Many roofing contractors and roofing workers have a good working
knowledge of the main provisions of the Occupational Safety and
Health Administration's (OSHA's) fall-protection regulations under
29 CFR 1926.500-503, commonly known as Subpart M. However, one of
the more obscure provisions of Subpart M—and one that
receives little attention in worker training sessions or safety
program content—is the requirement under 1926.502(d)(20) that
"the employer shall provide for prompt rescue of employees in the
event of a fall or shall assure that employees are able to rescue
This regulatory provision gives employers the responsibility of
worker rescue but does not give any guidance for how rescue should
be accomplished. Of further concern, OSHA guidance for the topic in
the form of letters of interpretation has not provided much
So what should you do to comply with the standard's demands?
Following are methods of job-site rescue you may consider when
developing a specific rescue-training program and recent product
developments that may be useful.
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