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Managing HSE on roof and gutter cleaning projects

Our team regularly carry out commercial roof cleaning projects which require a health and safety assessment regarding risks associated with working at height. A recent project involved cleaning both the roof and gutters of a large unit located in a retail park in Devon.  

The corrugated low-pitch roof of the unit was surrounded by wide trough gutters. The roof had become discoloured due to organic growth including lichen which had started to develop on the roof, whilst the gutters had become blocked by luxuriant plant growth!

How gutters become Colonised by plants

Dirt, in this instance washed down from the low pitch roof, and debris such as leaves, accumulate and decompose in gutters creating an environment that is surprisingly favourable to plant growth. Then, seeds carried by the wind and birds, land, take root and grow.

When gutters become so blocked water drains very slowly resulting in the gutters flooding. This can lead to water sitting above the roofline and leaking into the property causing immediate and long-term damage. It also dramatically  increases the weight being held within the gutters which can also cause long-term issues to their structure.  

Fast, efficient high quality cleaning  

The first task was to clear the gutters before we could start to clean the roof. Once these were clear water could once again flow freely down away from the roof and the building. We then worked on the roof removing lichen and other organic matter to leave it looking sparkling clean (see pics below). 

Health and Safety when working at height

As can often be the case, the cleaning element of this project was pretty straightforward. It was rather the proper management of health and safety with regards to high-level access and working at height that required our knowledge and experience.

Working on roofs is logically hazardous because it involves working at height. Roof work accounts for a quarter of all deaths in the construction industry - and not all people killed are roofers, many are maintenance workers such as ourselves.


OneFifty takes Health and Safety extremely seriously and we are rigorous about following the latest HSE guidelines. Our qualified operatives are experienced in working at height and our work is all fully insured.

Fall Arrest systems

On this project we used a fall arrest system for additional security. The purpose of a fall arrest system is to protect a person if they fall by shortening the distance of the fall and preventing them from hitting the ground. It includes three key components; i.) a body harness and ii.) a connector which is securely fastened to iii.) a reliable anchor point.

All anchor points require an annual inspection and must have the ‘pass’ test date clearly displayed. On this project we used pre-installed anchor lines that been inspected and approved as safe to use. 

If you would like to know more about roof cleaning, or any other high-level cleaning service, including testing fall arrest systems, please contact Max or Andy Morris on 0333 234 1445 or email and we'll get back to you.

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Some of our clients


Client Testimonials

“The work was carried out to a very high standard and we would not hesitate to use you again.”

Cathering Stott - Eunomia Research & Consulting

“Excellent to deal with from start to finish, very professional in their attitude and kept us informed at every stage. ”

Esther Hunting - Warwick Estates

“Please pass on my sincere thanks to guys for the demo and for getting Neptune cleaned.”

Wendy Tomlinson - Senior Conservation Officer, Cheltenham Borough Council

“I was very impressed with the finish your company produced and how quickly you managed to do it.”

Tom Brady - MD Building Services

“You’ve done a lovely job and we would recommend your services.”

Elaine Whitfield - Consort Property Management

“They were able to remove the remnants of graffiti that had not been removed previously using chemicals.”

Joe - Hillcrest Estate Management

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