Reinforced plastic tarps, commonly called “Blue Roofs,” provide temporary protection for the roofs of homes and other buildings damaged during severe weather such as a hurricane or tornado.

However, when employees access roofs to install these tarps, they are at risk of falls, electrocutions, and other hazards.

OSHA has issued a new fact sheet containing steps that employers can follow to help keep workers safe.

Among them:

  • Assess the roof condition/stability prior to allowing employees to start work. Do not allow employees to work on top of a damaged roof until after the strength and structural integrity of the roof has been determined.
  • Never install a tarp during a storm while it is windy or raining.
  • Watch for tripping hazards including vent stacks, satellite dishes, lightning arresting components and cables, and cleats holding down the tarp.
  • Do not walk on a tarp. A tarped roof will be very slippery, especially when wet.

For more information on how to work safely with “Blue Roofs,” click here for the fact sheet.