One of the good guys in Congress, Rep. Tim Walberg (R-Mich.), recently wrote to David Michaels, the head of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), asking him to explain why the agency felt compelled to change its rules for fall protection on residential projects. One of Walberg's questions was: "What evidence does the agency have that slide guards are not an effective fall-protection device?"
Michaels responded, in part, as follows: "OSHA's Integrated Management Information Systems (IMIS) records for 2005-07 show three instances where slide guards were installed but did not prevent a fatal fall from occurring. … In comparison, IMIS records show no instances where workers experienced a fatal fall while using a personal fall-arrest system."
According to IMIS records from 2005-07: