How Drones Improve On-The-Job Safety in the Roofing Industry - Xterior LLC.

How Drones Improve On-The-Job Safety in the Roofing Industry

Technology helps to keep roofers safe on the job
Read Time: 4 minutes
Mar 20, 2023

The roofing industry can be prone to accidents. With modern technology, however, drone cameras are providing a new level of business operation safety overhead. Managers are able to access the cameras remotely and understand what site tactics are working, what is not, and how much progress is being made on a particular project.

How Can the Roofing Industry Be Dangerous?

Roofing has been named by some attorneys as one of the most dangerous trade industries in the United States. There are thousands of fatalities every year for workers, meaning finding ways to improve on-the-job safety is essential to protect the lives of hardworking roofers. Here are some of the common reasons roofing can be a dangerous profession.


a roofer taking a break lying on a roof on a hot summer day

Many roofers work during the peak sun seasons of spring or summer when the heat increases to hazardous temperatures. Extreme hot weather can lead to dehydration, lethargy, headaches, or even heat stroke. These conditions make it challenging for roofers to spend all day performing laborious work under the sun.

Slip & Falls

a roofer working on a tile roof

Working on a ledge of a tall building means roofing workers are at risk for slip and fall incidents. Being around high ledges, power cords, and heavy machinery makes it easier for a worker to misstep and hurt themselves. This could mean days off of work to recover, or becoming permanently impaired and losing their job entirely.

Fallen Debris

two roofers tossing and catching a roofing tile across the span of a roof they’re working on

Exposed power lines or broken roofing pieces can fall and hit workers. Exposure to falling debris and other roofing materials can be dangerous or even fatal. Having a secure and safe working zone could help mitigate some of those risks.

How Could a Drone Improve Worker Safety?

a drone flying above a suburban area

With all of the dangers present in the industry, finding a way to measure safety requirements and have the capacity to improve overall workplace capabilities. The collected information can improve regulatory practices, which in turn could create a safer environment for workers.

Response to Disasters

In the case of a workplace emergency, operators could respond to a roofing injury or accident quickly. The drone imaging gives them more information about the overall safety of the environment and a map of the damage that occurred. The imaging can also help locate those who were hurt to understand what kind of supplies or assistance they may need to recover.

Reduce Substance Exposure

Working as a roofing contractor can lead to exposure to toxic substances and chemicals. The chemicals can cause brief illness in some or chronic health conditions that can become severely debilitating. Some are also exposed to radiation which can also cause severe health conditions. Drones can collect information on substance levels on a site and further prevent high exposure.

GPS Tracking & Inspection Improvements

GPS tracking can help conduct site inspections to evaluate the organizational structure. Managers sometimes cannot make it to site inspections physically, so GPS tracking helps them assess the working environment from anywhere. They can check in on progress and see how things are flowing from a security perspective.

Power Line Surveys

a drone flying in front of power lines

One of the safety risks mentioned is power line exposure which can lead to slip and fall incidents. Drones can monitor the progress of power line maintenance. Without regular maintenance, power lines can wrap over nearby vegetation or get into the work of day-to-day roofing activities.

Access Hard-To-Reach Locations

Drones can fly to crucial work zone areas where humans can have trouble reaching themselves. Chimneys or other areas high on a roof could be decaying or damaged. These decaying areas around a roof could eventually become hazardous if they break down while a worker is present.

How Risk Reduction Is Possible on Safety Sites

Drone technology can reduce roofer risk and react to site changes. Capturing real-time footage can increase response time to dangerous roofing situations, and create a better roofing environment for all employees surrounding the construction site.

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