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Last Post 08/21/2011 10:44 AM by  FloridaBoy
Roof Safety
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Raaptyr
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03/12/2009 6:31 AM
    I just went from being an adjuster for a locale to being a CAT adjuster and discovered my CAT boss thinks I should be getting on roofs my old boss would not have expected me to get on.  Anyway, I'm trying to find a post on roof safety equipment (I already have cougar paws) that can be done by an adjuster by himself.  I can't find such a discussion but I'm sure it is in here somewhere or maybe a few people could give me some ideas?  I've heard of kneeling boards but can't seem to find anyone that sells them - cougar paws website says they are out of stock.  I hear mention of harnesses but can this system be used by an adjuster who is by himself?  And how does it work?  I don't want to do anything crazy but I didn't get on roofs over 8/12 before but the new boss wants me on up to like 11/12 even w/o a valley to help and even when it is high to boot.  HELP!
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    Amart
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    03/12/2009 9:20 AM
    When i was down in Ohio i seen many roofs that as a very novice adjuster i did not understand how someone would safely get up on. One of the answers i got were ideas such as throwing a tennis ball with a rope around it over the roof to get a line for a harness for those roofs that were just completely unsafe or were a very slippery material. I have also heard of using sheet foam, but i don't know how that would help you scale it so much as just staying in one spot.

    There will many adjusters better than i that will tell far better means to access those tough roofs, so keep checking back Chris.
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    Tom Toll
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    03/12/2009 11:39 AM
    Chris, rope and harness is a dual effort. One to climb, one to hang on to the climber. 11/12 is very steep and very dangerous, particularly with no valley's. Cougar paws can give you a false sense of security on very steep roofs, so be careful with them. Some examiners have never been on a roof and will demand you climb dangerous roofs. I would not do it. It's your life, not the examiners or vendors.
    Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.
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    Ray Hall
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    03/12/2009 12:13 PM
    I have never climbed a roof steeper than 8/12 in over 50 years. I have been a staff and IA all this time, but I always get as close too it as I can. never had a problem.
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    Medulus
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    03/12/2009 1:03 PM
    Chris,

    Time to get a new boss. Yes, I know it's a tough economy but your safety is more important than climbing just one more roof.

    Back in 1999 I was in Fairfax, VA, when I got a call from Jim Flynt. He told me that an adjuster had fallen off a roof and was in a hospital in Fairfax. He asked me to go and visit. So, I dropped everything and headed for the hospital. When I got there, the nurse informed me he had just died. The total distance he had fallen was 22 feet.

    In 2006 I was in Indianapolis and met one of the GAB staff adjusters named Steve. A week later I was informed he had fallen off a roof. For months we weren't sure if he would live or die. The last I knew he was in a wheel chair for the rest of his life.

    Anecdotal evidence? You betcha! Enough for me to sit up and take notice? Absolutely! Personal experience? There's nothing worse than that feeling in the pit of your stomach when you start sliding down a steep pitch roof heading toward the ground knowing that the odds are less than 50/50 that you will be able to stop before the roof runs out. I have climbed roofs I should not have. I've somehow lived long enough to become wise enough to avoid doing it again.

    Take a photo of the roofs your boss wants you to climb. Mount them on a sheet of paper. Ask him to sign a statement that he is ordering you to climb this roof. If he is willing to sign the order, you will consider climbing the roof. Then make sure the signed orders are safely in the possession of your future widow or next of kin so they can bring the lawsuit after you die. Turn a second copy over to OSHA, explaining that your boss is asking you to do this without providing you with the proper equipment to safely perform the task. Be prepared to look for another job. There are other jobs, though. You only have one life.
     
    (I considered using some profanity for emphasis -- something about what your boss could do with a rolling donut -- but my better instincts kicked in and I deleted that part of the post.)
    Steve Ebner CPCU AIC AMIM

    "With great power comes great responsibility." (Stanley Martin Lieber, Amazing Fantasy # 15 August 1962)
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    okclarryd
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    03/12/2009 8:50 PM
    C'mon, Steve, ..........speak up.

    I, too, have been on roofs that I was wondering just how I was gonna get down. Makes me sweat just thinkin' about 'em.

    8/12 or 9/12 with Cougar Paws or equivalent is just about my limit. If my supervisor wants me on a steeper roof, he can come show me how. And I have invited more than one office rat to join me with no takers to date.

    If you're uncomfortable on a roof, there's a reason. Listen to your own good judgment and draw the line on what you will and won't climb.

    I am stubborn and a slow learner and have learned this lesson the hard way. You don't need to follow my footsteps on this.
    Larry D Hardin
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    ChuckDeaton
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    03/12/2009 10:48 PM
    God created the Greeks and the Greeks created hydraulics. Several companies make and rent lifts.

    God created Sir Edmond Hillary and Sir Edmond basically invented mountain climbing. A Google search will turn up multiple places that sell mountain climbing gear.

    Just the other day I got on a roof with a 60 foot wall height, it was raining and the wind was blowing. I climbed straight up a big oak tree and down the side of a cliff.

    My point here is that equipment makes the difference.

    We got on the 60 footer with a hydraulic lift. We went up the Oak tree with an ascender and a rope. We went down the cliff with a rope.

    OSHA sets safety rules for any profession that works at heights, follow them. No major company violates safety rules in the work place.

    There is a method to safely getting on top of tall steep residential roofs, alone. Rope, Cougar Paws, ascenders, safety harnesses are all part of the deal.
    "Prattling on and on about being an ass with experience doesn't make someone experienced. It just makes you an ass." Rod Buvens, Pilot grunt
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    Tom Toll
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    03/13/2009 11:05 AM
    Posted By Steve Ebner on 12 Mar 2009 01:03 PM
    Chris,

    Time to get a new boss. Yes, I know it's a tough economy but your safety is more important than climbing just one more roof.

    Back in 1999 I was in Fairfax, VA, when I got a call from Jim Flynt. He told me that an adjuster had fallen off a roof and was in a hospital in Fairfax. He asked me to go and visit. So, I dropped everything and headed for the hospital. When I got there, the nurse informed me he had just died. The total distance he had fallen was 22 feet.

    In 2006 I was in Indianapolis and met one of the GAB staff adjusters named Steve. A week later I was informed he had fallen off a roof. For months we weren't sure if he would live or die. The last I knew he was in a wheel chair for the rest of his life.

    Anecdotal evidence? You betcha! Enough for me to sit up and take notice? Absolutely! Personal experience? There's nothing worse than that feeling in the pit of your stomach when you start sliding down a steep pitch roof heading toward the ground knowing that the odds are less than 50/50 that you will be able to stop before the roof runs out. I have climbed roofs I should not have. I've somehow lived long enough to become wise enough to avoid doing it again.

    Take a photo of the roofs your boss wants you to climb. Mount them on a sheet of paper. Ask him to sign a statement that he is ordering you to climb this roof. If he is willing to sign the order, you will consider climbing the roof. Then make sure the signed orders are safely in the possession of your future widow or next of kin so they can bring the lawsuit after you die. Turn a second copy over to OSHA, explaining that your boss is asking you to do this without providing you with the proper equipment to safely perform the task. Be prepared to look for another job. There are other jobs, though. You only have one life.
     
    (I considered using some profanity for emphasis -- something about what your boss could do with a rolling donut -- but my better instincts kicked in and I deleted that part of the post.)
     
    Steve is absolutely correct. Better to live than to die falling from a roof. I have lost three friends in the last 10 years due to falling from unsafe roofs (too steep).
    It is just not worth the risk.

    Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.
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    Medulus
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    03/13/2009 6:02 PM
    Syracuse, New York, 1998 Labor Day straight line windstorm. My first mistake was thinking I was omnipotent enough to climb the steep three story roof. My second mistake was using the insured's rickety ladder that wasn't strong enough to support my weight. The third mistake was getting off the ladder onto the very steep roof old weather beaten roof with the loose granules all over it. I got near the top and started to slide uncontrollably down. I laid down full body on the roof. This slowed me but didn't stop me. The one thing I had done right is tie off the ladder on the gutter. I caught it with one foot just as I got to the edge of the roof. I lay on the roof for two or three minutes before I dared to move. As close as I want to get to painful agonizing death.

    Baltimore, Maryland, 2001 Branch assist assignment. The roof was steep but the slope levelled out near the bottom. So I stood on the lower part of the slope, took a running start and made it almost to the top. As I started to slide back I reached out and grabbed the ridge. I heard my shoulder make a loud pop and felt the intense pain a second later. I still have problems with full range of motion in that arm.

    If the roof doesn't feel right, don't do it. If that means you turn a file back in, so be it. Stay smart and stay alive.Trust your instincts. I can climb roofs with the best of them, but I now know my limits.
    Steve Ebner CPCU AIC AMIM

    "With great power comes great responsibility." (Stanley Martin Lieber, Amazing Fantasy # 15 August 1962)
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    ChuckDeaton
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    03/13/2009 8:44 PM
    Success is when preparation meets opportunity, preparation is what allows you to keep the file and the billing. Safety is a must, but climbing does not have to be dangerous, no matter what you are climbing.
    "Prattling on and on about being an ass with experience doesn't make someone experienced. It just makes you an ass." Rod Buvens, Pilot grunt
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    kmerian
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    03/14/2009 11:32 AM
    My rule of thumb is that if you don't feel safe, don't do it.

    8/12 is my limit. I don't use cougar paws, I think they give people a false sense of security.

    If your employer is pressuring you to go up on roofs that make you feel unsafe, remind them how much a workers comp claim would cost them, or like someone else said, invite them to come with you. Better yet, show them this:
    http://www.news4jax.com/news/605673...tail.html/
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    host
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    ChuckDeaton
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    03/14/2009 6:08 PM
    Those tall steep roofs represent billing, so if you don't want the billing turn the claim in, if you just don't want the job start talking to the vendor about Worker's Compensation.

    Don't tell me that you didn't notice that most of the large expanses of roofing, especially on newer construction, is high and steep.

    However, if you are a professional adjuster then assess the situation, deal with it in a legal and safe manner, professional adjusters expect tall, steep climbs and have the necessary equipment, and get on with life.

    Cougar paws, boots with lugs, line, ascenders, ladders, knowledge of knots, gloves, 100 foot tapes, cameras, putty knives, accurate assessment of the risk involved and having insurance is all a part of being an independent contractor.

    That is why you got hired in the first place. If you can't or won't do it go get back under the porch.
    "Prattling on and on about being an ass with experience doesn't make someone experienced. It just makes you an ass." Rod Buvens, Pilot grunt
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    ChuckDeaton
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    03/14/2009 6:46 PM
    Matterhorn://www.cliffhanger.com.au/product/Ascenders-and-Descenders/petzl-ascension-ascenders.php
     
    With two of these, an adequate length of proper line, secured with proper knots and a proper climbing harness you will not be falling off any roofs, or anything else.
     
    You may swing and you might slid a ways if you lose your footing, but with three of these and the other necessaries, you can go up the side of the Matterhorn, Mt. Everest or the big Oak tree in your backyard.
     
    It is done all the time.
     
    Don't leave the billing on a 100 sq 10/12 pitch, buy some equipment and practice. Safety is paramount.
    "Prattling on and on about being an ass with experience doesn't make someone experienced. It just makes you an ass." Rod Buvens, Pilot grunt
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    ChuckDeaton
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    03/14/2009 6:49 PM
    If you are really interested contact me and meet me in Houma, LA and I will show you the equipment and how to use it. Cat 102 remains free for the asking.
    "Prattling on and on about being an ass with experience doesn't make someone experienced. It just makes you an ass." Rod Buvens, Pilot grunt
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    okclarryd
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    03/18/2009 9:09 PM
    Chuck, I agree 100%.

    That would be me in the rocker on the porch.
    Larry D Hardin
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    Wes
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    03/20/2009 6:08 AM
    I don't do steep and I don't do double pulls unless its a flat roof up to a slope roof. Been adjusting 10yrs with no problems. I either make do with the access I have or report that a professional roofer/engineer may be required. If an examiner or manager attempted to coerce me in some way to climb a roof I wasn't comfortable with our relationship would most likely end violently.
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    jayteedee
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    03/26/2009 12:12 AM
    Anybody ever use a hook ladder,sometimes known as a chicken ladder, that hooks over the ridge?
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    bradpitt1111
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    05/24/2009 4:40 AM
    Cougar paws  are good for support but there are more useful ways to give the support to the roof!!
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    brad pitt
     [url=http://www.legalx.net]Lawyer Directory[/url]
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    Ggelatt
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    07/01/2009 11:10 AM
    Here in Atlanta, 9/12 - 12/12 are very common with anything built in the last 15 years. I do not have a problem getting on 12/12's. Trust your instincts, be smarter than the roof! Get Cougar paws and re-fills. Take the course that K-Squared offers on rope & harness. He's out of the Houston area. Excellent course, he teaches OSHA requirements along with a 1 or a 2 man system.
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