02.16.17

Follow These Steps to Ladder Safety

Falls from portable ladders (step, straight, combination, and extension) are one of the leading causes of occupational fatalities and injuries.

If ladders are frequently used on your job, here are some safety tips to keep in mind.

Inspections

All equipment, including ladders, should be inspected before use. If there is any damage to the ladder or accessories, do not use that ladder. If it cannot be repaired, properly discard it.

Use the Correct Type of Ladder

Straight or extension ladders should always be properly supported by a standing, solid surface, not propped up or supported by people.  Extension ladders should also always have some overlap. And never sit on the top of an A-Frame ladder.

Mind the Weight Load

Be aware of the maximum weight load a ladder can handle.  When ladder instructions mention weight load, they are referring to the combined weight of the person as well as the tools/items they are bringing on the ladder with them.

3 On, 1 Off

Whether it’s two hands and one foot, or two feet and one hand, there should always be only one appendage off the ladder at a time.  Never take both hands off while on a ladder.

Jonathan Barber is a welder and the Safety Advisor for Chicago Scenic Studios.