Roofing Contractor Dies after Falling through Skylight—Kentucky

Kentucky Case Report: 22ky096
Release Date: February 2, 2023

The following report is the product of our Cooperative State partner and is presented here in its original unedited form from the state. The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the individual Cooperative State partner and do not necessarily reflect the views or policy of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.


On November 11, 2022, a 37-year-old roofing contractor (victim) was assisting the job foreman with the installation of a commercial grade rubberized roof coating. In the process, the victim stepped on a fiberglass skylight and fell to the surface below. Post-incident, a non-employee family member of the foreman was attempting to retrieve tools left on the roof. While doing so, the family member fell through a fiberglass skylight adjacent to the skylight involved with the original incident. The non-employee family member suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

Key contributing factors identified in this investigation include:

  • Failure to recognize job hazards,
  • Failure to guard skylights with railings or skylight screen,
  • Failure to utilize fall protection when working at heights,
  • No worker safety training program.

Kentucky FACE investigators concluded that, to help prevent similar occurrences, employers should:

  • Implement a job hazard analysis process,
  • Guard skylights with railings or a skylight screen,
  • Train employees on and enforce the use of fall protection when working at heights above 6 feet,
  • Consider prevention through design (PtD) to “design out” or minimize hazards and risk.

Roofing Contractor Dies after Falling through Skylight—Kentucky [PDF – 1,381KB]