Ladder Safety with Walkboards
A walkboard is a length of wood or metal that is suspended between 2 supports, like 2 ladders. The effect is similar to scaffolding. Ladder accidents are among the most reported claims to insurance companies. Keep this in mind and follow these guidelines for ladder safety when working with a walkboard.
Basic Safety Precautions
Before you begin work, inspect your ladder for any loose screws, cracked rungs and old, rusty or malfunctioning hinges. Regularly clean the ladder and all its moving parts. Also make sure that you store the ladder in a safe place, like a store room or utility area. Keep it closed and against a wall.
When you are using a ladder for a walk board, A-frame ladders are ideal, but they can be set up with any style of ladder. Choose the best ladder for your walk board by taking height and angle into consideration. Make sure that the board that you are using is adequate for the job as well. Using a 2 x 4 for a board would not be safe because of poor foothold. You will want a board at least 18 inches wide and in good condition to avoid breakage.
How to Set up the Ladder
Another thing to be really careful about is how you set up the ladder. Many accidents happen because people don’t pay attention to this minute but essential factor about ladder safety. Place the ladder on firm and even ground. Place the ladder as close to the site of work as possible; don’t try to bend over or stretch too much while standing on the ladder. This is because, once you are on the ladder, the extra weight can result in a severe tilt leading to instability. Some ladders even come with a lock, where they can be firmly fitted to the floor or surface on which they are places. These are particularly safe and useful.
Use Ladders According to the Jobs You Do
There are various ladders for different jobs. There are even ladders that convert to a walk board without having to carry around a length of wood.. While on a ladder or moving it, make sure that you go slowly. There are some ladders which come with wheels. Though convenient, be extra cautious while using these. Pay extra attention to steadying the walk over or the ladder while working alone. The best thing to do is prop it up against a wall or a pillar. This is the best way to avoid accidents. For a walkover, make sure it is fitted well to the base before you attempt to use it. Also take some preliminary testing steps, to make sure that the fitting can take your weight.
These are very minor but yet crucial pointers that need to be kept in mind while working with walkovers and ladders. Ladder safety is something that shouldn’t be taken lightly.