Ladder Safety 101

Ladders are among those workplace fixtures that tend to be used so frequently that their hazards are rarely considered. But just consider the numbers. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that each year in the U.S., more than 500,000 people are treated and about 300 people die from ladder-related injuries. This is exactly why giving your employees a refresher on ladder safety is so important. 


Here are some rules that employees must follow when ascending and descending a ladder:

  • Always face the ladder.
  • Keep your body centered between the side rails and don’t overreach, which could cause you to lose your balance.
  • Always maintain three points of contact. Specifically, when moving up or down the ladder, you must have: 1) two hands and one foot in constant contact with the ladder or 2) two feet and one hand in constant contact with the ladder.
  • Never carry tools up a ladder with your hands. Use a tool belt, lift or ropes to carry tools and equipment so your hands are free to grip the ladder.
  • Wear the correct type of slip-resistant footwear and make sure the soles are clean to maximize traction.