Contractor Safety On the Job Site and Beyond

home improvement

At Valentine Roofing we know that our profession is inherently dangerous. Ladders are a leading cause of accidents and injuries across the board, and we use ladders for most of our work. In addition, our work is often done on uneven surfaces and high off the ground. The use of power tools is often considered dangerous. Taking any one of these factors into account, it is no wonder that much of the home improvement industry finds itself on the Burea of Labor Statistic list of most dangerous jobs in America.

13. Construction Laborer (Perform tasks involving physical labor at construction sites.)

4. Construction Trade Helpers (Assist on job sites.)

3. Roofers

Knowing that our industry is dangerous Valentine Roofing created, implemented, and enforces an entire program dedicated to job site safety and well-being of every employee in our care.

Training and Safety Program

The first line of defense against workplace-related injuries is to have an effective safety program that has well-understood training in place followed by every employee. Valentine Roofing’s safety program is implemented and overseen by a dedicated team committed to workplace safety. This team conducts job-related safety training upon orientation. They also schedule and coordinate CPR and emergency first aid certification at least twice each year for site foremen and other job site supervisors.

In 2021 Valentine Roofing worked together with Washington State Labor and Industries to ensure our program met or exceeded all state requirements. The audit concluded that the Valentine Roofing safety program was indeed thorough, going above and beyond to ensure employee safety.

We understand that human error can occur. In the event that our safety program is not adequately followed by an employee at Valentine Roofing, we employ reinforcement, retraining, reeducation, and/or reprimand as deemed appropriate by a manager. Our goal is always 100% compliance with zero violations and zero injuries!

Safety Equipment and PPE

Tools and equipment are inspected before each use. Any tool deemed defective or are not in proper working order is removed from service (pending repairs whenever possible). Safety equipment and job site tools that receive regular inspection include ladders, air compressors, nail guns, generators, skill saws and more depending on the job needs. Some tools and equipment, like ladders, ladder stands, and ladder tie-offs, are provided by the company to ensure they meet our standards.

Personal protective equipment, PPE, is equipment worn to minimize exposure to hazards that cause serious workplace injuries and illnesses.  Required PPE can vary from industry to industry. Valentine Roofing provides all PPE (that are not considered street clothes) to employees. This personal protective equipment includes but is not limited to hard hats, harnesses, ropes, anchors, hand protection, eye protection, and hearing protection. PPE is also regularly inspected and replaced as needed.

Fall Protection

Fall protection is a key component to job site safety and accident prevention at Valentine Roofing. Our safety program follows the “safety hierarchy of controls” mitigating falls hazards through engineering controls, administrative controls, and  PPE. While on the job site we typically employ a fall restraint system as part of our job site fall protection plan. This method uses a guard rail or more often a lanyard, preventing workers from reaching an edge. The entire plan for a specific job is denoted on that job’s official Fall Protection Plan. The plan identifies hazards, safety equipment in use, proper employment of safety equipment, and more. While there are general guidelines to follow regarding these plans each job site presents specific hazards. So a new and in-depth plan is created for every job as needed.

Inspections

Valentine Roofing employs full-time safety inspectors. Inspectors visit and inspect every job site to ensure compliance with our safety program and state requirements. In addition, Washington State Labor and Industries routinely conducts inspections for job site safety compliance.

We believe that any company should inspect what they expect. Routine inspections lead to a comprehensive understanding between field employees and management. Our inspectors are a driving force in creating awareness. They identify areas of our safety program that may need improvement. Internal inspections are a tool we use to understand when an employee needs further education or retraining. Ultimately preventing future accidents from ever happening.

Man staring at a well manicured landscaped two story home.
How Does Washington State Labor and Industries play into Safety? 

Washington State Labor and Industries is a state agency dedicated to the safety, health, and well-being of workers throughout Washington state.  In addition to regulating licenses, this agency inspects workplaces the ensure compliance with all health and safety regulations. Regulations are set by governing bodies such as the Federal Government, OSHA, and the state of Washington.

Consumers can find contractor license information, inspection results, and more using Labor and Industries contractor verification tool. This agency also provides businesses with ratings that relate to workplace safety. This rating is called an experience factor. Every industry has a standard experience factor, often set at one. Companies within any industry that have a rating greater than one are often considered to be in noncompliance with most safety and health regulations or have a long history of violations. Valentine Roofing proudly boasts a rating well below one. This indicates that our safety and health program ensures a safe work environment for all our employees. In short, Labor and Industries and every reputable contractor across the state have the same end goal, employee safety!

Back of a man while packing a van with roofing equipment.
Health and Safety Beyond the Job Site

We recognize that our employees in the field have the most hazardous jobs at Valentine Roofing which is why our job site safety program is so robust. We also recognize that health and safety go beyond the job site and into the office. So we focus on the health and safety of all our employees.

Our offices encourage several measures that engage a healthy and safe workplace. Some of those measures evolve as needs or policies change, as is the case with many Covid protocols. Our team stays up to date on all federal and state health recommendations to ensure that we are exceeding safety needs. All employees are encouraged to manage a balance between work and their personal life for general well-being. Valentine Roofing also offers excellent benefits like health insurance as well as dental and vision insurance for all employees and their families. Flexible PTO options are provided for employees to use their time off as they see fit. Health and safety are viewed on a holistic level here at Valentine Roofing to ensure that we are healthy and safe on the job site and beyond.