Whether you need to fix something on your roof or you’re a professional that works on heights, there are some safety tips you should always bear in mind to prevent potential falls and fatal injuries. Working at heights can be dangerous and precaution measures must be taken very seriously.
Provide training and protocols
Always provide the proper training and make sure the employees will understand everything without any doubts that could put their lives in danger. If there are doubts, repeat the training and never assign a job to a person that is not sure of their knowledge.
Identify the potential risks
Depending on the job, there are different risks. Identifying them can help you with applying the prevention measures and protocols. There must be a plan for hazard elimination.
Track the accidents
Although accidents should be prevented no matter what, make sure to track them if they eventually happen and to have evidence about them. That way you can help prevent them on some other occasion in the future. The accident tracking can give you insight into which equipment you should change or which measures you might implement in the future.
Don’t go alone to the roof
Even if the work that has to be done is not hard you shouldn’t go alone to the roof. Accidents might happen and it would be good if someone accompanied you every time you have to finish something there.
Use the ladders properly
Double-check the ladder stability before using them. They should be solid to support your weight and their material should be solid as well and capable of not moving when you’re up. Therefore, they have those metal braces that make them immobile. Make sure they work properly. Ladder accidents can cause fatal injuries. If the height is more than 6ft, make sure to use additional tools as a safety measure. In these cases, a roof safety harness is one of the best options. Since there is a wide selection of them, you can choose the type you need for the work.
Use fall-arrest equipment
OSHA provides detailed information on fall arrest elements. It is advised to read it and get informed well. These tools are anchorages, body harnesses as we mentioned and other components such as (connectors like snap hooks, connection points, lanyards, deceleration devices, lifelines, etc. There are requirements for each one of these tools.
Wear adequate shoes
Roofing shoes should be slip-resistant, and only shoes that fulfill this requirement are recommended for any roofing job. Footwear regulations by OSHA also confirm that an employer should provide their employees with proper shoes in areas where there is a danger from foot injuries. The possible hazards are many, footwear should protect the employee from an electrical hazard, like a static discharge or electric-shock hazard among others.
Beware of the weather conditions
We all know how different weather conditions like rain and snow can make surfaces slippery. The roof is no exception and in these weather conditions, there must be extra careful. This confirms the importance of good footwear. Workers can even become clumsy if the temperature is very low since the lack of good footwear can make their feet numb. On the other hand, extreme heat can cause dizziness and dehydration, so make sure you drink enough water and in case of any dizziness, the best thing is to pause roofing.
Use protective headgear
The most common protective headgear is a helmet. OSHA doesn’t have some special requirements when it comes to the lifespan of helmets, but it is recommended to replace them. The degradation of the helmets is related to the workplace and its conditions so make sure you have that in mind as well.
Rely on a professional
Roofing is a serious and responsible job, so unless you already have a lot of experience, make sure you consult a professional and avoid possible hazardous situations for yourself.
These ten tips are there for both amateurs and professionals and their employers when it comes to roofing-related jobs. Good training is crucial and respecting the protocols and the recommendations that a manufacturer of safety tools indicated is equally important. Always take into account the weather conditions, proper footwear, and protective helmets along with safety harness and other fall arrest equipment. This is the best way to ensure your maximum safety.