Millions of fall related accidents happen every year in North America and most are related to work on roofs and related types of work. So it really should go without saying that you should be very careful if you plan to do any work on your roof, or roofing on outbuildings like a shed or garage.
Even at 8′ off the ground, it is easy to lose your balance… and with our shed, we have a 7/12 pitch (30 degrees roughly) which does not look steep, but it is – be careful.
There are 3 main pieces of safety equipment for roofing:
All your ladders should be sturdy and in good repair. When setting up, make sure they are solidly on the ground, level and secure. Extension ladders should extend above the roof line by at least 3′ (check with your local safety authority to be sure), and precautions should be taken to secure the base. Watch this video from GAF for a little more info.
Fall Arrest Harness Kits:
The decision to use these should be based on the height and dangers associated with your project. Every state or province will have regulations regarding the minimum height, and when it is mandatory to use Fall Arrest Equipment. Before you setup this system, check all around the work area for dangerous obstacles on the ground (those a person may fall onto in the event of a fall). You should also be aware of dangers on the roof such as electrical masts, vent stacks and so on.
If you are not sure about safety regulations in your area, I highly recommend talking to your local safety authority and finding out what is required. You never know, if you do not wear the safety equipment and it is required, will your insurance cover you if you get injured?
Before buying any Fall Arrest Kit… Read “ALL” the reviews on several products. There is a lot of difference between brands and you want to make sure you get the best you can for the money spent.
Roof Brackets (Jacks) = Safe Footing:
Roof Brackets are a must on any steep roof. These are easily installed during the roof application and provide a very strong and stable platform to work from. At a cost of around $10 each, this is some of the cheapest safety equipment you can buy – also makes working on the roof much more comfortable.
Sorry, couldn’t find any good videos showing how to install and remove them. The Adjustable Roof Bracket shown to your right is available on Amazon for only $10.50 (has lots of good reviews). If you can, get the adjustable type, they are much more versatile and take up little room when stored away.
One of the most interesting set of solutions I found recently is shown in the video below by Acro Building Systems. While these are not your typical roof jacks, they appear to be far superior. However, I haven’t bought them yet so I cannot say for sure. They must fairly new on the market – I have found it hard to locate a nearby supplier.