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Tips for Better Ladder Safety

Tips for Better Ladder Safety

July 6, 2014

Whether you’re adding a fresh coat of stain to your arbor or stringing lights around your deck for a party, it’s important to remain safe any time you’re working on a ladder. The professional crew at Deck Builders of Pittsburgh, PA, encourages you to follow these important tips to remain safe whether you’re on a stepladder or climbing up an extension.

Fully Open on Stable Ground
Step ladders must be opened fully with the center supports locked in place before they’re used. Ladders that are only opened partially aren’t as stable. You should also check to ensure that ladders are on stable ground and level surfaces. When putting an extension ladder against the roof, keep it at an angle to prevent it from leaning back as you climb. The team at Deck Builders can show you how to properly work a ladder so that it will be easier for you to keep up with the maintenance on your deck.

Watch the Rungs and the Weight
The top of a stepladder is for tools, not your body weight. Likewise, the top three rungs of an extension ladder or for balancing rather than standing. Keep your body weight on the lower rungs or steps for better balance and greater safety. Before using any ladder, you should also check the weight limits. Never exceed the maximum load capacity or duty ratings for the ladder.

Use the Line
One of the most common mistakes homeowners make it carrying materials up the ladder manually. Deck Builders crews bring materials up using lines for greater safety and convenience. You should always have a buddy working with you when you’re on a ladder, so utilizing a line to lift materials shouldn’t pose a problem.

Proper Climbing
When climbing a ladder, you should face the rungs from the bottom to the top of the structure. Trying to climb while you’re facing behind you or to the side makes your footing less secure and increases your risk of accidents. As you’re working from the ladder, take care to avoid overreaching. Stretching out to paint that last little corner results in changing your center of balance and can cause the ladder to tip over. Move the ladder more frequently to avoid serious accidents and injuries.

Finally, when moving the ladder around, have your partner assist you. Heavy ladders and long extension ladders can be difficult to safely move, but the job is easier when you have someone to help you maneuver the load. Use care when moving and positioning the ladder in order to stay safe while working. Deck Builders offers a range of services for your convenience, and they hope that you’ll follow these safety tips to keep yourself safe when doing projects on your own.