Something people don’t often think about in regards to ladder safety is carrying a ladder properly. There are a few things to keep in mind when carrying the ladder. Here are just a couple of reminders for you and your team:
Be Aware of Your Surroundings
One of the most important things to keep in mind when moving a ladder is to be aware of your surroundings. Make sure the area is clear of debris or other tripping hazards. You also want to be aware of what is above your head. Make sure you check for any cords, power lines or anything else above your head that could cause problems. Make note of where people and ensure they aren’t in the ladder’s path. When you may be walking near power lines, make sure you use a fiberglass ladder. I read a news story a couple weeks ago about a man who was carrying an aluminum ladder, but not paying close attention. His ladder bumped the power line, resulting in his untimely death. It was a sad, but preventable accident.
Put the Ladder in the Correct Position
You should always put your ladder in the smallest position it can be. Stepladders should be folded and extension ladders should be in their shortest position. Having the ladder in a small position will make it easier to move.
In addition to folding and shortening your ladder, make sure you carry the ladder in the correct position, with the widest part angled down to the ground. Some ladders, like Little Giant’s articulated ladders, have wheels on the wide part to help you transport the ladder more safely and effectively.
If you are carrying an excessively long or excessively heavy ladder, you should get assistance from another person. Make sure you talk to one another to make sure you are in sync to prevent accidents. Getting help to move oversize ladders will help prevent any injury from straining your muscles.
Remember these tips next time you need to carry a ladder and be safe out there!