Throughout March, the American Ladder Institute will promote ladder safety across the country. Raising awareness helps to underscore the need for monitoring ladder safety in the workplace, including appropriate training procedures. The goal, of course, is to reduce deaths and workplace injuries linked to ladders. Oklahoma workers should know that a fall from the second or third rung of a ladder can be as dangerous as from the top of the ladder.
Each ladder has a duty rating, which indicates the maximum weight the ladder can support. There are several misconceptions about this rating. The weight limit includes not only the worker’s weight but also his or her clothing, personal protective equipment, and any accessories, equipment or tools that are carried on the ladder.
Choosing a taller ladder will not necessarily increase the duty rating. Falls from ladders occur at any height, and in the majority of ladder accidents, incorrect use is determined to be the cause. Safety authorities say the number of ladder accidents can be significantly reduced if obsolete, damaged or old ladders are removed from service.
Workers in Oklahoma who have to cope with the consequences of workplace injuries will likely be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Some ladder accidents cause injuries that are not life-threatening, but many incidents result in debilitating injuries that cause permanent disabilities. Workers can utilize the skills of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to assist with the navigation of benefits claims and to make sure that maximum compensation under applicable laws is achieved.