Before you get your ladder out to repair a roof leak on your Melbourne home, there’s some sobering information you should know first. More than 50,000 people fall from ladders each year in Victoria and require a trip to the hospital.
The frightening statistic comes from a Monash University study into injuries that occur around the home. Falls were the most common cause of injury for the periods analysed for the study. Falls in outdoor areas were slightly higher than falls inside. Perhaps not surprisingly, falls from ladders were responsible for a large percentage of the total falls.
To be fair, not all falls from ladders resulted from people getting on their roofs to repair leaks. However, the study clearly shows the dangers that ladders pose to people doing work around their Melbourne and Victorian homes.
Another interesting statistic from the study is that most of the falls from ladders that required a trip to the hospital were from less than one metre. Only around eight percent involved falls from higher than a metre. The statistics show that even a low-height fall can result in injury.
So, next time you are thinking of repairing a roof leak on your Melbourne home, cleaning the gutters or doing another job that requires you to use a ladder, take steps to keep yourself safe.
As RACV Policy Lead – Safety Elvira Lazar says in a RACV article on ladder safety: “People taking on tasks from a height need to make sure they are capable and have positioned their ladder safely. Because even a small trip or a stumble can result in an injury. What this data shows is Victorians are simply not taking their safety into account as much as they should be,” Ms Lazar says.
Leave roof leaks in Melbourne to the professionals
In the same article, RACV Head of Home Trades and Services Kieran Davies provides another piece of very good advice for people considering repairing their own roof leaks or doing other jobs that require ladders. That is, some jobs are best left to the professionals.
“If the job requires specialist equipment, training or a licence, is dangerous or you think may be beyond your skill or physical ability, you should get a professional,” Mr Davies says.
“It’s really important to be honest with yourself about your equipment, abilities and importantly your age. If you’re unsure or don’t feel comfortable completing the task, call in a professional. Even if it’s a job you used to do yourself, it’s really just not worth the risk.”
Oates Roofing Maintenance are the roof leaks professionals in Melbourne
Fair enough, you might think, but who are the best professionals to call in Melbourne if your roof leaks? Oates Roofing Maintenance is the simple answer.
Oates is a family-owned business that has been repairing roof leaks in the Melbourne area for well over 40 years. Customer service, superior quality and competitive prices are our highest priority. Plus, we are fully ensured, all our tradespeople are licensed and we are working from heights certified.
While roof leaks are perhaps our most required service, it’s far from the only roofing service we provide. Whether your roof needs repairs, maintenance, cleaning, inspecting, restoration, a complete reroof, gutter cleaning, downpipe replacement or vermin removal, Oates can help. That’s why we’re well-known as a one-stop-shop for roofing services.
Oates Roofing Maintenance tradespeople are up ladders every day, repairing roof leaks, cleaning gutters and providing other valuable roofing services, so we understand the importance of ladder safety. If you are determined to get up a ladder to do any work around the home, follow the tips that we use in our work:
- Choose the right ladder for the job you are doing. For example, if you’re painting inside, a specialist ladder that has a place for your paint can will reduce the number of times you need to climb up and down the ladder, reducing the chances of a fall.
- Make sure your ladder is in good condition and has non-slip feet.
- Always use any safety locks on your ladder.
- If possible, have someone else with you to hold and support the ladder. This is particularly important if you’re working reasonably high off the ground.
- Position your ladder so that it’s level.
- Don’t reach or lean while on the ladder. Move the ladder instead.
- Wear non-slip footwear.
- If the weather is rainy, windy or stormy, wait until conditions improve.
- Just in case something does occur and you do have a fall, only work from a ladder when someone else is in the home. While there are devices – such as the Apple Watch – that can detect falls, it’s no substitute for a person who can look after you if you do have an accident.