Why Ladder Safety is Important for Electrical Work
Dec 19, 2019 09:31
Some individuals are scared of heights. Some others are a lot bolder, and would not mind hanging from a cliff by their middle fingers. It does not matter whether or not you have a phobia of being at lofty heights. A truth still stands undoubtedly. Working at elevated heights of about seven feet and above is dangerous. It is potentially fatal if done without care. This is even more so when electricity and electrical lines get involved. It is for this reason that you must observe ladder safety.
Ladder safety is essentially a phrase used to refer to activities carried out as precautionary measures when working with ladders. These activities help to ensure a minimal level of risks in the process.
While working with electricity, for example, it is essential to remember that you must not work with conductive ladders. Aluminum ladders are not acceptable. Metal ladders are unacceptable, as well! The kind of ladder that can be generally used while working with electricity is a fiberglass ladder. It does not conduct electricity. It also does not absorb moisture, which could make it conduct electricity. As such, it is the best choice under those circumstances.
Why is ladder safety important in electrical work?
There is almost unarguably one primary reason ladder safety is vital in electrical work. The reason is none other than the prevention of unfortunate occurrences and by implication, the preservation of human life. These “unfortunate occurrences” could be anything from being electrocuted to getting injured and even dying. That is why it is imperative to ensure that you use non-conductive ladders when working with electricity. You can trust us when we tell you that they are your best bet.
The reason behind the statement we made above is simple. You could be an electrician or an engineer or even just a homeowner. Regardless of your reason for getting involved with electricity, take this scenario as an example. It should help you understand the need for ladder safety or working at heights safety in electrical work better. You need to make minor/major repairs to a faulty line in a particular location. Unfortunately, that electrical line is a few feet above your head. As such, it is quite tricky reaching it without the aid of a ladder. You then decide to get the portable ladder you use in carrying out duties, such as the one you have in this scenario.
As soon as the ladder is set up, you get right to work. You are disconnecting, reconnecting, screwing in, and plugging. While you are busy doing all of these, one of the electrical lines that were left uninsulated accidentally comes in contact with your ladder. At this point, there are two possibilities, but they are dependent on two entirely different things. If you happen to have chosen a non-conductive ladder in this scenario, you would be safe. Of, course it largely depends on the product range. Some non-conductive ladders are known to be able to resist as much as thirty thousand volts of electricity. As such, you are largely covered if the exposed line comes in contact with your ladder.
However, if you happen to have chosen a conductive ladder in this scenario, you would be in a lot of trouble. Depending on the amount of electricity in the exposed line, you could be electrocuted. In this case, you would most likely lose your balance and fall. The fall could either lead to injuries or death, depending on the height you fall from.
If, however, there is a lot of electricity in the exposed line, you could be electrocuted and lose your life before even hitting the ground. This is the primary reason you must always be cautious when using ladders during electrical work. According to Product Safety Australia, about 4.5 Australians (mostly men) die from ladder-related accidents annually. Ladder safety is a rather big deal, especially when you are working with electricity.
A few safety tips when using ladders
1.Always use non-conductive ladders when working with electricity.
2.Do not stand at the highest step on the ladder. It is a lot easier to trip and fall from this point because most ladders are not built to accommodate your full weight at the top of the ladder.
3.Always set up your ladder on even and level ground. That way, it would be a lot less difficult for the ladder to shake, causing you to fall.
4.Always inspect the ladder before using it.
5.Do not stretch or overreach when using a ladder. Instead, climb up another step to get to what you are trying to reach. The alternative is just to get a taller ladder.
When working with ladders and electricity, the most important thing to take note of is your safety. Remember always to put that at the back of your mind while working with ladders and electricity. It is particularly important to avoid unpleasant occurrences.
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