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Job-site Safety Conversations a Focus Following Notre Dame Fire

RCS Job-safety following Notre Dame Fire
May 8, 2019 at 5:00 p.m.

By Karen L. Edwards, RCS Editor.

NRCA Director of Enterprise Risk Management spoke to the Chicago-Sun Times in the wake of the fire.

Dietz tells the newspaper that while standards might vary in France, safety is a concern on every job site in the U.S. “It’s at the forefront of their minds,” said Harry Dietz, director of enterprise risk management at NRCA.  Dietz told The Sun-Times that roofing contractors are following rules while they are working. “There are a lot of requirements for handling flammable materials. One of the things roofing contractors are doing every day is thinking about that stuff.”

Dietz explained that insurance companies will set rules for risk control but that the historic nature of Notre Dame might have made fire control even more challenging. Fires may be more likely in structures such as the cathedral, but restrictions may prohibit some modern materials and methods. There are alternative ways to install the roof without using heat, but the use of adhesives and fasteners may destroy the historical nature of the structure according to Dietz. “A lot of things are hazards, and in many cases the hazards can’t be engineered out because you’re trying to recreate something that looks as it did centuries previous to when you’re doing the work,” he explained.

Police in France speculated that a short circuit likely caused the fire and the investigation is ongoing, possibly for months or years. It’s likely that an exact cause might never be found.

Read the full Chicago Sun-Times article.



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