It’s no secret that most homeowners will delay roof repairs or maintenance for as long as possible. Often this is as a direct result of the sheer inconvenience of getting and staying on the roof. But homeowners can benefit from the same features commercial property owners use. Most commercial buildings have roof anchor points to ensure that maintenance workers stay safe. So, what safety measures do you have in place for your home roof?
Crucial Roof Safety Tips To Consider
A recent survey shows that 224,000 Australian hospitalisations during 2019-20 were a result of slip and fall injuries. Furthermore, 40% of these were fatal. The bulk were from home injuries due to unsafe measures.
While not all of these falls are as a result of homeowners climbing or working on their roofs, it remains crucial to have the necessary safety measures in place.
We also recommend doing the maintenance regularly. Don’t let the roof work pile up. This will ensure that you don’t need to spend more time on the roof than absolutely necessary. Our experts have shared a few safety recommendations to keep everyone working on the roof safely.
Tip # 1: Use The Correct Equipment
Many accidents happen as a result of homeowners opting for shortcuts when they need to work at home. The amount of times we’ve heard the phrase “I know a quick way” is quite staggering!
For that reason, our experts have listed ‘use the correct equipment’ as the first and most crucial tip. This includes a roof access ladder as well as the necessary roof anchor points.
For home use, place the roof access ladders against the most secure wall. Having the right type of ladder will minimise the risk of injury as you’re carrying tools up and down. If you’re worried about anyone moving your ladder, opt for the kind that you secure to the building.
Tip #2: Wear The Correct Footwear
Just because you’re working at home doesn’t mean it’s acceptable to climb on the roof wearing your flip-flops. There’s a very good reason why footwear is a safety requirement in many industries.
Wearing the correct shoes will ensure that you have the right grip on the roof as you move around. This will lower the likelihood of slipping. We also recommend using gloves that provide grip in case you need to grab onto something.
Tip #3: Identify Potential Slipping Hazards
It’s imperative to analyse the job that you need to do before you get on the roof. For one thing, plant debris such as leaves, or branches could easily cause you to slip. Focus on clearing this first.
If you’re going to clean out gutters, check for places where water could be pooling. Cleaning as you work is another sure way to keep from tripping over tools that are lying around. Plan the type of work you need to do as well as the types of tools you’ll need to minimise several trips up and down the ladder.
Tip #4: Be Wary of The Weather
Ten minutes before a massive storm is due isn’t the best time to rush up onto the roof to clean out the gutters. Lightning, snow, ice, and high winds are all weather hazards that can pose a threat to anyone working on a roof.
At the other end of the weather spectrum, very hot weather can lead to heat exhaustion. This can leave you feeling dizzy which in turn can make slipping and falling very easy. The best time to work on the roof is during moderate, rain- and wind-free weather. If you have no alternative than to work under the sun’s harsh UV rays, be sure to wear a hat.
Tip #5: Eliminate Distractions
Taking precautions on top of the roof is a good start. But having children or pets running around where you’ve placed the ladder and remaining tools can be distracting. Even the smallest distraction can cause one to lose concentration which in turn could result in an accident.
Keeping children and pets away from the ladder and work area will prevent you or anyone else from getting distracted by what’s happening on the ground. Additionally, this will also prevent anyone from getting hurt if tools fall from the roof.
Tip #6: Ask the Professionals
It’s important to involve some professional assistance if you’re not sure how to perform the job. This means discussing the required job with your roof contractor to ensure you get the correct ladder and roof anchor points. They’ll also be able to advise you on other types of equipment that will get the job done correctly and keep you on the roof SAFELY.
Working on your home roof isn’t necessarily easier than doing repairs or maintenance on a commercial roof. Therefore, it’s crucial to ensure that you identify potential risks before getting on the roof. Additionally, using our few expert safety tips will ensure you stay safe as you perform any routine roof repair and maintenance duties.