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Saturday, March 12, 2011

Ladder Safety: Top 9 Tips

tied off ladder
There are times when I've needed to get something done in a hurry where a ladder was needed to be used. And of course I found out the scary way that that's not the way to go about working up on a ladder. Consequently, this article post will be of benefit not only to you but to me also.

After some research on the subject here are my Top 9 tips for Ladder Safety.  May we take them to heart..

  1. Make sure the Ladder is locked into place before climbing 
  2. Be sure the ground is at least fairly level and solid
  3. Never climb to the top of the Ladder
  4. Make sure there are no obstacles to obstruct your climbing
  5. Get help to hold the Ladder if needed
  6. Pick the right Ladder - Refer to my article "How to Make the Right Ladder Choice" - Here
  7. If needed, tie off the Ladder
  8. Always use proper climbing techniques   
  9. Make sure the Ladder is not to steep or shallow 
With stepladders and extension ladders make sure the locking arms are locked fully into place.  This will help to insure that the Ladder doesn't fold up on you when your climbing.  The locking arms on a stepladder are on both sides and ensure that each leg is locked into place.

On an extension ladder it has two spring loaded locks on either side to make sure it doesn't slide down while your up on it.  For maximum safety make sure these are locked in place before you begin to climb.

The ground should be fairly level before beginning.  If it isn't, you must for safety sake find a place to get it level as possible.  The ground should be dry and hard.  Not soft so it can sink to either side.

Never climb to the top of the Ladder as your weight will surely make the ladder top heavy.  Always climb only to the 3rd step down from the top.  Any higher and it will become unstable.

When climbing up make sure there is nothing to obstruct your climb such as tree limbs, electrical wires, etc..

If you can't meet any of the first 4 tips just mentioned then get help.  Ask a friend or family member for help to hold the ladder for you.  In fact, 2 people are better than one to make sure of maximum safety.

There are different types of ladders for different types of jobs or projects.  Such as Aluminum, Wood, and Fiberglass ladders.  Which one is right for you for what your doing?  As stated, refer to my article "How to Make the Right Ladder Choice" - Here to help you in your decision.

If your climbing up on a wall or roof, for extra stability tie the ladder off on both sides.  For example, on a roof you can drive a nail into the shingles on each side and use rope to tie off the ladder so it won't slide either way on you while up working on it.  Creating greater stability and safety.

Never climb up the ladder backwards.  Don't climb up on the front of a stepladder.  Always face the ladder and climb with both feet one step at a time.  As stated before never climb beyond the 3rd step from the top.  And never step out on the shelf of a paint ladder.

When you put up the ladder make sure it is not to steep or shallow as that will cause it to slide when your on it. Remember you can tie it off for greater safety.

Most of these are just common sense steps folks.  For greater benefit, print yourself off a hard copy of this article and use it as a checklist each time you go to get up on a ladder.  Since your safety is always number 1.

For both inside and outside I have a quality review of a great all purpose ladder you can read here.

Thank for coming by......