Ladders serve numerous purposes, which is why virtually every workplace in the U.S. has a ladder laying around somewhere. They are cheap to buy and easy to store. They are quick to deploy and move along and can help you reach things far more quickly and with less disruption than other methods of getting to height.
Yet some employers do not pay attention to their considerable disadvantages compared to scaffolding, mobile elevated work platforms (MEWPS) and other options on worksites that would benefit from an alternative approach.
They are not very stable
You are literally balanced on two or four small metal feet when you are up a ladder. It would not take much for the ladder to fall over with grave consequences for you. Someone could walk past and knock the base, you could overreach and tip it over or one of the feet could sink into the ground or slip, sending you plummeting.
They are not as simple to use as people think
Give someone something that looks complicated and they’ll think twice before touching it. An employer is unlikely to tell you just to grab an MEWP unless they have taken the time to train you. It’s an expensive and complicated machine they don’t want you breaking it or causing any damage as a result of your inexperience.
Ladders, by contrast, appear to be simple in nature. As a result, an employer may tell you to go up one without having given you any training. While the design is simple, there are several things you need to know to use them safely.
If you are injured in a workplace ladder fall, you should be entitled to claim workers’ compensation. Getting help from an experienced legal professional as you pursue a claim can help you to maximize your award and benefit from an approval without undue delay.