Print Page | Contact Us | Report Abuse | Sign In | Register
ROOF TALK
Blog Home All Blogs
Search all posts for:   

 

Top tags: BUSINESS  LEGAL  TECHNICAL  SAFETY  MEMBERS IN THE NEWS  WSRCA UPDATES 

'Cool Roof' Legal Debate in Denver, Colorado

Posted By Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, October 29, 2018

A year after passing “green roof” law, Denver suddenly the focus of 20-year “cool roof” debate

New law would force affected property owners to choose between creating green space, installing solar panels and saving energy.  

Courtesy of: The Denver Post  


The days of sprawling black roofs in Denver may be ending — but they won’t go quietly.

The Denver City Council will decide Monday whether to create a “cool roof” law for the city. The big hope is that requiring reflective, light-colored roofs on large buildings would lower ambient temperatures, fighting back against the city’s heat-island effect. “It’s not groundbreaking in Denver, but it’s one of the biggest” of the new cool roof laws, said Kurt Shickman, executive director of the Global Cool Cities Alliance.

“They’ll join a small number of big cities.” The change would affect new construction and reroofing projects for buildings over 25,000 square feet — not your typical home renovations. The new law also would force affected property owners to choose between creating green space, installing solar panels and saving energy. And, for once, many developers are looking forward to a new rule: It would replace the “green roof” law that voters approved last year, which would have required more costly rooftop gardens. The proposal has the support of green-roof organizer Brandon Rietheimer.  

 

Roofers vs. reformers

But even this smaller change has put the city in the middle of an ongoing debate between roofers and reformers. The council on Monday is likely to hear from industry representatives who say that the cool-roof mandate is an oversimplified approach for a complicated problem.

“Mandating a single component of a roofing assembly is just not what is good design practice,” said Ellen Thorp, associate executive director of the EPDM Roofing Association, which represents manufacturers of EPDM, a rubber membrane for roofs.

The trade association argued in a letter that cool roofs can cause two major problems in colder climates like Denver’s. First, they can purportedly accumulate moisture. Second, they are meant to retain less heat, which means heating bills can be higher. “Some of the best roofs on the market really were not going to be allowed, period,” said Jeff Johnston, president of the Colorado Roofing Association, who says that much of his Steamboat Springs business is still focused on dark roofs.  “Why eliminate it?”  

 

Attempting to adapt

The reason is simple, according to Katrina Managan, the city staffer who coordinated the roof revision. “The reason to do them is to adapt to climate change,” she said.

Denver could see a full month of 100-degree days in typical years at the end of the century, according to projections from the Rocky Mountain Climate Organization for a “high” warming scenario. And the impact will be worse in urban areas, where dry, unshaded rooftops and pavement are baked by the sun and heat the air around them. Urban environments can average up to 5 degrees hotter than the surrounding rural areas, and the difference can be much greater at times, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Cool roofs address part of that problem: They reflect the sun’s energy away and stay up to 60 degrees cooler than traditional roofs, the EPA reported. “It will save Denver a tremendous amount of money. It will create a huge amount of benefit through cooling. And it will set the example,” Shickman said. “It really does add to the argument that says we really should be considering this for almost all of our big American cities.”

City research found that the cool roof mandate would be more effective than the green roof initiative in combating heat, since the green roof requirement only covered parts of rooftops.

 

The bottom line?

Major cities began adopting cool-roof requirements nearly 20 years ago, with northerly Chicago among the first. It’s been joined by Philadelphia, Baltimore, New York City and Los Angeles, among others, according to GCCA. Much of the southern United States is now covered by the requirements, and San Francisco in 2017 adopted the first “green roofs” requirement.

“We’ve been in an epic fight between the industry and those of us on my side who are trying to push this forward,” Shickman said. Thorp, the EPDM Roofing Association representative, pointed to research to argue that Denver should proceed cautiously. Because cool roofs don’t get as hot, they can accumulate more condensation, which requires specialized designs to combat.

And she said that a cooler roof could mean higher heating costs and thus more carbon emissions in colder Denver. She acknowledged that the law would hurt sales of EPDM: Competing materials are cheaper and more popular for cool roofs. But she said that her clients also make those other materials. “They’re going to make the sale one way or another,” she said. Shickman countered that the companies are more heavily invested in EPDM, and therefore have a financial motivation to lobby against cool roofs.

Other materials “have been eating the lunch of EPDM,” he said. Thorp declined to disclose sales figures for the companies, but said the organization’s “primary driver” was to give roofers options. Cool roofs are already popular A city poll of roofers found that about 70 percent of new roofs in Denver are “cool.” “What we’re tending to find is most companies now are wanting to go to a light roof,” said Scott Nakayama, director of operations for Denver-based North-West Roofing.

“The amount that they’re going to save, as far as heating and cooling bills, tends to stand out.” His company has been installing about 20 light-colored roofs per year, and hasn’t encountered any of the issues raised by the EPDM Roofing Association, he said. Shickman points to this apparent lack of complaints as evidence that a well-designed cool roof can avoid moisture and other issues. They do come at a cost premium: Cool roofs can cost about 1.5 percent more than a traditional roof, according to city-commissioned research by Stantec, the engineering company.

Thorp said that estimate is too low. If the law is approved, it could take several years before it starts to have a regional effect, since roofs generally only need replacement every 20 years.

The rest of the details Under the change, developers of new builders can choose among the following options.

·       Install green space on the building or on the ground.

·       Pay for green space somewhere else.

·       Install renewable energy or a mix of renewable energy and green space.

·       Design the building for 12 percent energy savings compared to city standards, or achieve 5 percent savings plus green space.

·       Achieve either LEED Gold or Enterprise Green Communities certification for green design.

Existing buildings will have similar types of options, with different details.  

---

LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

Tags:  LEGAL  TECHNICAL 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Extending Your WSRCA Membership to All Employees

Posted By Alec Ward, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Friday, October 26, 2018
 
The value of WSRCA Membership extends far beyond your individual membership. As an enterprise membership, ALL employees of your company are considered Western States Members, and can access the amazing features within the Member's Clubhouse.
 
To share the benefits of WSRCA Membership with others in your company, simply visit the My Sub-Accounts page. From there, you can send them an invite, or create their accounts manually yourself!
 
- Western States Roofing Contractors Association

Tags:  WSRCA UPDATES 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

OSHA’s Rule on Walking-Working Surfaces and Fall Protection Standards

Posted By Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, October 22, 2018

---

Courtesy of: OSHA.gov

 

BACKGROUND

Falls from heights and on the same level (a working surface) are among the leading causes of serious work-related injuries and deaths. OSHA estimates that, on average, approximately 202,066 serious (lost-workday) injuries and 345 fatalities occur annually among workers directly affected by the final standard.

OSHA’s final rule on Walking-Working Surfaces and Personal Fall Protection Systems better protects workers in general industry from these hazards by updating and clarifying standards and adding training and inspection requirements. The rule affects a wide range of workers, from window washers to chimney sweeps. It does not change construction or agricultural standards.

The rule incorporates advances in technology, industry best practices, and national consensus standards to provide effective and cost-efficient worker protection. Specifically, the rule updates general industry standards addressing slip, trip, and fall hazards (subpart D), and adds requirements for personal fall protection systems (subpart I).

OSHA estimates this rule will prevent 29 fatalities and 5,842 lost-workday injuries every year.

The rule benefits employers by providing greater flexibility in choosing a fall protection system. For example, it eliminates the existing mandate to use guardrails as a primary fall protection method and allows employers to choose from accepted fall protection systems they believe will work best in a particular situation — an approach that has been successful in the construction industry since 1994. In addition, employers will be able to use nonconventional fall protection in certain situations, such as designated areas on low-slope roofs.

As much as possible, OSHA aligned fall protection requirements for general industry with those for construction, easing compliance for employers who perform both types of activities. For example, the final rule replaces the outdated general industry scaffold standards with a requirement that employers comply with OSHA’s construction scaffold standards.

The rule phases out a 1993 exception for the outdoor advertising industry that allows “qualified climbers” to forego fall protection. At least three workers have fallen from fixed ladders under this exception. One of them died. The final rule phases in the fixed ladder fall protection requirements for employers in outdoor advertising.

 

FALL PROTECTION OPTIONS

The rule requires employers to protect workers from fall hazards along unprotected sides or edges that are at least 4 feet above a lower level. It also sets requirements for fall protection in specific situations, such as hoist areas, runways, areas above dangerous equipment, wall openings, repair pits, stairways, scaffolds, and slaughtering platforms. And it establishes requirements for the performance, inspection, use, and maintenance of personal fall protection systems.

OSHA defines fall protection as “any equipment, device, or system that prevents a worker from falling from an elevation or mitigates the effect of such a fall.” Under the final rule, employers may choose from the following fall protection options:

• Guardrail System – A barrier erected along an unprotected or exposed side, edge, or other area of a walking-working surface to prevent workers from falling to a lower level.

• Safety Net System – A horizontal or semihorizontal, cantilever-style barrier that uses a netting system to stop falling workers before they make contact with a lower level or obstruction.

• Personal Fall Arrest System – A system that arrests/stops a fall before the worker contacts a lower level. Consists of a body harness, anchorage, and connector, and may include a lanyard, deceleration device, lifeline, or a suitable combination. Like OSHA’s construction standards, the final rule prohibits the use of body belts as part of a personal fall arrest system.

• Positioning System – A system of equipment and connectors that, when used with a body harness or body belt, allows a worker to be supported on an elevated vertical surface, such as a wall or window sill, and work with both hands free.

• Travel Restraint System – A combination of an anchorage, anchorage connector, lanyard (or other means of connection), and body support to eliminate the possibility of a worker going over the unprotected edge or side of a walking-working surface.

• Ladder Safety System – A system attached to a fixed ladder designed to eliminate or reduce the possibility of a worker falling off the ladder. A ladder safety system usually consists of a carrier, safety sleeve, lanyard, connectors, and body harness. Cages and wells are not considered ladder safety systems.

 

ROPE DESCENT SYSTEMS

The rule codifies a 1991 OSHA memorandum that permits employers to use Rope Descent Systems (RDS), which consist of a roof anchorage, support rope, descent device, carabiners or shackles, and a chair or seatboard. These systems are widely used throughout the country to perform elevated work, such as window washing.

The rule adds a 300-foot height limit for the use of RDS. It also requires building owners to affirm in writing that permanent building anchorages used for RDS have been tested, certified, and maintained as capable of supporting 5,000 pounds for each worker attached. This mirrors the requirement in OSHA’s Powered Platforms standard.

 

LADDER SAFETY SYSTEMS

Falls from ladders account for 20 percent of all fatal and lost work-day injuries in general industry. The new rule includes requirements to protect workers from falling off fixed and portable ladders as well as mobile ladder stands and platforms. (The ladder requirements do not apply to ladders used in emergency operations or ladders that are an integral part of or designed into a machine or piece of equipment).

In general, ladders must be capable of supporting their maximum intended load, while mobile ladder stands and platforms must be capable of supporting four times their maximum intended load. Each ladder must be inspected before initial use in a work shift to identify defects that could cause injury.

Fixed Ladders – Fixed ladders are permanently attached to a structure, building, or equipment. These include individual-rung ladders, but not ship stairs, step bolts, or manhole steps. The new rule phases in a requirement for employers to have ladder safety or personal fall arrest systems for fixed ladders that extend more than 24 feet, and phases out the use of cages or wells for fall protection under the following timeline: Starting in two years, all new fixed ladders and replacement ladder/ladder sections must have a ladder safety or personal fall protection system. For existing ladders, within two years, employers must install a cage, well, ladder safety system, or personal fall arrest system on fixed ladders that do not have any fall protection. Within 20 years, all ladders extending more than 24 feet must have a ladder safety or personal fall arrest system.

Portable Ladders – Portable ladders usually consist of side rails joined at intervals by steps, rungs, or cleats. They can be self-supporting or lean against a supporting structure. The final rule will be easier for employers and workers to understand and follow because it uses flexible performancebased language instead of detailed specification and design requirements. Under the revisions, employers must ensure that: rungs and steps are slip resistant; portable ladders used on slippery surfaces are secured and stabilized; portable ladders are not moved, shifted, or extended while a worker is on them; top steps and caps of stepladders are not used as steps; ladders are not fastened together to provide added length unless designed for such use; and ladders are not placed on boxes, barrels, or other unstable bases to obtain added height.

 

TRAINING REQUIREMENTS

The rule adds a requirement that employers ensure workers who use personal fall protection and work in other specified high hazard situations are trained, and retrained as necessary, about fall and equipment hazards, including fall protection systems. A qualified person must train these workers to correctly: identify and minimize fall hazards; use personal fall protection systems and rope descent systems; and maintain, inspect, and store equipment or systems used for fall protection.

When there is a change in workplace operations or equipment, or the employer believes that a worker would benefit from additional training based on a lack of knowledge or skill, then the worker must be retrained. The training must be provided in a language and vocabulary that workers understand.

 

TIMELINE

Most of the rule will become effective 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register, but some provisions have delayed effective dates, including: • Ensuring exposed workers are trained on fall hazards (6 months), • Ensuring workers who use equipment covered by the final rule are trained (6 months), • Inspecting and certifying permanent anchorages for rope descent systems (1 year), • Installing personal fall arrest or ladder safety systems on new fixed ladders over 24 feet and on replacement ladders/ladder sections, including fixed ladders on outdoor advertising structures (2 years), • Ensuring existing fixed ladders over 24 feet, including those on outdoor advertising structures, are equipped with a cage, well, personal fall arrest system, or ladder safety system (2 years), and • Replacing cages and wells (used as fall protection) with ladder safety or personal fall arrest systems on all fixed ladders over 24 feet (20 years).

 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Additional information on OSHA’s rule on walking-working surfaces and personal fall protection systems can be found at https://www.osha.gov/Publications/OSHA3903.pdf. OSHA can provide extensive help through a variety of programs, including technical assistance about effective safety and health programs, workplace consultations, and training and education. For more information on other safety-related issues impacting workers, to report an emergency, fatality, inpatient hospitalization, or to file a confidential complaint, contact your nearest OSHA office, visit www.osha.gov, or call OSHA at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742), TTY 1-877-889-5627

---

LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

Tags:  SAFETY 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

OSHA's SILICA STANDARD

Posted By Chris Alberts, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, October 15, 2018
Updated: Monday, October 15, 2018

 

Courtesy of: Trent Cotney and Travis McConnell

Cotney Construction Law
866.303.5868 | tcotney@cotneycl.com

---

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) controversial rule regulating exposure to respirable crystalline silica (silica) took effect on June 23, 2016. Enforcement of the new standard began on September 23, 2017 for those working in the construction industry, and on June 23, 2018 for the general industry.

The key provision with the greatest impact on the roofing industry is the stricter permissible exposure limit (PEL) for respirable crystalline silica. Silica is a common mineral found in concrete, brick, mortar, and other construction materials. Workers may be exposed to silica when performing tasks, such as: cutting masonry, operating jackhammers, drills, grinders, or using other heavy equipment. In the roofing industry, silica exposure commonly occurs as the result of cutting, crushing, drilling, or blasting cement roofing tiles. Yet, other common roofing activities may also lead to employee exposure.

OSHA’s new exposure limit reduces the allowable silica exposure from 250 to 50 micrograms per cubic meter of air averaged over a traditional eight-hour shift, a limitation that is five times lower than what was previously required for the construction industry. This degree of change in the regulatory standard is unprecedented for any industry. As a result, contractors will be required to comply with more burdensome rules mandating air monitoring procedures, use of respirators, medical examinations, testing, equipment maintenance, and will frequently be required to purchase new equipment which is compliant.

The rule requires employers to limit workers’ exposure to silica and provides two compliance options: follow Table 1 or implement alternative exposure control methods. Table 1 consists of 18 construction-related activities and details engineering controls, as well as the specific conditions which would require employees to wear respirators. For example, Table 1 requires that contractors use a saw equipped with an integrated water delivery system when using stationary masonry saws to cut material containing silica. When using a handheld drill to penetrate material containing silica, Table 1 requires contractors to use a drill with a dust collection system filter with 99% or greater efficiency and a filter-cleaning mechanism (along with other requirements).

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Author’s note:  The information contained in this article is for general educational information only.  This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

---

Trent Cotney, CEO of Cotney Construction Law, is an advocate for the roofing industry and General Counsel of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA).  For more information, contact the author at 866.303.5868 or go to www.cotneycl.com. 

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

Tags:  LEGAL  SAFETY 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

OUR OFFICE IS MOVING! Western States will be closed November 5-9, 2018

Posted By Alec Ward, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Tuesday, October 9, 2018
Updated: Monday, October 8, 2018

 
WSRCA is pleased to announce our new forever home!


WESTERN STATES ROOFING CONTRACTORS ASSOCIATION
356 Digital Drive
Morgan Hill, California 95037


Please make a note of our new location.  The office will be closed from November 5th until November 9th, re-opening on Monday November 12th.  All of our contact information will stay the same.

Tags:  WSRCA UPDATES 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Use Free Inspections to Land More Roofing Service Business

Posted By FCS Roof Software, WSRCA Associate Member, Monday, October 8, 2018
Updated: Monday, October 8, 2018

 

Over the last eight years, our team at FCS has had the opportunity to work with thousands of successful roofing contractors. Not surprisingly, many of them have stated that their continuous growth was a direct result of increasing their service and repair work while also providing an exceptional customer service experience.

Recognize the Need for “Free”

These successful roofing contractors all understood one thing – that in order to have a steady pipeline full of prospects for their sales team and increase their service work, they needed to offer free, no obligation roofing inspections to get those customers in the door first.

Roofing companies that offer free inspections end up getting much closer to their potential customers – a lot faster. And, they are starting off the relationship on the right foot by positioning themselves as an advisor, identifying current and future problem areas on their roof right from the start.

It’s important to keep in mind that some activities that may currently be unprofitable can pay off in the long run if the customers are good long-term prospects. Sales efforts in 2018 will have a long-term impact on sales and profitability in 2019 and beyond.

Provide Detailed Inspection Reports

One of the ways to stand out from the competition is to provide a detailed roofing analysis report upon completion of the inspection. An Inspection Report instantly gives you more credibility and will also allow the prospective customer to make an informed decision on their roofing work – without having to set foot on the roof. These reports will provide the condition of the roof’s membrane, flashings, perimeter edge and fascia, expansion joint covers, pitch pockets and penetrations.

Inspection Reports should also indicate the exact locations in addition to describing and prioritizing the roof work needed (emergency vs. remedial) with any related costs and photos. These reports can also be used in preparing and submitting requests for warranty repairs.

Offer Ongoing Service Agreements

Your Inspection Reports should also ALWAYS be accompanied with an ongoing roof maintenance plan recommendation or Service Agreement which will maximize the capacity and longevity of their roof.

By offering customers ongoing Service Agreements, you create “sticky” relationships whereby customers stay loyal and continue to generate predictable revenue.

Consider offering a dedicated Service Agreement that includes a 2-hour emergency arrival time and locked-in rates that they can incorporate into their roof’s maintenance budget.

Get Ready for More Inspections

As the demand for your roofing inspections grow, you need to be able to manage them efficiently and offer an experience that keeps your customers happy. Here are some ways to be more efficient and profitable:

  • Follow-up with inspection inquiries ASAP as they may be requesting a free inspection from multiple companies in the same day.
  • Track your inspection results and see how they measure up (i.e. how many new customers do your free inspections yield?).
  • Create a template for your Inspection Reports in which you can include photos, date stamps and canned recommendations for each deficiency.
  • Create a template for your Service Agreement in which you outline the various roof maintenance options you offer.
  • Store and track warranty information.
  • Go paperless by granting your customers online access to project management tools that help them track job progress, expenses, costs and historical information for budgeting and future reference.
  • Provide automated inspection and service/repair status updates via text or email.

Looking for an easy to use inspection tool?

Tags:  BUSINESS 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

WSRCA Member-Only Discounts of Roofing Materials and Related Services!

Posted By Alec Ward, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, October 1, 2018
Updated: Monday, October 1, 2018

WSRCA is pleased to announce a new money-saving membership feature for members: the WSRCA Member Discounts program!

Thanks to the generosity of WSRCA Manufacturer and Service Provider Members below, all WSRCA members now have access to exclusive discounts specific to the needs of roofing professionals.

Sign into your member account and start saving on roofing products and related services today! And don't forget, members who sign into their account from now until 12/31/2018 are automatically entered into our monthly drawing for $100!


Sincerely,

Western States Roofing Contractors Association

---

Not a Member of Western States RCA? Click Here to Join!
or call Toll Free 1-800-725-0333

Tags:  WSRCA UPDATES 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Use Your WSRCA Membership and Win $100!

Posted By Alec Ward, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, October 1, 2018

 

Ask any active WSRCA member, and they'll tell you the same thing:

 
The more you utilize WSRCA member benefits, the more time & money you'll save.
 
On average, a member who takes advantage of all WSRCA benefits increases their bottom line by an additional $22,809 each year. Before you can start enjoying the same benefits, however, you first have to sign-into the WSRCA Members Area!
 
To encourage members like you who have yet to explore the membership area, we are offering a special incentive. For the rest of the year, we will be raffling off a monthly cash prize of $100, just for signing in!
 
It's easy to participate. All you have to do is sign into the WSRCA website. A winner will be randomly selected at the end of each month.
 
 
While you are signed in, take some time to explore the site and discover the valuable features available to you!
 
Regards,
 
Alec Ward | Director of Membership
Western States Roofing Contractors Association
275 Tennant Avenue, Ste 106 - Morgan Hill, CA 95037
Local: 650-938-5441  Toll Free: 800-725-0333
Email: alec@wsrca.com

Tags:  WSRCA UPDATES 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

OSHA Violations

Posted By Darin Douglas, Lowe Roofing, Inc., Tuesday, September 25, 2018
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was started in April 1971 with the goal of dramatically affecting workplace safety in the United States.  Anyone who employs others, runs a business, or operates on a construction site must comply with OSHA’s rules and regulations.  Those regulations are backed by a series of violation categories with fines attached to many of them, and it is important to be aware of these as you navigate the world of workplace safety.  Starting in January 2018, new fine amounts were announced by OSHA and are currently in effect.  There are six different categories within the violation structure OSHA has set up.



De Minimis Violation

    De minimis violations result from a technical violation of OSHA rules but carries no impact on the safety and health of workers.  Inspectors will not issue a citation or fine for this violation, but will instead inform the employer of the issues and list them within the inspection report.  An example of a de minimis violation would be not having standard-sized lettering on your worksite hazard signs.



Other Than Serious Violation

    Other than serious violations have a maximum fine amount of $12,934 attached to them.  Violations in this category are defined as acts not causing death or serious bodily injury.  Inspectors have a lot of say in this category and can reduce fine amounts up to 90% in some cases.  Failing to provide employees with copies of safety rules and regulations would be an example of an other than serious violation.



Serious Violation

    The serious violation category is defined as having a definite chance to cause serious injury or death.  OSHA expects that employers should be aware of the serious hazards associated with the work being performed and should provide adequate safety controls to protect workers.  This violation carries with it a maximum fine amount of $129,336, but as with the previous categories, inspectors can adjust fine amounts based on things like the seriousness of the violation, company history, company cooperation, and many other factors.  Failing to provide any fall protection for workers on a 6:12 roof slope would be an example of a serious violation.  



Willful Violation

    The willful violation is the harshest category within OSHA's penalty structure and is issued when an employer knowingly disregards employee safety and health by intentionally not following OSHA rules and regulations.  This violation carries with it a maximum fine amount of $129,336.  Fines can grow rapidly if a person is killed due to this intentional lack of safety, sometimes becoming a criminal offense accompanied by possible jail time.  



Repeat Violation

    Repeat violations carry with it a maximum fine amount of $129,336.  An inspector can issue a repeat violation if the employer has been cited for the same thing, or something very similar, before.  Employers who are issued too many repeat violations risk inspectors issuing a willful violation if they feel an employer is blatantly disregarding OSHA recommendations and repeatedly committing the same violations.  



The Failure To Abate Prior Violation

    A failure to abate prior violation is issued when an employer fails to correct a cited hazard in the time allotted within the citation literature.  This violation comes with a fine of $12,934 for every day the cited hazard is not corrected after the citation is posted.  Issued citations by OSHA will come with all the necessary information employers need to meet abatement expectations, so failing to abate a hazard will not go well for the employer if inspectors have to return to the site.   



OSHA violations carry with them a significant financial challenge, and can have a lasting effect on workplace safety and health within a company.  As an employer, if you are issued a citation, make sure to give the process its due diligence.  Inspectors take into account lots of different things, and if your company is well informed and accountable, it can have a significant impact on inspectors when they look at possibly reducing fine amounts.

Tags:  SAFETY 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Reducing Falls During Residential Construction: Re-Roofing

Posted By Chris Alberts, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, September 24, 2018
Updated: Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Courtesy of: OSHA.gov

 

Re-roofing exposes workers to the hazards of demolition work at heights. With the proper fall protection, the risk of serious falls can be substantially reduced. This fact sheet highlights some of the hazards workers encounter during re-roofing and lists some practical methods employers can use to protect workers who replace roofs. The fall protection methods in this fact sheet may not be suitable in all situations. Employers are responsible for ensuring compliance with applicable OSHA requirements.

 

Risks During Re-Roofing

Workers replacing roofs risk permanent injury or death from falls while they demolish old roofs and install new roofing material (for example, shingles, tiles, or slate). Even experienced roofers are exposed to unpredictable fall hazards caused by uneven sheathing, sudden gusts of wind, loose roofing materials, and surfaces that become slick when wet. Taking appropriate fall protection measures reduces risks and saves lives.

The employer must provide a training program for each worker who might be exposed to fall hazards. The program must enable each worker to recognize the hazards of falling and train each worker in the procedures to follow to minimize these hazards. For fall protection training requirements, refer to 29 CFR 1926.503. In all cases, employers must evaluate the hazards and take measures to reduce the risk of falls.

More than one-third of fall deaths in residential construction are caused by falls from roofs.

 

Safe Roofing Practices: Important Steps

Before beginning the job, focus on identifying fall protection needs. Survey the roof to determine if there are pre-installed anchorages available that can be used. If not, then plan immediately to identify those systems needed to protect workers from falls and have them in place before the workers report to the job.

 

Reducing Risks: Determining Structural Integrity

Many workers have been injured when the roofs they were working on collapsed from under them. Employers must determine the structural integrity of the roof and take all necessary precautions to protect the workers before the job begins (29 CFR 1926.501(a)(2)). If workers notice signs of structural deterioration (for example, dry rot), a competent person should evaluate the area.

Other considerations for a safe construction site:

  • Guard against falls through skylights or other roof openings. Use a guardrail system, a personal fall arrest system (PFAS), or a protective cover that will support two times the weight that may be imposed on it at any one time. For additional information on protecting workers around skylight and other roof openings, refer to 29 CFR 1926.501(b)(4) and 29 CFR 1926.502(i).
  • Appropriate footwear is important personal protective equipment on any construction site, but it is critical during roof demolition. A nail or shingle-removal tool injury can cause a worker to lose concentration and fall.
  • Workers should be careful of air hoses and power cords for nail guns and other electrical equipment. If a worker steps on one, hoses and cords can slip underfoot and lead to falls.

 

Staging Material

Loose material and hand-held equipment can create tripping hazards on the roof surface. To minimize exposure to fall hazards, employers can stage materials so that workers on the roof have quick and safe access to them. While handling material on the roof, the worker should hold the material on the side of his or her body that faces the down-sloped edge to prevent being struck by the materials if they are dropped. Material can also be staged so it cannot slide off the roof edge and potentially strike a worker on the ground. Slide guards can help to keep material from sliding off the roof. Establishing a restricted area around the perimeter of the project can also keep workers out of the danger zone where debris, tools or materials may fall to the ground. The area should be posted with signs that warn of the potential hazard.

 

Protect Workers on the Ground

During the demolition phase, protect workers on the ground from falling debris by controlling how debris leaves the roof. Consider using an all-terrain forklift to elevate a disposal box to the roof level. This method makes cleanup after the job particularly easy.

 

Using the Right Equipment

Employers must provide roofers fall protection equipment that meets OSHA requirements whenever they work 6 feet or more above a lower level. There are fall protection systems available that can provide roofers the flexibility they need during demolition and roof installation. Some are more efficient than others because, in many cases, the employer can use the same system for both processes. Each phase of roof replacement has different challenges, but the risk of falling remains constant. Contractors may be able to protect their workers using the following equipment:

  • Personal fall arrest systems;
  • Guardrails; or
  • Ladders.

Note: Fall protection requirements for residential construction work performed on ladders are in Subpart X, not in 29 CFR 1926.501(b)(13).

 

Providing Fall Protection for the Whole Job

Personal fall arrest system: A PFAS is a tool available to roofers during replacement jobs. In fact, a PFAS is the system of choice for many roofers. However, a breakdown in any component of a PFAS could be disastrous for a worker. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions on selecting, installing and using PFAS components correctly. Some PFASs include special elevated anchor assemblies that permit the system to protect workers even when they stand near the anchor locations. Certain anchorage assemblies rotate or offer extension arms to improve mobility and prevent lifelines from contacting the roof surface. This is particularly useful during roof demolition when a line could catch on a nail or debris.

Personal Fall Arrest System (PFAS)

A PFAS is designed to safely stop a fall before the worker strikes a lower level. It includes three major components:

  1. An anchorage to which the other components of the PFAS are rigged.
  2. A full body harness worn by the worker.
  3. A connector, such as a lanyard or lifeline, linking the harness to the anchorage. A rip-stitch lanyard, or deceleration device, is typically a part of the system.

Horizontal lifeline: An engineered horizontal lifeline system, when used as part of a PFAS, is another way to increase the area in which a worker is protected. Install the system following the manufacturer’s instructions and under the supervision of a qualified person. Horizontal lifelines must be designed to maintain a safety factor of at least two (twice the impact load). For requirements for horizontal lifelines, refer to 29 CFR 1926.502(d)(8).

Rope grabs: Instead of attaching themselves to a fixed anchor, workers may be able to use adjustable rope grabs, another available component of a PFAS. This inexpensive and very popular system is the fall protection system of choice for many roofers. Rope grabs allow workers to adjust the length of the lifeline and can be useful when workers are moving about the roof frequently. The anchored ropes can be as long as necessary, making this form of fall protection highly versatile. Roofers who use rope grabs need to constantly take up the slack out of the line. Too much slack could allow a worker to free fall more than six feet off the roof if they slip. Training and monitoring are critical to the safe use of rope grabs.

Fall Restraint: While fall restraint systems are not mentioned in OSHA’s fall protection rules, OSHA will accept a properly utilized fall restraint system instead of a personal fall arrest system when the restraint system is rigged so that the worker cannot get to the fall hazard. In effect, (if properly used) the system tethers a worker in a manner that will not allow a fall of any distance. A fall restraint system is comprised of a body belt or body harness, an anchorage, connectors, and other necessary equipment. Other components typically include a lanyard, and may also include a lifeline and other devices.

Always follow the manufacturer's instructions or consult a qualified person to ensure proper installation of anchor points. Fall restraint may be a viable way to provide fall protection in situations in which the employer has concerns about the adequacy of available anchorage points for fall arrest equipment.

Temporary guardrails: Removeable guardrail systems can offer roofers effective protection when installed around the roof perimeter. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions or consult a qualified person, as defined by 29 CFR 1926.32(m), for proper guardrail installation. This person could be the owner, the supervisor, or any other worker who has extensive knowledge, training and experience with fall protection and is able to solve problems relating to fall protection. For requirements requirements for guardrails, refer to 29 CFR 1926.502(b)- Guardrail Systems.

Other considerations: Some employers have found success in eliminating fall hazards by using scaffolds and aerial lifts when site conditions permit their use. Fall protection requirements performed on scaffolds and aerial lifts can be found in 29 CFR 1926 Subpart L – Scaffolds.

 

Attaching Anchors

OSHA requires that anchors for PFASs be able to hold at least 5,000 pounds of weight per person or maintain a safety factor of at least two (twice the impact load) under the supervision of a qualified person. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions or consult a qualified person when installing anchors to ensure they are strong enough to hold the sudden weight of a falling worker. OSHA believes that anchorages available on the market will meet the strength requirements if they are installed as per the manufacturer’s instructions, with the right number of properly sized nails or screws through the roof sheathing and into one or more roof trusses.

When choosing an anchor to use for fall protection, employers have a number of options; for example,

  • Peak anchor: At the top of the roof, peak anchors are typically solid, non-moving pieces secured to the trusses underneath.
  • Permanent D-rings: Inexpensive D-ring anchors can be attached to the truss frame; they can be left permanently on the roof for future use.

Install an anchor above the area being built: Choose an anchor that is appropriate for the type of roof and anchor location. Depending on the roof design, the best location might be at the peak of the roof, directly over a truss.

Consider leaving anchors in place: Where practical, employers may consider leaving anchors in place. This can make the current job simpler and reduce the burden for roofers in the future.

 

Written Fall Protection Plans

When working at heights of 6 feet or greater, if the employer does not use ladders, scaffolds, aerial lifts or fall restraint systems and can demonstrate that it is not feasible or would create a greater hazard to use conventional fall protection equipment (guardrails, safety nets or PFAS), the employer must develop a written site-specific fall protection plan in accord with 29 CFR 1926.502(k). The plan must be prepared by a qualified person. This person could be the owner, the supervisor, or any other worker who has extensive knowledge, training and experience with fall protection and is able to solve problems relating to fall protection.

The site-specific fall protection plan must document, for each location, why the use of conventional fall protection equipment is not feasible or will create a greater hazard. The plan must also describe the alternative methods that the employer will use so that workers are protected from falls. Workers and their supervisors must be trained on the proper use of those other fall protection methods.

Conventional fall protection equipment can reduce or eliminate the chances of a fatal fall. Otherwise, a written site-specific fall protection plan ensures that protection continues, even when conventional fall protection methods are determined to not be feasible.

---

 

OSHA Standard:

29 CFR 1926 Subpart M – Fall Protection

Available online at www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=STANDARDS&p_id=10922.

OSHA Residential Fall Protection Web Page: www.osha.gov/doc/topics/residentialprotection/ index.html.

 

OSHA Compliance Guidance:

Compliance Guidance for Residential Construction – STD 03-11-002 (dated 12/16/2010)

Available online at www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=DIRECTIVES&p_id=4755.

State Plan Guidance: States with OSHA-approved state plans may have additional requirements for Residential Roofing. For more information on these requirements, please visit:www.osha.gov/dcsp/osp/statestandards.html.

Help for Employers: OSHA's On-site Consultation Program offers free and confidential advice to small and medium-sized businesses in all states across the country, with priority given to highhazard worksites. On-site Consultation services are separate from enforcement and do not result in penalties or citations. Consultants from state agencies or universities work with employers to identify workplace hazards, provide advice on compliance with OSHA standards and assist in establishing injury and illness prevention programs. To locate the OSHA Consultation Program nearest you, call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742) or visit www.osha.gov/dcsp/smallbusiness/consult.html.

Almost every OSHA area office has a Compliance Assistance Specialist to assist employers in complying with OSHA standards. To find the Compliance Assistance Specialist nearest you, call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742) or visit: www.osha.gov/html/RAmap.html.

---

LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

Tags:  SAFETY 

Share |
PermalinkComments (2)
 

OSHA’S CONFINED SPACE STANDARD FOR CONSTRUCTION

Posted By Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, September 10, 2018


By: Trent Cotney, Cotney Construction Law

8621 E Dr. MLK Jr. Blvd, Tampa, FL 33610
866.303.5868 | tcotney@cotneycl.com

---

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), a confined space is one that is large enough for an employee to enter fully and perform assigned work, such space is not designed for continuous occupancy, and is limited or restricted in means of entry or exit. Some examples include tanks, storage bins, silos, and underground vaults to name a few. A confined space is determined to be a permit-required confined space if has one or more of the following: potential hazardous atmosphere; material with potential to engulf an entrant; can cause entrant to be trapped or asphyxiated by inwardly converging walls/floors sloping downward, or any other serious safety/health hazard.

In order to better understand the allocation of responsibility under OSHA’s confined space standards, it’s helpful to understand the definitions of the parties involved with the permit space.  A competent person is one who is capable of identifying existing and predictable hazards in the surroundings or working conditions which are unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous to employees and who has the authority to take prompt corrective measures to eliminate them.  A controlling contractor is the employer that has overall responsibility for construction at the worksite.  A host employer is the employer that owns or manages the property where the construction is taking place.  The entry employer, which is a new term to the standard, refers to any employer who decides that an employee it directs will enter a permit space; in other words, this may be a roofing contractor, whether a contractor or subcontractor.   An attendant is an individual stationed outside one or more permit spaces who assesses the status of authorized entrants and who must perform duties specified by section 29 CFR 1926.1209.  An entry supervisor refers to the qualified person responsible for determining if acceptable entry conditions are present at a permit space where entry is planned, for authorizing entry and overseeing entry operations, and for terminating entry as required.

Before beginning work on a worksite, a competent person must identify all confined spaces and permit spaces.  If the worksite contains a permit space, the roofing contractor must inform exposed employees and the controlling contractor of the existence and location of, and the danger posed by, each permit space.  If employees will not be entering permit spaces, the roofing contractor must take measures to prevent those employees from entering.  If employees will enter a permit space, the roofing contractor must have a written permit space program.  The OSHA website provides an example program for reference.

Before operations begin, the host employer must coordinate with the controlling contractor and provide information about the location, hazards, and precautions taken with regard to the permit space.  The controlling contractor must communicate that information to and coordinate with each entity which may enter the permit space or whose activities may result in a hazard in the permit space.  The controlling contractor must ensure that multiple entry employers do not create hazards for each other.  The entry employer must inform the controlling contractor of the permit space program that it will follow and the foreseeable hazards in each permit space.

As part of the permit space program, each entry employer must:

CLICK HERE TO CONTINUE...

---

Author’s note:  The information contained in this article is for general educational information only.  This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

Trent Cotney, CEO of Cotney Construction Law, is an advocate for the roofing industry, General Counsel of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA), Florida Roofing & Sheet Metal Contractors Association (FRSA), Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), Tennessee Association of Roofing Contractors (TARC), and several other local roofing associations. For more information, contact the author at 866.303.5868 or go to www.cotneycl.com. 

Tags:  LEGAL  SAFETY 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Technical Bulletin 2018-S1: Ice Damming on Cold/Ventilated Water Shedding Steep-Slope Roofs

Posted By Chris Alberts, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Tuesday, September 4, 2018
Updated: Monday, September 10, 2018

Greetings WSRCA Members:

BACKGROUND INFORMATION:

During the past few winters, WSRCA Member Contractors in varying areas of the western U.S. have reported an increasing number and intensity of winter-time icedam formation and resultant damage at various buildings in the western states.

INTRODUCTION:

This Bulletin’s discussion of ice-dams, along with guidelines and suggestions for mitigation of ice dams, is focused on steep-slope roof systems in general and primarily on ventilated (i.e., theoretically vented, so “cold-in winter”) watershedding steep-slope roof systems. These ventilated/cold watershedding steep-slope roofs are frequently, though not exclusively, found on single-family and multi-family residential construction. These ventilated steep-slope roofs are also found on light commercial (e.g., dental and medical clinics, etc.) and some institutional buildings (e.g., schools, community centers, etc.). This document also considers ice-damming on warm (i.e., non-vented, but compact insulated) watershedding steep-slope roofs, which are frequently found with cathedral-ceiling or vaulted-ceiling construction on multi-story townhouses, other split-level residential, smaller scale commercial, and on many churches, and some other institutional projects.

THE ICE-DAM CYCLE:

Ice-dams are the naturally occurring eave edge refreezing of snow-melt water, typically at or upslope from the exterior wall line of a building. The subsequent repetitive back-up and refreezing of snow-melt along downslope roof perimeters and eaves is typically the initiator of melt-water (i.e., snow and/or ice melt) intrusion through layer(s) of watershedding roofing systems.

Five (5) stages of ice-dam formation are depicted and explained on the following pages. For reader clarity, the roof type sometimes used in heavy snow and ice climates have large Field-built ridge vent systems as is depicted in the following drawing excerpted from WSRCA’s Cold-Weather Tile Manual, Detail No. CWT10.

Thus, during a sub-freezing spell, a primary key to minimizing ice-dams is the reduction of snow-melt, which in turn may be mitigated by keeping the entire roof system or assembly below freezing temperature(s).

CONDITIONS AFFECTING ICE-DAM FORMATION:

Several controlling elements should be deliberated when considering steep-slope roof design or reroofing and the mitigation or “control” of ice-dams. Among the numerous items to be considered are:

• The climate the project is located in;

• The roof slope;

• The type of roof assembly (e.g., cold-ventilated roof or warm-compact insulated roof);

• The primary roof covering (e.g., asphalt shingles, tile, metal roofing, etc.);

• The roof design and vented or non-vented;

• Component configuration;

• Insulation;

• Ventilation;

• The building heating system;

• Potential air infiltration;

• The roof’s details and the layout of the roof including the related roof transitions (e.g., valleys, clerestory roof elevation changes where drifting can occur, etc.) and intersections (e.g., chimneys, skylights, plumbing vents, other roof penetrations, etc.).

Climate Considerations:

While technical resources are available for estimating the likelihood of ice-dam formation in various geographic locations, an empirical indicator is the history of ice-dam problems in the climatic location and/or region of your project. The long-term weather and climatic data, the experience and knowledge of local contractors, experienced roof designers, workers and building departments are the start to anticipating ice-dams and the potential means and methods to mitigating icedams and their affects.

Other climate-related factors include the effect of night-time clear skies, which accelerate the rapid cooling of roofs and refreezing of daytime melt-water, the orientation of the project roof, local topography and anticipated snow depths. Clear night-time sky radiative cooling often causes refreezing of snow-melt when freezing temperatures may not otherwise occur or be as severe on overcast or cloudy nights. Roof slopes oriented to the south experience greater snowmelt due to day-time solar radiation. Conversely, ice dams on roof areas oriented to the north may endure longer and prolong ice-dam issues. Local topography and wind patterns affects depth of snowdrifts, or inversely, snow scour. Counterintuitively, snow has some insulation capacity so that deep snow cover may adversely ‘warm’ (i.e., 33 degrees F) the roof deck of warm/compact roof assemblies. In addition, deep snow may block individual roof vents and ridge ventilation openings of cold/ventilated roof assemblies, thus accumulating attic heat, melting the snow cover and contributing to ice-dam formation.

Roof System / Roof Assembly Configuration:

Roof Type – As noted above, two general types of steep-slope roof assemblies may be considered concerning ice-dams: Cold/ventilated roof systems; and Warm/insulated compact roof systems. The physics of heat in these two roof types affects ice-dam formation. Cold/ventilated roof assemblies, if sufficiently ventilated, may allow less snow-melt because the sub-freezing air temperature in the ventilated roof cavity or space (e.g., the attic) keeps the roof sheathing, underlayment and primary roof covering (e.g., asphalt shingles, etc.) below freezing also. Warm/compact roof assemblies, in contrast, despite thick insulation, eventually conduct enough heat to melt snow cover.

Roof Configuration – Complex roof layouts or configurations can make for complex behavior of ice-dams. Interestingly, valleys, hips, overhanging eaves, closed or open soffits, headwalls, sidewalls, skylights and other roof elements can contribute to the complex behavior of internal heat flow and air movement, the success of ventilation air pathways, heat conduction and snow depth, including the effects of wind-driven snow drifting, which all can affect ice-dam

formation and severity. Interior elements, such as vaulted or cathedral ceilings, chimneys, the location of heater and heat registers, and others, can also significantly affect heat conduction and ventilation and so affect ice-dam formation and severity.

Extensive overhanging eaves warrant special caution because of the increased probability of upslope melt-water refreezing over large eave areas and the consequent likelihood of widespread damage. Short eaves, such as where fascia project only an inch or two for a ventilation gap, are near to the building’s heat which tends to keep melt-water in liquid state. Reaching the gutters, melt-water tends to refreeze because of freezing air on three sides: above, outboard and below. Longer eaves, projecting as much as several feet beyond the heat of the exterior wall, are that much more removed from the building’s heat and enveloped in subfreezing air that causes refreezing, ice dam build-up, resulting in water intrusion and damage.

Some have observed the formation of ice dams at extended eaves located above dark color south facing walls where solar heat builds-up below the eave. At compact insulated roof assemblies, some have chosen to extend the insulation through the eaves in order to minimize daytime heat transfer to the snow pack above the eave. To the contrary, some roofing contractors have reported skepticism of the function of insulated eaves for compact insulated roof assemblies as they have observed ice dam problems occurring during more severe winters. The several variables of orientation, solar radiation versus cloud cover, amount of insulation, daytime versus nighttime temperatures, mild versus severe climate patterns, and ventilated versus compact roof assembly indicate the topic of insulated eaves may be a subject for further examination.

Heat and Insulation – Insulation does not prevent the conduction of interior-generated heat through roof assemblies or into roof cavities and attics, but rather slows down the transfer of heat into the roofing system. Thicker insulations and higher thermal resistance (i.e., R-value) may minimize ice-dam formation during shorter duration freezes, but eventually allows snowmelt during longer periods of exterior freezes. As noted above, thick snow, which is a mild insulator, may affect the location of the melting plane within a roof’s snow cover. For example: a foot of lightweight fluffy snow may add insulation value of R-10 to more than R-20, above the roof covering. As a result, on warm/compact roof assemblies, the 33-degree or higher melt temperature may occur within the snow cover rather than on the surface of the roofing. Thermal bridging through fasteners, sandwiched sheet metal flashing flanges, and other non-insulation components may also contribute to the duration and volume of snow-melt and/or refreezing affects.

Air Infiltration – Air mass is able to transport many times more heat than is typically conducted through insulation. Therefore, air “leakage” from interior spaces (e.g., through unsealed can lights, kitchen range and/or bathroom exhaust fan ducting air leaks, etc.) into attics and roof assemblies may have a greater effect than insulation on snow-melt. Air exfiltration from building interiors into roof assemblies is more likely a concern in older roofs and older buildings, which are less airtight. Newer roofs are more likely to be ‘tighter,’ some of which may include an air infiltration barrier or vapor retarder. Vapor retarders may also perform as air barriers.

Vapor permeability of roofing materials plays a lesser, indirect role regarding ice-dams. A lowperm (i.e., vapor permeability unit of measure) rated ice-dam protection membrane installed above well-ventilated and properly insulated attic likely presents little, vapor/condensation issues, but achieving the “well ventilated and properly insulated” is difficult with some buildings. A low perm, ice-dam protection membrane above a warm/compact roof assembly, however, is sequentially misplaced as a potential vapor trap, which may cause condensation within the warm/compact roof assembly.

BUILDING CODE REQUIREMENTS & RELATED DATA:

The 2018 International Building Code (IBC) and International Residential Code (IRC) requirements for ‘Ice Barrier’ read similarly. For water-shedding roofs, ice barrier is required in regions where there has been a history of ice forming along the eaves causing water backup. Roofing contractors, roof designers and building owners should confirm the specific requirements for ice barrier with their local building department.

Ice barrier, per both the IBC and IRC, is required from a line 24-inches upslope of exterior walls to the lowest edges (e.g., to the fascia) of roof surfaces. It is prudent roofing practice to base this 24-inch upslope measurement from the interior face of the exterior wall. While WSRCA prefers the term ice-dam protection membrane, contractors, designers and owners should be aware of the I-Codes’ synonymous term ‘ice barrier.’ Ice-barrier, as defined by ICodes, is a minimum of two layers of asphalt saturated underlayment cemented together, or “self-adhering” polymer-modified bitumen sheet membranes.

IRC Figure R403.3(2) Air-Freezing Index an Estimate of the 100-Year Return Period, a nationwide contour map of freezing temperatures, may help identify ice-dam prone regions. A footnote indicates, “It is used as a measure of the combined magnitude and duration of air temperature below freezing.” Thus, it might be used in conjunction with NRCA recommendations, below. IRC Table R403.3(2) Air-Freezing Index for U.S. Locations by County compiles similar data in tabular form.

Industry Benchmark Guidelines:

WSRCA recommends ice-dam protection membranes “in cold climates where snow and ice are common” and “in areas of significant snow accumulation.” WSRCA further recommends icedam protection membrane “should be installed in all potential ice damming locations such as along downslope eaves in valleys, around chimneys, crickets, around roof penetrations, and up rake edges. At downslope roof edges it is recommended to extend ice dam protection membrane upslope a minimum of 24-inches inside the interior face of the exterior wall.” This means covering more than just the lowest 24-inches of eaves upslope of the fascia or gutter. Rather, cover all roof areas from the fascia/gutter line, upslope across all overhanging eave areas and exterior wall areas, then continue upslope 24-inches measuring from the interior face of the exterior wall.

NRCA recommends that ice-dam protection membrane be installed in locations where the average temperature for January is 30 degrees Fahrenheit or less. NRCA provides a map of such areas. Further, NRCA recommends ice-dam protection membrane be installed a minimum of 36-inches upslope of the outer wall’s interior line when the roof slope is less than 4 in 12.

In all cases, conservative judgement should be exercised while conforming to, or exceeding, the most rigorous requirements or benchmarks, whether Code, WSRCA, NRCA or others.

SOLUTIONS:

Solutions to ice-dam problems may best be interpreted as ventilation, ice-dam control or mitigation rather than complete prevention of ice-dams. Because of the broad variety and types of the current steep-slope watershedding roofs, existing as well as those yet to be designed and constructed, in conjunction with the variety of [micro-] climate conditions, the industry should understand that there are no universal and absolute solutions to ice-dam prevention.

For new roof projects, detailed design attention should be given to ventilation, insulation, icedam protection membrane, the membrane’s extent (e.g., distance upslope, potential number of plies, etc.), and whether there are or are not overhanging eaves. For existing roofs and reroofing projects, ice-dam protection membrane is a practical strategy of ice-dam control or mitigation of moisture intrusion and damage. WSRCA members should encourage clients to consider several strategies in addition to ice-dam protection membrane: retrofit of ventilation, sealing and airtight taping of interior penetrations that would otherwise allow interior air and heat leakage into the roof cavity, and the need for insulation review and upgrade or retrofit, or replacement in addition to ice-dam protection membrane(s).

Ventilation – Optimal ventilation, with regard to ice-dam mitigation, keeps the roof deck and roofing system below freezing, during periods of exterior freezes, by flushing air through, and thus heat out, of the attic or roof ventilation cavity. Venting of attics and cathedral ceiling roof cavities, utilizing downslope and companion upslope venting is the most common means for ventilation of steep-slope water shedding roof assemblies.

Historically, attic ventilation requirements prescribed by building codes were based primarily on condensation-related concerns – for example, roofs with vapor retarders are allowed less ventilation (1:300 ratio) than those without a vapor retarder (1:150 ratio). Ventilation for ice-dam control, however, is grounded on larger openings and cavities for moving larger volumes of sub-freezing exterior air into downslope eave (e.g., intake) vents, through the roof cavity or attic and out upslope roof vents (e.g., exhaust) or ridge vents. Whether for ice-dam control or condensation control, it is good basic roof design practice to balance eave ventilation intake-air openings in approximately 50-50 ratio with ridge or upslope exhaust-air openings. (See WSRCA Bulletin concerning roof ventilation.)

Cathedral ceiling roof assemblies, with ceilings attached directly to the underside of sloped roof rafters or trusses, are special cases of ventilated roofs. Research concerning roof ventilation for effective control of ice-dams on cathedral ceiling roof assemblies (see references) indicates that the necessary vent opening size and vent space above the insulation is related to the amount of roof insulation, roof slope and length of the slope. The research indicates that much larger openings and larger cavity height above the insulation is necessary-beyond that required by codes—for effective condensation and/or ice-dam mitigation. Vented nail-base insulation panels, though conceptually similar to “vented” cathedral ceiling roof assemblies, typically do not provide nearly sufficient ventilation and air-flow for ice-dam mitigation and condensation control in all such roof configurations.

Warm/compact steep-slope roof assemblies conduct heat through insulation over time and narrow closed cavities or spaces are susceptible to condensation, and contribute to ice-dam formation. Properly sized ventilation cavities, such as can be constructed with over-framing assemblies, located above a compact insulated roof assembly, can provide the ventilation necessary to move sufficient air under the elevated roof sheathing and thus reduce the likelihood of snow-melt and mitigate ice-dams.

Ice-Dam Protection Membrane / Ice Barriers – Both the International Building Code (IBC) and the International Residential Code (IRC) indicate that a history of ice-dam formation is prudent criteria for deciding to install an ice barrier (the IBC and IRC term) or ice-dam protection membrane (WSRCA preferred term) in roof assemblies. The IRC, however, requires ice barrier if adopted or specifically specified by the local building department in Table R301.2(1) the Climatic and Geographic Design Criteria.

 

CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL DOCUMENT...

 

---

REFERENCE DOCUMENTS:

• WSRCA/TRI Tile Roofing Manual for Cold Climates, 1998, Reprinted 2005.

• Air Vent Inc. Attic Ventilation: Tips and Answers from the Experts December 2016.

• CertainTeed Shingle Applicators Manual, January 2011.

• Fryer, Mark; Brown, E. Staples; Design of Ventilated Attic Spaces for Buildings in Cold Regions; State of Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities Division of Planning and Programming Research Section 2301 Peger Road Fairbanks AK 99701, January 1986.

• State of Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities; Roofing Standards Manual, February 1986.

• Tobaisson, Wayne; Tantillo, Thomas; Buska, James; Ventilating Cathedral Ceilings to Prevent Problematic Icings at Their Eaves; Proceedings of the North American Conference on Roofing Technology September 1999, Toronto, Ontario.

• Holladay, Martin; How It Works: Ice Dams; Fine Home Building, December 2015 / January 2016.

• Holladay, Marin; Preventing Ice Dams; Fine Home Building, May 2011.

• Rupar, Maciek; Ice Dam Busting: Eradicating Ice Dams Begins Below the Roof Deck; Professional Roofing, June 2012.

• Hoffman, Jeffrey; An Ice Dam Analyzed; Journal of Light Construction, March 2010.

• Ireton, Kevin; Venting the Roof; Exterior Finishing Fine Home Building, June 2010.

• WSRCA Steep-Slope Committee; Laminated Shingles & Water-Shedding Roof Systems for Lower Slopes, January/February 2010.

• ARMA Asphalt Roofing Residential Manual Pages 47-48 Eave Flashing for Ice Dam Protection, 2006.

---

LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

Tags:  TECHNICAL 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Trent Cotney and Cotney Construction Law Named Legal Advisors to WSRCA Membership

Posted By Chris Alberts, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Thursday, August 23, 2018
Updated: Tuesday, August 28, 2018

---

In our continuing efforts to provide Members with the highest level of cost-effective and cutting-edge benefits, WSRCA proudly announces our new legal partnership with Trent Cotney and Cotney Construction Law (CCL).

Led by Trent Cotney and a growing team of construction attorneys, Cotney Construction Law (CCL) is a progressive law firm dedicated to fighting for the roofing industry throughout the Western States and beyond. Nationally, CCL is recognized as a one-stop shop for roofers with legal experience in all areas of construction law. With the knowledge, experience, and passion to level the playing field for clients, most of their attorneys have backgrounds in construction, ranging from work as estimators for structural contractors, roofers, overseas manufacturers of construction products, and supply house distributors.

With nationwide offices and licensure in 18 states, Cotney Construction Law has developed into an industry leader throughout the country, participating in the construction industry on a policy and educational side, sharing information through events and resources, and uniquely representing the roofing industry as a legal and business partner.

Florida Bar board certified construction lawyer, Trent Cotney, president, established the firm in 2012. Growing up with a family who worked in construction and personal experience in the industry as he made his way through school, Cotney says his focus was on creating a business whose sole purpose was properly serving the customer, and specifically representing the industry side.

To ensure a unique and relevant understanding of the industry, most of the 19 attorneys the firm now employs, along with key staff, come from construction backgrounds. “When I sit across the table from someone at another firm who does construction law, I know they’re smart, but I also know that there are very few who have had their hands dirty so to speak, actually working in the field.”

Cotney specifically hires people with backgrounds in construction because they know the industry from a business side and can better relate to clients about the nuances of their business and legal matters. “Construction is in all of our roots. An ethic of hard work, an understanding of the people and of the work, it is part of who we are and will always be the basis under which we operate.”

The firm advocates for the industry and works as general counsel for Florida associations including the Florida Roofing & Sheet Metal Contractors Association (FRSA), Florida Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Contractors Association (FRACCA) and the Florida Irrigation Society (FIS). Last year the firm donated more than $120,000 in pro bono time for industry-related work and has donated tens of thousands personally to construction associations.

Other support for the industry includes assisting with the formation of the National Women in Roofing organization that launched early in 2016 and whose members now number in the hundreds, and two scholarships established to support young people pursuing careers in the industry. “We try to give back to the industry personally and professionally, through time, talent and treasure,” says Cotney.

Cotney has developed and shares his expertise in OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) defense and has published an Amazon best-selling book titled OSHA Defense for the Construction Industry. The firm was also named Lawyer Monthly’s OSHA Defense Law Firm of the Year (2015-2017).

The team represents clients ranging from small, family-owned operations, to publicly-traded companies. Cotney speaks at various state and national construction association events on topics such as construction contracts, employment and immigration issues, contractor licensing and collecting payments on projects

The firm is a full-service construction law firm and handles all aspects of construction law, immigration and employment issues, business planning and formation, and creditor’s rights and bankruptcy. “We are fortunate enough to have been recognized by our peers and the industry for our service and professionalism,” says Cotney, referencing the lengthy list of honors and awards both he and the firm have won including the Gold Circle Award for service from the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA 2014), Lawyer Monthly’s OSHA Defense Law Firm of the Year USA (2015-2017), and Florida Super Lawyers Top 100 Lawyers (2016, 2017).

Tags:  LEGAL  WSRCA UPDATES 

Share |
PermalinkComments (1)
 

A View From the Hill - Political News: OSHA's Regulatory Agenda

Posted By Chris Alberts, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, August 20, 2018

A VIEW FROM THE HILL: Political News

By: Craig Brightup, The Brightup Group LLC

---

President Trump’s actions on federal regulations have worked so well that there’s basically been a freeze on new regulations while older ones are repealed or pared back.  But an exception is the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which has continued to pursue an Obama-era regulatory agenda.

One of the standards drafted under President Obama that went into effect in the Trump Administration is the silica rule.  This rule shouldn’t have become effective for construction last year, because the Permissible Exposure Limit and Action Level are too low and work requirements and engineering controls are unrealistic in many situations.  Thus, OSHA says it will publish a Request for Information to start fixing the rule, but the enforcement moratorium is over and OSHA inspectors are issuing silica citations.

Another dubious policy from OSHA is its proposed rulemaking to revise the electronic injury and illness reporting rule that was issued by the Obama Administration and formerly known as the Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses rule.  OSHA’s recent Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) would modestly lighten the reporting burden for employers, but is silent on issues that most concern the business community and actually adds a controversial new disclosure requirement.

OSHA issued the original Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses rule in 2016 and it required establishments with 250 or more employees to electronically submit to OSHA recordkeeping data on the 300A, 300 and 301 forms.  The rule also required certain establishments with 20 – 249 employees to submit their 300A forms based on a list sorted by the North American Classification System that includes construction.

In addition, OSHA added a “whistleblower” provision that employers must post a “reasonable” policy on how employees are to report their injuries and safety violations.  Furthermore, the rule’s preamble states that most safety incentive and post-accident drug testing programs would be considered “unreasonable” and in conflict with the statute’s anti-retaliation (whistleblower) protections.      

On July 8, 2016, the National Association of Manufacturers and other business groups sued OSHA, targeting the impact on safety incentive and drug testing programs under the whistleblower provision.  On Jan. 14, 2017, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and another set of business groups filed a second lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma seeking a permanent injunction of the entire rule.

Both cases are stayed to allow the Trump Administration time to determine how to respond and OSHA must submit updates every 90 days to the court in Oklahoma.  But OSHA’s new rulemaking is so minimal that plaintiffs might reactivate the lawsuits.

The NPRM would change reporting requirements for establishments of 250 or more employees to just 300A forms, but it’s silent on the whistleblower provision and scrubbing sensitive information from submissions before posting on the OSHA website.  And it would add a controversial new requirement that establishments must include their Employer Identification Numbers (EIN) on their submissions.

In the meantime, employers should have submitted 300A forms electronically to OSHA by July 1, 2018.  Also, on April 30, 2018, OSHA clarified that employers in state-plan states where the state has not yet issued a companion regulation still must meet the federal requirements.  Finally, in 2019 and annually thereafter, the 300A form must be electronically submitted by March 2.              

Tags:  BUSINESS 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

A View From the Hill - Political News: OSHA's Regulatory Agenda

Posted By Chris Alberts, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, August 20, 2018

A VIEW FROM THE HILL: Political News

By: Craig Brightup, The Brightup Group LLC

---

President Trump’s actions on federal regulations have worked so well that there’s basically been a freeze on new regulations while older ones are repealed or pared back.  But an exception is the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which has continued to pursue an Obama-era regulatory agenda.

One of the standards drafted under President Obama that went into effect in the Trump Administration is the silica rule.  This rule shouldn’t have become effective for construction last year, because the Permissible Exposure Limit and Action Level are too low and work requirements and engineering controls are unrealistic in many situations.  Thus, OSHA says it will publish a Request for Information to start fixing the rule, but the enforcement moratorium is over and OSHA inspectors are issuing silica citations.

Another dubious policy from OSHA is its proposed rulemaking to revise the electronic injury and illness reporting rule that was issued by the Obama Administration and formerly known as the Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses rule.  OSHA’s recent Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) would modestly lighten the reporting burden for employers, but is silent on issues that most concern the business community and actually adds a controversial new disclosure requirement.

OSHA issued the original Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses rule in 2016 and it required establishments with 250 or more employees to electronically submit to OSHA recordkeeping data on the 300A, 300 and 301 forms.  The rule also required certain establishments with 20 – 249 employees to submit their 300A forms based on a list sorted by the North American Classification System that includes construction.

In addition, OSHA added a “whistleblower” provision that employers must post a “reasonable” policy on how employees are to report their injuries and safety violations.  Furthermore, the rule’s preamble states that most safety incentive and post-accident drug testing programs would be considered “unreasonable” and in conflict with the statute’s anti-retaliation (whistleblower) protections.      

On July 8, 2016, the National Association of Manufacturers and other business groups sued OSHA, targeting the impact on safety incentive and drug testing programs under the whistleblower provision.  On Jan. 14, 2017, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and another set of business groups filed a second lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma seeking a permanent injunction of the entire rule.

Both cases are stayed to allow the Trump Administration time to determine how to respond and OSHA must submit updates every 90 days to the court in Oklahoma.  But OSHA’s new rulemaking is so minimal that plaintiffs might reactivate the lawsuits.

The NPRM would change reporting requirements for establishments of 250 or more employees to just 300A forms, but it’s silent on the whistleblower provision and scrubbing sensitive information from submissions before posting on the OSHA website.  And it would add a controversial new requirement that establishments must include their Employer Identification Numbers (EIN) on their submissions.

In the meantime, employers should have submitted 300A forms electronically to OSHA by July 1, 2018.  Also, on April 30, 2018, OSHA clarified that employers in state-plan states where the state has not yet issued a companion regulation still must meet the federal requirements.  Finally, in 2019 and annually thereafter, the 300A form must be electronically submitted by March 2.              

Tags:  BUSINESS 

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 
Page 3 of 7
1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6  |  7