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CROSS Safety Report

PV panels and structural adequacy of roofs

Report ID: 589 Published: 1 October 2016 Region: CROSS-UK

This report is over 2 years old

Please be aware that it might contain information that is no longer up to date. We keep all reports available for historic reference and as learning aids.


A reporter raises concerns over the structural adequacy of existing roofs to accommodate PV panels.

Key Learning Outcomes

For PV panel suppliers and building owners:

  • A structural assessment should be carried out on existing roofs to ensure they can accommodate the additional loading from PV panels

  • Assessments should be carried by a person who has the relevant experience and is competent to do so

Full Report

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The Full Report below has been submitted to CROSS and describes the reporter’s experience. The text has been edited for clarity and to ensure anonymity and confidentiality by removing any identifiable details. If you would like to know more about our secure reporting process or submit a report yourself, please visit the reporting to CROSS-UK page.


In total over a period of a few years a reporter's firm of consulting engineers assessed approximately 25,000 domestic roofs to check their adequacy for supporting PV panels. These were carried out on the basis of existing roof information provided by the installer.

Of those investigated, between 15 and 20% were found to be structurally inadequate. In some of these instances they recommended strengthening works such as propping purlins, doubling up on rafters and other measures.

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