Using a ladder at your place of employment may be second nature. You do this day after day, so you don't think much about your safety.
Unfortunately, a minor mistake can result in a major accident that causes a serious injury or even death.
Here are some tips you can follow to prevent a workplace ladder accident:
- Never use a damaged ladder: If you notice any damage or defects, move the ladder off the job site. Using a damaged ladder is a big risk.
- Maintain three points of contact: Keep one hand and two feet or two hands and one foot on the ladder. This allows you to maintain your balance at all times. Anything less than three points of contact is a safety risk.
- Choose the right size ladder: For example, if your ladder is too short to reach the necessary height, you may find yourself standing on the top rung. This increases the risk of tipping.
- Be careful of where you place your ladder: Search for firm and level ground that's far enough away from pedestrian and vehicular traffic.
- Don't carry heavy loads: If you're carrying a heavy load, a small move in either direction could pull you to the ground below.
Even if you follow these tips, you could still be injured in a workplace ladder accident. If this happens, stay where you are and call for help. Also, administer first aid until paramedics arrive.
As soon as possible, inform your employer of the accident and the injuries you've suffered. This will work in your favor when making a workers' compensation claim.