Safety Alert 92 – Working in roof spaces

01 June 2021

Did you know?
Legislation now requires that all workers performing work at “domestic-type” premises turn off all sources of electricity before entering the roof space.

What is considered the roof space?
Most roof spaces in residential premises constitute the space between the ceiling and the roof. Even where there is only sufficient space to reach in to conduct the work (particularly for shallow eaves) there is a risk of shock, and the electrical installation should be de-energised to remove the hazard.

There may be some circumstances (e.g. renovations) where all or part of the roof is to be removed. The hazard of an energised and potentially damaged electrical installation still exists in these circumstances. The exposed areas should continue to be considered a roof space and all sources of power de-energized before any parts of your person enter the roof space.

An attic can be considered an exemption to this rule but only a properly constructed attic with floors and walls that provide suitable barriers between the electrical installation and any potential occupants.


  • There are many electrical hazards that can be found in the roof space that are potentially life threatening, including but not limited to the following:
  • Exposed live electrical conductor/wiring
  • Unenclosed junctions
  • Deteriorated and/or damaged cabling
  • Unterminated live cables
  • Metallised foil insulation which may have been energised due to poor installation practices

What do you need to do?
Before commencing work in a roof space:

  • Ensure you have conducted a Risk Assessment
  • Follow your IITT Checklist to isolate all supplies of electricity (remember solar will need to be isolated from the roof top or there will still be live DC from the roof to the inverter)
  • Attach your personal lock out and Danger Tag to the isolation point/s

Further Information
WorkSafe’s Guidance note – Working in Roof Spaces was developed to assist workers in complying with the OSH Regulations.

For further information regarding this Safety Alert, please contact EGT on (08) 6241 6100 or speak with your Field Officer.

Click here to download this Safety Alert as a PDF.

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