US20140367628A1 - Support apparatus for barrier means and method of use thereof - Google Patents

Support apparatus for barrier means and method of use thereof Download PDF

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Publication number
US20140367628A1
US20140367628A1 US14/184,852 US201414184852A US2014367628A1 US 20140367628 A1 US20140367628 A1 US 20140367628A1 US 201414184852 A US201414184852 A US 201414184852A US 2014367628 A1 US2014367628 A1 US 2014367628A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
means
support apparatus
movement
cam
members
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US14/184,852
Inventor
Peter Hewson
David Brine
John Paul Shepardson
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Rapid EPS Ltd
Original Assignee
Rapid EPS Ltd
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Priority to GBGB1310741.2A priority Critical patent/GB201310741D0/en
Priority to GBGB1310741.2 priority
Priority to US13/928,556 priority patent/US20140367627A1/en
Priority to GB201402639A priority patent/GB201402639D0/en
Priority to GBGB1402639.7 priority
Application filed by Rapid EPS Ltd filed Critical Rapid EPS Ltd
Priority to US14/184,852 priority patent/US20140367628A1/en
Publication of US20140367628A1 publication Critical patent/US20140367628A1/en
Abandoned legal-status Critical Current

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    • EFIXED CONSTRUCTIONS
    • E04BUILDING
    • E04HBUILDINGS OR LIKE STRUCTURES FOR PARTICULAR PURPOSES; SWIMMING OR SPLASH BATHS OR POOLS; MASTS; FENCING; TENTS OR CANOPIES, IN GENERAL
    • E04H17/00Fencing, e.g. fences, enclosures, corrals
    • E04H17/14Fences constructed of rigid elements, e.g. with posts, with additional wire fillings
    • EFIXED CONSTRUCTIONS
    • E04BUILDING
    • E04GSCAFFOLDING; FORMS; SHUTTERING; BUILDING IMPLEMENTS OR OTHER BUILDING AIDS, OR THEIR USE; HANDLING BUILDING MATERIALS ON THE SITE; REPAIRING, BREAKING-UP OR OTHER WORK ON EXISTING BUILDINGS
    • E04G21/00Preparing, conveying, or working-up building materials or building elements in situ; Other devices or measures for constructional work
    • E04G21/32Safety or protective measures for persons during the construction of buildings
    • E04G21/3204Safety or protective measures for persons during the construction of buildings against falling down
    • E04G21/3223Means supported by building floors or flat roofs, e.g. safety railings
    • E04G21/3233Means supported by building floors or flat roofs, e.g. safety railings without permanent provision in the floor or roof
    • E04G21/3242Means supported by building floors or flat roofs, e.g. safety railings without permanent provision in the floor or roof using clamps
    • EFIXED CONSTRUCTIONS
    • E04BUILDING
    • E04GSCAFFOLDING; FORMS; SHUTTERING; BUILDING IMPLEMENTS OR OTHER BUILDING AIDS, OR THEIR USE; HANDLING BUILDING MATERIALS ON THE SITE; REPAIRING, BREAKING-UP OR OTHER WORK ON EXISTING BUILDINGS
    • E04G5/00Component parts or accessories for scaffolds
    • E04G5/14Railings
    • E04G5/142Railings extensible or telescopic
    • EFIXED CONSTRUCTIONS
    • E04BUILDING
    • E04GSCAFFOLDING; FORMS; SHUTTERING; BUILDING IMPLEMENTS OR OTHER BUILDING AIDS, OR THEIR USE; HANDLING BUILDING MATERIALS ON THE SITE; REPAIRING, BREAKING-UP OR OTHER WORK ON EXISTING BUILDINGS
    • E04G5/00Component parts or accessories for scaffolds
    • E04G5/14Railings
    • E04G2005/148Railings latticed or netted
    • EFIXED CONSTRUCTIONS
    • E04BUILDING
    • E04HBUILDINGS OR LIKE STRUCTURES FOR PARTICULAR PURPOSES; SWIMMING OR SPLASH BATHS OR POOLS; MASTS; FENCING; TENTS OR CANOPIES, IN GENERAL
    • E04H17/00Fencing, e.g. fences, enclosures, corrals
    • E04H17/14Fences constructed of rigid elements, e.g. with posts, with additional wire fillings
    • E04H2017/1447Details of connections between rails and posts
    • E04H2017/1491Hinged connections between rails and posts

Abstract

Support apparatus is provided for barrier means. The support apparatus includes support means for supporting one or more barrier means therewith in use. Movement means are provided for allowing movement of the support apparatus relative to a surface in use. Stop means are provided for stopping or preventing movement of the movement means in use.

Description

    CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • This application claims priority to United Kingdom Application No. GB1402639.7 filed Feb. 14, 2014, and is also a Continuation-in-Part of U.S. application Ser. No. 13/928,556 filed Jun. 27, 2013, which claims priority to United Kingdom Application No. GB1310741.2 filed Jun. 17, 2013, each of which is herein incorporated by reference in its entirety.
  • FIELD OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention relates to support apparatus for barrier means and to a method of use thereof.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • Although the following description refers almost exclusively to support apparatus for barrier means for use as part of a fall prevention system, it will be appreciated by persons skilled in the art that the support apparatus of the present invention could be used to support any item or items for any suitable purpose.
  • Conventionally during the construction of steel frame buildings, corrugated decking is placed between I-beams, rolled steel joists (RSJ s) or any structural steel section of the building frame, and concrete is poured onto the decking to form one or more floor surfaces within the building frame. Typically, the construction workers who perform the task of fitting the corrugated decking work adjacent one or more exposed edges of the building frame. This is a particular problem if the building frame includes a number of storeys or floors because any fall from the building frame is likely to cause injury to the construction worker and could be fatal. Although construction workers working against exposed edges tend to be connected to the building frame by safety ropes to prevent the workers from falling off the building frame, the risk of injury if they did fall is still present. In addition, in order to improve the safety of the construction workers, it is common to use a net and scaffolding system adjacent the exposed edge to catch any construction worker who may fall from the exposed edge. However, the provision of a net and scaffolding system is expensive and is time consuming and cumbersome to move as the building work progresses.
  • Similar safety problems to those described above are encountered during the construction of wooden frame buildings. However, rather than corrugated decking being used, cross laminated timber (CLT) decking is used.
  • It is therefore an aim of the present invention to provide support apparatus for barrier means that overcomes the abovementioned problems.
  • It is a further aim of the present invention to provide a method of using support apparatus for barrier means that overcomes the abovementioned problems.
  • It is a yet further aim of the present invention to provide a fall prevention system.
  • It is a yet further aim of the present invention to provide a method of using a fall prevention system.
  • According to a first aspect of the present invention there is provided support apparatus for barrier means, said support apparatus including support means for supporting one or more barrier means therewith in use, movement means for allowing movement of the support apparatus relative to a surface in use and stop means for stopping or substantially preventing movement of the movement means.
  • Thus, the present invention provides movable support apparatus for barrier means that allows the support apparatus to be moved relative to a surface when needed but prevents movement of the support apparatus when in a required position. This apparatus is particularly advantageous for use in the construction industry to support one or more safety barriers. The apparatus can be used adjacent an exposed edge of a building frame to prevent construction workers from falling from the building frame during construction work. The support apparatus can be easily moved by a construction worker as the building structure progresses.
  • Preferably the support apparatus includes a body portion and the support means are provided on or associated with the body portion.
  • In one embodiment the body portion includes at least two spaced apart plate members.
  • Preferably the support means are provided between said at least two spaced apart plate members.
  • Preferably one or more bridging members are provided between said at least two spaced apart plate members to provide the plate members with strength and rigidity.
  • Preferably the at least two spaced apart plate members are arranged substantially parallel to each other.
  • In one embodiment the body portion includes a pair of inner plate members and a pair of outer plate members.
  • Preferably the distance between the pair of inner plate members and/or the pair of outer plate members can be adjusted using adjustment means. This allows the support apparatus to be used on different sized items, such as different sized construction beams and/or the like.
  • In one embodiment a single adjustment means is provided. In an alternative embodiment two or more adjustment means are provided.
  • In one embodiment barrier means are integral with the support means. In an alternative embodiment barrier means are attachable to or detachably attachable to the support means.
  • Attachment means can be provided on or associated with the support means and/or barrier means to allow attachment of the barrier means to the support means in use.
  • The attachment means can include any or any combination of one or more pins, inter-engaging members, nuts and bolts, screws, clips, welding, adhesive, chains and/or the like.
  • The barrier means can include any or any combination of one or more frame members, meshing, netting, fencing and/or the like. The barrier means is/are typically in such a form so as to prevent a person falling through the barrier means if they were to accidentally fall on to it in use.
  • In one embodiment the support means includes at least one sleeve, channel member, aperture, recess and/or the like into which at least part of a barrier means is located in use.
  • Preferably an end of the barrier means is located in an opening defined in the support means.
  • Preferably the movement means includes one or more rollers, wheels, drums, ball bearings and/or the like which allows movement of the support apparatus along or relative to a surface in use.
  • The stop means can be an integral part of the movement means, can be provided on or associated with the movement means or can be completely separate to and independent of the movement means.
  • Preferably the stop means is movable between an actuated position, wherein it substantially stops or prevents movement of the movement means or support apparatus, to a non-actuated position, wherein it allows movement of the movement means and thus movement of the support apparatus.
  • The stop means can be any item or mechanism that prevents movement of the movement means or support apparatus when actuated.
  • The stop means can include any or any combination of one or more teeth, braking member, locking member, cam member, cam wheel and/or the like.
  • In one embodiment the stop means is in the form of or includes a cam member and preferably in the form of a cam wheel. Movement of the cam member or rotation of the cam wheel moves the same, or at least part of a cam surface between a non-actuated position and an actuated position.
  • Preferably rotation of the cam wheel in a first direction allows relatively free movement of the cam wheel and thus allows movement of the movement means and support apparatus.
  • Preferably rotation of the cam wheel in a second direction, which is typically substantially opposite to the first direction, moves the cam wheel into a position whereby further movement of the cam wheel, and thus the movement means and support apparatus, is substantially prevented.
  • Preferably when an off-centered weighted part of the cam wheel or a cam surface engages a floor surface in use, this forms the actuated position of the cam wheel or stop means, wherein further rotation of the cam wheel or stop means in the second direction is substantially prevented.
  • Preferably the cam wheel or cam member is arranged such that movement of the support apparatus in the first direction, in a rearwardly direction or in a direction away from the cam wheel or cam member allows relatively free movement of the cam wheel or cam member. Movement of the support apparatus in the second direction, in a forwardly direction or in a direction towards the cam wheel or cam member actuates the cam wheel or cam member and prevents or stops further movement of the movement means or support apparatus.
  • In one embodiment the stop means, cam wheel or cam member is arranged so as to have a weighted portion or an off centered weighted portion integrally formed with, provided on or associated with the same. For example, an arm portion or weighted member can be added to the stop means, cam wheel or cam member to bias the stop means, cam wheel or cam member to an actuated or stop position. It is not necessary for a free end of the weighted portion to engage with a surface to create a •stop, it simply needs to provide a biasing force to the stop means, cam wheel or cam member to allow a portion of the stop means, cam wheel or cam member to engage with a surface to create a stop position.
  • In one embodiment, movement of the stop means between a non-actuated position to an actuated position, is as a result of a user at least partially lifting, tilting, pivoting and/or jerking the support apparatus in use, in addition to or as an alternative to a moving the support apparatus in a first and/or second direction.
  • Further preferably movement of the stop means between a non-actuated position to an actuated position, is as a result of a user at least partially lifting, tilting, pivoting and/or jerking the support apparatus in a direction towards the stop means, cam member or cam wheel in use.
  • In one embodiment movement of the stop means between an actuated position and a non-actuated position is as a result of user actuation of a user actuation means or mechanism. The user actuation means or mechanism can include any suitable mechanical linkage, brake cable, gearing, one or more levers, pneumatic means, hydraulic means, magnetic means and/or the like.
  • In one example, the user actuation means is in the form of a cable, such as a brake cable, having a first end attached to or associated with the stop means and a second end attached to or associated with a user actuatable lever, dial, button and/or the like. Actuation and release of the lever or user actuation means by a user, moves the cable, and therefore the stop means, between non-actuated and actuated positions respectively.
  • In one example, user actuation means are provided on or associated with a part of the barrier means. For example, a cable lever, can be provided on the frame forming the barrier means.
  • Preferably the stop means, cam member or cam wheel is provided at or adjacent a front of the support apparatus. However, the stop means, cam member or cam wheel can be provided between a front and rear portion of the support apparatus or at the rear of the support apparatus as required.
  • More than one stop means, cam members or cam wheels can be provided if required.
  • Preferably the stop means, cam member or cam wheel is provided on or is associated with the body portion of the apparatus.
  • Preferably the stop means, cam member or cam wheel is provided on, is associated with or provided between the inner plate members and/or outer plate members of the body portion.
  • Preferably movement means are provided at a location a spaced distance apart from the stop means. For example, if the stop means is provided at or adjacent a front of the support apparatus, movement means can be provided in the middle of the support apparatus, at the rear of the support apparatus and/or a spaced distance behind the stop means.
  • Preferably movement means are provided on or are associated with the body portion of the apparatus.
  • Further preferably movement means are provided on, are associated with or provided between the inner plate members and/or the outer plate members of the body portion. For example, in one embodiment, a roller member is rotatably mounted between the inner or outer plate members of the body portion.
  • In one embodiment first and at least second movement means or sets of movement means are provided on or associated with the support apparatus and/or body portion.
  • In one embodiment the first and at least second movement means are arranged a spaced distance apart in a substantially horizontal or parallel plane. For example, one movement means could be provided substantially centrally of the body portion and one movement means could be provided at a rear of the body portion. The stop means could be provided, in one example, at a front of the body portion.
  • In one embodiment first and at least second movement means are arranged a spaced distance apart in a substantially vertical or upright direction. Thus, in one example, first movement means are provided at or adjacent an upper portion of the support apparatus or body portion and at least second movement means are provided at or adjacent a lower portion of the support apparatus or body portion.
  • In one embodiment first and at least second movement means are provided in a substantially horizontal plane and at least third movement means can be provided in a substantially vertical or upright direction. The first and at least second movement means could be provided in a plane substantially transverse or perpendicular to the plane in which the at least third movement means are provided.
  • The provision of first and at least second movement means in a vertically spaced apart orientation allows the first and at least second movement means to contact different parts or sides of a floor or beam surface in use. For example, if the surface on which the support apparatus is to be used is an I-beam, the first movement means can be moved along an upper surface of the I-beam and the at least second movement means can be moved along a lower surface of the I-beam, such as a lower surface of a flange of the I-beam.
  • Preferably adjustment means are provided on or associated with the first and/or at least second movement means to allow the spacing between the first and/or at least second movement means to be adjusted in use. This allows the support apparatus to be used on different sized beams, floor surfaces and/or the like.
  • In one embodiment the adjustment means allows the first and at least second movement means to be rotatably, slidably or pivotably moved relative to each other.
  • Locking means can be provided to lock the adjustment means in use to maintain the position of the first and/or at least second movement means in a required position.
  • In one embodiment the adjustment means includes one or more threaded screws or nut and bolt mechanisms with which the first and/or at least second movement means, inner and/or outer plate members are associated with or rotatably mounted thereon.
  • Preferably the at least second movement means are provided on or are associated with the outer plate members of the body portion. However, they could be provided on or associated with inner plate members if required.
  • Preferably a second movement means is provided on or associated with each outer plate member. For example, the second movement means can be provided substantially opposite to each other.
  • Preferably at least part of the body portion, the inner plate members and/or the outer plate members are arranged for location adjacent to, in abutting relationship with or in engagement with one or more surfaces of the floor or item on which the support apparatus is to be used in use. For example, if the support apparatus is to be used on an I-beam, the outer plate members can typically abut against or are located adjacent the end surfaces of one or more flanges of the I-beam in use.
  • Preferably the inner and/or outer plate members or portions are provided on at least two opposite sides of the body portion. Preferably the inner and/or outer plate members or side portions are provided a spaced distance apart.
  • Preferably adjustment means are provided to allow the distance between the at least two opposite side portions or plate members to be adjusted in use. This allows the support apparatus to be used on different sized beams, any other structural steel section, floor surfaces and/or the like.
  • In one embodiment guard or cover means are provided on or associated with at least part of the support apparatus, the movement means, the stop means, body portion and/or the like. This prevents accidental movement or damage to one or more parts of the support apparatus, the movement means, the stop means, the body portion and/or the like when the guard means is in a guarding position.
  • The guard means are preferably movably mounted to a part of the support apparatus, the movement means, body portion and/or the stop means to allow movement between a guarded position, wherein access to at least part of the support apparatus, the movement means, the body portion and/or the stop means is substantially prevented, and a non-guarded position, wherein access to at least part of the support apparatus, the movement means and/or the stop means is allowed.
  • In one embodiment guide means are provided to guide movement of the movement means, inner and/or outer plate members during adjustment using adjustment means. The guide means can include one or more arm members, guide shafts and/or the like.
  • According to a second aspect of the present invention there is provided a method of using support apparatus.
  • In one embodiment the barrier means include one or more frame members that are telescopic in form or are arranged so as to be extendable or retractable in length. Preferably the telescopic frame members are substantially freely extendable or retractable in length, thereby allowing the length of the same to be freely altered simply by moving a support apparatus associated with the barrier means and/or a part of the barrier means in use.
  • In one embodiment two or more frame members forming the barrier means are hingedly or pivotably movable relative to each other, thereby allowing the angle between the frame members to be adjusted in use and/or the position of the frame members relative to each other to be adjusted in use.
  • In one embodiment two or more support apparatus are provided and are arranged a spaced distance apart and barrier means are arranged so as to extend between two or more of said spaced apart support apparatus.
  • Preferably the barrier means are arranged so as to provide a substantially U-shaped frame between the two spaced apart support apparatus. The U-shaped frame typically protrudes rearwardly of the support apparatus, such that the base or rear of the U-shaped frame is arranged closest to a worker in use or furthest from the support apparatus.
  • In one embodiment the one or more surfaces or items on which the support apparatus is used is an I-beam, H-beam, W-beam, RSJ, flanged beam, universal beam, steel beam, double T beam, any structural steel section of a building frame and/or the like.
  • Preferably first movement means allows movement of the support apparatus along a top surface of the beam and the second movement means allows movement of the support apparatus along an underside or lower surface of the beam or a flange of the beam.
  • Preferably the stop means are associated with or actuated against a top surface of the beam on which the apparatus is to be used in use. However, the stop means could be associated with or actuated against a lower surface of the beam on which the apparatus is to be used in use.
  • Preferably the support apparatus is for use on a steel or metal frame building, a construction frame or partial construction frame, such as for example a frame for use in making a mezzanine floor.
  • In one embodiment the support apparatus is for use on a timber frame building, a construction frame or partial construction frame. In this embodiment, one or more beams are provided that are attachable to a part of the timber frame building, such as for example, to the timber decking or frame used on a floor of the timber frame building.
  • Preferably the one or more beams provided are aluminum beams so as to be lightweight whilst providing the necessary structural properties. If pre-defined beams are supplied with the support apparatus, adjustment means may not be required on the support apparatus since the pre-defined beams will be of pre-defined dimensions.
  • Preferably attachment means are provided to allow attachment of the one or more beams to an existing part of the timber frame building. The attachment means can include any suitable attachment means, such as one or more screws, nuts and bolts and/or the like.
  • Further preferably the one or more beams provided are !-beams but could be any type, shape or design of beam as required.
  • Preferably beam guide means can be provided on or associated with the one or more beams to allow one beam to be located in a required orientation with respect to another beam. For example, when laying the beams in an end to end arrangement, the beam guide means ensure one beam is aligned correctly with another beam.
  • The beam guide means in one example are in the form of one or more protruding arms that protrude outwardly from a front and/or rear end of the beam. Preferably the one or more protruding arms are provided on the web of the beam (i.e. between outer flanges of the beam), so that the web of the next beam can be inserted adjacent to or between the one or more protruding arms.
  • According to a third aspect of the present invention there is provided a fall prevention system including support apparatus for supporting barrier means.
  • According to a fourth aspect of the present invention there is provided a method of using a fall prevention system.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • Embodiments of the present invention will now be described with reference to the accompanying figures, wherein:
  • FIGS. 1 a-1 c show an end view, a side view and a plan view from above of support apparatus according to an embodiment of the present invention respectively;
  • FIGS. 2 a and 2 b show a side view of the support apparatus in FIGS. 1 a-1 c with the stop means in a non-actuated position and an actuated position respectively;
  • FIG. 3 is a front view of the support apparatus with barrier means attached in use in one example;
  • FIG. 4 is a plan view from above of the support apparatus with barrier means attached in use in one example;
  • FIG. 5 is a side view of the support apparatus with barrier means attached in use in one example;
  • FIG. 6 is a simplified perspective view of the support apparatus in use in one example;
  • FIGS. 7 a-7 b show a side view and an end view of support apparatus according to a further embodiment of the present invention respectively;
  • FIG. 7 c shows a side view of the support apparatus in FIGS. 7 a-7 b used on wooden frame building;
  • FIGS. 8 a-8 b show side views of support apparatus according to a yet further embodiment of the present invention with the stop means in a non-actuated or moving position and an actuated or non-moving/stop position respectively;
  • FIGS. 9 a-9 c show an end view, top plan view, and side view of support apparatus according to a further embodiment of the present invention.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
  • Referring to FIGS. 1-6, there is illustrated support apparatus 2 forming part of a fall prevention system according to an embodiment of the present invention. The support apparatus in the illustrated example is typically used on a steel frame building structure, although it could be used on any building structure as required.
  • The support apparatus 2 includes a body portion 4 comprising two substantially parallel inner plate members 6, 8 located a spaced distance apart. A bridging member 10 is provided between the inner plate members 6, 8 to provide the body portion with strength and rigidity. In addition, bridging member 10 acts to prevent cam wheel 46 from rotating past a position where it functions as a stop means, as will be described in more detail below. Support means in the form of a hollow sleeve member 12 is also located between and joined to inner plate members 6, 8 of body portion 4.
  • Hollow sleeve member 12 is substantially elongate in form and has an opening 14 defined between a top edge 16 for the location of barrier means therein in use. Hollow sleeve member 12 protrudes upwardly from a top surface of body portion 4.
  • Body portion 4 also comprises two substantially parallel outer plate members 18, 20 or I-beam flange guide plates. The outer plate members 18, 20 typically have a greater height or width compared to the inner plate members 6, 8 as will be described in more detail below. The outer plate members 18, 20 are joined to the inner plate members 6, 8 via elongate adjuster screws 22, 24.
  • The outer plate members 18, 20 are substantially parallel to the inner plate members 6, 8 and are arranged a spaced distance therefrom.
  • First movement means in the form of a roller 26 is rotatably mounted on adjuster screw 24 located between inner plates 6, 8 and adjacent a rear end 28 of the support apparatus 2. The roller 26 typically engages with an upper surface of an I-beam in use for enabling movement of the apparatus along said upper surface.
  • Second movement means in the form of a pair of rollers or flange rollers 30, 32 are provided and are joined to outer plate members 18, 20 via flange guide pins 34. Rollers 30, 32 face inwardly of the apparatus towards each other. They are provided a spaced distance apart from roller 26 in a vertical direction below the same. Rollers 18, 20 typically engage with a lower surface of a flange of an I-beam in use for enabling movement of the apparatus along said lower surface.
  • The vertical spacing of the flange rollers 30, 32 with respect to upper roller 26 can be adjusted using flange roller adjustment screws 36. Rotation of the nut portion 38 of adjustment screws 36 allows the flange rollers 30, 32 to be moved along the length of the threaded screw portion 40 between raised and lowered positions in a substantially vertical direction. This allows the support apparatus 2 to be used with different sized beams, any structural steel section or floor surfaces in use (i.e. it allows the apparatus to be used on apparatus with beam flanges of different thicknesses).
  • The spacing between outer plate members 18, 20 can be adjusted using adjustment means including handle means 42 which allow rotation of adjuster screws 22, 24 relative to locking nuts 44.
  • This adjustment mechanism also allows the support apparatus 2 to be used on different sized beams or floor surfaces in use (i.e. it allows the apparatus to be used on apparatus with beam flanges of different widths).
  • Upper roller 26 and lower flange rollers 30, 32 allow the support apparatus 2 to engage with and be moved relative to an I-beam in use in one example.
  • In accordance with the present invention, stop means are provided on the support apparatus 2 in the form of a cam wheel 46 provided adjacent front end 48 of the apparatus.
  • The off-centered weighted portion of the cam wheel is arranged such that movement or rotation of cam wheel 46 in a first clockwise direction, as shown by arrow 50 in FIG. 2 a, allows the apparatus to move in a forwardly direction (i.e. towards front end 48) or in a rearwardly direction (i.e. towards rear end 28), as shown by arrow 52. In order to do this, the rear end 28 of support apparatus 2 is typically lifted slightly upwardly, as shown by arrow 54, to allow rotation of cam wheel 46 in the clockwise direction.
  • Movement or rotation of cam wheel 46 in a second an anti-clockwise direction, as shown by arrow 56 in FIG. 2 b, actuates the cam wheel such that it stops further movement of the cam wheel 46 and locks or prevents the support apparatus 2 from moving in a forwardly direction. This actuation is caused by the off-centered weighted part of the cam wheel engaging with the floor surface on which the apparatus is being used, thereby preventing further rotation of the cam wheel in said direction. In order to move the cam wheel 46 in an anti-clockwise direction, the rear end 28 of support apparatus 2 is typically lowered, as shown by arrow 58.
  • Thus, a user can move the support apparatus relative to a surface by moving the cam wheel in a clockwise direction. A user can prevent movement of the support apparatus, at least in a forwardly direction, by moving the cam wheel in an anti-clockwise direction.
  • In one embodiment, the support apparatus is used as part of a fall prevention system, as shown in FIGS. 3-6, on a steel building frame including a plurality of RSJ s, structural steel sections or I-beams 100. Each I-beam 100 typically includes a top flange 102, a bottom flange 104 with an intermediate support post or web 106 joining the top flange to the bottom flange 104. Both the top and bottom flanges 102, 104 protrude outwardly from either side of support post 106.
  • A construction worker 108 that is fitting a floor surface between adjacent !-beams 100 typically locates a corrugated metal sheet 110 between the adjacent !-beams and then moves forward on the metal sheet 110 to fit the next metal sheet. It can be seen from FIG. 5 that as the construction worker fits the next most forwardly metal sheet 110, they are working adjacent an exposed edge 112. This is dangerous and, if the worker were to fall, could result in injury or death of the worker.
  • The fall prevention system of the present invention provides a safety barrier 114 that prevents the worker 108 from getting too close to the exposed edge 112 whilst allowing the safety barrier to be moved relatively easily as the worker progresses with fitting the floor sheet or sheets.
  • In the illustrated embodiment, the safety barrier 114 includes an upright frame member 116, an end of which is located through opening 14 of sleeve member support 12. Two rearwardly protruding side frame members 118 are attached to each upright frame member 116 and are arranged a spaced distance apart along a substantially vertical axis. The rearwardly protruding side frame members 118 are typically substantially horizontally arranged. Two rear frame members 120 are provided between the two rearwardly protruding side frame members 118. The rear frame members 120 are also typically substantially horizontally arranged and are provided a spaced distance apart along a substantially vertical axis. Two rear upright frame members 121 are provided between the upper and lower rear frame members 120 and the upper and lower side frame members 118 to provide strength and rigidity to the safety barrier 114.
  • The worker 108 typically works adjacent the rear frame members 120 in use and is therefore a spaced distance apart from the exposed edge and the upright frame members 116.
  • The rear frame members 120 are preferably telescopic in form, as shown by arrows 122 in FIG. 3, such that the length of the frame members can be freely extendable or retractable in a direction substantially parallel to the longitudinal axis of the frame members 120. In particular, each rear frame member 120 comprises a first outer frame member 120 a that has at least a hollow end section that has slightly larger dimensions compared to a second inner frame member 120 b which is slidably located in the hollow end section of frame member 120 a. This allows a first support apparatus to be moved independently and separately to a second or further support apparatus, as shown in FIG. 4 without compromising the rigidity of the safety barrier 114.
  • In use, and with reference to FIG. 4, a worker 108 stands behind rear frame members 120 and grips a part of the safety barrier frame so as to allow them to jerk or move first support apparatus 2 in such a manner that cam member 46 is moved from an actuated or locked position to a non-actuated or movable position. This allows first support apparatus 2 to be rolled forwards (or backwards if required) on the I-beam to an advanced forwardly position, relative to adjacent support apparatus 2′. The rear frame members 120 extend in length due to the different positions of the support apparatus 2, 2′. The user can then move to the part of the safety barrier frame adjacent support apparatus 2′ and jerk or move said support apparatus 2′ in such a manner so that cam member 46 is moved from an actuated or locked position to a non-actuated or movable position. This allows second support apparatus 2′ to be moved or rolled forwards (or backwards if required) on the I-beam or other structural steel section to an advanced forwardly position. The support apparatus 2, 2′ are now substantially opposite to each other and the frame members 118, 120, 116 are all substantially perpendicular to each other.
  • It will be appreciated that the frame members could include mesh or netting to prevent a worker from falling between the frame members if required.
  • Each or one or more frame members of the safety barrier can be pivotably or hingedly movable relative to each or one or more other frame members so as to allow movement of the frame members relative to each other during movement of the support apparatus and/or barrier means.
  • The support apparatus can be provided any suitable distance apart on the building frame. In one example, the support apparatus are provided approximately 6-10 foot apart.
  • The components of the support apparatus and barrier means can be made from any or any combination of the same material or different material. For example, the support apparatus and/or barrier means can be made from metal, wood, rubber, plastic and/or the like.
  • A similar arrangement is shown in FIGS. 9 a-9 c but in this embodiment, support apparatus 402 has a single adjustment screw 404 provided between inner and outer plates 6, 8, 18, 20 and, in this illustration, is located substantially centrally of the body apparatus 402. The provision of a central adjustment screw provides for more uniform adjustment of the inner and outer plate members at the front and rear 48, 28 of the apparatus. Guide means in the form of guide shafts 408, 410 are provided adjacent to the front 48 and rear 28 of the apparatus to guide movement of the inner and outer plate members during adjustment. The guide shafts are typically non-rotatable shafts relative to which the plate members can move.
  • A further difference in the embodiment shown in FIGS. 9 a-9 c is that in addition to first roller 26 provided at rear end 28, a second roller 406 substantially centrally of the apparatus below sleeve member 12 and between inner plate members 6, 8. The provision of two rollers 26, 406 in the same substantially horizontal plane generates greater stability of the apparatus during movement of the same. In addition, a cover 412 is provided at the front and rear of the apparatus to cover the interior of the apparatus in use. Both covers 412 can be independently pivotable or hingedly movable to allow access to the interior of the support apparatus.
  • Referring to .FIGS. 7 a-7 c, there is illustrated a further embodiment of the present invention. In this illustration, support apparatus 202 is for use on a timber frame building. The same reference numerals have been used in the previously described embodiment to describe the same features.
  • In this embodiment, a plurality of pre-defined aluminum I-beams 100 are supplied with the support apparatus for attachment to the timber decking of the floor being fitted to the timber frame building. Since the I-beams are of pre-defined dimensions, there is no requirement for an adjustment mechanism for adjusting the horizontal distance between the outer plates 18, 20.
  • There is no requirement for inner plate members 6, 8 as in the previously described embodiments. A bridging member 10 is provided between the outer plates 18, 20 and the sleeve member 12.
  • First movement means are provided in the form of front and rear rollers 26 which are located at the front and rear of the support apparatus 202 respectively. An axle 204 about which the rollers rotate is provided between the outer plates 18, 20. Second movement means in the form of a pair of flange rollers 30, 32 are joined to outer plates 18, 20 are previous described. No adjustment means are provided in this example for the flange rollers to adjust the vertical distance between the rollers since the dimensions of the I-beam are known.
  • In this illustration cam wheel 46 is located between front and rear rollers 26, but it could be provided at the front and/or rear of the support apparatus as required. In addition, two or more upper rollers could be provided if required or just a single upper roller could be provided as required.
  • A weight 206 is attached to the off-centered cam wheel 46 to provide a biasing force of the cam wheel 46 to an engaged or actuated position. This helps moves the cam wheel 46 to the engaged position in use.
  • A fixed cover member 208 is provided at the rear of the support apparatus 202 to substantially cover the rear roller 26. A pivotable cover member 208 is provided at the front of the support apparatus 202 to allow pivotal opening and closing of the same about pivot axis 210. Any combination of cover means, fixed cover means, pivotable cover means and/or other types of removable cover means can be provided as required.
  • In use, a fitter fits two pre-defined I-beams 100 to a timber decking surface in a spaced apart orientation, with flange 104 in abutment with the timber decking surface 212 and flange 102 uppermost, a spaced distance above timber decking surface. Attachment means, such as for example, self drilling screws can be used to do this.
  • The support apparatus 202 is located on the I-beam 100 as previously described and used in a similar manner to the support apparatus 2 previously described. Guide means in the form of a pair of spaced apart outwardly protruding arms 214 are provided on the web 106 to protrude outwardly and substantially parallel to the web 106. These act as a guide for a fitter to locate the web 106 of an adjacent I-beam to be fitted in an end to end manner with the already fitted I-beam.
  • Referring to FIGS. 8 a-8 b, there is illustrated a further embodiment of support apparatus 302, wherein user actuation means are provided to move the cam wheel 46 between a non-actuated position, as shown in FIG. 5 a, and an actuated or stop position, as shown in FIG. 5 b. The user actuation means in this illustration are in the form of a cable 304 joined at a point 306 to the cam wheel 46 and a user actuated lever (not shown) provided on a part of the frame easily accessible to a user. When the lever is actuated by a user, the cam surface of the cam wheel is moved to an upper position a spaced distance apart from the upper surface of I-beam flange 102 (by rotation clockwise of the cam wheel in this example), thereby allowing movement of the support apparatus along the I-beam in any required direction. When the lever is released, the cam surface of the cam wheel falls to a lower position under gravity as a result of the off-centered weight or weighted bias of the cam wheel (by rotation anti-clockwise of the cam wheel in this example), thereby preventing movement of the support apparatus along the I-beam in at least a forwards direction.
  • It will be appreciated that any or any combination of the abovementioned features can be used in any of the illustrated or non-illustrated embodiments as required.

Claims (20)

What is claimed is:
1. Support apparatus for barrier means, said support apparatus including support means for supporting one or more barrier means therewith in use, movement means for allowing movement of the support apparatus relative to a surface in use and stop means for stopping or substantially preventing movement of the movement means or support apparatus in use.
2. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the support apparatus includes a body portion comprising at least two spaced apart members or plate like members and the support means is provided between said at least two spaced apart members or plate like members.
3. Support apparatus according to claim 2 wherein the body portion includes a pair of inner members or plate like members and a pair of outer members or plate like members.
4. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein one or more adjustment mechanisms are provided to allow adjustment of the distance between two or more movement means in a horizontal and/or vertical direction and/or for adjusting the distance between two or more spaced apart members forming part of the support means.
5. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein barrier means are integral with the support means, or are attachable or detachably attachable to the support means using attachment means.
6. Support apparatus according to claim 5 wherein the attachment means include any or any combination of one or more pins, inter-engaging members, nuts and bolts, screws, clips, welding, adhesive or chains.
7. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the support means include at least one channel member, sleeve member, aperture and/or recess defining an opening, and an end of the barrier means is locatable in said opening in use.
8. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the movement means includes any or any combination of one or more rollers, wheels, drums, ball members, or ball bearings.
9. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the stop means is movable between an actuated position, wherein it stops or substantially prevents movement of the movement means or support apparatus, to a non-actuated position, wherein it allows movement of the movement means or support apparatus.
10. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the stop means includes any or any combination of one or more teeth, braking members, locking members, cam members, cam surfaces or cam wheels.
11. Support apparatus according to claim 10 wherein rotation or movement of the stop means, cam wheel, cam member or cam surface in a first direction or in a forwardly allows relatively free movement of the stop means, cam wheel, cam member or cam surface and thus movement of the movement means and support apparatus; rotation or movement of the stop means, cam wheel, cam member or cam surface in a second direction or in a rearwardly direction moves the stop means, cam wheel, cam member or cam surface into a position whereby further movement of the stop means, cam wheel, cam member or cam surface and thus movement of the movement means and support apparatus, is substantially prevented.
12. Support apparatus according to claim 10 wherein an off-centered part and/or weighted part of the stop means, cam wheel, cam member or cam surface is/are arranged to engage a floor surface in use to form an actuated position of the stop means, cam wheel, cam member or cam surface such that further rotation or movement of the stop means, cam wheel, cam member or cam surface is substantially prevented.
13. Support apparatus according to claim 9 wherein user actuation means are provided to move the stop means between the actuated and non-actuated positions.
14. Support apparatus according to claim 13 wherein the user actuation means includes a brake cable and a handle mechanism to actuate said brake cable.
15. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein first and at least second movement means are provided on or associated with the support apparatus, the first and at least second movement means arranged a spaced distance apart in a substantially vertical or upright axis and/or in a substantially horizontal direction.
16. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein first and at least second movement means are provided in a substantially horizontal plane and at least third movement means are provided in a substantially vertical plane or upright direction, the first and second movement means provided in a plane substantially transverse or perpendicular to the plane in which the at least third movement means are provided.
17. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein guard or cover means are provided to at least partially cover the stop means, movement means and/or support means in use.
18. Support apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the barrier means include any or any combination of one or more frame members, meshing, netting, fencing, telescopic frame members, pivotably or hingedly mounted frame members or a substantially U-shaped frame.
19. A method of using support apparatus, said support apparatus including support means for supporting one or more barrier means therewith in use, and wherein said method includes moving the support apparatus to a desired position relative to a surface in use using movement means, and wherein stop means are provided on or associated with the apparatus for stopping or substantially preventing movement of the movement means or support apparatus when said stop means are actuated.
20. A fall prevention system, said system including support apparatus and barrier means, said support apparatus including support means for supporting one or more of said barrier means therewith in use, movement means for allowing movement of at least the support apparatus relative to a surface in use and stop means for stopping or substantially preventing movement of the movement means or support apparatus in use.
US14/184,852 2013-06-17 2014-03-24 Support apparatus for barrier means and method of use thereof Abandoned US20140367628A1 (en)

Priority Applications (6)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
GBGB1310741.2A GB201310741D0 (en) 2013-06-17 2013-06-17 Support Apparatus for Barrier Means and Method of Use Thereof
GBGB1310741.2 2013-06-17
US13/928,556 US20140367627A1 (en) 2013-06-17 2013-06-27 Support apparatus for barrier means and method of use thereof
GB201402639A GB201402639D0 (en) 2014-02-14 2014-02-14 Support apparatus for barrier means and method of use thereof
GBGB1402639.7 2014-02-14
US14/184,852 US20140367628A1 (en) 2013-06-17 2014-03-24 Support apparatus for barrier means and method of use thereof

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US14/184,852 US20140367628A1 (en) 2013-06-17 2014-03-24 Support apparatus for barrier means and method of use thereof

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US13/928,556 Continuation-In-Part US20140367627A1 (en) 2013-06-17 2013-06-27 Support apparatus for barrier means and method of use thereof

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Cited By (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
CN105926496A (en) * 2016-04-28 2016-09-07 无锡昊瑜节能环保设备有限公司 Road isolation guardrail
CN106088643A (en) * 2016-06-16 2016-11-09 西安理工大学 A kind of planning and designing method of Old building earthquake-resistant structure group
CN107989468A (en) * 2017-11-28 2018-05-04 丁佳为 A kind of Anti-climbing guardrail
CN108385994A (en) * 2018-02-11 2018-08-10 邹宗春 A kind of architectural engineering safeguard
CN109577742A (en) * 2018-12-04 2019-04-05 河北省晋力电气有限公司 A kind of folding safety fence
US10538929B2 (en) * 2017-03-15 2020-01-21 Leading Edge Safety, LLC Automated safety rail system
US10640983B2 (en) * 2016-03-23 2020-05-05 Safe Rack Llc Platform system

Cited By (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US10640983B2 (en) * 2016-03-23 2020-05-05 Safe Rack Llc Platform system
CN105926496A (en) * 2016-04-28 2016-09-07 无锡昊瑜节能环保设备有限公司 Road isolation guardrail
CN106088643A (en) * 2016-06-16 2016-11-09 西安理工大学 A kind of planning and designing method of Old building earthquake-resistant structure group
US10538929B2 (en) * 2017-03-15 2020-01-21 Leading Edge Safety, LLC Automated safety rail system
CN107989468A (en) * 2017-11-28 2018-05-04 丁佳为 A kind of Anti-climbing guardrail
CN108385994A (en) * 2018-02-11 2018-08-10 邹宗春 A kind of architectural engineering safeguard
CN109577742A (en) * 2018-12-04 2019-04-05 河北省晋力电气有限公司 A kind of folding safety fence

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