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Employers have a duty to prevent roof falls

| Dec 24, 2020 | Workers' Compensation

Falling is always a risk when working on a roof. Whether installing a skylight, replacing the roofing material or delivering presents down the chimney, you need to take steps to stay safe. A fall from such height could kill you or leave you with severe injuries.

Employers are responsible for their employees’ safety

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) provides guidance for employers on keeping employees safe when working on roofs. They outline three essential steps:

  • Plan: Sending workers on to a roof cannot be a spur-of-the-moment decision. Employers need to make a clear plan on how to do the work safely. Once they know the pitch of the roof, they should ensure they follow the relevant OSHA guidelines. There are different regulations and procedures for low angled and steep angled roofs. Every roof will have particular hazards to take into account.
  • Provide: Employers must provide workers with appropriate equipment to safely carry out the job. It can include ladders and scaffolding as well as fall protection equipment and other personal safety equipment.
  • Train: Having the correct equipment is useless if workers don’t know how to use it. Employers need to provide adequate training to carry out the job before they send anyone up on a roof.

If you are injured in a roofing accident, you should make a claim with your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance provider. It doesn’t matter if you were at fault in some way. It is no-fault insurance. The insurer may try to reduce the payout, so you might want to seek an attorney’s help to ensure they pay what you are due.