By chatting with your local trusted ladder supplier, you can gather some useful and pertinent information regarding ladder safety and regulations in the workplace. Labour law in South Africa outlines the need for ladders in various situations, and how these ladders are to be used safely, and maintained on an ongoing basis.
A high number of work-related injuries and incidents result from the incorrect use of ladders, or using a ladder that is not right for the particular type of situation. Ladders are essentially required when workers need to work at height. A defective or poorly maintained ladder can spell trouble for anyone making use of it. According to the labour department in SA, working at any height is considered “high risk”. Employers are required to provide staff members with adequate tools and equipment to carry out their tasks safely. But, what if the ladder is in a poor condition or the worker uses it incorrectly? Records show that a large majority of deaths on the job site are a result of falls from ladders. In other incidents, serious injuries have been sustained, such as loss of consciousness, head injuries, or broken bones. In the electrical environment, some workers have suffered electrocution as a result of using the wrong type of ladder and coming into contact with electricity.
Of course, the term “working at height” is quite vague. Many people ask their ladder supplier to clarify just how high a “height” is and from what height is a ladder strictly required. The Occupation Health & Safety Act of 1993 addresses working at height under General Safety Regulation 6. This particular regulation makes it clear that any height above ground (that cannot be reached with feet firmly placed on the ground) is considered a height. This means. in no uncertain terms, that you cannot use a desk or chair to reach up for something. If you have to reach and be elevated off the ground, even just few centimetres, a ladder must be used. This regulation applies to absolutely every working environment, from the construction site to the corporate office space.
Top Causes of Ladder Accidents
Any leading ladder supplier will tell you that it is often how the ladder is used and cared for that can negatively affect the safety in the workplace. Incidents involving falls from ladders usually occur because of one of the following:
- The ladder is poorly maintained or damaged.
- The ladder has no non-slip devices and is used in wet conditions (causing slipping).
- Workers don’t grip correctly when dismounting the ladder, which causes slipping.
- The ladder is set up incorrectly and placed in a poor position.
- Heavy winds cause the ladder to shift or fall.
- Using the wrong ladder for the job (as is the case with ladders in the electrical field).
- Lack of education on how to safely use a ladder.
You will find that your local ladder supplier will have a variety of ladder types to offer you. Each ladder on the market is purpose-designed. That means that a step ladder used in a shoe store will not be the same (or have the same load-bearing capacity and durability) as an industrial ladder used in a factory or on a construction site. The types of ladders range from industrial and commercial units, to household units. Ladders can be single, sectional, extension, or rolling ladders. And this is really only mentioning a few. At CasLad, we are a ladder supplier that believes in offering our clients variety. With this as our goal, we offer ladders in the following categories to our clients:
- Aluminium Industrial A-Frame Ladders
- Aluminium Industrial Double-Sided Ladders
- Aluminium Commercial Extension Ladders
- Aluminium Industrial Single Ladders
- Aluminium Heavy-Duty Extension Ladders
- Aluminium Commercial Multiform Ladders
- Fibreglass Industrial A-Frame Ladders
- Fully Fibreglass Industrial A-Frame Ladders
- Fibreglass Commercial-Duty Extension Ladders
- Fibreglass Heavy-Duty Extension Ladders
- Mobile Safety Ladders
- Jonno Tower Ladders
If you would like to learn more about the various types of ladders on the market, choose CasLad as your official ladder supplier. You can give us a call or send us an email today.