CoatingsPro Magazine

MAR 2016

CoatingsPro offers an in-depth look at coatings based on case studies, successful business operation, new products, industry news, and the safe and profitable use of coatings and equipment.

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34 MARCH 2016 COATINGSPROMAG.COM gradation. For example, a dead-fat roof has a diferent slip coefcient than a 2/12 roof, and so on. So how do you organize this? A good place to start is to consider basic risk management protocol. Te professionals use a fve-step process: 1. Identify the risk. Look at the situa- tion and, in this case, determine the fall-related risks. 2. Prioritize the risk. Once all of the fall-related exposures are ascer- tained, consider those needing greatest attention, as often this will dictate treatment of the other related hazards. 3. Treat the risk. Consider all of the available fall control options and choose the method(s) to use. 4. Implement the strategy. Employ the chosen methods. 5. Review. Look at how the employed methods worked, and make adjust- ments as needed. It is an iterative process and often in safety scenarios, the fve steps blend together when you are familiar with treatment options. Some Examples Risk identifcation is the most import- ant step because if you miss the risk, you automatically assume it. In other words, if you don't consider that slope impacts slip resistance, for example, you expose your workers to unintended slip-related risks. Similarly, if you don't consider that warning lines on a 4/12 roof may not have the proper tip-over resistance of 16 pounds (7.3 kg) on the down slope side of the roof, a worker may not feel the line if he gets too close. In fact, this scenario will likely tip the stanchions over without much efort, exposing the worker to a tripping incident or, worse, the edge. Te question that you should be asking yourself is: Are warning lines the right choice here? Usually steep versus low slope is as far as the risk assessment goes, and you can see how that could set the stage for increased risk. Consider ground-to-eave height, for example. If you decide to only use PFAs and the roof height is 7½ feet (2.3 m), you're going to have a real problem if someone falls. Most PFAs need at least 17 feet (5.2 m) clearance to catch a worker before he or she hits the ground (see Diagram 1). A nd consid- ering the popularity of rope grabs, it's ver y easy to assume that the worker may not have minimized his or her free-fall distance by adjusting the rope grab properly and, therefore, managing the lifeline slack. Again, the question should have been different: A re PFAs the right choice here? Now let's consider the work: the application of a coating. W hen you're applying the coating on a rooftop, are you walking backward, sideways, or forward? Each of these movements creates a diferent risk that should be considered. If you're walking backward or sideways, a warning line would seem appropriate. In fact, the backward walk is what was intended in its original purpose. Walking forward is unlikely, but never say never. In that instance, what system makes the most sense? W hat is the coating's contribution to slip-related hazards? Have you adjusted for that? Are warning lines the right choice here? Finally, consider the three variables together. You can see that you might assume warning lines are best when you're walking backward; however, if you're on a 4/12 slope, then you're setting the applicator up for a Considering that there's a synergistic efect between roof slope, roof height, and membrane being installed, analyzing all those elements is key to understanding better how to apply the risk treatment option appropriate for the task. Safety Watch

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