Dave Johnson from ISHN shared a blog post on his approach to ladder safety. He’d had some bad weather near his house, requiring him to use a ladder to to trim some trees. Once he was on the ladder, he realized he should have taken a quick refresher course on ladder safety. Johnson then explained a couple of tips to help others be safer on ladders.
Choose the Right Ladder for the Job
According to the CPSC, the number one cause of ladder injuries is because of choosing the wrong ladder. The ladder should be tall enough that you don’t have to stand on the top rung or top cap. The ladder should also allow you to maintain three points of contact, to have both feet and one hand on the rungs or both hands and one foot. You also want to make sure the ladder is in good shape, not worn or damaged.
Using ladders can get tricky, and it can be helpful to have a second opinion. Many jobs could benefit from consulting another person or having the other person stabilize the ladder while you climb it. This person can also remind you of safe ladder practices.
Keep Your Mind on the Job
Believe it or not, many people get nervous climbing the ladder not because of any specific hazards, but because the ladder’s height makes them nervous. Instead of focusing on the ladder’s height, remain focused on the task at hand and getting that task done safely.