Whatever be the location, the set up or the material, being observant and taking precaution while using a ladder is as important as making extra sure you don’t goof up while taking a baby in your arms. It is imperative you stay alert, not let your mind wander and watch your steps. Equally cardinal is the fact that you buy a ladder that is in consonance with your needs. 

Studies show most of the falls that take place are partly because of carelessness and partly because of using equipments that aren’t right or in other words unsafe. Also, many people often use the ladder in a perilous manner and in a way that is anything but secure or compromise on the quality and go for the substandard ones to cut down on the costs. 

Here are some safety rules that’ll help prevent accidents from taking place and minimise ladder induced, work related death and injury.

Doing a pre as well as a post-check:

Always do a pre-check before engaging the ladder in a task. Follow it up by doing a post-check after the work is done. While the former allows you to be aware of cracks, splits, corrosion, protruding nails, wobbly side rails, etc. before a mishap takes place, the latter lets you clean the dirt, oil, grease or scrutinise the damage that may have been caused while completing the task to avoid future accidents.

Setting up the ladder:

Always set the ladder on a plain, even surface. Never place it atop anything, especially empty boxes or unsteady bases.

Climbing the ladder:

While climbing the steps, keep your face towards the ladder and firmly hold the side rails with both the hands. Avoid carrying heavy tool and equipments or skipping the steps.

Knowing your ladder well:

It is good to know the ladder’s height, the material it is made up of, whether it is extendable and so on.

Knowing your work environment well:

You need to know whether you are going to use the ladder at home or office, in a populated work zone or in a walkway/ footpath/ roadway.

Also, keep in mind:

1. Making use of metal ladders in an area that is strewn with exposed electrical tools, wires and the like is a strict no no.
2. You cannot get access to more than three to four feet above the ladder top (as the topmost standing level is usually two to four rungs down from the top). Going beyond it may result in a fall.
3. Immediately get the broken or defective ladders serviced or repaired and do not use them even if it is for a nanosecond.
4. While fibreglass does not conduct electricity and wood also has a good reputation (particularly when dry) for the same, aluminium is known to be electrically quite conductive.
5. While fibreglass and aluminium is resistant to extreme weather conditions and not prone to catch fire, wood is known to be much more sensitive to weather conditions and highly inflammable as well.
6. Although fibreglass is favoured by many and even used by fire fighters, aluminium ladders are the most feasible ones for home or office use because they strength, weightlessness and affordability.