March is National Ladder Safety Month. Every day approximately 13,000 workers are injured and over 700 of those are from ladder related injuries*. Proper ladder safety is important whether you are just hanging holiday lights at home or working on a large construction site.
Over 100 deaths a year occur from ladder accidents*. Many of these accidents can be avoided with the proper usage and training. The American Ladder Institute offers a free training program. As part of this program, there are safety videos and flyers available for the workplace. Ladder safety training can go a long way in making the workplace a safe workplace!
According to a 2016 ALI study the most common ladder mistakes that led to injury were overreaching and missing a step. When following a few simple practices many of these ladder mistakes can be avoided.
- Choose the right ladder for the job. The basic rule is that a person’s reach height is four feet higher than the ladder. If a person must reach more than four feet, the ladder is too small.
- Besides reaching too high, if a person must reach too far that their center of gravity does not stay within the center of the ladder, the ladder should be moved.
- When ascending or descending the ladder, do not skip steps. Skipping steps leads to missing a step, which can lead to a fall. Take your time.
- Ladders should be on a level and firm surface. An uneven surface can lead to accidental movement of the ladder. If the ladder has non-slip feet or levelers, use those to create a more stable base.
Even the easiest jobs such as cleaning out gutters need to have the same ladder precautions as a larger job. You can avoid going up on ladders to clean gutters when a gutter guard is installed. Gutter guards keep out the leaves and debris and allow the rain water to keep flowing through. Using these basic tips will make gutter guard installation or any job requiring a ladder much safer.
GutterStuff® Pro FR is the easiest gutter guard to install and maintain, which will reduce the number of trips up a ladder to maintain the gutters. For more information and to order GutterStuff® Pro FR, please call TJM Innovations at 414-446-8778 or visit gutterstuff.com