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OSHA dictates many uses for guard rails, but one that particularly applies to construction projects is 29 CFR 1926.501(b)(14). This regulation demands the use of guard rails any time a worker on, above, or near a wall opening six feet or higher from “lower levels”. Guardrails are actually one option of several; the others include “fall arrest systems” and safety nets. The guardrail is a particularly useful accessory here because it provides a large, early warning that there is an opening that can be hazardous. Depending on how a safety net system is used, the workers may or may not be able to stand close to the edge of the opening. If workers are needed that close to the edge, the net system makes sense, but if they aren't required to be so close, a guardrail system could be the less expensive option.