top of page
Netting Systems

"Safety net systems." Safety net systems and their use shall comply with the following provisions:

  • Safety nets shall be installed as close as practicable under the walking/working surface on which employees are working, but in no case more than 30 feet below such level. When nets are used on bridges, the potential fall area from the walking/working surface to the net shall be unobstructed.


Safety nets shall extend outward from the outermost projection of the work surface as follows:



Vertical distance from working level to horizontal plane of net


Minimum required horizontal distance of outer edge of net

from the edge of the working surface



     Up to 5 feet .....................................8 ft.

     More than 5 feet up to 10 feet ..10 ft.

     More than 10 feet .........................13 ft.



  • Safety nets shall be installed with sufficient clearance under them to prevent contact with the surface or structures below when subjected to an impact force equal to the drop test specified in paragraph (c)(4) of this section.

  • Safety nets and their installations shall be capable of absorbing an impact force equal to that produced by the drop test specified in paragraph (c)(4)(i) of this section.

  • Except as provided in paragraph (c)(4)(ii) of this section, safety nets and safety net installations shall be drop-tested at the jobsite after initial installation and before being used as a fall protection system, whenever relocated, after major repair, and at 6-month intervals if left in one place. The drop-test shall consist of a 400 pound (180 kg) bag of sand 30 + or - 2 inches (76 + or - 5 cm) in diameter dropped into the net from the highest walking/working surface at which employees are exposed to fall hazards, but not from less than 42 inches (1.1 m) above that level.

  • When the employer can demonstrate that it is unreasonable to perform the drop-test required by paragraph (c)(4)(i) of this section, the employer (or a designated competent person) shall certify that the net and net installation is in compliance with the provisions of paragraphs (c)(3) and (c)(4)(i) of this section by preparing a certification record prior to the net being used as a fall protection system. The certification record must include an identification of the net and net installation for which the certification record is being prepared; the date that it was determined that the identified net and net installation were in compliance with paragraph (c)(3) of this section and the signature of the person making the determination and certification. The most recent certification record for each net and net installation shall be available at the job site for inspection.

  • Defective nets shall not be used. Safety nets shall be inspected at least once a week for wear, damage, and other deterioration. Defective components shall be removed from service. Safety nets shall also be inspected after any occurrence which could affect the integrity of the safety net system.

  • Materials, scrap pieces, equipment, and tools which have fallen into the safety net shall be removed as soon as possible from the net and at least before the next work shift.

  • The maximum size of each safety net mesh opening shall not exceed 36 square inches (230 cm) nor be longer than 6 inches (15 cm) on any side, and the opening, measured center-to-center of mesh ropes or webbing, shall not be longer than 6 inches (15 cm). All mesh crossings shall be secured to prevent enlargement of the mesh opening.

  • Each safety net (or section of it) shall have a border rope for webbing with a minimum breaking strength of 5,000 pounds (22.2 kN).

  • Connections between safety net panels shall be as strong as integral net components and shall be spaced not more than 6 inches (15 cm) apart.

Back to Top

bottom of page