Ministry of Labour Advisory on Ladder Safety
Published on: 05/05/2015
Improper use of ladders on construction projects can pose a hazard and continues to be a major cause of workplace incidents in Ontario. Falls from heights due to unsafe work practices are one of the main causes of critical worker injuries and fatalities on Ontario construction projects.
All workplace parties — employers, supervisors and workers -are responsible for ensuring compliance with Ontario's Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) and its regulations. There are many factors to consider for the safe use of ladders on construction projects. Here are just some of them:
• Ladders should only be used if other work methods are impractical and a hazard assessment has been completed before using a ladder.
• Ladders must be kept in good condition.
• Safe distance from energized electrical equipment and overhead power lines must be maintained when positioning ladders.
• Employers must ensure that appropriate fall protection equipment needed for the job is used by workers and maintained in good condition; workers must be adequately trained on the use of equipment.
• Supervisors need to ensure that workers are aware of the written emergency procedures – and that these procedures are visibly available on site.
• The user of the ladder must maintain three-point contact at all times while on the ladder.
• Workers standing on a ladder while performing work must wear fall protection equipment if working at a height of more than three metres.
Constructors are responsible for ensuring that every employer and worker on the construction project works in compliance with the requirements in OHSA and its regulations, and they must always ensure that the health and safety of workers on the construction project is protected.
To report unsafe work practices, please contact the Ministry of Labour Health & Safety Contact Centre toll-free at 1-877-202-0008.
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