Every day, workers make mistakes on ladders. In most cases, these mistakes do not result in accidents. For instance, a worker is supposed to keep three points of contact at all times, but there are plenty of workers who have reached out to hold something with both hands and not fallen off of the ladder.
However, ladder falls are one of the biggest hazards for many workers, especially in construction, so it’s clear that some of these errors do lead to serious and even fatal injuries. You need to know what the mistakes are so you can avoid them. Four of the most common are:
- Placing the ladder incorrectly. This could mean placing it on ground that is not stable, for instance, or putting it in front of a door.
- Using the wrong ladder. Height is a huge issue. Someone with a ladder that is too short will often try to use it anyway to save time, and that means climbing higher on the ladder than is safe.
- Leaning and reaching on the ladder. When something is just out of reach, climbing all the way down to move six inches to the side feels like too much trouble, so workers often lean out, slip, and fall.
- Using a ladder that is in poor condition. Like any other tool, a ladder wears out over time. The difference is that a worn ladder could break or even collapse, and that’s very dangerous.
Whether or not you make these mistakes, falls in the workplace can cause massive damage and leave you in the hospital. When this happens, be sure you know what legal options you have. Workers’ compensation is there for a reason, so don’t be afraid to file a claim.