Step Ladders - 10 Best Practice Tips
1. Avoid standing on the top step - unless a platform is provided for this purpose, the top step of a swingback step ladder should not be stood on.
2. Never use step ladders near electricity - make sure your ladders are not positioned anywhere near electrical cables or sources. Aluminium step ladders conduct electricity. Use fibreglass (GRP) step ladders if you work in electrical areas.
3. Do not lean from step ladders - 3 points of contact (two feet and a hand) must be made with your ladder. Move your step ladder closer to where you are working to prevent leaning.
4. Always use step ladders on a firm surface - ensure the ground you are working on will not suddenly sink. If you're not sure, use a ladder stabiliser accessory to prevent slipping.
5. Avoid using step ladders in bad weather - try to avoid using step ladders outside in bad weather. The risk of falling or slipping is much greater.
6. Ensure your step ladder is correctly set up - always make sure that your step ladder is fully open and level before using. Check that all braces and catches are correctly in place and that the platform step is locked in place, if applicable.
7. Never use your step ladder as a work platform - step ladders are designed to use vertically and not horizontally for walking across. A large range of work platforms is available.
8. Always read the step ladder instructions - prevent injury by reading the step ladder instructions before using for the first time.
9. One step ladder, one user - step ladders should only be used by one person at a time.
10. Check the maximum weight - EN131 classified step ladders can accept up to 150 kg. Class 1 classified step ladders can accept up to 175 kg.