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Ladder Safety: Inspection and proper use of ladder

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Ladder Safety: Inspection and proper use of ladder

Ladder is important on sites and work environments because they are common tools commonly used in many industries. However, improper use of a ladder can lead to accidents and injuries. This article will discuss how ladder safety is important, inspection of ladders, and how you can use ladders to promote a safe working environment.

Understanding the risks of improper use of a ladder

Improper use of a ladder can cause so many things. Such as falls of persons, falls of objects, etc. However, the inappropriate use of a ladder can involve so many things, which include

1.Incorrect placement of ladders

Incorrect placement of ladders means placing the ladder on uneven, slippery, and unstable surfaces. The unstable surfaces can be areas where the ladder is possibly sinking into the ground. Slippery surfaces can lead to a fall off a ladder, too.

2.Overreaching when making use of a ladder

Sometimes, workers try to use a ladder even when the length of the ladder is not suitable for that job. They will try to stretch themselves beyond the ladder’s reach, and this causes an imbalance, which can cause an accident. 

3.Use of defective ladders

The defective ladder is damaged. When a ladder is damaged, it is unsafe to use it as a working tool. Defective ladders increase the risk of accidents in a work area.

What are the potential injuries resulting from the use of a ladder?


Falling is one of the potential effects of the use of ladders; there could be falls of objects or falls of persons. A person’s fall is mostly a result of a slip from the rungs or the instability of the ladder. Falls can be preventable when adequate measures are in place when using a ladder.

2.Impact Injuries

The fall of objects from a ladder can result in an impact injury. For example, a hammer can fall from a worker’s hand while working on a ladder. This object can land on another worker’s body.

3.Muscle strains

There could be muscle strains when using a ladder due to an incorrect posture and also from overreaching from a person when the correct ladder height is not in use for that particular work.

How to conduct ladder inspection

Ladder inspection is a crucial activity that helps ensure a safe ladder in a work area. During an inspection, the different parts of the ladder are checked for damages, and the information is documented. Every unsafe ladder is removed from service until they are repaired or replaced.

Regular Ladder inspection schedule

Ladders are meant to be inspected before each use. Ladder inspection will help to identify any visible defects on the ladder body. Then, there is another inspection called periodic inspection, and you can conduct this one to check the structural integrity of the ladder periodically.

Keep places to inspect on a ladder.

1.Safety Label

These are the labels on the ladder; you must ensure they are visible and legible for people to read. 

2.Rungs and Steps

Check for rungs and the steps and ensure that there is no visible damage to them or signs of wear and tear on the ladder.

3.Hardware Stability

Under hardware stability, you are checking for the bolts, the screws, and the hinges. These hardware have to be in good condition.


4.Structural integrity.

The ladder is being assessed for any bent or damaged components in its body. 

Essential guidelines on proper use of ladders

  • Ensure that you choose the right ladder for your job. Choosing the right ladder will help you prevent overreaching. Any ladder you select should have an appropriate height, including where you want to get to or where you want to work. Also, ensure that the ladder’s weight is sufficient to carry the user’s weight.
  • When setting a ladder, always ensure it is on stable surfaces. Avoid unstable, slippery, or soft surfaces, which may cause the ladder to tip or fall. Ensure you secure the ladder firmly on the ground to ensure stability. 
  • Obey the three-point contact whenever you are making use of a ladder. It means having your two hands and one foot or two feet and one hand at any given time on a ladder when climbing. Most importantly, face the ladder when climbing and going down.
  •  Maintain your center of gravity when standing on a ladder. Also, your body must be centered between the side rails to avoid tipping off the ladder. Stop the jobs that need you to overreach or ensure you get a suitable ladder to prevent overextending yourself.
  • Avoid carrying a heavy load up or down a ladder, and make sure you use tool belts to have your tools so that both of your hands will be free when climbing the ladder.
  • Train your employees on the safe use of ladders. Make the training comprehensive enough for your workers to learn and apply what they have learned. During the training, remember to train them to identify potential hazards from using ladders and address them. It does not end with training; there should be an arrangement for ladder safety awareness and regular reminders through safety meetings and toolbox talks.


Ladder Safety is very important for our homes and the workplace, and ensuring regular inspections, proper usage, and adequate training will prevent accidents arising from ladders. Let’s embrace the above article and put it to good use. 

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