Impellizeri. The National Roofing Contractors Association
(NRCA) is authorized by OSHA to offer 10- and 30-hour
safety courses. You can also ask prospectives about any in-house training they offer to employees.
You might ask within an RFP to review a company’s
safety policies, Impellizeri says. Why would you allow
workers on your roof who don’t have the right training or
knowledge to do so safely?
You can also request a firm’s Experience Modification Rate (EMR). This is a number that every contractor
receives from their insurance company. It is calculated
based on past reported injuries and projected reoccurrences. An EMR of 1 is the baseline and the number moves
higher with each accident or injury. You can stipulate that
contractors have a certain EMR if they’re going to work
on your building, explains Impellizeri. Note this number
is only current for a three-year window and can fluctuate
annually, adds Richardson.
Another relevant number is the Total Incident Rates
(TIR). This is based on cases reported in the OSHA 300
Logs for injury and illness recordkeeping, explains Richardson. You can also go on OSHA’s website and search for
inspection data for specific companies.
As with most safety practices, it doesn’t take much to
reduce your roof’s risk profile. The trick is to have the right
measures in place and make sure all parties do their part to
“From the building owner and facilities department to
the contracted roofing company, it is in everyone’s best interest to have the right safety training,” stresses Impellizeri.
“If you don’t pay attention, people can get hurt.” B
Jennie Morton firstname.lastname@example.org is senior
editor of BUILDINGS.
roof. Though this is particularly important for supervisors,
Richardson recommends making sure all crew are empowered to be safety officers.
You can use the competent person definition from OSHA
Evaluate Contractors for Safety
as a guideline: an individual “who is capable of identify-
ing existing and predictable hazards in the surroundings
or working conditions which are unsanitary, hazardous, or
dangerous to employees, and who has authorization to take
prompt corrective measures to eliminate them.”
There are also many online and free resources you can
provide to your staff such as videos, whitepapers, and
webinars. Try asking your local roofing contractor if they’re
willing to provide educational sessions as well.
When an outside firm works on your roof, how much
are you liable for the safety of their workers? In these
situations, OSHA considers your roof a multi-employer
worksite. This means multiple parties can be cited for “a
hazardous condition that violates an OSHA standard.” Your
organization is typically considered the host employer for
contracted workers and are thus responsible for risks they
are exposed to. However, your responsibility is mainly concerned with the physical condition of the roof.
“It’s still the obligation of the contractor to require safety
training and ensure their employees know how to set up
a job site properly or get on and off the roof responsibly,”
Part of your due diligence should also be contracting with
companies with a proven safety record. There are a number
of things you can ask a service provider to determine if
safety is a priority:
Look for roofing firms that are current on their OSHA
training and can provide certificates of completion, says