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Ladders have been around for centuries but accidental falls from ladders are still a main cause of injury today among construction workers, painters, window washers, repair workers, builders, gardeners, farm workers, warehouse workers, laborers and many others. Ladder falls even have their own section of the OSHA Safety and Health Regulations for Construction (1926.1053). Some people have a notion that ladder accidents are always the fault of the user but it has been found that in many cases employer negligence, lack of proper safety training, or ladder defect is actually at fault.
To try to prevent ladder injuries and ladder falls, OSHA has designed a set of guidelines for ladder manufacturing and ladder use. Including in it are requirements such as the ladder must be able to hold at least 3.3 times the maximum intended load, the minimum width of ladders must be 16 inches or more in most cases and it discusses the proper distances the rungs must be placed from each other for many types of ladders. OSHA has also set rules for how ladders need to be anchored and how users need to operate a ladder. It is due to safety precautions like this that the roof ladder was invented since a regular extension ladder was not found to be safe enough for constant roofing work.
Ladders are, of course, a portable or permanent structure that uses regularly spaced rungs to aid in climbing up or down. Ladders are found throughout numerous industries. There are many types of ladders including roof ladders, multi-purpose ladders, industrial ladders, aluminum ladders, wooden ladders, telescopic ladders, cotterman ladders, caged ladders, self-supporting A-frame ladders, step ladders, step stools, extension ladders with foot pads, fiberglass ladders, fixed ladders, heavy duty ladders, garden ladders, rope or chain ladders, fixed wall ladders, library ladders, Little Giant ladders, orchard ladders, and extendable ladders. Ladders are also used for scaffolding but we will cover scaffolding falls and scaffolding injuries on another page.
Employers are responsible for providing the right equipment and ladders for the job, weather conditions, environment and terrain that they are having their employees work in. They must also train their workers as to how to safely use each type of ladder and when to use them. This is especially true when it comes to teaching the employees on how to use the clamps, foot pads, cleats, supports, anchors, ladder stabilizers (they are the two arms that attach out from the top of an extension ladder), ladder lock assembly, extension ladder puller, the paint shelf, and a pot hook to help carry things like paint buckets up and down. Ladder levelers are also available. They provide stability with their adjustable feet in uneven terrain. And of course, employers need to instruct their employees which rungs of the ladder are safe or not safe to work from including the top rung and second rung.
A ladder fall can cause a very serious work accident or personal injury including broken bones, lacerations, spinal cord injuries, head injuries, wrongful death, back injuries, muscle strains, ligament sprains, and more. We at the Law Offices of DiMarco | Araujo | Montevideo have represented people who have been hurt from a ladder accident for over three decades so we have the knowhow and ability to help you win in court. Call us today at (888) 516-8530 to schedule a free initial consultation and case evaluation. We will go for the maximum possible compensation for your personal injury or work injury and you will not have to pay us until and unless we win your case. Whether you have a workers’ compensation claim, third party case or personal injury, we can definitely help you.