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A ladder accident can happen when you least expect it

As a construction worker, you may have many years of experience using a ladder. This leads you to believe nothing could ever go wrong, as you've never run into any trouble in the past.

Unfortunately, a ladder accident can happen when you least expect it. Even if you're doing everything possible to remain safe, it doesn't mean you'll never find yourself in a bad situation.

Since the use of a ladder has the potential to cause an accident, here are a few tips to keep in mind throughout your workday:

  • Let other people know when you're going up or down a ladder, ensuring that they don't bump into it and cause an accident
  • Never place a ladder near an exit door or vehicular traffic
  • Inspect the ladder before taking the first step, looking for both defects and damage
  • Only place the ladder on firm and level ground
  • Never place anything under one or both legs of the ladder in an attempt to level it
  • Always maintain three points of contact
  • Never carry a heavy load on a ladder, as this increases the likelihood of losing your balance
  • Be sure to use the right size ladder for the job
  • Don't stretch, lean or pull, as doing so could cause the ladder to tip over
  • Horseplay is a big no-no when using a ladder
  • If necessary, ask a team member to hold the ladder when you're going up or down

It's hard to keep all these safety tips in mind when using a ladder, especially if it's a big part of your day. Even so, it would be in your best interest to get into the habit of doing so, as you don't want to make a mistake that could result in an accident.

If a ladder accident does occur, stay where you are and make sure someone calls for medical help.

Also, you should report the accident to your supervisor as soon as possible (if he or she doesn't already know what happened).

Depending on the circumstances, you may find that you can file a claim for workers' compensation benefits while also seeking personal injury compensation.

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