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Roofing Falling Hazards

Roofing work is especially dangerous due to factors like the weather, elevations, and roof slopes. The roof slope determines the fall protection measures that employers must institute to ensure worker safety.

Low-slope Roofs

A low-slope roof is defined by OSHA as a roof having a slope of less than or equal to 4 inches of vertical rise for every 12 inches of horizontal length. When working on a low-slope roof that has one or more unprotected sides or edges that are 6 feet or more above any lower levels of the structure, workers must use one of the following fall protection systems:

  • Guardrail systems
  • Safety net systems
  • PFAS
  • A combination of conventional systems and a warning line system
  • A warning line system and a safety monitoring system

Note that when roofers are working on a low-slope roof that is 50 feet or less in width, employers can use a safety monitoring system without having to use a warning line system.

Steep-slope Roofs

A steep-slope roof is defined by OSHA as a roof having a slope greater that 4 inches of vertical rise for every 12 inches of horizontal rise. When working on a steep-slope roof that has one or more unprotected sides or edges that are 6 feet or more above lower levels, workers must use one of the following fall protection systems:

  • Guardrail system with toeboards
  • Safety net systems
  • PFAS

To learn more about Fall Protection visit our OSHA Construction Fall Protection Online Training Certification Course web page.

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