Why ladder safety should be a top priority!
Working as an electrician means you will be spending a lot of time working on ladders and scaffolding.
You have to practice ladder safety at all times. One wrong move can land you in the hospital, or worse.
Much of the wire you install or repair in residential settings will be inside walls, and easy to work on from the floor.
But many times, especially in industrial buildings, you have to work on ladders. Most of the conduits in factories run along or near the ceiling.
Despite a huge selection of power lifting devices and aerial baskets, ladders still remain the only practical way to access many overhead work locations.
The humble ladder was once a simple, portable set of wooden steps. Over time it has evolved into all sorts of sophisticated adjustable models that come in various styles.
There are many versions available designed specifically for certain trades, including electricians.
Ladder designs have not just transformed to provide convenience and additional ladder safety features, the materials used to make ladders has changed as well. Plus, there are now many accessories available to make your work easier and safer.
Even with the new advances in materials, wooden ladders are by no means obsolete. Electricians, however prefer to use fiberglass, as it does not conduct electricity either wet or dry.
The six- and eight-foot ladders, twin-step models and twenty-four and twenty-eight foot extension ladders are the most popular choices for electricians.
Ladders are rated according to a duty rating system, which classifies ladders by strength and intended use.
The ANSI and OSHA enforce very strict testing to determine ladder safety standards, and to protect those that use the ladder.
Professional electricians usually prefer ladders rated for heavy duty, as opposed to cheaper and flimsier models designed for casual use around the house.
Many ladder manufacturers have designed ladders for specific trades, and the Werner Ladder, designed specifically for electricians, is one of the best. This IAA heavy duty ladder has everything an electrician needs to make his job easier, like:
All ladders designed for electricians come with special ladder safety features and hooks and brackets for carrying tools.
The adjustable A-frame design is also very popular for convenience and ladder safety reasons. To be the most useful and safe for an electrician, a ladder must:
Wooden ladders are not ideal for an electrician because they can conduct electricity when wet or dirty.
Fibreglass ladders are heavier than aluminum models, but much safer when working with electricity. Most of them now come with built in leg levelers, which makes them much safer when working on uneven ground.
For extra convenience and safety, many electricians use V-rungs, cable hooks, pole lashes and straps to secure the ladder and prevent accidents.
The most important part about working safely is to always use the proper equipment.
Most accidents happen when people try to cut corners, either to save time or money. This usually results wasting a lot of both.
Use the right ladder and use the proper techniques for set up and climbing.
Portable ladders are put into three basic categories:
Type I ladders made of fiberglass are the number one choice for electricians. They cost more, but are more durable and safer to use around electricity.
The best way to prevent accidents and injuries is always use your
equipment properly with workplace safety tips. This is very important when working on ladders.
Ladders, as with all equipment, must be kept clean and in proper working order. A small crack might not seem bad, but with all of the tools and wire you may be carrying, the extra weight could snap a rung. Always work as safely as possible.
Ladders are very useful tools. Just make sure to always practice proper ladder safety.
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