[TowerTalk] Roof Climbing Safety

Eric Rosenberg wd3q at starpower.net
Wed Jun 21 01:05:07 EDT 2006

There was a discussion a couple of weeks ago about safety and roof 
towers.  I found an article in a 2001 issue of Family Handyman that I've 
scanned and can email interested folks. 

I've talked to my roofer about safety and he showed me a great way to 
secure a ladder (and did it for me):  He wrapped a piece of sheet metal 
around (and perpendicular to) each end of a short (3 ft) 2x4.  He then 
took the ends of the sheet metal and tucked them underneath the 
shingles, and fastened them through the rafters.  This gives me a 
permanent base against which I can rest the feet of the ladder without 
worrying about the ladder slipping down the roof.  The nice part is that 
the 2x4 is not itself attached to the roof, so I can lift it up to clean 
around it, not worry about it rotting against the shingles. It looks 
like this:

  |||                    |||                 
  |||                    |||    <-- sheet metal (vertical)
==|||====================|||==  <-- 2 x 4 (horizontal)

I have a photograph of it, for those interested.

When I asked how to prop the ladder against the gutters, he said they 
place a 2x6 over the gutter and rest the ladder against it. Simple!

I haven't (yet) rigged a safety line from the roof tower to the ladder. 
That's next, but not in the near future, as we've entered the 3-H season 
here in the nation's capitol:  Hazy, Hot, and Humid!


Eric W3DQ
Washington, DC

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