Safety is an ongoing issue when it comes to the use of ladders, and this autumn, its importance is being highlighted by a new safety campaign run by the Ladder Association. Launched under the rather direct title of Get A Grip, the campaign aims to urge ladder users – and those responsible for them – to take a fresh approach to ladder training.
Currently, falls from height are still amongst the leading causes of workplace fatalities in the UK, with at least 35 fatal injuries having occurred over the 2017-18 period. What’s more, businesses are facing record fines for failing to ensure the safety of their employees, making the campaigns aims more relevant to UK industry than ever.
Why do so many fatalities occur on ladders?
Ladders have been around for thousands of years, and as far as most people are concerned, the majority aren’t particularly hard to use. However, it’s this very simplicity and intuitiveness that can lead to dangerous mistakes. Complacency and failure to carry out basic checks – such as the structure or the stability of the ladder – can lead to painful, life-changing or even fatal injuries. According to statistics from the HSE, falls from stepladders can be equally dangerous as falls from greater heights.
“Safety and competence in the workplace begins with thorough and consistent training.” comments Steve Booker, the Chair of the Ladder Association’s Training Committee. “The saying ‘you can’t teach an old dog new tricks’ is sadly all too familiar where ladders are concerned. It’s an attitude that encourages a complacent, over confident and potentially dangerous mentality.”
The main aim of the Ladder Association’s Get A Grip campaign is to combat this complacency, reminding users and managers alike of why patience and diligence is so important to avoiding accidents. To assist in training and education, the Association has even created a free Ladder Safety Pack, which provides vital information on the recent changes to the European Ladder Standard EN131, and provides helpful guidance on the correct way to use and inspect ladders in order to avoid accidents.
Where does Browns Ladders come in?
The Get A Grip campaign is one that we enthusiastically support here at Browns Ladders. Obviously, your safety and welfare is our top priority at all times, both in our role as product vendor and service provider. We carefully vet every single ladder we stock here at Browns for their structure, stability and construction, and many are fitted with specific safety devices to help them excel in their role and keep you safe. This includes features like non-slip feet, and internal ladder spreaders for enhanced stability.
What’s more, we also offer certified ladder inspections to provide peace of mind in the integrity of your existing equipment. The period between inspections often varies between companies and industries. If you use your ladders on a daily basis, we’d generally recommend you get your ladders inspected at least once every three months.
In addition to our inspections service, we also offer qualified safety training for individuals and companies, to educate them in the proper practices of using ladders and thus cut down on the amount of accidents and injuries. You can book your place on one of our courses by giving us a call on 01282 615517, or if you’re looking for new or replacement equipment, you can shop our range of extension ladders here.