printech, January, 2004
Ladder Safety Tips

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From: Gary Jones ( )
Date: Mon, 26 Jan 2004 22:11:06

All: FYI - From Occupational Health and Safety eNews at and Minnesota OSHA

Tips: Using ladders safely

According to Minnesota OSHA, most workers injured in falls from ladders are less than 10 feet above the ladder's base. The agency offers the following tips for improving ladder safety to help workers avoid falls and other ladder mishaps.

• Inspect your ladder for tight joints between steps and side rails, cracks, rust, broken rungs and rails, and oily or greasy rungs.
• Ensure there are nonslip safety feet on each ladder, or secure the ladder to prevent it from sliding on slippery surfaces.
• Stepladders must have a metal spreader bar.
• Check the ladder's rating, and don't subject it to a load greater than its rated capacity.
• Use only nonconductive ladders near electrical conductors.
• Set the ladder on solid footing, against a solid support.
• Place the base of non-self-supporting ladders out away from the wall or edge of the upper level one foot for every four feet of vertical height.
• Never increase the height of a ladder by standing it on other objects, such as boxes or barrels, or by splicing two ladders together.
• Keep ladders away from doorways or walkways, unless they can be protected by barriers.
• Climb the ladder carefully, facing it and using both hands. Use a tool belt or hand line to carry materials.
• Keep your body centered. Never let your belt buckle pass beyond either ladder rail. If something is out of reach, get down and move the ladder.
• Never use ladders as sideways platforms, runways or scaffolds.

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