Ladder Use Tool Box Talk
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Introduction: Ladders are one of the most used, and abused, pieces of equipment on a construction site. When abused and misused, they have enormous potential to cause accidents and injuries.
• Ladders are essentially a means of access/egress and should only be used as working platforms for very short duration tasks, where alternative platforms would be impracticable, and where such tasks can be carried out safely using a ladder.
• Only industrial class ladders should be used, which are in good condition (no missing/broken rungs, split stiles, etc).
• Ladders must be suitable angled (1 unit out for every 4 units up) and suitably secured (preferably tied off at the top using both stiles to prevent both sideways slip and rotation).
• Ladders must extend sufficiently beyond working platforms to allow for safe access/egress.
• Ladders must not be painted (this hides defects), should be stored correctly, and be subject to regular inspection.
• Never take serviceability for granted, always carry out a visual check prior to use. Report any defects immediately.
• Never carry out homemade repairs on a ladder, and never use a ladder with existing home made repairs, and never use a homemade ladder!
• Always stand ladders on a firm base. Never use milk crates, oil drums, etc., to gain extra height, and if ground is soft use suitable support.
Consider staking at bottom.
• Never use rungs as a support for planks, or rest rungs on planks.
• Remove excessive mud, grease, etc., from footwear prior to climbing/descending a ladder.
• Always use both hands to climb/descend, and face the ladder.
• Do not carry loads up ladders – use hoists or alternatives.
• Never over reach from ladders – get down and move them.
• Avoid using metal ladders against metal surfaces – the reduced friction makes them more liable to slipping.
• Beware of overhead obstructions, especially overhead power lines (metal ladders/metal reinforcements).
SILLY PEOPLE TAKE CHANCES – SENSIBLE PEOPLE TAKE PRECAUTIONS
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