Philadelphia Construction Accident Lawyers at Galfand Berger Review Ladder Safety
October 11, 2013
Each year, thousands of people are injured or killed as a result of a ladder accident. One of the most common causes of a ladder injury is a fall; however, it is not the only cause of injury. While on a ladder, individuals can be struck with objects or come into contact with electrical power lines. Some ladder accidents can be attributed to defective equipment. Other causes of ladder accidents are failure to maintain ladders in good working condition or failure to provide proper ladder safety training for workers. It is important to understand that most ladder accidents can be prevented.
Ladder Accidents Can Cause Serious Injuries
Ladder injuries can range from mild to severe and self-limiting to life-long. Extended hospital stays, rehabilitation and ongoing treatments may be needed. Victims of ladder accidents may endure physical disabilities that make it difficult to return to their jobs. Some of the more common injuries that ladder accident victims suffer are:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Back and neck injuries
- Broken bones
- Lacerations and bruises
- Musculoskeletal injuries
- Electrical injuries
Playing it Safe: Recommendations to Improve Ladder Safety
Ladders can be used safely as long as workers are properly trained on how to use them and the ladders are free of defects. Our Philadelphia construction accident lawyers believe that workers who use the following ladder safety recommendations can greatly reduce their chances of experiencing a ladder accident:
- Inspect a ladder before each use. Look for loose screws, hinges, broken rungs or steps, cracks or slippery surfaces. Do not use a damaged ladder.
- Ensure that you are using the right ladder for the job. Check the length of the ladder as well as the maximum weight capacity. Read instructions and warning labels.
- Do not use a metal ladder near any electrical lines or equipment.
- Use ladders on a level and firm surface. Stabilize the ladder with large flat wooden boards or leg levelers if necessary.
- Set straight and extension ladders at a 75-degree angle.
- Don’t place a ladder in front of a door or window unless you ensure that is securely locked or guarded.
- Ladders need to extend 3 feet above the working surface or roofline.
- Only have one individual on the ladder at a time.
- Always face the ladder and do not step on the top rung or bucket shelf.
- Keep three points of contact on the ladder at all times such as two hands and one foot or two feet and one hand.
- Maintain a center of gravity. Do not lean too far to either side, rather climb down and reposition the ladder.
- Wear a tool belt. Do not use your hands to carry tools up and down the ladder.
- Never leave a raised ladder unattended and when your job is completed, store the ladder in a dry, safe place.
Seek Qualified Legal Representation from an Experienced Construction Accident Attorney
If you or someone you know is injured in a ladder accident, it is important to seek medical care right away. If possible, gather as much evidence as you can from the accident scene including the ladder itself. Also, pictures of the site where the accident took place can be beneficial when a later investigation is conducted. After your accident, consult with a qualified construction accident lawyer such as those at Galfand Berger in Philadelphia. We can determine who should be held liable for your injuries, and if negligence contributed to the cause of your accident.
We have witnessed firsthand the devastation that ladder accidents can have on their victims. In addition to the physical and emotional anguish that ensues after a ladder accident, we understand that injured workers and families may suffer financial hardships. While construction site accident victims may be entitled to Workers’ Compensation benefits, additional compensation can often be recovered through a third-party liability claim if a third parties’ negligence contributed to the injuries.
The Philadelphia personal injury lawyers have represented countless clients who have suffered work-related injuries including construction site accidents and ladder accidents. Our extensive experience in investigating construction accident claims along with our profound understanding of the applicable laws has enabled us to establish a proven track record of achieving justice and successful outcomes for our clients. Call Galfand Berger today at 1-800-222-USWA (8792) to schedule a free consultation with a qualified construction accident lawyer or contact us online.