March is Ladder Safety Month
March 16, 2023
March is National Ladder Safety Month. This event raises awareness of ladder safety with a goal of decreasing preventable ladder-related injuries and deaths. According to the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors, or InterNACHI, there are more than 164,000 injuries and 300 deaths caused by falls from ladders annually. The association also notes that many of the fatalities are from falls of 10 feet or less, which shows just how dangerous using ladders can be and how important it is to take precautions.
The campaign is the only event that addresses ladder safety topics in both the home and at work. To commemorate National Ladder Safety Month, take a few moments to read over some important facts and tips that can help keep you and your loved ones protected from sustaining preventable ladder-related injuries.
The Top Goals of National Ladder Safety Month
National Ladder Safety Month has several key goals. The event aims to:
- Decrease the number of ladder-related injuries and deaths
- Increase the number of ladder safety training
- Increase the frequency of ladder safety trainings
- Lower the rankings of ladder-related safety citations on OSHA’s yearly “Top 10 Citations List”
- Increase the number of in-person ladder trainings
- Increase the number of companies and individuals that inspect and properly dispose of old, damaged, and/or obsolete ladders
Ladder-Related Injuries: Causes and Common Types
Falls from ladders are by no means the only culprits behind the tens of thousands of ladder-related injuries that occur each year. Other common causes of ladder-related injuries are being struck with objects or coming into contact with power or electrical lines as well as incidents that result from a manufacturing design or defect or the absence of proper warning labels and/or instructions. This is why it is so crucial that we take a comprehensive look at ladder safety issues: because safety plays a role starting with a ladder’s original design and construction all the way through to when consumers use them.
While a fall or other accident involving a ladder can cause an array of injuries, some of the most common ones include:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries or TBIs
- Lacerations, sprains, strains, and bruises
- Bone fractures, including hip, wrist, and shoulder fractures
- Rib injuries
- Musculoskeletal injuries
- Back and neck injuries
- Electrical injuries
Some people will need long-term medical care and follow-up treatment(s) for an extended period – sometimes permanently – following their ladder-related injury or injuries.
Important Ladder Safety Tips
According to the National Safety Council (NSC), ladder safety is made up of a few key topics. Some of these apply to employment scenarios and others apply to ladder use both at work and at home. They are:
- Train workers how to properly and safely use ladders
- Inspect ladders before use to ensure that they are in good working order. This includes checking for loose screws, hinges, broken rungs or steps, or cracked and slippery surfaces. If a ladder appears damaged, do not use it
- Make sure to use the right size ladder for the job
- Wear slip resistant shoes on ladders
- Do not use ladders during high winds or storms
- Always set a ladder up on firm, level ground and away from doors and/or windows
- If you are feeling tired or dizzy, do not use a ladder
- Only allow one person on a ladder at a time
- Do not carry items that could prohibit you from holding the ladder firmly
- Always maintain three points of contact when you are climbing a ladder. This means facing the ladder and having two hands and one foot, or two feet and one hand, in contact with the ladder at all times
Were You Injured in an Accident Involving a Ladder?
Whether you were hurt while using a ladder at work or at home, it may be a good idea to have an experienced attorney on your side. At Galfand Berger, our attorneys are accomplished at litigating workers’ compensation, products liability, and personal injury claims on behalf of injured victims. For example, if you sustain injuries associated with using a ladder with a manufacturing defect, like unstable rungs or improper materials, our attorneys can help you recover damages for lost time from work and medical expenses.
Philadelphia Products Liability Lawyers at Galfand Berger, LLP, Representing Injury Victims Since 1947
If you have questions about filing a claim for injuries you sustained, contact the lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP today. Call us at 800-222-USWA (8792) or fill out our online form for a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia, Bethlehem, Lancaster, and Reading, we serve clients throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania, including Allentown and Harrisburg.