Our toughest jobs: working when the temperature’s through the roof

IF you complain about the summer heat in Orange, consider yourself lucky you aren’t a roofer or an electrician.

These professions are just two of Orange’s hottest jobs, and tradesman regularly work in temperatures above 50 degrees.

With temperatures soaring well over 30 degrees this week in Orange, electrician Elliot Brice said managing working conditions becomes paramount.

“It does get very hot for us running around in roof cavities around town, but it’s part of the job so there’s no use complaining,” Mr Brice explained.

“I don’t carry a heat meter or anything with me at the moment but I’d estimate on a 30 plus day, like we’ve had every day this week, the temperature under a tin roof would get upwards of 55 or 60 degrees, especially if it’s grey or black.

“It creates a big problem if you don’t manage the conditions properly. We make sure we hydrate well, and we limit our stints in the really hot areas. We also make sure we take turns a bit.

“Honestly we have it pretty good. The heat must be unbearable sometimes for guys in other jobs, like roofers.”

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Mr Brice also highlighted roofing as one profession he was sure worked in extreme conditions.

Orange roofer Grant Tom confirmed Mr Brice’s assumption, saying he wouldn’t take a thermometer up to the roofs for fear of demoralising his employees.

“I wouldn’t want the boys knowing how hot it is up there sometimes,” Mr Tom explained, estimating roofers would work in temperatures upward of 60 degrees regularly.

“Black tin roofs are the worst, but it gets hot up there on anything really.

“We make sure all the boys know about hydration and drink plenty of water, and we make sure we get off there as quick as we can. 

“We’ll start as soon as we can see in the morning, and knock off early afternoon. It tends to be OK in Orange most of the time, but we have to go to Parkes soon, that’ll be hot.”


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