The risk of falling from heights is extremely high, even for the most highly trained worker. A single slip can result in serious injuries or even death. As an employer/property supervisor, it’s your responsibility to ensure roof access for all employees/trades.
Use the right roof access systems to protect your workers. These include a compliant rooftop access hatch, compliant roof ladders, fall arrest systems, and guardrails. These are just a few of the many tips that you should keep in mind to reduce or eliminate fall hazards. Let’s take a look at both.
1. Correctly Using Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Proper PPE is essential to protect roof workers. Armor is vital for soldiers. Protective gear is essential for workers who climb on roofs. Make sure that your workers are properly equipped for the task.
Harnesses This is not the time to compromise workers’ safety by purchasing low-quality harnesses. Quality full-body harnesses that fit properly and are easy to adjust for your employees should be purchased.
Lanyards The lanyard that is most appropriate for the job. If workers are working on a higher platform you should consider a retractable one.
You must inspect your PPE every so often to ensure it’s functioning at peak performance. To use the equipment properly, the user must be taught how to use it.
2. Make Sure To Use The Correct Equipment
You should use the appropriate fall protection system to accomplish the task. Consider whether this is a one-off job or if permanent equipment is required for ongoing maintenance. Here are a few choices:
Roof Access Hatch:
A roof hatch gives workers safe access to a roof. Construction companies should select a durable, secure, and long-lasting roof access hatch. You don’t have to go for the cheapest option.
Many builders use a ladder to reach the roof. Ladders are not always easy to use. If not used properly, ladders can pose a danger to your health. Take into account the ladder’s length relative to the roof height. Make sure there are at least three points of contact and that the ladder is stable. A ladder greater than 4.5m is not recommended.
Use Roof anchors which are designed and installed professionally by engineers. They should conform to safety standards.
Simple Line Systems:
Simple line systems can be used to hold the user’s hand while working at heights. They provide great fall protection and are commonly used for work at heights.
3. Encourage The Buddy System
We recommend that your roofers use the buddy system. If something does happen, it’s not a good idea to be alone on the roof. The second pair of eyes is always helpful in case one person fails to take safety precautions.
4. Communication Is Essential
Even though two workers can be on the roof at once, this may not work well when you are working on smaller projects. Workers on roofs must have a way to communicate with one another. You can use a phone or a radio to do this. Encourage workers to check in on their safety at least once per 15 minutes.
5. Respect The 2m Rule
Make sure your workers adhere to the 2m rule. Employers should never be more than 2m away from the roof’s edge. This applies unless you have a roof security rail system. Tip: Mark out the boundaries.
No matter what fall protection system you choose to use, it is essential that you train your workers before they use it. There must be no mistakes, confusion, or uncertainties in how fall protection equipment is used. Proper and thorough training should be done. This is not only your legal obligation but also your responsibility as a caring employer.