During this time of year, I always like to do a post on holiday ladder safety. The holidays are known for being a joyful time, and it would be terrible to have an accident put a damper on the season.

One of the common tasks this time of year is hanginf Christmas lights and other outdoor decorations. Here are a few tips to help you be safe:

Use the ladder on even ground

Ground is rarely perfectly level by itself. Make the ladder as even as you can by digging out the ground on one side or by using levelers.

Set the Ladder Up Correctly

When setting the ladder up, make sure the hinges are locked into place. For an A-frame stepladder, you want to double check that the hinge locks into place, otherwise the ladder will collapse and you will get injured.

Use the Right Ladder for the Job

Depending on the height of your house and the decorations you are putting up, you will most likely be choosing between an A-frame stepladder and an extension ladder. Before setting the ladder up, consider the height you need and which ladder would help you get the job done most safely.

Stay Between the Rails

Once you are on the ladder, make sure to stay between the ladder rails. Leaning while on the ladder could lead to a catastrophic accident. Follow the “belt buckle rule” and keep your body between the rails.

Beware of Weather 

Wait until you have a nice, clear day to use your ladder. If it is windy, snowy, or rainy, wait until the weather has cleared up before setting up your decorations.

While this post is aimed more at home owners than those working on the job site, we figured it might be a good reminder with the holidays here now.