Rungs, cleats, and steps of portable ladders (except as provided below) and fixed ladders (including individual-rung/step ladders) shall be spaced not less than 10 inches (25 cm) apart, nor more than 14 inches (36 cm) apart, as measured between center lines of the rungs, cleats, and steps. Copy link. Non-self-supporting ladders shall be used at an angle such that the horizontal distance from the top support to the foot of the ladder is approximately one-quarter of the working length of the ladder (the distance along the ladder between the foot and the top support). The mounting of ladder safety devices for fixed ladders shall conform to the following: Mountings for rigid carriers shall be attached at each end of the carrier, with intermediate mountings, as necessary, spaced along the entire length of the carrier, to provide the strength necessary to stop employees' falls. Ladders shall be maintained free of oil, grease, and other slipping hazards. This combination of safe equipment and its safe use can eliminate most ladder accidents. Ladder Safety Ladders are the "go-to" tool for any job that involves working from height—whether you're changing a light bulb, retrieving items from a high shelf, or painting a building. For example, Rule 1926.1053(a)(3)(i-iii) explains that rungs, steps and cleats should be spaced between 10 and 14 inches apart, with few exceptions present. OSHA rules cover all step ladders, straight ladders and extension ladders whether they are wood, fiberglass or metal. Fixed ladders shall be provided with cages, wells, ladder safety devices, or self-retracting lifelines where the length of climb is less than 24 feet (7.3 m) but the top of the ladder is at a distance greater than 24 feet (7.3 m) above lower levels. Click here to download the ladder safety program 2. What does this cover? Rungs, cleats, and steps of step stools shall be not less than 8 inches (20 cm) apart, nor more than 12 inches (31 cm) apart, as measured between center lines of the rungs, cleats, and steps. OSHA rules apply to all stairways and ladders used in construction, alteration, repair, painting, decorating and demolition of worksites covered by OSHA’s construction safety and health standards.” Simple definition: Ladders are dangerous. When splicing is required to obtain a given length of side rail, the resulting side rail must be at least equivalent in strength to a one-piece side rail made of the same material. Ladder safety begins with the selection of the proper ladder for the job and includes inspection, setup, proper climbing and standing, proper use, care, and storage. Inspect wood ladders for cracks or splits. It includes details like the weight loads, the allowable space between rungs and when cages are required. The minimum perpendicular clearance between fixed ladder rungs, cleats, and steps, and any obstruction behind the ladder shall be 7 inches (18 cm), except in the case of an elevator pit ladder, for which a minimum perpendicular clearance of 4 1/2 inches (11 cm) is required. In addition to the general safety rules for all ladders there are special rules for using stepladders and for single and extension ladders. Ladders shall be used only on stable and level surfaces unless secured to prevent accidental displacement. •Always keep your belt buckle between the ladder rails. The area around the top and bottom of ladders shall be kept clear. The side rails of through or side-step fixed ladders shall extend 42 inches (1.1 m) above the top of the access level or landing platform served by the ladder. For through-fixed-ladder extensions, the steps or rungs shall be omitted from the extension and the extension of the side rails shall be flared to provide not less than 24 inches (61 cm) nor more than 30 inches (76 cm) clearance between side rails. See osha.gov for ladder standards. Ladder Safety Training Video - YouTube. Ladders must be used only for the purpose for which they were designed. When portable ladders are used for access to an upper landing surface, the ladder side rails shall extend at least 3 feet (.9 m) above the upper landing surface to which the ladder is used to gain access; or, when such an extension is not possible because of the ladder's length, then the ladder shall be secured at its top to a rigid support that will not deflect, and a grasping device, such as a grabrail, shall be provided to assist employees in mounting and dismounting the ladder. The top of a non-self-supporting ladder shall be placed with the two rails supported equally unless it is equipped with a single support attachment. Never use a ladder for any purpose other than the one for which it was designed. In this meeting we’ll review ladder safety basics so we can avoid easily preventable injuries. The minimum perpendicular clearance between the center line of fixed ladder rungs, cleats, and steps, and any obstruction on the climbing side of the ladder shall be 30 inches (76 cm), except as provided in paragraph (a)(15) of this section. The rung spacing on the extension section of the extension trestle ladder shall be not less than 6 inches (15 cm) nor more than 12 inches (31 cm), as measured between center lines of the rungs, cleats, and steps. Do not move or shift a ladder while a person or equipment is on the ladder. Ladder sections shall be offset from adjacent sections, and landing platforms shall be provided at maximum intervals of 50 feet (15.2 m). Portable ladders with structural defects, such as, but not limited to, broken or missing rungs, cleats, or steps, broken or split rails, corroded components, or other faulty or defective components, shall either be immediately marked in a manner that readily identifies them as defective, or be tagged with "Do Not Use" or similar language, and shall be withdrawn from service until repaired. •Maintain 3-points of contact with the ladder. The rungs of individual-rung/step ladders shall be shaped such that employees' feet cannot slide off the end of the rungs. Removable gates or non-rigid members, such as chains, may be used instead of handrails in special-use applications; and There are rules for installing and using them properly, as well as inspecting them. The ability of a ladder to sustain the loads indicated in this paragraph shall be determined by applying or transmitting the requisite load to the ladder in a downward vertical direction when the ladder is placed at an angle of 75 1/2 degrees from the horizontal. Statistics show that every year about 30,000 people will be incapacitated by ladder and ladder-replacement involved accidents. Ladder Safety System. Duration: 1 minute │ Watch now . Avoid over reaching with this quick ladder safety tip. Ladders placed in any location where they can be displaced by workplace activities or traffic, such as in passageways, doorways, or driveways, shall be secured to prevent accidental displacement, or a barricade shall be used to keep the activities or traffic away from the ladder. Each portable ladder that is not self-supporting: At least four times the maximum intended load, except that each extra-heavy-duty type 1A metal or plastic ladders shall sustain at least 3.3 times the maximum intended load. Be sure that all locks on an extension ladder are properly engaged. Play as. A portable ladder can be moved easily. For a parapet ladder, the access level shall be the roof if the parapet is cut to permit passage through the parapet; if the parapet is continuous, the access level shall be the top of the parapet. Except when portable ladders are used to gain access to fixed ladders (such as those on utility towers, billboards, and other structures where the bottom of the fixed ladder is elevated to limit access), when two or more separate ladders are used to reach an elevated work area, the ladders shall be offset with a platform or landing between the ladders. For side-step fixed ladders, the side rails and the steps or rungs shall be continuous in the extension. OSHA Ladder Safety for General Industry. Fixed ladders with structural defects, such as, but not limited to, broken or missing rungs, cleats, or steps, broken or split rails, or corroded components, shall be withdrawn from service until repaired. Ladder Safety. OSHA ladder safety regulations. Also, the rules may vary depending on the type of ladder (fixed or portable). 1926.1050 provides the Scope, Application and Definitions for the Subpart. OSHA studies have shown that 100% of ladder related accidents could have been prevented using proper safety. Do not place a ladder on boxes, barrels or other unstable bases to obtain additional height. The requirement to withdraw a defective ladder from service is satisfied if the ladder is either: Marked in a manner that readily identifies it as defective; Or blocked (such as with a plywood attachment that spans several rungs). The bottom of the cage shall be flared not less than 4 inches (10 cm) all around within the distance between the bottom horizontal band and the next higher band; The top of the cage shall be a minimum of 42 inches (1.1 m) above the top of the platform, or the point of access at the top of the ladder, with provision for access to the platform or other point of access. Ladders must be maintained free of oil, grease, and other slipping hazards. This program covers the consequences of unsafe ladder use, the types of ladders and how to use each type, and ladder safety, inspection and storage. This aspect of ladder safety can be highly technical and not easily memorized, especially as updates are made. Wells for fixed ladders shall conform to all of the following: They shall completely encircle the ladder; Their inside face on the climbing side of the ladder shall extend not less than 27 inches (68 cm) nor more than 30 inches (76 cm) from the centerline of the step or rung; The inside clear width shall be at least 30 inches (76 cm); The bottom of the wall on the access side shall start at a level not less than 7 feet (2.1 m) nor more than 8 feet (2.4 m) above the point of access to the bottom of the ladder. Ladders shall not be loaded beyond the maximum intended load for which they were built, nor beyond their manufacturer's rated capacity. OSHA Subpart X-Stairways and Ladders specifies the rules for ladders. Obviously, falling off a ladder can injure you. Injuries and fatalities associated with working on and around portable and fixed ladders are a major workplace safety problem. Workers often use ladders to gain access to multiple levels and areas that are hard to reach. Stay safe by learning the five steps to ladder safety. … Each fixed ladder: At least two loads of 250 pounds (114 kg) each, concentrated between any two consecutive attachments (the number and position of additional concentrated loads of 250 pounds (114 kg) each, determined from anticipated usage of the ladder, shall also be included), plus anticipated loads caused by ice buildup, winds, rigging, and impact loads resulting from the use of ladder safety devices. 1926.1053(b)(15) – Ladders shall be inspected by a competent person for visible defects on a periodic basis and after any occurrence that could affect their safe use. Ladders shall have nonconductive siderails if they are used where the employee or the ladder could contact exposed energized electrical equipment, except as provided in §1926.955(b) and (c) of this part. (2.1 m/sec.) Ladder safety begins with selecting the right ladder for the job and includes inspection, setup, proper climbing or standing, proper use, care, and storage. Always check a ladder before using it. Ladders shall be used only for the purpose for which they were designed. The area around the top and bottom of ladder must be kept clear. 1926.1053(b)(2) – Ladders shall be maintained free of oil, grease, and other slipping hazards. Ladders built and tested in conformance with the applicable provisions of appendix A of this subpart will be deemed to meet this requirement. They are the step ladder, the straight ladder, the combination ladder, and the extension ladder (OSHA, n.d.b). Ladders built in conformance with the applicable provisions of appendix A will be deemed to meet this requirement. These ladders are made of various materials—aluminum, fiberglass, wood, and steel—with their distinct strengths and weaknesses. The minimum clear distance between the sides of individual-rung/step ladders and the minimum clear distance between the side rails of other fixed ladders shall be 16 inches (41 cm). Do not use the top step/rung of a ladder as a step/rung unless it was designed for that purpose. Ladder Safety. Ladder Types 1. Have at least both hands and one foot or both feet and one hand in contact with the ladder at all times. Do not place a ladder on boxes, barrels or other unstable bases to obtain additional height. OSHA estimates that, for general industry companies, falls from ladders — step, straight, combination, and extension — account for 20% of fatal and lost workday injuries. A cage or well, and multiple ladder sections, each ladder section not to exceed 50 feet (15.2 m) in length. Mountings for flexible carriers shall be attached at each end of the carrier. Do not use a self-supporting ladder (e.g., step ladder) as a single ladder or in a partially closed position. (The requirements to have guardrail systems with toeboards for falling object and overhead protection on platforms and landings are set forth in subpart M of this part.). When portable ladders are used for access to an upper landing surface, the ladder side rails shall extend at least 3 feet (.9 m) above the upper landing surface to which the ladder is used to gain access; or, when such an extension is not possible because of the ladder's length, then the ladder shall be secured at its top to a rigid support that will not deflect, and a grasping device, such as a grabrail, shall be provided to assist employees in mounting and dismounting the ladder. Ladders are so common that it’s easy to forget the risks involved in using them. Difficulty. Info. The rungs and steps of fixed metal ladders manufactured after March 15, 1991, shall be corrugated, knurled, dimpled, coated with skid-resistant material, or otherwise treated to minimize slipping. Additional Examples Brought to you by www.osha-pros.com LADDER SAFETY When attempting to reach something at an inaccessible height it may seem easier to use a replacement for a ladder such as furniture, but it isn’t worth the potential danger. Ladders must not be tied or fastened together to provide longer sections, unless they are specifically designed for such use. There are three specific standards within the subpart that address ladder safety. The minimum clear distance between side rails for all portable ladders shall be 11 1/2 inches (29 cm). The ability of a ladder to sustain the loads indicated in this paragraph shall be determined by applying or transmitting the requisite load to the ladder in a downward vertical direction. The Basics of Ladder Safety. Where ladder safety devices are provided, the maximum clearance between side rails of the extensions shall not exceed 36 inches (91 cm). If the ladder is damaged, it must be removed from service and tagged until repaired or discarded. Wood job-made ladders with spliced side rails shall be used at an angle such that the horizontal distance is one-eighth the working length of the ladder. Many times workers are hasty in movement or they fail to pay attention to their surroundings. Use a ladder only on a stable and level surface, unless it has been secured (top or bottom) to prevent displacement. Shopping. Cages for fixed ladders shall conform to all of the following: Horizontal bands shall be fastened to the side rails of rail ladders, or directly to the structure, building, or equipment for individual-rung ladders; Vertical bars shall be on the inside of the horizontal bands and shall be fastened to them; Cages shall extend not less than 27 inches (68 cm), or more than 30 inches (76 cm) from the centerline of the step or rung (excluding the flare at the bottom of the cage), and shall not be less than 27 inches (68 cm) in width; The inside of the cage shall be clear of projections; Horizontal bands shall be spaced not more than 4 feet (1.2 m) on center vertically; Vertical bars shall be spaced at intervals not more than 9 1/2 inches (24 cm) on center horizontally; The bottom of the cage shall be at a level not less than 7 feet (2.1 m) nor more than 8 feet (2.4 m) above the point of access to the bottom of the ladder. OSHA Updates Ladder Safety Standard. Falls from portable ladders (step, straight, combination and extension) are one of the leading causes of occupational fatalities and injuries. Questions. Inspect metal and fiberglass ladders for bends and breaks. The General Industry Standard is 1910.24-27. OSHA/VOSH has developed specific regulations to address ladder safety and to help prevent injuries. The design and installation of mountings and cable guides shall not reduce the design strength of the ladder. A ladder placed in any location where it can be displaced by other work activities must be secured to prevent displacement or a barricade must be erected to keep traffic away from the ladder. or less; The connection between the carrier or lifeline and the point of attachment to the body belt or harness shall not exceed 9 inches (23 cm) in length. Never use a damaged ladder… Ladder safety devices, and related support systems, for fixed ladders shall conform to all of the following: They shall be capable of withstanding without failure a drop test consisting of an 18-inch (41 cm) drop of a 500-pound (226 kg) weight; They shall permit the employee using the device to ascend or descend without continually having to hold, push or pull any part of the device, leaving both hands free for climbing; They shall be activated within 2 feet (.61 m) after a fall occurs, and limit the descending velocity of an employee to 7 feet/sec. Look for overhead power lines before handling a ladder. OSHA Quiz: Ladder Safety . OSHA ladder safety rules and regulations exist because statistics show that workers are more likely to abuse and misuse ladders rather than use them correctly in the workplace. U.S. Department of Labor | Occupational Safety & Health Administration | 200 Constitution Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20210. 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