Roofing Injuries: Staying Safe This Summer

Roofing Injuries: Staying Safe This Summer

Access Doors and Panels on 12th Aug 2020

Roofing Injuries: Staying Safe This Summer

Given that roofing work is dangerous because of the height roofers must work from for long hours every day, it is not surprising that roofers can get injured, or in worst-case scenarios, die. The dangers they usually face include falls, electrocutions, and being hit by construction materials and tools.

It doesn't matter what circumstances surround them-- roofing accidents are always dangerous and typically life-changing. Roofing is even considered as one of the most hazardous professions anywhere in the world. It involves hard work that's physically demanding as well as requires heavy lifting, climbing, bending, kneeling, all while atop a roof. That's why roofing accidents are common in commercial and residential construction projects and happen throughout the year.

Whether you're an employer who has roofers as your employees or you're a roofer yourself, it is always essential to ensure health and safety by keeping in mind to take precautions and avoid following dangerous roofing practices:

Dangerous Roofing Practices

  • Failure To Hydrate

Roofing is usually at its peak in the summer, and because of this, high heat warnings are all too frequent. If you're going to do a DIY roofing job, keep drinking plenty of water to avoid heatstroke.

  • Lifting Materials Incorrectly

Of course, roofing involves lifting heavy materials from place to place. Employers must provide their roofers with ample training on raising heavy metals properly to avoid muscle strains, pulls, and back injuries.

  • Failure Of Securing Oneself To The Structure

A roofing job often involves doing physically tricky maneuvers, and if a roofer isn't equipped with the harness properly, there is a great danger of falling. An employer should provide the roofer with the necessary equipment to secure himself to whatever structure he is working on and provide the training required to use the equipment.

  • Failing To Get Training On Dangerous Tools And Equipment

A roofer usually carries a nail gun, a circular saw, or any other potentially dangerous tool. Unfortunately, these tools give a higher risk on a roof that is still in the construction process more than the risk on flat, stable ground. If used on a roof, they require separate, comprehensive training. Before you use any tools on a roof, make sure you are trained with the necessary training to handle these tools safely.

Roofing Injuries

People can experience so many roofing injuries, but we only included some of the more common ones.

  • Broken bones

It is the most common injury that happens when someone falls off a roof. When a roofer falls off a roof or ladder, the impact's force is strong enough to break the body's bones.

  • Back injuries

These injuries are also fairly common since the work of roofers involves lifting heavy tools and materials. Also, they may even have to carry heavy objects up and down ladders. Back strain and pain can also be caused by crouching and bending for an extended period.

  • Heatstroke

One of the most known causes of roofing injuries is sun exposure, causing severe burns, heat, and heatstroke. Such damages can land the worker in a hospital and can rarely even cause death. Workers are at a heightened risk of sun exposure injuries if they lack proper hydration and sun protection.

  • Toxic fumes

If a roofer is working with asphalt roofing, there is a risk of getting exposed to the asphalt fumes. Moreover, prolonged and excessive exposure to these fumes can cause chronic coughing and skin cancer. Other symptoms include eye irritation, throat irritation, headaches, and fatigue.

  • Puncture wounds and Lacerations

A common injury roofers face each day at work can range from minor puncture wounds to severe cuts and even lacerations due to power tools.

  • Paralysis

One common accident scenario that can result in a worker's severe spinal cord injury is when he accidentally falls from a height and stops the fall by grabbing onto something. Not being able to grab something stable properly can cause the worker to twist his/her body mid-fall, resulting in a fall on his/her chest, back, or head. Any injury sustained by the worker on his neck or back can lead to spinal cord injury, leading to paralysis.

Also, roofing accidents happen by things such as lack of safety equipment, roof collapse, ladder falls, falling objects or debris, the destruction of scaffolding, malfunctioning equipment, electrocution, and slips and falls from the roof.

Final Thoughts

A person's life is just as valid as any other project or money the person will earn. For this summer--where most roofing jobs happen-- take every measure necessary always to ensure your safety. To sum up everything in this article, here are five tips that cover all of the information we discussed earlier.

  • Always pay attention to the weather.

During summer, there can be times where the weather patterns may change. By checking the weather report regularly, you will stay aware of the weather patterns throughout the day or week. Try to work around the sun on any sunny day-- this means you should try starting early in the morning before the working environment gets too hot. It is possible to work on the west side of a sloped roof at the start of the day and then move to the east side later once the sun changes positions. Roofing safety in summer isn't just about staying cool on sunny days, but also for making sure you have a quick method to shut down for the day in case of rain or thunderstorms,

  • Always stay cool

It's best to have water breaks every 15 minutes, so still have water to drink. Prepare a cooler filled with water bottles and ice packs and always remind your crew members to stay hydrated.

  • Never skip out on routine safety measures.

You might try to avoid an extra layer of a harness or hard hat because of the heat. Skipping safety measures is an unsafe practice and should be required before every roofing job.

  • Exercise caution when using supplies and tools.

Use caution and wear gloves when handling shingle bundles that may have been sitting under the sun for days before the installation. On the other hand, wet shingle bundles may be too heavy to carry safely if it recently rained. Avoid working on a roof under the rain, and always watch out for slippery surfaces if it has just rained. Walking on the asphalt shingles can also be dangerous during direct sunlight since they tend to get soft. If necessary, wait until they cool down. Lastly, don't forget to look out for any tools that may have been left out in the sun, especially those made of metal. Store items safely and wear work gloves every time you handle them.

  • Don't spend too much time on the roof.

Working on the roof can get hot since the roof gets so much direct sunlight. Don't forget to take breaks in shaded areas throughout the day. More importantly, look for ways to reduce the number of trips you make up onto the roof.

Summer is a time you can spend reevaluating the time to spend working on your roof. If possible, keep these tips in mind when working, and you'll be able to safely finish your work. For more informative and entertaining blogs, you can find more at

12th Aug 2020 Access Doors and Panels