Illinois residents who frequently work with ladders may forget how inherently dangerous they are, especially if they are used day in and out without any incident. However, falls from ladders can be extremely dangerous and may leave a person with severe, lasting damage.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), falls are still among the most deadly of all unintentional lethal incidents. 43% of falls also occur from ladders, though this number skyrockets to 81% among construction workers. It’s not just construction workers who risk fall injuries, though. Anyone who falls from any ladder can end up with:
- Broken bones
- Brain damage from head trauma
- Spinal cord and spine damage
- Skull fractures
These injuries may take months or years of therapy and recovery to heal from. Some damage may never be reversed. This can permanently alter a person’s quality of life, ability to work, and independence.
Safety+Health Magazine points out that many ladder falls can be prevented. While some are a result of freak accidents, most happen because proper safety protocol isn’t followed or because the equipment being used is not up to industry standard. Unfortunately, someone else’s negligence can easily lead to the injury of the fellow worker, employee, or friend who next uses the ladder in question.
Safety precautions should always be followed when using a ladder. This means ensuring the ladder is secured before climbing, wearing the appropriate safety gear, and having an additional person nearby for spotting and stabilization of the ladder. Though incidents may still occur even if these things happen, it can cut down on them.