How to Stay Safe as a Roofer
When working on roofs, a few simple precautions can go a long way. Invest in safety gear, wear appropriate clothing, and stay alert to your surroundings. You can also try to limit distractions. This article will highlight some of the most important safety precautions for roofers.
Dressing for the weather
If you work on a roof, you should dress appropriately for the weather. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health provides specific guidelines for work in cold, hot, and humid conditions. You also need to consider the workload you have and the amount of sun exposure you receive. A good shirt with long sleeves will keep you comfortable, and it should be durable and breathable.
The summer months are often hottest, so you need to dress accordingly. Long sleeve shirts, hats, and protective gear such as long pants and long sleeves will help you stay cool. In addition, wear sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher. Keep in mind that heatstroke is very dangerous and you should avoid the heat if possible.
When dressing for the weather as a roofer, you should avoid wearing sleeveless or cut-off tops, which will leave you exposed to the elements. You should also avoid wearing 100% polyester fabrics, as they are prone to melting in extremely hot weather. Instead, you can buy hoodies and long sleeves, which will keep you warm while protecting your neck and head. You can also opt for natural fibers, which breathe better and wick moisture away from the skin.
Investing in safety equipment
As a roofing professional, investing in safety equipment is imperative to prevent workplace injuries and fatalities. Research shows that roofers wearing safety gear tend to take more risks because they think they’re safer, which is known as risk compensation. This is a problem, as it results in unsafe behavior. In fact, fatal work-related falls increased 26 percent between 2011 and 2016. A recent study from Virginia Tech and Clemson University looked at the effectiveness of different safety technologies.
Safety equipment can be expensive. Costs depend on the complexity of a facility and how many areas you need to secure. In addition, the costs of a safety incident can be high. Ultimately, an incident can endanger the health of an entire facility and the livelihood of employees.
In addition to protective gear, proper clothing is also an important safety equipment for roofers. Properly fitted safety clothing and harnesses will help you prevent serious injuries. Falling shingles, for example, can be extremely hazardous, so investing in protective clothing is essential. For added protection, use a full-body safety harness and a lifeline to prevent a fall. Also, invest in a helmet.
A safety vest is especially important for roofers. It’s not only required by law, but it also helps you to be visible and alert people around you. It’s also a good idea to invest in work pants that are durable, breathable, and flexible. Knee pads also provide extra protection when kneeling on a roof.
Distractions are inevitable in any job, so you have to learn to avoid them. You can start by setting boundaries for colleagues. If someone is constantly chatting away, tell them politely that you need time to focus on your task. Alternatively, you can block out online distractions. There are apps available that block access to specific websites.
When working on the roof, you should try to avoid being distracted by cell phones, radios, or other noises. Distractions can lead to slips and falls. You should also keep an eye out for hazards and report them to the supervisor. Some of these measures require investments in proper clothing and equipment.