Injuries in the workplace from ladder use represent one-third of all reported falls.

Many fall-related injuries result from improper use or using a defective ladder.

Step/extension ladders are made to access/egress upper levels, not to be used as work platforms. There are specifically designed ladders for work platforms such as order pickers. These ladders are constructed with a small platform and guardrail. The following safe work rules should be observed when working with ladders.

Guide for Discussion


Look for missing or loose cleats at the bottom.

Look for loose or missing screws, bolts, or nails on the job-made ladders

Look for cracked, broken, split, dented, or badly worn rungs, cleats, or side rails.

Splinters on wood ladders.

Corrosion on metal ladders.

 Ladder Use

-Always use the right ladder for the right job.

-Don’t set your ladder in a walkway or door opening.

Keep the area at the top and bottom of the ladder clear of tool cords, tools, material, and garbage.

-Always set the ladder on solid footing.

-Use a twenty-five percent (25%) angle (1-4) on the slope of the ladder.

The three (3) top rungs must extend beyond the landing platform when using extension ladders
(Or the top of an extension ladder must be 36” (3 feet) above the landing.)

-Don’t lean to the side when on a ladder, or you may tip over.

-Do not carry tools or materials on a ladder. Use both hands when climbing a ladder to grab onto the side rails. If it is necessary to move material or tools up a ladder, first climb up, then pull up the work with a hand line.

-Only one person on a ladder at a time (unless the ladder is double cleated).

-Always secure the top of the ladder to prevent it from sliding.

-Never lean on a step ladder; always fully open a step ladder.

-Always face the ladder.

Additional Discussion Notes: Always tie off the ladder so it stays where you put it.

Remember: Falls from ladders are preventable.
If you follow these safety tips ladder accidents can be avoided.

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