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  #1  
Old 10-22-2011, 01:41 PM
ralph124c ralph124c is offline
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Why Do Roofers Do This?

I mean, doesn't their insurance have any say in this?
I just saw two guys working on at least a 60 degree pitched roof-both without safety harnesses.
In my younger days, I did some roof work-but always with a safety harness and a 1" diameter line to a tie point.
Looks awful dangerous to me.
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  #2  
Old 10-22-2011, 01:47 PM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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It is dangerous, and they are breaking the law. Call your local OSHA and bust their asses.
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  #3  
Old 10-22-2011, 02:02 PM
engineer_comp_geek engineer_comp_geek is online now
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They do it because the safety equipment slows them down. It may not be the smartest reason but that's the reason I've heard from roofers, even from one roofer who had already fallen a couple of times (didn't learn the lesson I guess).
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  #4  
Old 10-22-2011, 02:40 PM
thirdname thirdname is offline
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What do they tie onto? I don't think most houses have anything suitable on the top of the roof.
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  #5  
Old 10-22-2011, 03:09 PM
Rushgeekgirl Rushgeekgirl is offline
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What do they tie onto? I don't think most houses have anything suitable on the top of the roof.
There are harness systems you can buy that involve nailing brackets in to the rafters to keep yourself tethered to. This does slow you down though.
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  #6  
Old 10-22-2011, 03:12 PM
Rick Rick is offline
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Rule #1 of roofing. Do not step back to admire your work.
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  #7  
Old 10-22-2011, 03:34 PM
Marconi N. Cheese Marconi N. Cheese is offline
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My FIL told me a story about a guy that threw a rope over the roof, tied one end to the bumper of his car and himself to the other end. Seemed to work well until his wife got in the car to go to the store. Jerked him up, over, and off the roof. Didn't kill him, but I'll bet he was surprised.
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  #8  
Old 10-22-2011, 03:35 PM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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Rule #1 of roofing. Do not step back to admire your work.
I know you say that as a joke, but the first thing my dad taught me when walking on a roof is to never walk backwards.
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  #9  
Old 10-22-2011, 04:53 PM
gaffa gaffa is offline
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Originally Posted by Rushgeekgirl View Post
There are harness systems you can buy that involve nailing brackets in to the rafters to keep yourself tethered to. This does slow you down though.
In situations like that, I have to wonder - is it
  1. The individuals being stupid?
  2. The boss not giving a shit?
  3. The boss insisting on a level of productivity that causes workers to skip vital steps?
A friend of mine nearly lost his family company when an employee disabled the safety guards on a metal stamping machine to reach in and grab the finished piece. He lost two fingers when the machine malfunctioned and double-stamped. He re-installed the guard, hired an OSHA compliance firm to come in and lecture people, and paid the Workman's Comp.

Then his own brother did the same thing and lost the SAME TWO FINGERS three months later! He had to close down the entire machine shop department, and lost all that business. In both cases, it was reason #1.
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  #10  
Old 10-22-2011, 05:00 PM
running coach running coach is offline
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Originally Posted by Marconi N. Cheese View Post
My FIL told me a story about a guy that threw a rope over the roof, tied one end to the bumper of his car and himself to the other end. Seemed to work well until his wife got in the car to go to the store. Jerked him up, over, and off the roof. Didn't kill him, but I'll bet he was surprised.
And that's all it is-a story.

Notice who printed the story.

Last edited by running coach; 10-22-2011 at 05:02 PM..
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  #11  
Old 10-22-2011, 08:24 PM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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On a low-pitched roof that isn't more than one story, some roofers will just nail a piece of one-by to the roof to use as a foot support. The guys doing the roof next door were on a very steep pitch on a two-story house with no safety gear at all. Gave me the willies.
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  #12  
Old 10-22-2011, 08:38 PM
flatlined flatlined is offline
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I once watched roofers working on a Victorian house with those spiked cupolas. No harnesses. I was so afraid that I'd see one of them go splat. As far as I know, no splatting happened.
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  #13  
Old 10-22-2011, 08:43 PM
Maserschmidt Maserschmidt is offline
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Originally Posted by ralph124c View Post
I mean, doesn't their insurance have any say in this?.
Their insurer will ask them if they tie off, and they will tell the insurers "yes, of course we do." If the customer is big enough they'll visit occasionally and check it out, but there's no money in sending someone out to check a 3-man roofing crew.

Which is why insurance is so expensive for roofing companies. Falls from one story are more expensive in the long run than falls off very tall buildings.
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  #14  
Old 10-22-2011, 09:00 PM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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Originally Posted by Maserschmidt View Post
Which is why insurance is so expensive for roofing companies. Falls from one story are more expensive in the long run than falls off very tall buildings.
I heard from someone that worked for a railroad company many many many years ago that they were told if someone is on the tracks and they won't be able to stop on time to not even attempt to slow down*. They found it's cheaper to payout a one time settlement then a lifetime of disability.


*In other words, if you can't stop, don't slow down and run the risk of hitting a stalled car at 7 mph and maiming the person.
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  #15  
Old 10-22-2011, 09:10 PM
Ferret Herder Ferret Herder is offline
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Other than the usual "sue everybody" tendencies in situations like that, I'm not entirely sure why the train line would have to pay out. After all, it's not like the train could swerve to hit the car.
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  #16  
Old 10-22-2011, 09:17 PM
Maserschmidt Maserschmidt is offline
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Originally Posted by Ferret Herder View Post
Other than the usual "sue everybody" tendencies in situations like that, I'm not entirely sure why the train line would have to pay out. After all, it's not like the train could swerve to hit the car.
You'd think, right?
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  #17  
Old 10-22-2011, 09:22 PM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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Originally Posted by Ferret Herder View Post
Other than the usual "sue everybody" tendencies in situations like that, I'm not entirely sure why the train line would have to pay out. After all, it's not like the train could swerve to hit the car.
I know it's sort of the opposite of what I was saying, but just to take your question on it's own merit...sometimes it's easier to settle out of court and keep everything quiet then to wind up with going to court to prove why you (the RR Company) weren't responsible but in the mean time have it end up back in the media a few more times.

ETA, or you could look at Maserschmidt's cite. It's from a Personal Injury website. But it brings up some (to my untrained eyes) valid points. If you got caught in tracks that weren't marked and the train wasn't blowing it's horn you might not have even known you were in trouble.

Last edited by Joey P; 10-22-2011 at 09:24 PM..
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  #18  
Old 10-22-2011, 09:39 PM
Ferret Herder Ferret Herder is offline
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Originally Posted by Maserschmidt View Post
You'd think, right?
Nice and vague page to try to drum up business. Around here, train operators do not blow the horn at every crossing or they'd be honking nearly non-stop for miles. In my suburb and along the line that I've seen, they only blow the horn when passing/about to pass another train, in either direction and especially at a station. They also blow the horn when they see someone crossing dangerously, but that can be hard to see considering how close the train can be when someone runs out across the tracks. I guess I'm used to people stopping cars on the tracks, driving around down gates, running across when a train is obviously coming and gates are down/bells are ringing, etc., being in a populated area with controlled crossings, etc.

Last edited by Ferret Herder; 10-22-2011 at 09:39 PM..
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  #19  
Old 10-22-2011, 09:48 PM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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Originally Posted by Ferret Herder View Post
Nice and vague page to try to drum up business. Around here, train operators do not blow the horn at every crossing or they'd be honking nearly non-stop for miles.
I think what Mr Ambulance Chaser was saying is that there are Federal/State/Local laws regarding when they must blow their horn and if you got hit because they didn't do it, it might not be your fault. Maybe it's not required where you are, but it's certainly required in some areas.
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  #20  
Old 10-22-2011, 09:54 PM
Chimera Chimera is offline
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Most of the roofers I knew back in the day were getting paid cash off the books and/or were being pushed to do the job as quickly and cheaply as possible. Hell, most of them were druggies too.
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  #21  
Old 10-22-2011, 11:50 PM
Rushgeekgirl Rushgeekgirl is offline
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Originally Posted by gaffa View Post
In situations like that, I have to wonder - is it
  1. The individuals being stupid?
  2. The boss not giving a shit?
  3. The boss insisting on a level of productivity that causes workers to skip vital steps?
A friend of mine nearly lost his family company when an employee disabled the safety guards on a metal stamping machine to reach in and grab the finished piece. He lost two fingers when the machine malfunctioned and double-stamped. He re-installed the guard, hired an OSHA compliance firm to come in and lecture people, and paid the Workman's Comp.

Then his own brother did the same thing and lost the SAME TWO FINGERS three months later! He had to close down the entire machine shop department, and lost all that business. In both cases, it was reason #1.
Well my daughter's father did it all the time because he couldn't afford a harness and none of the people who hired illegal immigrants cared whether they fell off a roof. He did fall and (luckily only) damaged his shoulder, and the guy who hired him told him he'd report him to ICE if he tried to sue. That's the standard response and many are so afraid of ICE or know they won't get any justice they don't do a thing about it.
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  #22  
Old 10-23-2011, 11:06 AM
lost4life lost4life is online now
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Back in April we had some hailstorms that destroyed a lot of roofs. Since then I've seen every house in my neighborhood get a new roof, including mine. I don't recall any of the crews having any kind of safety devices.
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  #23  
Old 10-23-2011, 11:32 AM
TriPolar TriPolar is online now
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Some roofers will tell you that you want to spend as little time as possible on a roof and safety devices just slow you down. It's hot and dirty work, but I haven't met a roofer who hasn't had at least one fall. Sadly, one fall is all a lot of them get.
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  #24  
Old 10-23-2011, 11:54 AM
Muffin Muffin is online now
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Originally Posted by Joey P View Post
I heard from someone that worked for a railroad company many many many years ago that they were told if someone is on the tracks and they won't be able to stop on time to not even attempt to slow down*. They found it's cheaper to payout a one time settlement then a lifetime of disability.


*In other words, if you can't stop, don't slow down and run the risk of hitting a stalled car at 7 mph and maiming the person.
That sounds like a shaggy dog story, for if word got out of that policy, the railroad company would be dog meat in a lot of litigation.

I was in the front car of a train that hit a kid on a bicycle, the train tried to stop before hitting him.
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Old 10-23-2011, 11:58 AM
Muffin Muffin is online now
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Originally Posted by Chimera View Post
Most of the roofers I knew back in the day were getting paid cash off the books and/or were being pushed to do the job as quickly and cheaply as possible. Hell, most of them were druggies too.
Word.

From what I've come across in construction law in Ontario (where we have a strong occupational safety regime), roofers tend to be dumber than dog shit, and always looking for a way to game the system. That's a bad combination when working at heights.
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  #26  
Old 10-23-2011, 12:45 PM
Mr. Miskatonic Mr. Miskatonic is offline
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The roofers I saw most recently were straight from Ireland. Someone asked the foreman and he said they worked cheap and no immagration officers ever looked for white guys on a job site.
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  #27  
Old 10-23-2011, 01:55 PM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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Originally Posted by Muffin View Post
Word.

From what I've come across in construction law in Ontario (where we have a strong occupational safety regime), roofers tend to be dumber than dog shit, and always looking for a way to game the system. That's a bad combination when working at heights.
I'll let Dread Pirate Jimbo speak for himself, but when I told him about this thread yesterday, that was pretty much what he said (he's a construction safety officer).
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  #28  
Old 10-23-2011, 02:36 PM
RickJay RickJay is online now
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In my experience workers will always skip on safety measures unless they're enforced, because everyone thinks it Won't Happen To Them.
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  #29  
Old 10-23-2011, 05:41 PM
ralph124c ralph124c is offline
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Originally Posted by Maserschmidt View Post
Their insurer will ask them if they tie off, and they will tell the insurers "yes, of course we do." If the customer is big enough they'll visit occasionally and check it out, but there's no money in sending someone out to check a 3-man roofing crew.

Which is why insurance is so expensive for roofing companies. Falls from one story are more expensive in the long run than falls off very tall buildings.
I don't nderstand..you either have a safety harness or not. If you are wearing the harness, you slip and fall-and fall maybe 5 feet. You do not have an accident.
If you are not wearing a harness, you fall off the roof-and you are dead or gravely injured.
Does insurance pay off if you are not wearing the harness?
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  #30  
Old 10-23-2011, 05:47 PM
Taomist Taomist is offline
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I'm still laughing at having to wear a harness to go 5 feet up a six foot ladder. I'm a safety gal, but seriously...that was stupid. The line caused more problems getting up and down than it could ever have helped should I have 'fallen'. FFS I'm pretty sure that even if I'd fallen I still would have hit the floor; it just wasn't high enough to warrant that.
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  #31  
Old 10-23-2011, 05:51 PM
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Just a note about liability. Here in Ontario (YMMV), there is the owner of the property being worked on, and the contractor who arranges for all the permits and hires the employees and sub-contractors who do the work. If the owner directly hires the people who do the work, then the owner assumes the tasks and responsibilites of the contractor, which increases the risk taken by the owner. Although using a reputable contractor costs more, it is money well spent for unsophisticated owners.

If an owner uses a contractor who is not so reputable, the owner runs the risk of the contractor having the owner sign permits and other documents related to the project as if the owner were also the contractor, which could leave the owner on the hook.
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  #32  
Old 10-23-2011, 06:57 PM
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I know someone who used to be a roofer, and did this all the time- despite being blind in one eye hence having no depth perception at all. He somehow managed to reach retirement without any bad falls.

Some guys just like pushing their luck.
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  #33  
Old 10-23-2011, 07:58 PM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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Originally Posted by ralph124c View Post
I don't nderstand..you either have a safety harness or not. If you are wearing the harness, you slip and fall-and fall maybe 5 feet. You do not have an accident.
If you are not wearing a harness, you fall off the roof-and you are dead or gravely injured.
Does insurance pay off if you are not wearing the harness?
I'm sure it pays out and probably raises their rates. But it's probably still cheaper then buying, maintaining and training all the employees on the proper use of safety equipment that slows them down. Also, if the turnover is fast, that means lots of training and if they roofers are experienced, they'll just go somewhere else that doesn't require them to use safety equipment.
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  #34  
Old 10-23-2011, 07:59 PM
Maserschmidt Maserschmidt is offline
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Originally Posted by ralph124c View Post
I don't nderstand..you either have a safety harness or not. If you are wearing the harness, you slip and fall-and fall maybe 5 feet. You do not have an accident.
If you are not wearing a harness, you fall off the roof-and you are dead or gravely injured.
Does insurance pay off if you are not wearing the harness?
I'm not following the part you don't understand, but yes, workers compensation in the US pays off if you aren't wearing a harness. And in NY it's a little more complicated; if you fall from a height, you can waive the WC and sue.
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  #35  
Old 10-23-2011, 08:07 PM
Ibanez Ibanez is offline
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Originally Posted by ralph124c View Post
I mean, doesn't their insurance have any say in this?
I just saw two guys working on at least a 60 degree pitched roof-both without safety harnesses.
In my younger days, I did some roof work-but always with a safety harness and a 1" diameter line to a tie point.
Looks awful dangerous to me.
Superman complex.

I saw the same thing camping this summer. Yahoos in canoes with no life jackets on.
The worst was a canoe with a young child and parent, the kid was wearing one but the parent wasn't.
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  #36  
Old 10-23-2011, 08:19 PM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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Superman complex.

I saw the same thing camping this summer. Yahoos in canoes with no life jackets on.
The worst was a canoe with a young child and parent, the kid was wearing one but the parent wasn't.
To this day I always remember something my mom told me when I was younger and didn't want to wear a life jacket on my Grandpa's motorboat.

"But mom, I'm a strong swimmer, I can get back to the dock no matter how far out we are"
"Yeah, but if you hit your head when you fall out of the boat, you won't be able to swim at all"

And that's the thing people always seem to forget...sure, you're a strong swimmer, maybe you can swim for 500 yards without a problem, but the question is, why did you end up in the water in the first place? Did the boat overturn? Did you trip and hit your head and go over the side? Were you drinking or rough housing? Too many unknowns. Also, a capsized canoe isn't all that violent of an event, but trying to flip it back over in 8 feet of water with a friend will eat up a lot of your energy...I hope you have enough left to tread water if you can't do it on your own.
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  #37  
Old 10-23-2011, 08:37 PM
Faruiza Faruiza is offline
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I second that. One of our favorite trips is to camp and go tubing down the Kern River. ALL of us wear life jackets. Yes, it's bulky, and it's kind of uncomfortable, but a couple hundred people have died in that water since 1968, and it's almost always because the dumb bastard wasn't wearing a life jacket.

I have hit my melon once when a rapid got me right by a rock and I flipped. It didn't knock me out, but I saw white for a few seconds. My life jacket helped me get oriented quickly, and I continued on with nothing but a bruise.

No matter how hard we try to evolve, human beings STILL cannot breathe water!

On edit: Wow, hijack! Carry on. Nothing to see here.

Last edited by Faruiza; 10-23-2011 at 08:39 PM.. Reason: Acknowledgement of hijack...mea culpa.
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  #38  
Old 10-23-2011, 08:44 PM
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In white water, also wear a helmet. If you can't get your hands on a paddling helmet, then use a hockey helmet but make sure the chin strap will not let go easily.
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  #39  
Old 10-23-2011, 08:50 PM
Muffin Muffin is online now
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..

Last edited by Muffin; 10-23-2011 at 08:51 PM.. Reason: Wrong thread -- sometimes I'm a dumb as a roofer.
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  #40  
Old 10-23-2011, 09:16 PM
jjimm jjimm is offline
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Originally Posted by Ibanez View Post
Yahoos in canoes
That's a Dr Seuss book.

Where I am right now I frequently see guys monkeying around on rickety scaffolding hundreds of feet up with no safety equipment, guys arc welding with no safety glass or just a pair of $3 sunglasses on, and people smashing the ground for hours with pneumatic drills with no ear protection.

In some Asian countries I've been in, taxi drivers have disabled the safety belts, and I once got told off by a cabbie for putting mine on - he considered it an insult to his driving (which sucked).

Machismo + peer pressure + convenience + stupidity.
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  #41  
Old 10-23-2011, 09:24 PM
Dread Pirate Jimbo Dread Pirate Jimbo is offline
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Falls are the number two cause of fatalities in the workplace, behind vehicular collisions.

As I understand it, OSHA throughout the US requires tie off at 6' for all construction operations. The company I work for, which does several billion dollars worth of business a year in Canada and the US, uses this as our company-wide standard, although some jurisdictions, like here in Alberta, have less stringent requirements (we're at 3m for fall protection requirements). We figure if Americans are clever enough to figure out how to make that work, surely all the Canadians are too.

But, of course, roofers are still bad for behaving themselves, even when all this is clearly explained to them before they step onto one of our sites. Two weeks ago, on a big commercial project I'm working on, where we are re-roofing a 40-year-old med sciences structure, our superintendent spotted three roofers working 8' up on a pile of roofing material without their harnesses. He immediately called them down to suspend them for the remainder of the day and the next (as per our disciplinary policy for such violations) and discovered that they not only hadn't been tied off, but that they also hadn't generated a job procedure for high risk work, a fall protection plan, or even a hazard assessment, all of which are legal requirements for the work at heights they were doing. The punchline -- among the three guys misbehaving was the crew's foreman. Morons.

We've had one lost time injury since I moved to that project in June. A roofer climbing out of a garbage bin and jumping down, rather than taking the extra six seconds to use the ladder. He landed awkwardly and blew up his knee, requiring surgery to repair the damage. Moron.

As to the bullshit argument that the safety gear slows you down, I can only say this: the company I work for has been in business since 1906 and, in a century of careful statistical analysis, we've determined that a worker who conducts himself safely, using all the safety measures we and the legislation requires, is more productive than a worker who is lying on a stretcher in the hospital or a slab in the morgue.
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  #42  
Old 10-23-2011, 11:30 PM
Mongo Ponton Mongo Ponton is offline
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Piece work.

That's how they get paid and if you want to eat you have to go fast.

I did this for about 3 years when I was young and if you're not union you're not getting paid much per square (100 square feet).

I consistently did 10 squares a day and made $12 per square. 10 squares is rocking it and if you couldn't do 8 there was no point in being there so 8 - 10 is pretty average range for a roofer. A union guy made $1000 per week whatever he did.

We were once put on a large residential pseudo government project and worked for nearly a year breaking every possible safety rule before someone questioned not how we were working but how much we were making. They about flipped when they found out we were paid piece. Someone from the government had to figure out how much we should have been paid by expected rates of productivity and we ended up getting an extra $1800 check for each of the previous weeks worked. That check took a couple years to come in or we all would have quit the next day.

In other words our productivity had been about 2 1/2 times greater than union guys following safety rules and we had had to do that to earn just 60% of what they earned.

I had two falls from 2 stories or more. If you're laid up you're not nailing shingles and you're not getting paid. That's it. Falls from 1 story don't warrant any work stoppage. There was no Workmens Comp, everyone was an independent contractor, although we would do extra each day to get a guy that was hurt some money.

You know within a second if a slip is an out of control one or not and you start looking for a solution fast. Failing finding anything to grab you drive the claw of your hammer through the deck and yell. The gutter is your last shot but they don't hold very well.

The scariest part was really getting on and off the ladder at the top. I don't know why and I don't know if other guys felt this way but it always scared the shit out of me.

We also got paid piece for putting on tarpaper (less staples is faster but more dangerous), for putting on drip edge, and occasionally for stacking the roof.

It was also the most violent construction environment I worked in.

This is a brutal way to make a living and turnover was very high. Injuries, aging out of high productivity, fear and fatique make for a generally short career. If a new guy showed up and was just afraid he wasn't laughed at or dogged he just went home. Better to have a scared guy off the deck. I know we would sometimes watch them leave with a wistful expression on our faces and then get back to work.

Summertime on a black roof it gets to about 130 degrees and takes your breathe away but you have to keep up your speed. In the winter we would sometimes have a laborer go up at 5 AM to clear our 10 squares each of snow and ice so we could work. This was so dangerous and so rude he got to go home then and still got paid for the day. I finally quit because I just couldn't take the cold anymore. Hershey Pennsylvania in February is not for the weak.

The guys you see are trying to make a living. Putting safety gear on them and scaffolding under them means they will no longer make a living wage while still having to deal with the misery and time pressure The alternative is to hire unions and follow all the OSHA rules but unfortunately we could only afford to live in sheds.

Don't judge them. Figure out if you have a part in our society that demands this and accept it or change it.

Last edited by Mongo Ponton; 10-23-2011 at 11:30 PM.. Reason: thought some more commas would look good
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  #43  
Old 10-23-2011, 11:43 PM
drewtwo99 drewtwo99 is offline
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Location: Houston, Texas
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My dad is a career roofer and owns his own small roofing company. I worked summers for him growing up, so I can say...

The men were told to follow all safety regulations, but dad would turn a blind eye so that jobs could get done quickly.

Men are paid piecework; abiding by all the safety regulations and requirements just means they make less money. That's how they see it.

OSHA got on my dad's ass at least once over violations, and he ramped up required safety meetings and stuff, and then got on the men to actually follow safety procedures.

On very steep/dangerous roofs, the men are sometimes paid hourly or the piece rate is much higher, so that they can follow safety regulations and work carefully.

Over time, my dad has been definitely more concerned with safety and tries his best to bid dangerous jobs so that he can pay his men more... but roofing is a cutthroat industry, and typically, people just go with the cheapest bid that they can get.

So bottomline is, dad can only pay his men so much because he can only bid a job so high before he bids himself out of a contract. It sucks.

I would also like to say that the employees my dad had were alcoholic, drug users, who were dumb as rocks. But damn could they work really, really hard. It's incredible how hard roofing is.
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  #44  
Old 10-23-2011, 11:45 PM
Muffin Muffin is online now
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Originally Posted by Mongo Ponton View Post
Don't judge them.
Don't judge them? Why the hell not? I call stupid when I see it, and with roofers, I see it. Don't like it? Too bad.

Last edited by Muffin; 10-23-2011 at 11:48 PM..
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  #45  
Old 10-23-2011, 11:52 PM
Cliffy Cliffy is offline
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I was in the hospital a few days this summer and one of my roommates was a roofer who'd had a fall and broke both legs -- two tibs and femur. Poor dude.

--Cliffy
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  #46  
Old 10-24-2011, 12:17 AM
BigT BigT is offline
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Originally Posted by Muffin View Post
Don't judge them? Why the hell not? I call stupid when I see it, and with roofers, I see it. Don't like it? Too bad.
Because if they don't do that, they can't make a living wage. Making fun of poor people is not a good thing.

If you don't want them doing it, then you go out and pay them more money so they won't have to. Otherwise, you have no right to say anything.
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  #47  
Old 10-24-2011, 12:41 AM
Muffin Muffin is online now
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If they are not willing to obey the law that is there to protect them from themselves, are not willing to work safely and compensate for the lower income by not blowing their wages on booze and/or drugs, and are not willing to simply change careers, then tought titty. Calling them stupid is not making fun of them. It is calling it like it is.

As far a me paying more for safe roofers, it is not a matter of paying more, it is a matter of not trying to save a buck by hiring unsafe contractors who turn a blind eye to illegallity. When our building was re-roofed, we took care to hire a general whom we knew ensured that his subs worked safely. The only general contractors whom I represent have safe workplaces, and most notably, I have never represented roofers but I have acted against roofing companies.
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  #48  
Old 10-24-2011, 01:38 AM
aceplace57 aceplace57 is offline
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Safety harness is a mixed blessing. The ropes are a trip hazard. If you do fall you can still get hurt. 1. you can swing violently on the rope and crash into the wall. 2. the sudden jerk when the rope goes tight can snap your neck or back. 3. ropes too long and you still hit the ground.

I made money for college by roofing in the summer. It's very dangerous, dirty work. I've done hot-tar-and-gravel roofs with an old fashioned kettle and I've pounded shingles. Never want to do it again. I hired a contractor to roof my house a few years ago.

Last edited by aceplace57; 10-24-2011 at 01:42 AM..
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  #49  
Old 10-24-2011, 09:15 AM
shiftless shiftless is offline
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My neighbor is a roofer, has been forever and never, ever wears a harness, or goggles or gloves either for that matter. Of course, that one time he fell he was out of work for a long time but he didn't start using a harness afterward.

Setting up a harness system would take a lot of time and trying to work on a roof with ropes and straps underfoot sounds like it would be pretty dangerous too. It's not like a roofer just stands in one place the whole time.
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  #50  
Old 10-24-2011, 09:28 AM
Nava Nava is offline
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Originally Posted by jjimm View Post
In some Asian countries I've been in, taxi drivers have disabled the safety belts, and I once got told off by a cabbie for putting mine on - he considered it an insult to his driving (which sucked).

Oh FUCK! We finally managed to convince the French that Spain is not in Africa, and now that we're in the EU (and in the Eurozone!) I discover we're in Asia? Damnit! My geography teachers blew goats!

I've noticed a lot of commonality between seatbelt idiocy and love of telling me how to live my life, though, so I'm reasonably confident that we can file both groups under M for machista.



My brother works as a construction foreman. I can locate him easily because way too often he's the only man onsite to have his hardhat on (if there is a second hardhat around, it's worn by a "technical architect" or safety officer, two professions which are overwhelmingly female hereabouts).
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