Roofing

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Falls are the number one killer in construction. Workers engaged in roofing activities are especially vulnerable. Therefore, protection from falls is of critical importance for both employers and workers.  Proper selection, use, and maintenance of equipment; good housekeeping and effective worker education are critical to the employer’s efforts of protecting workers from falls. Additional information related to the specific requirements for fall protection equipment can be found here:

Note: Requirements marked with * are also valid for owners.

An employer or contractor must:

  • Permit the competent workers who are engaged in the installation of a roof to use approved soft-soled footwear without puncture-proof plates in the soles;
  • Have a Fall Protection Plan in place;
  • Ensure that any roof or other work surface into which a worker could step or fall is protected by a prescribed covering and warning sign or a guardrail and toeboard*;
    • Where the above protection is removed for any reason, ensure an effective alternative means of protection is immediately provided*.
  • Ensure that a crawl board or roof ladder used for roof work is securely fastened to the roof*;
  • Ensure that where a roofer’s hoist is used that all counterweights on it are designed as an integral part of the hoist, remain securely attached at all times during hoisting, are designed to specifications, and any part or section of the hoist that may become disconnected is equipped with suitable locking devices;
  • Ensure that roofing material is not used as a counterweight on a roofer’s hoist;
  • Ensure that a roofer’s hoist is only used to perform vertical lifts;
  • Ensure that no worker is required or permitted to use a wooden gallows frame roofer’s hoist;
  • Ensure that where a portable ladder is used to access a roof or other landing that it extends at least 1m above any platform;
  • Ensure that the side rails of a fixed ladder extend not less than 1m above any platform, roof or other landing on the structure to which the ladder is fixed*;
  • Ensure that a ladder opening in a platform, roof, or other landing does not exceed 750 mm x 750 mm;*
  • Ensure any opening or hole in a floor, roof, or other surface on which workers are required or permitted to work or stand is guarded or covered as required; and
  • Ensure that before powered mobile equipment is placed on a floor, roof, or other surface on which workers are required or permitted to walk to stand for the purpose of demolishing a structure, that the floor, roof, or other surface is capable of supporting the load that may be placed on it;  
  • Make sure that you ask appropriate questions before you hire a contractor.

A worker must:

  • Check weather forecasts before working on a roof to ensure that there won’t be any slippery or hazardous conditions. 
  • Wear appropriate personal protection equipment.
  • Pile all necessary material on the roof not less than 2m from the edge (make sure it won't slide off the roof).
  • Keep a constant eye on the gable if near it.
  • Always be aware of where work is being performed on the roof, including proximity to the edges.
  • Keep the job site clean.

Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, 1996
S.S., c. O-1.1, Reg 1

Part IX Safeguards, Storage, Warning Signs and Signals

Section 122 Guardrails

122. (1) Subject to subsections (2) to (4), where the installation of a guardrail is required by these regulations, an employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that the guardrail:

(a) has a horizontal top member that is not less than 920 millimetres and not more than 1070 millimetres above the working surface;

(b) has a horizontal intermediate member that is spaced midway between the horizontal top member and the working surface;

(c) is supported for the entire length of the guardrail by vertical members that are:

(i) not more than three metres apart, in the case of a guardrail installed before the coming into force of this section; and

(ii) where reasonably practicable, not more than 2.4 metres apart, in the case of a guardrail installed on or after the coming into force of this section;

(d) is capable of supporting a worker who may fall against the guardrail; and

(e) is constructed of 38 by 89 millimetre construction grade lumber or other materials that are of equal or greater strength.

(2) Clause (1)(a) does not apply to a guardrail that:

(a) was installed on or before October 30, 1988; and

(b) is not less than 900 millimetres nor more than one metre above the working surface.

(3) A horizontal intermediate member is not required in the case of a temporary guardrail that is manufactured with a substantial barrier completely filling the area enclosed by the horizontal top member, a horizontal bottom member and the vertical members.

(4) A wire rope guardrail may be used at the external perimeter of a building under construction.

(5) Where a wire rope guardrail is used pursuant to subsection (4), an employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that:

(a) the guardrail consists of a horizontal top member and a horizontal intermediate member made of wire rope that is not less than 9.5 millimetres in diameter, with vertical separators not less than 50 millimetres wide that are spaced at intervals not exceeding 2.4 metres;

(b) the horizontal top member and horizontal intermediate member are positioned above the working surface in accordance with clauses (1)(a) and (b);

(c) the guardrail is kept taut by means of a turnbuckle or other appropriate device; and

(d) the guardrail is arranged so that a worker coming into contact with the ropes cannot fall through the ropes.

(6) An employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that no worker hangs equipment on a guardrail.

Section 124 Openings in floors, roofs, etc.

124. (1) An employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that any opening or hole in a floor, roof or other work surface into which a worker could step or fall is:

(a) covered with a securely installed covering that is capable of supporting a load of 360 kilograms per square metre and that is provided with a warning sign or permanent marking clearly indicating the nature of the hazard; or

(b) provided with a guardrail and a toeboard.

(2) Where the covering or guardrail and toeboard mentioned in subsection (1) or any part of the guardrail or toeboard is removed for any reason, an employer, contractor or owner shall immediately provide an effective alternative means of protection.

Part XII Scaffolds, Aerial Devices, Elevating Work Platforms and Temporary Supporting Structures

Section 190 Crawlboards, roof ladders

190. An employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that a crawl board or roof ladder used for roof work is securely fastened to the roof.

Part XIII Hoists, Cranes and Lifting Devices

Section 221 Roofers' hoists

221. (1) Where a roofer's hoist is used, an employer or contractor shall ensure that:

(a) all counterweights on the hoist:

(i) are designed as an integral part of the hoist;

(ii) remain securely attached to the hoist at all times that hoisting is in progress; and

(iii) are designed to exert an opposing moment that is equal to at least four times the moment exerted by the maximum rated load; and

(b) any part or section of the hoist that may become disconnected is equipped with suitable locking devices.

(2) An employer or contractor shall not require or permit a worker to use roofing material as a counterweight on a roofer's hoist.

(3) An employer or contractor shall ensure that a roofer's hoist is used only to perform vertical lifts.

(4) An employer or contractor shall ensure that no worker is required or permitted to use a wooden gallows frame roofer's hoist.

Part XVI Entrances, Exits and Ladders

Section 253 Portable ladders

253. (1) In this section and section 254, "portable ladder" means any ladder that is not fixed in place, and includes a stepladder.

(2) An employer or contractor shall ensure that:

(a) a portable ladder is equipped with non-slip feet;

(b) a portable ladder is secured against accidental movement during use;

(c) a metal or wire-bound portable ladder is not used where the ladder or a worker handling or using the ladder may come into contact with an exposed energized electrical conductor; and

(d) a portable ladder extends at least one metre above any platform, roof or other landing to which the ladder is used as a means of access.

(3) An employer or contractor shall ensure that each worker who handles or uses a portable ladder is instructed in the requirements of this section.

(4) An employer or contractor shall ensure that a stepladder:

(a) is not more than six metres high when set for use;

(b) has legs that are securely held in position by means of metal braces or an equivalent rigid support; and

(c) when in use, has a front section slope at an angle of one horizontal to six vertical.

(5) An employer or contractor shall ensure that:

(a) an extension ladder is equipped with locks that securely hold the sections of the ladder in the extended position;

(b) where a section of an extension ladder is extended, the section that is extended overlaps another section for at least one metre;

(c) an extension ladder consisting of two sections does not exceed 14.6 metres in length; and

(d) an extension ladder consisting of more than two sections does not exceed 20 metres in length.

(6) An employer or contractor shall ensure that no single portable ladder and no section of an extension ladder exceeds nine metres in length.

Section 255 Fixed ladders

255. (1) In this section, "fixed ladder" means a ladder that is fixed to a structure in a vertical position or at an angle that is between vertical and 25 to the vertical, but does not include a ladder used in underground mining operations to which The Mines Regulations apply.

(2) A ladder that is fixed to a structure at an angle of more than 25 to the vertical, or more than one horizontal to two vertical, is deemed to be a stairway and is subject to the requirements of sections 121 and 251.

(3) An employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that:

(a) the rungs on a fixed ladder are uniformly spaced with centres that are not less than 250 and not more than 300 millimetres apart;

(b) a clearance of at least 150 millimetres is maintained between the rungs on a fixed ladder and the structure to which the ladder is affixed;

(c) a fixed ladder is securely held in place at the top and bottom and at any intermediate points that are necessary to prevent sway;

(d) the side rails of a fixed ladder extend not less than one metre above any platform, roof or other landing on the structure to which the ladder is fixed;

(e) a ladder opening in a platform, roof or other landing does not exceed 750 millimetres by 750 millimetres;

(f) a fixed ladder that is more than six metres high:

(i) is equipped with:

(A) platforms at intervals of not more than six metres or ladder cages, in the case of ladders installed on or before March 11, 1986; or

(B) platforms at intervals of not more than six metres and ladder cages, in the case of ladders installed on or after March 12, 1986; or

(ii) is equipped with a personal fall arrest system that meets the requirements of Part VII.

(g) a fixed ladder in an excavated shaft is installed in a compartment that is separated from the hoist compartment by a substantial partition.

(4) Where a ladder cage is required by these regulations, an employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that:

(a) the ladder cage is constructed of hoops that are not more than 1.8 metres apart, joined by vertical members not more than 300 millimetres apart around the circumference of the hoop;

(b) no point on a hoop of the ladder cage is more than 750 millimetres from the ladder; and

(c) the ladder cage is of sufficient strength and is designed to contain any worker who may lean or fall against a hoop.

(5) In the case of a ladder cage constructed before July 1, 1997, an employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that:

(a) the lowest hoop of the ladder cage is not more than three metres from a platform, landing or the ground; and

(b) the uppermost hoop of the ladder cage is at the level of a platform, landing or roof.

(6) In the case of a ladder cage constructed on or after July 1, 1997, an employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that:

(a) the lowest hoop of the ladder cage is not more than 2.2 metres from a platform, landing or the ground; and

(b) the uppermost hoop of the ladder cage extends at least one metre above the level of a platform, landing or roof.

[Sask. Reg. 67/2007, s. 23]

Part XXVII Demolition Work

Section 384 Demolition procedures

384. In a demolition, an employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that:

(a) dust from the demolition is controlled to the extent that is reasonably practicable;

(b) materials and debris are not allowed to accumulate in any area to the extent that the materials and debris cause overloading of a structure that could result in the collapse of all or part of the structure;

(c) any opening or hole in a floor, roof or other surface on which workers are required or permitted to walk or stand is guarded or covered as required by section 124;

(d) a free-standing scaffold is used in the demolition of a building shaft from the inside;

(e) steel structures are dismantled column length by column length and tier by tier from the top downward; and

(f) no wall or other part of the structure being demolished is left in an unstable condition or in danger of accidental collapse except during the actual demolition of that wall or part of the structure.

Section 387 Use of powered mobile equipment

387. (1) Before powered mobile equipment is placed on a floor, roof or other surface on which workers are required or permitted to walk or stand for the purpose of demolishing a structure, an employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that the floor, roof or other surface is capable of supporting the load that may be placed on the floor, roof or other surface.

(2) Where powered mobile equipment is used for the purpose of demolishing a structure, an employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that safe work procedures are developed and implemented.

Part VII Personal Protective Equipment

Section 96 Footwear

96. (1) Subject to subsection (4), an employer or contractor shall ensure that:

(a) a worker uses footwear that is appropriate to the risks associated with the worker's place of employment and occupation; and

(b) a worker who may be at risk from a heavy or falling object or who may tread on a sharp object uses approved protective footwear.

(2) The following places are deemed to be places where a worker is exposed to a risk described in clause (1)(b):

(a) a mine, mill or smelter;

(b) a forestry or sawmilling operation;

(c) a construction site;

(d) a drilling operation;

(e) an oil or gas servicing operation.

(3) An employer or contractor shall:

(a) provide outer foot guards if there is substantial risk of a crushing injury to the foot of a worker; and

(b) provide approved protective footwear if the feet of a worker may be endangered by hot, corrosive or toxic substances.

(4) After consultation with the committee, the representative or, where there is no committee or representative, the workers, an employer or contractor may:

(a) permit the following to use approved soft-soled footwear without puncture-proof plates in the soles:

(i) workers who are competent steel erectors engaged in the connection of structural components of a skeletal structure;

(ii) competent workers who are engaged in the installation of a roof; and

(b) impose any conditions that the employer or contractor considers appropriate on the use of footwear described in clause (a).