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Dos and don'ts of ladder safety at construction sites

As a construction worker, there is a wide range of things you could encounter on the job. Some could have the potential to turn your life, and that of your family, upside-down. Among these are workplace falls. Injuries from such construction site accidents could change your life in a great many ways. This is among the reasons why compensation issues can be such critical ones for construction workers here in Illinois after workplace falls.

Fall risks and ladder use at construction sites

Ladders are among the things commonly used at construction sites that have unique fall risks connected to them. Fall accidents from ladders can be particularly severe, given their potential to involve falls from substantial heights.

How can you protect yourself from fall accidents when using a ladder in connection to construction work? A fact sheet from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration gives some tips on this topic.

Keeping safety in mind when you are preparing to use a ladder

Some of these tips cover things to do when preparing to use a ladder for a construction work task. Among these are:

  • DO think carefully about what type of ladder would be best for the task at hand
  • DO make sure the ladder is secure
  • DO make sure that all openings, holes and skylights in the area you will be working are covered or guarded
  • DON'T set the ladder up on unlevel footing

So, safety planning can be an important part of getting ready to use a ladder at a construction site.

Safety precautions you can take when on a ladder

Your opportunities to protect your safety don't end once the planning stages are over and you are on the ladder. There are some important safety things to keep in mind once on a ladder, including the following tips:

  • DO face the ladder
  • DO hold at least three points of contact with the ladder
  • DON'T overreach when on the ladder
  • DON'T go to a stepladder's top or top step

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