Safety Tip for Home Owners

March 18, 2017

With spring come many chores for home owners here in Atlanta. Window cleaning, high-top dusting, etc. may require ladders.  Don’t Fall OFF your ladder (it’s Spring!) while accomplishing these tasks.  These are 4 common mistakes that can lead to injury:

1 – Selecting the Wrong Type of Ladder

2 – Using Worn or Damaged Ladders

3 – Incorrect Use of Ladders

4 – Incorrect Placement of Ladders

Safety Tips for Homeowners:

Never:

  • leave a raised ladder unattended. Ladders that are not in use should be laid on the ground or put away.
  • place a ladder in front of a door that is not locked, blocked or guarded;
  • place a ladder on an unstable or uneven surface;
  • use a ladder for any purpose other than the one for which it was designed.  Many homeowners and even professionals sometimes use an extension ladder as a ramp between two points or as a shelf to hold materials and supplies, and what may seem convenient in a pinch in the field may lead to an accident or injury;
  • tie or fasten ladders together to provide longer sections, unless they are specifically designed for that purpose;
  • use a ladder in windy conditions;
  • use a ladder if you’re not fully alert and physically able;
  • skip any rungs while climbing or descending;
  • bounce on any rungs;
  • use a ladder that has been exposed to fire or strong chemicals, as these conditions may leave residual damage or corrosion, which cannot be detected during use;
  • exceed the maximum load rating. The maximum load rating, which should be found on a highly visible label on the ladder, is the maximum intended load that the ladder is designed to carry. Duty ratings are Type lll, ll, l, lA and 1B, which correspond to maximum load capacities of 220, 225, 250, 300 and 350 pounds, respectively. Inspectors and homeowners should know the duty rating of the ladder they are using, as well as the combined weight of themselves and their tools;
  • use a step ladder in the closed or partially closed position, or use it by leaning it against a wall;
  • sit on any rung, including the top;
  • climb past the fourth rung from the top on a leaning ladder, or the second rung from the top on a step ladder.  Never use the top step;
  • pull, lean, stretch, or make any sudden moves. Over-reaching is the most common and dangerous form of ladder misuse;
  • climb a ladder while holding tools or other items.  Both hands are required for safe climbing and descent;
  • pull or push any items while ascending or descending.  Always wait until you’re at the top or bottom of your working point to hoist or lower items;
  • step on the rear section of a step ladder or the underside of an extension ladder;
  • paint a wooden ladder, as this can conceal cracks and other damage that would require repairing or replacing the ladder; or
  • drop or throw a ladder, or allow it to fall, which can create a hazard for others, as well as damage the ladder. 

While you may not be using a ladder, share this with anyone you may know that might be using a ladder as ladder accidents are preventable but thousands still get injured every year while using a ladder

Hopefully you found this information, informative and useful.