Ladders are the largest contributor to accidents while working at height in New Zealand. Many of these accidents may have been avoided if ladders were inspected prior to use and on a regular basis to ensure they were fit for use.
Ladders that are not properly maintained or used correctly can cause injuries or even in some cases death. So what does a good ladder look like?
Ladders within any workplace need to be industrial rated and comply with AS/NZS 1892 standards. The ladder will have a specification sticker on it, stating if it is an industrial rated AS/NZS 1892 standard ladder, and also provide the load rating.
Rating labels on ladders may look similar to the one below.
Ladder inspections would ideally be carried out on a pre-use and 6 monthly basis. The records of the inspection should be kept as evidence. You could carry out a ladder inspection using a ladder inspection report form, mobile / tablet app, or using a ladder inspection tag.
Ensure all staff that use ladders know and are competent with carrying out a ladder safety inspection.
Some key items to check prior to using the ladder are:
Read the instructions of use
Practise opening and closing the ladder, is it operating correctly and safely?
Check the ladder has been assembled correctly.
Are all locking clips secure?
Are firm bars firmly in place?
Is the ladder on a firm level base?
Is the ladder away from electrical lines and components
Is there any rust or parts missing?
Do the feet have all the caps and are not worn?
Is the ladder specification sticker present & readable?
Our team are available if you require assistance with ladder inspection reports and Safe Work Procedures.
Please contact us if you require any advice.