Benefits of Retractable Safety Barriers

Safety barriers are a necessary protection for warehouse and industrial environments, but sometimes permanent barriers are restrictive and that’s when retractable safety barriers may fit your needs.



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Benefits of Retractable Safety Barriers

Industrial facilities can be dangerous places. Accidents can result from improper use of equipment, inadequate safety systems, inappropriate PPE, lack of training, and human error. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2016 there were 2.9 million non-fatal workplace injuries and 5,190 total occupational fatalities

OSHA Requirements

According to OSHA's General Duty Clause, Section 5(a)(1), employees and their place of employment must be free from recognized hazards that could cause death or serious physical harm. Walking-working surfaces must be clean, orderly, free of hazards, and provide safe access and egress (1910.22).

Permanent vs Retractable Safety Barrier Solutions

Potential hazards exist in environments where pedestrians and material handling equipment share the same space and risk colliding. A common solution to separate and protect pedestrians is to install traditional yellow steel barriers. While these do provide an excellent heavy-duty permanent solution, complete restriction to an area is not always ideal. Many applications benefit when a safety solution offers versatility and flexibility. 

Retractable safety barriers provide protection for your people and equipment with the additional flexibility of allowing partial or complete access when needed. A retractable barrier designed with workflow efficiency in mind, allows for ease of access into a safety zone when needed, yet provides heavy-duty protection at other times. 

A common area that needs protection is the drop off at a vacant loading dock. An ideal solution is a safety system which provides protection when there is no trailer present yet easily retracts when full access to a trailer is necessary. Rite-Hite’s Dok-Guardian™ Safety Barrier is designed for impact and will help ensure maximum safety at your loading dock. To access trailers, the curtain manually retracts into one of the 48" tall safety yellow Warden guards anchored on both sides. 

Applications like rail docks and finger docks require longer stretches of protection. When access is needed, a modular, self-storing barrier, like the GuardRite Retractable Barrier, easily allows access to just one specific area. 

The flexible design of retractable safety barriers can help facilities commit to both safety and efficiency.

Retractable Safety Barriers

When to Utilize Retractable Safety Barriers

  Why is protection needed here?
Rite-Hite Retractable Barrier Solutions


Loading Docks Loading dock safety barriers are needed to protect people and fork trucks from the dangerous drop-off when no trailers are present. 
The Dok-Guardian™ Safety Barrier manually retracts to allow trailer access. It can also interlock with a Dok-Lok® Vehicle Restraint, leveler or overhead door, to ensure safe sequences of operation. 


Rail Docks and Finger Docks Long spans of open dock edges at rail docks and finger docks are dangerous. Barrier protection is needed for workers and material handling equipment.
Access points at rail docks can vary by 200 to 300 feet, or more. Rite-Hite’s GuardRite® Retractable Barrier is a modular and self-storing barrier system ideal for this type of application. Individual retractable bollards are self-storing which allows access only where needed while maintaining heavy-duty protection elsewhere.


Sensitive Equipment Barrier protection can help prevent fork trucks from damaging sensitive equipment, charging stations, etc.
The GuardRite® Retractable Barrier protects sensitive equipment and can be easily retracted when repairs, maintenance, or access is needed. 


In-Plant Work Zones Safety barriers help define work zones and separate employees from material handling equipment.
When occasional access is needed the GuardRite® Strap and the SpanGuard® Mesh Safety Barriers both retract and self-store to allow for complete access to the area. 


Machine Guarding Protect employees from machines if the operation exposes an employee to a potential hazard.

The Side-To-Side retractable safety curtain rolls onto a constant pressure roller tube when not extended for clean, unobstructed access to the machine. Becomes an effective screen from process driven hazards such as weld flash, sparks, light flying debris and other potential hazards.













Hazardous equipment, dangerous drop-offs, material handling equipment, and pedestrians can all share the same space in a safe and productive industrial environment. Retractable safety barriers offer flexible barrier protection that permanent barriers just can’t provide. 

Your local Rite-Hite representative can help you match the right barrier for the right application.

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