wylenzek

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