Hundreds of thousands of people suffer ladder-related injuries in the United States every year. Falls from even short ladders can result in serious injury and death, necessitating caution for any workers planning to use a ladder for any purpose. Numerous studies exhibit data that paint a cautionary tale for workers and homeowners using the common tool.
- 43 percent of fatal falls in the 2000s involved ladders
- 20 percent of workers injured in a fall were using a ladder
- 81 percent of construction workers injured in a fall that was treated in an emergency room were using a ladder
- About 500,000 people fall from ladders annually
- 97.3 percent of ladder-related injuries occur at homes or farms
Between 1990 and 2005, ladder-related mishaps resulting in injury increased over 50 percent. Ladder safety should be taken seriously by anyone who uses a ladder, but especially for workers who use ladders during their work duties. The American Ladder Institute has offered some guidelines that should be followed by anyone using a ladder.
- One person, one ladder, unless the ladder is specifically designed for more than one user
- Do not use a ladder if you are tired or feeling faint
- Do not use a ladder in high winds
- Do not wear low-traction shoes when climbing a ladder
- Confirm the ladder you are about to use is in good physical condition – ladders that sway or lean should be discarded
- Confirm the ladder you are about to use is the appropriate strength for the job – never exceed the weight limit of a ladder
- Confirm the ladder you are about to use is the appropriate length for the job – never step on the top rung of a ladder
- Ensure the ladder is placed on solid, level ground
- Ensure the ladder is not positioned in front of a door or gate that could open into the ladder – block, lock, or guard the door if necessary
- Do not climb a ladder without having free hands
- Climb ladders slowly and deliberately – avoid sudden actions that could cause you to lose balance
- Do not attempt to reposition a ladder that you or someone else is standing on
- Do not attempt to lean beyond the sides of a ladder
- Always keep three points of contact with a ladder – either two hands and one foot or one hand and two feet.
See the full basic ladder safety guidelines here.
Any worker injured after a fall from a ladder while on the job is eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Any person injured after a fall from a ladder due to someone else’s negligence is eligible to pursue a personal injury claim. The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth helps injured workers and accident victims seek medical care and financial compensation for their injuries. We offer 100 percent free consultations, so call us today at 888-517-9888 to speak with an injury recovery expert!