Many of the home and garden ideas that you find on these blogs or other places on the internet require use of a ladder. While these serve as a very important tool, they can also be one of the deadliest things you use. Many people have been severely injured or even killed while using a ladder. Here are just a few things that the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) says you should know when using one:
Know the load rating
We’re not saying that you’ve been eating too many hamburgers, just remember that sometimes you are bringing tools up with you that can influence the weight that is on the ladder.
Use the feet that were given to you
We’re talking about the feet of the ladder of course. You shouldn’t place the feet on anything to boost it up such as a boxes or barrels. Also, be aware of the surface you are putting it on. It should be even and not having any foreign substances, such as oil, nearby.
Know your distances
The distance of the base of the ladder away from the wall should be a quarter of the ladders’ total height. In other words, if you have a 16-ft ladder, it should be four feet away from the wall.
Another distance to know is three feet when using and extension or straight ladder. Three feet is the amount of ladder that should be above the ledge that you are leaning it up against.
Too far up
One of the most well-known rules, and probably most ignored, is how far up a ladder you should venture. The top step is NOT the highest you should go on a ladder. On a straight, single or extension ladder, you should not go on the top three steps. On a step ladder, the last step you should go on is typically considered the one below the tool stand.
Most importantly just use common sense when on a ladder. If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. This is just a small collection of the rules you should know. For all of the OSHA regulations, check out the link below.