Tag: ladder safety training (page 1 of 6)

Career and Hobby-Ending injury

This week, I found an article talking about a ladder accident and injury that happened in June. While technically “old news” the man from the article is still dealing with the effects of his accident.

The story

Troy Mandaloniz, a well-known MMA fighter, was working at his day job in property maintenance. He was working to remove a bird’s nest from the front porch of the property when he suddenly fell 18 feet to the ground. He used his arm to break the fall, and then got up to find someone to help him.

Mandaloniz had been in shock when he was looking for help, but on the way to the hospital, the trauma set in. He started having a seizure in the car, so the driver got him to a fire station where they sent him in an ambulance to the hospital. From there, he was sent on a Life Flight to a larger hospital. At the hospital, they put him in a medically induced coma where he basically stayed for the next two months.

The Injuries

From the fall, Mandaloniz suffered severe injury. He had bleeding on his brain and fractures to his forehead, cheekbone and nose. He had two snapped ribs and a broken knee cap. Because he had slightly softened the fall with his arm, his arm and hand are completely bent and broken. It really is a miracle that he survived the fall. Now out of the coma, Mandaloniz is relearning most things. He will not be able to work at his job nor will he be able to fight again.


When it comes to ladder safety, prevention is key. It’s sad to say, but Mandaloniz’ mistake was made before he even climbed the ladder. The first thing he did was choose the wrong type of ladder. According to the article, he chose a tripod ladder, a ladder meant for work in orchards, not as an all-purpose ladder. If he would have chosen a tall stepladder, this accident probably would have never happened.

Why are tripod ladders so dangerous?

There are a number of issues with this type of ladders. They are particularly unstable because the tripod pole can be easily overextended or moved. According to OSHA, orchard ladders the ladder side rails and tripod pole should slightly penetrate the ground to make the ladder more stable. In addition, tripod ladders do not have any sort of locker or spreader bars to keep the moving pieces stable. All of these facts show you why unless you wok at an orchard, you really shouldn’t be using this kind of ladder.

We hope Troy Mandaloniz is able to make the most of his situation and recover as quickly as possible. Let us learn from his mistakes and avoid making the same ones.

Ladder Safety in Construction

Darkhorse 17 Stairs 8_1Construction is one of the more dangerous industries to work in. With all the safety concerns, I thought I would do a ladder safety post specifically for those who want more information about ladder safety in construction.

Obviously, all the regular rules we talk about are still key. Inspect the ladder. Maintain three points of contact. Etc. Having said that, there are a few of the “basic rules” that become a little more important.

Use the Right Ladder for the Job

Especially in construction, there are numerous types of ladders available. Make sure you choose one that is designed for the task at hand. Choose a ladder that is the correct height. There are few things worse than climbing on the top rung or top cap because you should have selected a taller ladder. Along those same lines, make sure the ladder you choose is the best option for your project. Don’t choose a stepladder when you should have chosen an extension ladder. The opposite is also true.

Follow Tie-Off Rules

Make sure you are familiar with the guidelines for working at heights. Make sure you are following all the tie off rules. If you have one accessible to you, the Aerial Safety Cage is a great option and in compliance with all tie-off regulations. These rules are in place to help you be safer and more secure and to prevent injuries in the case of a slip or fall.

Use the Ladder on Even, Solid Ground

Another common issue for ladder safety in construction is uneven ground. Make sure you don’t put a ladder on the ground when it’s uneven. To level the ground, you have a few choices. You can dig out the uneven side to make it level. You can attach levelers to the ladder. Or, you can use a ladder that has integrated levelers like the Ratchet Levelers.

Working at height when on a construction site can be dangerous, but hopefully these tips will help you and your team work a little safer.

Ladder Safety Training Your Team Won’t Dread

photoHaving ladder safety training is necessary, but it is also something most employees don’t look forward to. Here are a few tips on how to make your safety trainings a little better:

Incorporate Team Leaders

Instead of choosing to do all the training yourself, choose a leader who can help plan and lead the training. While you as the safety officer are important, it can be helpful to recruit others to help add to the presentation. Having more people involved will also help them be more interested in helping others see the benefit in the safety training, rather than seeing the meeting as just another obligation.

Have a Sense of Humor

Obviously safety training is a serious thing, but you can incorporate some humor in your training. You can use YouTube videos and music to make your presentation more engaging. You can show fail videos or other “what not to do’s” as examples and to help keep your listeners interested.

Get Participation

If you make the training more of an interactive activity rather than a lecture, your information will stick with everyone better. Research shows that the best way to learn material is to teach others. You can help your team learn by having ways for them to teach one another during the training.

One of the focuses of this blog is to help you make training more effective. By improving your overall approach and planning to your ladder safety meeting and other safety trainings, you will make your training more effective by default.

Do’s and Don’ts of Extension Ladders

Every now and again, it’s nice to have a simple ladder safety training plan all laid out. Here’s just a basic plan for a future ladder safety training for extension ladders:

First, you can go over the basics.

On an extension ladder you should (Thank you to safety.blr.com for the guidelines.):

  • Maintain 3-point contact when climbing or descending a ladder
  • Face the ladder when climbing up or descending
  • Keep your body inside the side rails
  • Avoid tipping the ladder over sideways or causing the ladder base to slide out
  • Carry tools in a tool belt or raise tools up using a hand line. Never carry tools in your hands while climbing up or down a ladder
  • Extend the top of the ladder three feet above the roof line
  • Keep ladders free of any slippery materials

Here’s what your employees should NOT DO:

  • Place a ladder on boxes, barrels, or unstable bases
  • Use a ladder on soft ground or unstable footing
  • Exceed the ladder’s maximum load rating
  • Tie two ladders together to make them longer
  • Ignore nearby overhead power lines
  • Move or shift a ladder with a person or equipment on the ladder
  • Lean out beyond the ladder’s side rails
  • Use an extension ladder horizontally like a platform

When putting on a training, it can be helpful to have visual aids to illustrate what you are telling them to do or not do. You can use pictures or videos. For example, here’s a video you could show as an example of what not to do.

Hopefully this post gives you an idea on what to include in an effective safety presentation.

How to Be the Best Safety Officer [pt 1]

Earn Respect

As a safety officer, you need the respect of your team. Never do anything that would lose their respect like invent facts or violate safety rules yourself. If you don’t know the answer to a question, admit you don’t know and then find the answer. Making something up since “You are supposed to know everything” won’t do anyone any favors. Also, if you see a safety violation, make sure you correct the violation and use it as a teaching moment.

Reward “Good Behavior”

As a safety officer, you may always be tempted to focus on the negative sine that is a large part of the job. However, you can find ways to focus on the positive elements too. Find ways to reward your team when they do things the right way. If your team is struggling with a certain safety focus, find a way to track when they are safe. If your team is struggling with ladder safety, for example, you could choose one piece of ladder safety and reward them when they stay safe. You could choose to track when ladders are being inspected and reward them if they inspect their ladders a percentage you choose. Obviously, you can adapt this tip for whatever works best for you and your team.

Have a Plan

Any good leader has a plan and executes that plan. As a safety officer, make sure you develop a safety plan and then use that plan as you develop trainings and find ways to enforce the rules.

Being a safety officer can be a tough job, but, hopefully, these tips will help make your job a little easier.

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