It is important to evaluate your roof for hazards on a regular basis. Regular assessments are a cost effective way to stay on top of any possible issues, and are therefore a critical part of roof safety.
Many rooftop hazards may not be immediately obvious. Familiarity and complacency can make even the more obvious hazards seem less dangerous than they are. It cannot be stressed enough that roof safety requires a thorough approach. Cutting corners can prove deadly.
Rooftop hazards can range from being relatively mild to being critical with severe consequences. Identifying hazards, cataloguing them and addressing them with professional solutions can be accomplished with an in-depth roof inspection and evaluation by someone with expertise in the field.
Roof Safety: Different Types of Hazards
A typical roof inspection and hazard assessment is usually done under the assumption that the roof structure itself is safe and viable. If any doubt exists about the safety of the roof, a professional roofer or consultant should be engaged before the roof inspection is conducted.
An inspection usually starts by evaluating the point of access to the roof, as this in itself can constitute a serious hazard. For example, an access ladder should be examined as to its structural integrity and compliance to regulations.
In the case of ladder access, it must also be determined whether or not it is safe to exit the ladder at the rooftop. If the user is exposed to any kind of fall hazard directly below the access point, this would already pose a problem.
A roof inspection would also look to identify any trip hazards on a rooftop, such as cable trays or gas lines.
In addition, uncovered openings on rooftops - including skylights - pose a significant hazard, with the potential of someone falling through. Observing proper skylight safety precautions is an often overlooked aspect of roof safety that sadly costs lives and causes serious injuries every year. With the proper coverings and/or guardrails, these tragic incidents can easily be avoided.
Another common hazard is when HVac or other services are positioned too close to the roof edge, thus endangering any personnel who have to mount the roof to work on these kinds of units. A roof inspection would identify this hazard and provide direction as to how to resolve the problem.
Rooftop access hatches can also be dangerous without the right guardrails and safety precautions. Multiple roof levels can pose additional fall hazards, especially if workers have not been equipped with appropriate personal fall protection equipment or fall protection training.
Roof Inspection Checklist
Rooftop hazards are a very real concern and should be addressed on a regular basis. A professional roof inspection and hazard assessment can be very cost-effective and is guaranteed to reduce the possibility of costly incidents in the future. With the right products, materials and information, most rooftop hazards can be resolved at a reasonable price point.
A basic roof inspection checklist would include the following key points:
- Assessment of access point to the roof
- If access point to the roof is a ladder, is there a recognizable safety hazard? Can the rooftop be accessed safely from the top of the ladder?
- Assessment of roof features, including
- Skylights (are they covered properly or surrounded by guardrails; is the skylight damaged)
- Control zone access
- Rooftop access hatches (are there guardrails and is the access point safe from below)
- Positioning of any units including HVac or other systems
Why Get a Roof Risk Assessment?
Roof risk assessments should be done regularly, and will help you steer clear of some of the common rooftop safety issues that can easily accumulate without due attention.
A risk assessment will provide you with all the data and information you need regarding your roof to make informed decisions and create a plan moving forward. Risk assessments provide you with detailed information on your roof conditions, and grade any existing issues ranging from minor problems to emergency situations that may require immediate attention.
professional roof risk assessments give you peace of mind and the knowledge you’ll need to monitor and mitigate any ongoing concerns. This information will help you plan your budget more accurately, as well.
Your First Step: Our Free Rooftop Review
Stay one step ahead of avoidable incidents or expensive repairs by booking a free rooftop review. We use Google map images to remotely review and evaluate your rooftop, mark out any obvious hazards and recommend solutions.