You’ve probably noticed the weather getting colder. Georgia’s summer heat and humidity is gone and fall has arrived bringing with it crisp air and beautiful leaves. Of course, once fall hits, there’s a lot of work to be done to get your home ready for winter. There are leaves to be raked, gutters to be cleaned, trees to be trimmed, just to name a few. Often, these fall maintenance tasks involve climbing up ladders which can sometimes lead to falls or injuries. The physicians at Resurgens Spine Center would like to share a few ladder safety tips to help you get through your chores safely this fall.
Use the Right Ladder for the Job
There are many types of ladders, so choose a ladder that is recommended for the task at hand. Also, inspect the ladder before you begin to make sure it is in good working order. For smaller jobs around the house, a small folding ladder would be appropriate. However, a taller ladder would be a better choice for cleaning your gutters or trimming your trees.
Don’t Stand on the Top of a Folding Ladder
Try to resist the temptation to stretch an extra few feet by standing on the top of the ladder. This can cause a folding ladder to become top-heavy, making it harder to balance and it will often lead to falls and injuries.
Wear Proper Footwear
Choose shoes that are slip-resistant, such as tennis shoes. Make sure the soles are clean to help maximize traction while climbing the ladder.
Always Have a Partner to Hold Your Ladder
Having a helper on the ground holding your ladder will help prevent it from falling over while you’re on it. Your helper can also assist you by handing you tools from the ground so you don’t have to keep climbing up and down to get the job done.
Use Three Points of Contact When Climbing a Ladder
The American Ladder Institute has prescribed this method as the safest way to climb a ladder. They recommend that three of your limbs should be in contact with the ladder at all times while you’re climbing. Instead of taking an arm and leg off the rungs at the same time, move each limb individually. That way, you’ll be more stable and less likely to fall off to the side when you shift your weight.
At Resurgens Spine Center, we want you to be safe during your fall cleanup. We hope including our ladder safety tips with your chore list will prove helpful for you and your family. If you develop neck or back pain from doing your fall cleanup, call or schedule an appointment online with one of our physicians. Have a great Fall!!