Options for Skylight Protection Now Available

Did you know that Brauner Safety Services offers skylight protection? In partnership with Safety Rail Company, you can now choose from several options for protecting your skylights.

Why do you need skylight protection?

According to the CDC, fatal falls and serious injuries may result from inadequate guarding and fall protection for work around skylights and roof and floor openings.

Additionally, based on OSHA’s guidelines, 29 CFR 1910.23(a)(4), it requires that skylights in the roof of buildings through which persons may fall while walking or working shall be guarded by a standard skylight screen or a fixed standard railing on all exposed sides.

Beyond regulations and laws, the bottom line is that you want to keep your workers and crews safe on the job.

The most dangerous skylight on a building is quite common and easily recognizable – the translucent skylight. This skylight is flush with the metal panel. It can often be difficult to see, especially if the entire roof has been painted and/or coated over. If a crew member were to unknowingly walk on top of this skylight (which frequently happens in the U.S.), it will shatter, and the person walking over it will likely fall through to the floor.

During the pre-job inspection of the roof area, contractors have an opportunity to offer this protective metal screen to customers so that they limit liability and decrease potential dangers to those who may be working or performing maintenance on their roof. The screen is clearly visible and eliminates accidents; if someone is distracted or simply not paying attention, they can still easily walk across the skylight when the appropriate guard (SRC Skylight Guard) is in place.

So, what are the options for skylight protection?  Here is a summary and corresponding product sheets for the skylight fall protection options that are currently available through Brauner Safety Services:

  1. SRC SKYLIGHT GUARD – The SRC Skylight Guard is an OSHA compliant fall protection screen guard for skylights. The screens simply sit on the roof over the entire skylight without any mechanical penetrations. Heavy-duty construction prevents contact with skylight lens in the event of a fall. Installation takes 15 minutes.
  2. SRC SKYLIGHT SCREENS – The SRC Skylight Screen is an OSHA compliant fall protection screen. The screens compression-fit to the aluminum frame of the skylight without any mechanical penetrations. Heavy-duty construction prevents contact with skylight lens in the event of a fall. Installation takes 15 minutes.
  3. SRC SKYVIEW BARRIER – The SRC Skyview Barrier is a 42” tall OSHA compliant fall protection guard for skylights. This freestanding railing barrier sits on the roof without any mechanical penetrations. Installation takes 10 minutes with this one-piece design.

To learn more about skylight protection and the product that is best suited for your job site or roof, contact Brauner Safety Services.

CERTA Training is Critical to Safety & Success

Image of visible flame vs. the flame under an infrared heat detector – High heat extends far beyond what the eye can see.

As any roofing professional knows, safety must be a top priority on the job in order to be successful. And while many of us would prefer a quick and easy solution for safety, the truth is that proper safety is multifaceted and requires dedication to learning and acquiring the skills necessary to identify risks, as well as understand the tools and resources that are available to mitigate those risks.

Today, we are taking a closer look at CERTA training, and why it is a critical part of a roofing company’s safety strategy.

What is CERTA Training?

According to NRCA (National Roofing Contractors Association), CERTA is an acronym for the Certified Roofing Torch Applicator program. It is a training program designed to teach roofing workers how to safely use roofing torches.

CERTA training demonstrates how proper roof system configuration design and application techniques can result in fire-safe installations. In 2003, insurance industry representatives approached the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) to address concerns about increasing incidents and losses occurring from roofing workers’ torching activities. There was a clear need for focused safety training addressing torching activities, and as a result, the CERTA program was developed.

The current CERTA program provides the best practices and newest industry requirements for torching activities.  The requirements are met through a certification program where authorized trainers such as Brauner Safety Services deliver effective behavior-based training to roofing workers.  There is simply no comparable training program available in the roofing industry. 

Why CERTA Training?

Working with roofing torches comes with high risks, and it is vital that crew members have a comprehensive understanding of those risks and how to avoid injury. If you want to better understand why CERTA training is so important, simply ask the insurance experts – As stated by Rob Foote, President of Furman Insurance:

Furman Insurance highly recommends Jim Brauner and his firm to all of our roofing clients! We manage the insurance programs for over 200 roofing contractors throughout the country and Brauner Safety Service’s hands-on in-person training has virtually eliminated the frequency of torch fires. Torch Fires are the single largest root cause of property damage and business interruption claims. These types of claims can severely cripple a roofing contractor as it pertains to their brand impact and explosive increases on their future insurance burdens. Brauner Safety’s approach to personal engagement and communication with the CERTA student is an essential and important part of his CERTA training.

CERTA training by Brauner Safety Services demonstrates how proper roof system configuration design and application techniques can result in fire-safe installations. The full-day program trains roof system installers on the safe use of roofing torches used to apply polymer-modified bitumen roofing products.

Upon completion of Brauner Safety’s CERTA training program, participants will be able to:

  • List personal protective equipment requirements for torching activities.
  • Describe basic first-aid procedures associated with torching activities.
  • Explain proper steps and procedures for handling propane gas cylinders.
  • Identify components of a torch assembly.
  • Demonstrate safe assembly, lighting, and use of torch equipment.
  • Identify the key elements of comprehensive pre-job inspections.
  • Recognize hazardous areas.
  • Demonstrate safe torching techniques near hazardous areas.
  • Explain post-job fire watch and other safety-related duties.

From a business perspective, CERTA training just makes sense.  The program offers business owners multiple benefits including but not limited to insurance savings, hazard/liability control, and improved employee safety.  CERTA training lowers the risk for roofing contractors, assures compliance with insurance underwriting guidelines and reduces exposure of personal and corporate assets.

To learn more about CERTA training programs and to schedule your next session, contact Brauner Safety Services today.

5 Reasons to Choose In-Person Training

There is no denying that the pandemic changed the way that most communities and businesses operate. Our daily lives were essentially shut down and put on pause, and most of us were forced to pivot and even revise daily operations. Fast forward to today, and we are seeing much of our “normal” and previous ways of interacting, working, and learning coming back into the picture.  Live events like concerts and sports have been well underway, along with indoor dining, attendance in schools and offices, and the elimination of mask mandates. This movement to more in-person experiences has greatly benefited our communities, especially when it comes to education.

In 2020, many education programs could no longer function in an in-person setting and were either put on hold or moved to a distance learning/online format.  According to recent studies, this shift from in-person to distance education caused major gaps in learning.  In fact, NPR reported that “Students learned less when they were remote… The problem is that when schools went remote, students simply did not learn as much or as well as they would have in person.”

So, what does this mean to you as a roofing professional?  When it comes to the safety and training of your team, there is simply no substitute for in-person training. From CERTA training to CPR and First Aid, there is a hands-on learning component that is vital to understanding how to perform functions, retain the information and receive the personal attention necessary for success.

According to an article published in Scientific Research, “Training in occupational risk prevention is an important issue, notably because it constitutes a prerequisite to improving health and safety in the workplace. In a recent study on training effectiveness among construction workers, it states that ‘safety training has been regarded as the most important factor in preventing safety accident hazards.’” 

Need more of a reason to pursue in-person safety training?  Here are five reasons to ensure your next training is hands-on and onsite:

Knowledge & Retention – To put it simply, memory benefits greatly from active instruction and hands-on experience. According to a study published this year, active learning in the workplace is one of the most effective ways to improve competence through learning retention. Training delivered through hands-on activities and group discussion can result in greater knowledge retention, as active learners proved to retain 93.5% of previously learned information. Additionally, everyone has different learning styles; the four commonly understood categories of learning include visual, auditory, reading/writing, and kinetic (hands-on) learning. Online learning presents several challenges for each learning style, while in-person addresses and provides clear instruction that is inclusive of all four learning styles.

Increased Engagement –The truth is that engagement is crucial to success in education. If students are not focused and engaged, they will not gain much from the lessons presented. An engaged class asks questions, gets involved and becomes part of the lesson. Students receiving in-person instruction have fewer distractions, increased concentration, and they can more easily ask questions and solve problems directly with instructors and fellow team members in real-time.  

Safety – When it comes to training such as CERTA (Certified Roofing Torch Applicator), there are high risk activities involved in the class that require everyone to be closely monitored.  From ensuring that all safety gear is properly worn to making sure the equipment and flame are under control, experienced CERTA trainers need to be onsite to quickly and properly address any risks and liabilities.

Feedback – In-person training provides opportunities for important hands-on feedback that addresses proper practices. Especially in cases such as CERTA classes, how and where someone is positioned and holding the torch is vital to their safety and those around them. When engaged in a classroom environment (indoors or outdoors), students receive more personalized one-on-one attention and coaching.

Team Building – When people are in-person and learn together, there is a bonding and team building aspect that cannot be duplicated. Students are able to interact as a group with the instructor and each other, creating an opportunity to learn from one another and engage in organic discussions. Connections that are essential to team unity and safety are formed and carried on from the classroom to the job site.

To learn more about the benefits of safety training, in-person instruction, CERTA and other industry-related education programs, contact Brauner Safety Services. As a leading provider of industry safety education, Brauner Safety Services comes to you, providing in-person and customized programs nationwide.

Preparing for Safe + Sound Week 2022

OSHA’s Safe + Sound Week is right around the corner and scheduled to take place from August 15th through 21st of this year.  Don’t know about OSHA’s Safe + Sound Week yet?  No problem, we are here to help you plan and join this year-round campaign that encourages every workplace to have a safety and health program.

As published on OSHA’s website, “Safe + Sound Week is a nationwide event held each August that recognizes the successes of workplace health and safety programs and offers information and ideas on how to keep America’s workers safe.”

The reason to participate in the event is simple… You and your team will be joining thousands of businesses to raise awareness of workers’ health and safety, along with demonstrating your own commitment to a safe workplace (on and off the job site).

As most contractors are already aware, success on the job is directly related to having a strong and reliable safety program.  A proper safety and health program enables teams to proactively identify and manage workplace hazards before they cause injury or illness. Whether you have an existing safety program or are looking to start something new, participating in Safe + Sound Week can help jumpstart or improve your program, as well as provide the opportunity to recognize the successes of your current safety efforts.

Participating in Safe + Sound Week has never been easier; in just three steps, you can demonstrate your commitment to safety.

Step #1: Sign up to Participate – OSHA provides an interactive map where you can register your company event, as well as view events and companies that are registered in your area.

Step #2: Plan and Promote – Getting the word out about your participation is essential; it’s simple – if you don’t share and promote your participation in the event, your customers and followers will not know about it. You will want to identify the activities that you plan to promote; OSHA provides helpful examples of activities, social media kits and graphics, along with useful resources to share with your team.

Step #3: Recognize Your Participation – At the end of the week, you should return to OSHA’s event website to download your company’s certificate of recognition and virtual challenge coin.

To learn more about Safe + Sound Week, register your company, and begin planning your participation, visit OSHA’s event webpage here.  To take the next steps in strengthening your company’s safety program and training, contact Brauner Safety Services.

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