Ladder Safety Tips from Safety Services

Safety Services Company has a blog where they post safety tips, and sometimes they post safety tips for ladders too. Here are a couple safety tips from the blog:

Choose the Right Ladder

First, you want to choose the right ladder for the job. You might find a stepladder will help you best do the job, or an maybe an extension ladder would. You also want to choose the correct weight rating. There are a few different weight ratings to choose from. For commercial and industrial use, we recommend a Type 1A or 1AA, which is a 300 or 375 pound rating.

Use the Ladder Correctly

Always secure the ladder to make sure it does not slip or move while you are on it. If you are using an extension ladder to get to a roof or other surface, make sure the ladder extends three feet past the roof line. Always face the ladder when climbing up or down. Never climb higher than the second rung on stepladders and the third rung on extension ladders. Keep your hands free while on the ladder, and use a tool belt. When you set up the ladder, make sure to have it at the correct angle, 75.5 degrees.

Maintain the Ladder

Always take care of your ladder and do the proper maintenance. Always inspect the ladder before and after use. If any part of the ladder is damaged, either fix the ladder or dispose of it properly. Check the joints and latches and check aluminum ladders for cracks, broken welds and other rough spots. If using a fiberglass ladder, make sure the fiberglass is in good condition and has not flowered. For any ladder, make sure the the bearings are oiled and that the wheels and pulleys are in good working condition as well.


Ladder Safety Toolbox Refresher

Every now and again, I like to do a refresher on our Ladder Safety Toolbox. If you want some quick ideas for ladder safety training, the Toolbox is a great resource.

The Toolbox has a number of training resources, including OSHA guidelines, safety flyers, checklists and PowerPoint presentations. The Toolbox is set up so you can easily download the handouts and print them off.

The information from OSHA includes links to helpful OSHA site, OSHA ladder safety rules, the OSHA Fall Prevention Training Guide, Ladder Setup Tips, and a pamphlet about Ladder Safety.

If you don’t have time to plan your own safety training, we have a quick video in the Toolbox you can share quickly and easily too.

Have you found the Ladder Safety Toolbox helpful? Is there anything you would like to see added?



Ladder Safety Tips from Redwoods Group

The Redwoods Group, a service and insurance organization, has a number of ladder safety tips on its website.

Here are a few tips they have for volunteers:

When using a ladder:

-Inspect the ladder

-Follow the weight limits

-Don’t overreach

-Beware of slip hazards

When on a Stepladder

-Keep all feet on a firm, level surface

-Lock the spreader bar into place

-Never use a stepladder as an extension ladder

When on an Extension Ladder

-Secure the locks

-Extend the ladder three feet above the roof line

-Place the ladder at 75.5 degrees before climbing

Do you think they missed any important safety tips, or did they do a good job of covering everything?

Ladder Safety When Working In The Construction Industry


Today we have a guest post from Dennis Kaminski, founder at SafetyMart.

It should come as no surprise that when it comes to injuries and deaths on the job, construction ranks as one of the most dangerous occupations in America. In fact, more than 40 percent of the deaths that happen on construction jobs were due to falls. Further, falls from ladders account for more than 25 percent of all those deaths. In 2014 alone, 90 of 359 fatalities at construction jobs resulted from falls off ladders. And reports from OSHA show that of all the violations in the industry, falls account for the third most often reported.

Despite all of this, ladder safety is one of the most overlooked health and safety risks in the construction industry. It’s probably little wonder that there are so many accidents despite the fact that ladders are so common at construction sites and are used virtually every day by practically everyone at a given site.

The truth is that there are many reasons for these problems, but the incorrect and unsafe use of a ladder should not be one of the reasons for these problems. In the spirit of preventing these problems, this list of safety guidelines is provided.

Safety Guidelines When Using Ladders in Construction

  • You should understand how to use a ladder properly. In fact, every employee should be properly and completely briefed on the correct use of a ladder, regardless of the type of ladder or its use. Everyone should understand what the common hazards associated with a ladder are and how to avoid them. They should understand how a ladder is to be placed before its use, and the load-bearing capacities of every ladder.
  • Whenever you open a ladder, make sure the metal hinges at the top as well as the braces on the sides, are secure, locked, and straight. Also, make sure that you never erect a ladder on uneven ground. Make sure that each leg of the ladder makes contact with the ground.
  • Never sit or stand on the top or even the top step of a ladder. You should stand no further up than the rung that allows you to stand with your shinbone at the top of the ladder.
  • Only climb on the side of the ladder that has steps. Never use the backside of a ladder to stand. Also, never allow more than one person to stand on a ladder at any one time. It should also go without saying but never use the paint can stand as a step.
  • Before you move a ladder, make sure to always remove any tools that you might have sitting on it.
  • Never leave a ladder unattended. This is especially true at the end of the day when the workers leave and others, such as children, might come on site. When work is complete for the day, take down your ladders, close them up, and store them away.

Special Caution Notes for Extension Ladders

  • Most household ladders come in four, six, and eight feet heights. In special cases, however, some ladders come with extensions that allow them to reach higher–and sometimes much higher–lengths. Below are a few tips for using these ladders safely.
  • When you place an extension ladder on a home or building, you should lay it flat on the ground, with the feet touching the structure. Then open it to the desired height. Once it is the height you wish, stand it up, walking it to the structure you want to climb.
  • Once your ladder is standing at the structure you want to climb, raise it to the height you want by pulling the rope on the telescopic part of the ladder. Make sure that both sides of the ladder are extended to equal lengths before you secure it.
  • Make sure that your ladder has both feet on the ground, and that it is standing away from the structure at about a 1:4 ratio of distance. For example, if you have a ladder that is 16 feet tall, the legs should be four feet away from the house or building.

Above all else, whatever the type of ladder being used or the conditions, use common sense. It’s the best and most reliable safety measure.

Some Main Causes of Ladder Accidents

laddersdamagedWhat are some of the most common causes of ladder accidents? Today, let’s explore a few of the most common causes of ladder accidents and how to prevent them.

Selecting the Wrong Type of Ladder

It can be tough to know which ladder is the right ladder for your job, but it is crucial to help you be safe on the job. Choose a ladder with the correct weight rating. Also, make sure the ladder is tall enough for the job at hand. Many injuries happen from the operator standing on the top rung or top  cap and then falling from overreaching. Also consider whether an extension ladder or stepladder is the best option.

Using Worn or Damaged Ladders

Another leading cause of ladder accidents is using old, worn and damaged ladders. After a couple years, the ladder feet get worn and the materials can break down. Damaged ladders dangerous and can lead to serious injury if not fixed or taken out of service. Always inspect the ladder before you climb it and take care of any safety concerns.

Incorrect Use of Ladders

Using the ladder incorrectly is the number one cause of ladder accidents. Never use a ladder any other way than they way intended by the manufacturer.  Never lengthen or alter your ladder, and always remember to use three points of contact. Human error is by far the leading cause of ladder accidents. Never use a ladder in any other way than what the manufacturer intended it to be used for. Also, do not lengthen or alter a ladder in any way.

Incorrect Placement of Ladders

Make sure the ground is level and firm before you put the ladder on it. Never put your ladder in front of an unlocked or unguarded door. Also, always secure your ladder before climbing.

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