Holiday decorating frequently involves hanging items higher than you can reach while standing on the floor. Below are some helpful reminders about safe ladder use; these hints are also available to print as a small reminder for employees:
- When putting up holiday decorations, always use the proper step stool or ladder to reach high places. Don’t stand on chairs, desks or other furniture. In 2011, falls from chairs, desks and other furniture resulted in 69 days of lost work, over $47,000 in cost, and much pain and lost function for UW System employees.
- If you have to use a step ladder near a doorway, lock or barricade the door and post signs so no one will open it and knock you off the ladder.
- A straight or extension ladder should be placed one foot away from the surface it rests against for every four feet of ladder height.
- When you climb, always face the ladder and keep three points of contact on the ladder whether two hands and one foot, or two feet and one hand.
- When climbing, keep your hips between the side rails and do not lean too far or overreach. Reposition the ladder closer to the work instead.
- Use ladders with slip-resistant feet and wear clean, dry and slip-resistant shoes when climbing a ladder.