SAFETY & PROPER CARE
Isaacson ladders places ladder safety as our number one priority. To assist you with using your ladder in the safest and most efficient ways please take note of the following precautions.
A stepladder requires level ground support for all four of its side rails. If this worksite condition does not exist, a stepladder should not be selected for the job.
A Stepladder must not be used unless its base is spread fully open and the Spreaders locked. Stepladders are not to be used as Single Ladders or in the partially open position.
In order to prevent tipping the ladder over sideways due to over-reaching, the user must climb or work with the body near the middle of the steps. The ladder should be set-up close to the work. Never attempt to move the ladder without first descending, relocating the ladder, and then re-climbing. Do not attempt to mount the ladder from the side or step from one ladder to another unless the ladder is secured against sideways motion.
In an effort to avoid losing your balance and falling off the stepladder, the user must not step or stand higher than the step indicated on the label marking the highest standing level. The user must also not step or stand on the Top Cap or bucket/pail shelf.
When ascending or descending the ladder, always face the ladder and maintain a firm hand hold. Do not attempt to carry other objects in your hand(s) while climbing.
The braces on the rear of a stepladder are not intended for climbing or standing and must not be used for that purpose. Note, however, that special stepladders are available with steps on both the front and rear and are intended for two users at the same time.
The anti-slip feet at the bottom of the stepladder side rails must be present and in good condition prior to using the ladder. The ladder must not be used on ice, snow or slippery surfaces unless suitable means to prevent slipping is employed.
A stepladder must never be placed upon other objects such as boxes, barrels, scaffolds, or other unstable bases in an effort to obtain additional height.
A thorough inspection must be made when the ladder is initially purchased and each time it is placed into service. Clean the climbing and gripping surfaces if they have been subjected to oil, grease or slippery materials. Working parts, bolts, rivets, step-to-side rail connections, and the condition of the anti-slip feet (safety shoes) shall be checked. If structural damage, missing parts, or any other hazardous defect is found, the ladder must not be placed into service and either discarded or competently repaired.
Ladders exposed to excessive heat, as in the case of fire, may have reduced strength. Similarly, ladders exposed to corrosive substances such as acids or alkali materials may experience chemical corrosion and a resulting reduction in strength. Remove these ladders from service.
Ladders with bent or broken side rails must be destroyed.
In the event a ladder is discarded, it must be destroyed in such a manner as to render it useless. Another person must not be afforded the opportunity to use a ladder that has been deemed unsafe.
When transporting ladders on vehicles equipped with ladder racks, the ladders must be properly supported. Overhang of the ladders beyond the support points of the rack should be minimized. The support points should be constructed of material such as wood or rubber-covered pipe to minimize the effects of vibration, chafing and road shock. Securing the ladder to each support point will greatly reduce the damaging effects of road shock.
Storage racks for ladders not in use should have sufficient supporting points to avoid sagging which can result in warping the ladder. Other materials must not be placed on the ladder while it is in storage.
OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY ACT, 1993
General Safety Regulations : 13A. Ladders
1. An employee shall ensure that every ladder is constructed of sound material and is suitable for the purpose for which it is used, and -
a. is fitted with non-skid devices at the bottom ends and hooks or similar devices at the upper ends of the stiles which shall ensure the stability of the ladder during normal use; or
b. is so lashed, held or secured whilst being used as to ensure the stability of the ladder under all conditions and at all times.
2. No employer shall use a ladder, or permit it to be used, if it -
i. has rungs fastened to the stiles only by means of nails, screws, spikes or in like manner; or
ii. has rungs which have not been properly let into the stiles: Provided that in the case of welded ladder or ladders of which the rungs are bolted or riveted to the stiles, the rungs need not be let into the sides; or
b. has damaged stiles, or damaged or missing rungs.
3. No employer may permit that -
a. a ladder which is required to be leaned against an object for support be used which is longer than 9 m; and
b. except with the approval of an inspector, the reach of a ladder be extended by fastening together two or more ladders: Provided that the provisions of this subregulation shall not apply to extension of free-standing ladders.
4. In the case of wooden ladders the employer shall ensure that -
a. the ladders are constructed of straight grained wood, free from defects, and with the grain running in the length of the stiles and rungs; and
b. the ladders are not painted or covered in any manner, unless it has been established that there are no cracks or other inherent weaknesses: Provided that ladders may be treated with oil or covered with clear varnish or wood preservative.
5. When work is done from a ladder, the employer shall -
a. take special precautionary measures to prevent articles from falling off; and
b. provide suitable sheaths or receptacles in which hand tools shall be kept when not being used.
6. An employer shall ensure that a fixed ladder which exceeds 5 m in length and is attached to a vertical structure with an inclination to the horizontal level of 75 or more -
a. has its rungs at least 150 mm away from the structure to which the ladder is attached; and
b. is provided with a cage which -
i. extends from a point not exceeding 2.5 m from the lower level to a height of at least 900 mm above the top level served by the ladder; and
ii. shall afford firm support along its whole length for the back of the person climbing the ladder, and for which purpose no part of the cage shall be more than 700 mm away from the level of the rungs: Provided that the foregoing provisions of paragraph (b) shall nor apply if platforms, which are spaced not more than 8 m apart and suitable for persons to rest on, are provided.