They help you fix roofs, install windows, and hang drywall for your customers. Ladders are so common that we often neglect learning how to use them safely. Unfortunately, thousands are injured or killed each year in ladder-related accidents.
Before you climb up for your next project, spend a minute checking your knowledge about ladder safety. Remember, ladders are safe tools when properly designed, maintained, and used.
Ways to reduce your chances of falling from a ladder:
• Inspect the ladder. Before using a ladder, inspect it to confirm it is in good working condition.
• Secure the ladder. Place the ladder on level ground and make sure the contact points – floor, wall, etc. – are not slippery.
• Follow the three point-of-contact rule. When climbing, keep two hands and a foot (or two feet and a hand) on the rungs or side rails.
• Stay off of the top. Always stay off the top two steps and platform of a step ladder.
• Do not overreach the ladder. The user should keep his or her bellybutton between the side rails.