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What are the top causes of workplace ladder accidents?

When working on a ladder on a job site, it's critical that you take steps to maintain a high level of safety. Don't assume that just because you have experience using a ladder that you'll never be injured in an accident. It's this line of thinking that increases the risk of trouble.

Understanding the top causes of workplace ladder accidents can help keep you safe. Here's what you need to protect against:

  • Placing a ladder near traffic: For example, if you're using a ladder on a construction site, don't place it close to the street or an area where construction vehicles are frequenting.
  • Placing a ladder on uneven ground: Even if you're not climbing high, your ladder must be on level and firm ground. Anything but this greatly increases the risk of it tipping.
  • Being in a hurry: When climbing or descending a ladder, it's critical that you take your time. You need to go one rung at a time as you watch every step you take.
  • Carrying a heavy load: You consider this a way to save time, but it also puts you at risk of being pulled off the ladder. For instance, don't attempt to carry a heavy tool or building material up or down a ladder.

Even with knowledge of the top causes of workplace ladder accidents, you could still find yourself injured. If this happens, do the following:

  • Administer first aid
  • Seek treatment at a local doctor or hospital
  • Report the accident and your injuries to your employer
  • File a claim for workers' compensation if you can't return to work

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