In most workplaces, there will come a time when a task needs to be carried out at a height. Ladders come in useful when the reach of a person is not enough to get to where they need to be. However, using ladders can be dangerous and there are hundreds of fatalities each year from ladder falls.
If you use ladders at work, then it’s important to take every precaution. Outlined below are some tips that should help to keep you safe.
The right ladder for the job
The type of ladder you need will largely depend on the tasks at hand and your work environment. For example, if you are reaching for a shelf in the office that’s just above eye level, a small step ladder may suffice. If you work in a construction environment then you are going to need something more heavy duty. The most important thing is that you find a ladder that is the appropriate height. You don’t want to have to reach far if you’re already near the top of the ladder.
A flat surface
One thing you always want to ensure is that the ladder is standing on a flat surface. Balance is key to ladder safety, and if the floor area is cambered, the ladder could slip or become unbalanced once you begin climbing. If working on a cambered floor, you’ll need to ensure that the ladder is adjustable so that it is stable.
3 points of contact
Whatever task you are carrying out, you always want to ensure that you have three points of contact on the ladder. So, you should never be in a “hands-free” position.
Sadly, even when you are careful, accidents at work can still happen. If you have been injured on the job, make sure you look into your workers’ compensation options.