Doesn't everyone know how to use a ladder? Isn't it just common sense, put it against the wall and climb up and don't fall, duh...? Isn't it more important to only focus on safety training for the more dangerous stuff like man lifts, and dump trucks, and work zone flaggers, and big power tools?
NO. To all of the above.
Although one of the most common tools used on a construction site, if improperly used, Extension Ladders can lead to serious injuries or even fatal incidents. Ladders are involved in 20 percent of fall injuries among workers and 81 percent of construction worker fall injuries.
According to OSHA, "Workers who use extension ladders risk permanent injury or death from falls and electrocutions. These hazards can be eliminated or substantially reduced by following good safety practices."
The extension ladder below is missing the foot assembly and the foot pads. This appears to be the top portion of an extension ladder that has been taken part. Definitely not safe!
OSHA Standard 1926.1060(a) states that the employer shall provide a training program for each employee using ladders and stairways, as necessary...to recognize hazards related to ladders and stairways...
If you are working with extension ladders remember these important safety precautions. If you are leading the safety huddle or toolbox talk on ladder safety, make sure these safety tips are communicated to your crews who are using extension ladders.
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