Dos and Don'ts for Using a Portable Ladder



Inspect the ladder for defects such as missing, damaged or loose components; snags; oil, mud or other slippery materials. Make sure moving parts work properly and all connections are secure.

Don’t climb a ladder if you are not physically or mentally up to it. Dizziness and shortness of breath can interfere with balance.  Certain medications can also affect balance.

Get help with a ladder that is too heavy to handle by yourself. If possible, have another person hold the ladder while you are working on it.

Don’t use a ladder, particularly an aluminum ladder, around electrical wires that might be live. If the power is turned off, be sure it cannot be turned on while you are working.

Wear slip-resistant shoes or boots, and make sure the soles are clean. Climb one step at a time while facing the ladder. Keep your body centered and use your hands.

Don’t use a ladder in strong winds.

Be sure the ladder has been set up with all ladder feet on firm, level ground.

Don’t place a ladder on slippery or unstable surfaces, and don’t try to move or shift the ladder while you are on it.

Keep the area around the ladder clear and control traffic. For example, if the ladder is located where a door might open, lock or block the door

Be careful not to overbalance when moving materials. Carefully limit the weight of materials you carry on the ladder. Have materials handed to you or haul them up with a rope.

Keep your body centered on the ladder. Hold the ladder with one hand while working with the other. Never let your belt buckle pass beyond either ladder rail.

Don’t stand or sit above the highest safe standing level. This means you don’t use the top three rungs of an extension ladder or the top of a stepladder.

Related article:
Safely Use Ladders When Removing Debris
2/13/2007 2:51:28 AM
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