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Staying Safe While Working on the Roof

On the surface, working as a roofing contractor may not seem to be a dangerous profession. However, the reality is that roofing contractors have a workplace fatality rate that is nearly fifteen times the national average. The risks of a slip and fall accident from height are significant, and roofing contractors in San Antonio can protect themselves from the hazards inherent to working on roofs of all heights, shapes, sizes, and slopes.

Roofing Fatalities in the United States

In 2018, data gathered by the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed that roofing contractors accounted for 96 of the 5,250 work-related fatalities in the US that year. That was a fatal accident rate of 51.5 per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers. For comparison, the average rate across all occupations was just 3.5.

Roofing Safety Tips to Live By

Roofing contractors can help reduce their risk of a slip and fall accident by adhering to a number of established safety standards. These include:

  • Always work in pairs. Never work on a roof alone. If a fall occurs, having someone there to contact first responders can mean the difference between life and death.
  • Never use a damaged ladder. Damaged ladders that can't be properly repaired should be discarded.
  • Always level the ladder. Ladders should be placed on solid, level surfaces. Never erect a ladder on sand, gravel, or grass without first digging a small hole to insert the feet.
  • Call it a day when the roof is wet. Never work on a roof that is wet from rain, dew, or water from the sprinkler. Wait until it dries completely.
  • Check for overhead power lines. Many slip and fall accidents occur after roofing contractors make accidental contact with overhead power lines.
  • Strap into a safety harness. Similar to seat belts, safety harnesses arrest your fall before you can suffer serious injury.
  • Check your traction. Never work on a roof without wearing proper footwear with sufficient tread to provide traction. Further, always clear debris and unnecessary tools from the roof while working.
  • Watch the weather. Always check the forecast before starting work, and dismount the roof when thunder and lighting are approaching.

Contact Welmaker Injury Law in San Antonio at (210) 828-6033 to learn more about slip and fall compensation following a roofing accident. We will answer your questions and help you determine which types of compensation you can pursue from your employer and/or other liable parties.