Safety first! Sound familiar? This is something we are repeatedly saying to our children, but it is imperative that we keep this in mind when working around the home with the help of a ladder.
Ladders have been around a long time, and are common to almost every home and workplace. This, and their simplicity, gives the false impression that ladder work requires no special knowledge or skills (as is demonstrated in this picture!). The opposite is true. Ladders are tools. And as with any job you are about to tackle…make sure you know what you are about to do and be familiar with the tools you will be using. Many of the basic safety rules and that apply to most tools also apply to the safe use of a ladder:
- Before using a ladder, inspect it to confirm it is in good working condition. Do not use a ladder that has loose or missing parts.
- Read the safety information labels on the ladder.
- Wear slip-resistant shoes.
- Ensure that the ladder you are using is the right size for the job.
- As a rule of thumb, the ladder should be greater than the total weight of the climber, tools, supplies, and other objects placed upon the ladder.
- The length of the ladder must be sufficient so that the climber does not have to stand on the top rung or step.
- Hips and shoulders should be over the centre of the ladder.
- When the ladder is set-up for use, place it on firm level ground.
- When using an A-frame stepladder, make sure the brace is locked in place.
- When using an extension ladder, do not place the base too close or too far away from the building. The base of the ladder should be 1 foot away from support for every 4 feet of height.
- Do not place ladders in front of closed doors that can open toward the ladder.
- Never jump or slide down from a ladder or climb more than one rung/step at a time.
- Do not overreach.
- Do not carry objects while climbing or descending a ladder so that you minimize the chance of losing your balance.
- Climb slowly and deliberately, maintaining three-point contact by keeping two hands and one foot, or two feet and one hand, on the ladder at all times.
- If you are going to climb onto a roof, the ladder should extend 3 feet higher than the roof.
Of course you can set those safety concerns aside and let us to the job for you! Our staff have been fully trained in all aspects of safety on the job and will ensure that the work is done efficiency and with excellence.