Slipped and fell on a metal roof yesterday. What is the best way to secure myself?

While cleaning the gutters on a house yesterday. I was walking toward the edge. There was a tree kind of hanging over the roof. Looked like it was kind of blocking the sun from that spot. Allowing mildew to grow. Well it looked dry to me so I got close. Then next thing I know both my feet aren’t underneath me and im on my butt. I was about two feet from the edge. Luckily it was a single story house with leaves and dirt where I would of fell. I was wearing Sperry’s (boat shoes). They have pretty good grip. What do you guy’s recommend I do to secure my self. After that I kind of stepped on a screw every time i took a step.

Korkers…there is a specific one with a sponge like material on the bottom. We use them and have great grip even in the rain.

Justin, just glad youre alright, I bet that was scary. Could it have been done from ladder instead?

I agree with using Korkers, or a crepe sole work boot, like old school ironworkers. For larger jobs (commercial), especially pressure washing, try this:

2103675 - Standing Seam Roof Anchor (SRL not included)

I got on a roof last year with a brand new pair of cheap New Balances that I bought. They were terrible and I could not even stand on the roof. I got up there and immediately had no traction. I was able to get back onto to the ladder but not after I thought bad things were about to happen.

Great point Sharen…

Just like she said you could of done it off a ladder, no reason not to have. Metal roves are very dangerous and unless it has a very low pitch, was new, or had some sort of roof anchor, I refuse to walk on them.

I like that device that Mulch-Man shared, even though getting to the top of the roof can be a bit skittish ! Nick / InNoutWindows slid off a 3 story roof going to the top to tie-off, so anything can happen to anyone, anytime, anyplace ! He broke his back and survived the fall and to today he’s doing good and slowly making his way back !

Even when your hooked to the roof you should still have the specialized Korkers on that Dave Yogi-man, pointed out ! Good Advice Dave.

Your lucky Justin and you dodged the bullet on this one, count your blessing, and I know you realize the hand of God protected you ! Still you need to always walk safely and smartly in this industry ! It don’t take much to send us over the edge !

Good luck and always think safe !


I had never heard of Korkers before. Checked out their website and I want a pair. Could someone check out the website and tell me what sole that I need. I can’t tell which one is sponge-like from the photos. A couple of years ago I fell off the roof of a building and landed flat on my back on the hood of a brand new GMC Denali. It cost me $900.00 to fix the Denali and I was happy it was there. I was not injured.

Please let me know about which sole to purchase. Do you use the same sole on shingled roofs as you do on metal roofs? I really want / need a pair.

Check your inbox- I sent you a PM

Get the 3-in-1 Overshoe. It has three interchangeable soles.
Work Overshoe | 3-in-1 Overshoe | Korkers

That’s what I own, and I use all three soles for my service area.

I hate seeing threads like this and I’m really glad you were not hurt Justin.

We will have Korkers in stock very soon.

Cool- always wondered why you didn’t carry them.

Man, I’m glad UR ok. Isn’t there some way to secure oneself with a harness and rope? Couldn’t a guy tie a rope to a solid object and somehow descend the rope with it attached to a harness? I’ve been trying to figure this method out myself.

Side note for EVERYONE - I’d look into disability ins. I recently got a policy. For about $150.00/mo it will put $5,000 in my pocket every month til age 65 [I]if [/I]I become disabled. BTW - a person is 3.5 times more likely to become disabled than die. That’s no doubt more for window cleaners.

Thanks. Could of done it by ladder but it would of took forever. The gutters were pretty clogged up with pine needles.

Couple days before this job I was doing that hotel that was 2 stories. Had a metal roof got on top and decided it was a bad idea. So ended up talking with the owners. They rented a scissor lift for the day and they paid for it. Knocked it out in no time.

The roof that I fell on was a pretty low pitch I guess thats why I didn’t go over the edge. But I don’t think any type of shoe would of held. I guess no more metal roofs for me. Will look into the Korkers for the regular old shingle roofs.

Will you have them within the month? If so I can wait. But I will be ordering a pair soon.

If u are on a roof it is usually unwise to only rely on shoes with good grip. I don’t mean to be frank, but we must harness ourselves! This is serious. My guys can’t even imagine doing gutter cleaning on a roof without being strapped in. Home depot has a $100 kit. It has a safety line, a harness, a lanyard, and a temporary anchor. You can hammer the metal anchor into the top of many types of roofs (find the studs or the nails will slip out easily) and then pull it out once u r done. Seal any holes left behind. If you cannot anchor up, don’t get on the roof (don’t use chimneys). Anchoring is super simple and will eventually save your life or health. You can anchor on hard tile roofs too. Ask me how if you need more info.

[B]The Korkers have interchangeable soles, with foam ones designed for metal roofs, spikes for cedar & rubber textured for regular old shingle roofs. As long as the pitch isn’t exteme the foam soles work great. But as an added precaution it only takes an extra 10 minutes per job to rope in and it gives your customers a peace of mind.[/B]

I would work from ladder to do the gutters. Use a 12 foot pole with gutter tool attached for maximum reach. When I wash metal roofs I throw my ropes over the roof and anchor on both ends. Harness up and lean into the system. A very safe and comfortable way to do it and you can get a way bigger quote if you insist on roping.

I like to use a 24ft yellow telescoping extension wand for my pressure washer with a gutter ball attached. If you’re wondering what the gutter ball is, Google it. I can clean 2 story gutters from the ground and use my 10ft step ladder to reach higher if necessary. I say Google gutter ball because the info you find will explain it better than I can, I think you can find a YouTube video of it as well.

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I’m glad that you’re safe. There have been 2 or 3 times when I nearly slipped while cleaning on a roof. I have been looking out for the best ways of securing myself too. I’m watching videos in Youtube for some ideas.