Ladder Safety: Top Causes of Ladder Accidents

Using a ladder to reach out-of-reach heights is common in both the home and the workplace. Accidents involving ladders are a primary cause of worker injuries and fatalities in the construction sector. As per numerous safety studies, over 90,000 individuals across the country obtain urgent care treatment each year as a direct consequence of ladder-related accidents.

On the other hand, the dangers of ladders are not unavoidable. According to safety experts, anyone can prevent almost all unfortunate incidents with appropriate protective measures. So, before you go out and buy a new ladder or decide on construction equipment for rent, it’s essential to be aware of some of the most frequent causes of ladder accidents and how you can avoid them.

Here, we have outlined the top significant factors of ladder accidents and how to prevent them.

1. Selecting the Wrong Ladder for the Task

Utilizing the wrong ladder for the job can lead to dangerous situations such as collisions and falls. If the ladder is too short, the climber may have to go above and beyond to finish the task. If this occurs, you may fall if you overextend yourself. 

Several ladders have weight limits. Excessive weight on a ladder can cause the rails or rungs to tear, leading to serious injury.

Besides that, when handling items up on the ladder, you must also keep the maximum weight in mind. If not, you may risk injuring yourself or others. 

2. The Ladder is in the Wrong Position

All instructions, markings, and labels should be reviewed and followed at all times. Before climbing, make sure the ladder is securely in place and at a precise angle. Never use boards or other materials to alter the height of the ladder. Numerous ladders already come with built-in indicator devices which aid in expanding stability.

Place the base of an extension or straight ladder 1/4 of the ladder’s working length away from a wall or other vertical surface when putting it up. Use a stepladder only when it’s not leaning against an object or a building. Ladders must be fully extended and placed on a level, firm, and stable surface only.

3. Utilizing Ladders With Custom Modifications or Damaged Ladders

Over time, rungs on ladders will start to wear and end up losing their non-slip layer, resulting in an increased risk of slips and falls. To guarantee the integrity of the ladder, you must inspect ladders and even scaffolds regularly before each use. Extension ladder ropes and locks need to be in excellent shape and free of cracks.

Altering ladders beyond the equipment rental company guidelines is not advised due to the possibility of compromising the ladder’s integrity and bringing down its duty rating. Every ladder with damages must be labeled “Dangerous. Do Not Use” until a new ladder is available or the repairs are done.

4. Overbalancing

Among the most common and crucial pieces of ladder safety information is to keep your hips within the guardrails at all times. When you have something you need but it’s just out of reach, do not lean over the top of the ladder or off the side. This is among the most harmful situations you can put yourself in once you are up a ladder because it’s all simple for it to shift the weight, fall, and take you with it.

5. Failure to Adhere to Basic Ladder Safety

The rule of three points of ladder contact is vital, and it requires you to stay on the ladder with two hands and one foot or two feet and one hand. When a climber doesn’t follow this rule and other safety precautions that are necessary to take, ladder accidents will inevitably occur. You don’t want to be among the individuals who get hurt when they fall off a ladder. To feel at ease while working with ladders, make sure to select the ideal type of ladder for the project and act following the basic safety precautions.

Injuries Caused by Using a Ladder

Ladder accidents can have serious consequences, necessitating extended hospital stays and recovery times. Most importantly, injuries can have long-term outcomes, and maybe some individuals will never be able to return to their previous level of activity. Falling from a ladder can result in the following injuries:

  • permanent disability
  • shoulder, knee, elbow joint injuries
  • injury to the internal organs
  • abrasions, cuts, and puncture wounds from falling objects
  • severe lacerations
  • spinal injuries
  • bone fractures

Choose Elephant Rental

Elephant Construction Solutions serves professionals and hobbyists alike with high-quality tools and equipment you need to get the job done. Located in the Rio Grande Valley, we offer construction equipment for rent, power tools for rent, power equipment rentals, saw rental, and concrete breaker rental, as well as other quality equipment and machinery, including air compressor rental, power generator rental, and even scaffolding. 
Reach out to us at Elephant Construction Solutions to get your free quote for any machinery your site may need. Whether it’s as simple as a lawnmower, as important as scaffolding, or as small as a nail gun, we have the rental tools and equipment you need to successfully finish your next project and stay under budget while doing it.


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