If you work in an industrial environment, then it is likely that you have a ladder solution in place to allow personnel to move between two or more levels quickly and without using the enormous amounts of space required by a stairwell or the massive investment and constant maintenance of an elevator.
However, if you have an access solution which is dependent on ladders, it is crucial to make safety and security arrangements to counter the risks posed by such a system. While undoubtedly more cost-effective and space-effective than other forms of access and elevation, accidents involving ladders have the potential to be more severe – unless you have the right preventative measures in place.
Protection Against Falls
Falls are the primary cause of injury in accidents involving ladders in the workplace, and they have the potential to be very severe. As a result, it is absolutely necessary to take precautions against your personnel being involved in falls from your ladders, and a vertical ladder system is the best way to protect them. Usually consisting of a set of vertical steel bars connected by loops of steel which encase the ladder, vertical ladder systems are preferable to other ladder safety systems thanks to their unobtrusive nature – they simply encase a ladder, rather than creating fall platforms or other breaks in the ladder’s height, meaning that your staff can still move quickly up and down through the levels with no obstruction.
However, should one of them fall, the vertical ladder system will prevent them from falling back away from the ladder, giving them much more of an opportunity to catch themselves – or, failing that, it also provides a number of additional handholds in the form of the system’s hoops and bars.
The encasing nature of the vertical ladder system protects your personnel from the worst of a fall even in the event that they don’t catch themselves at all and free-fall – as the system stops them from falling back, away from the ladder, it also stops them from turning in the air, protecting their head, neck and spine from the effects of the fall.
Protection Against Other Accidents and Injuries
Of course, falls aren’t the only kind of accident that can occur with a ladder, and a vertical ladder system is capable of protecting people from these other ladder-based accidents as well. In the event of dropped equipment, the ladder system will prevent the dropped item from moving outside the confines of the ladder as it falls, ensuring a direct vertical fall.
Trapped hands, fingers and the like are also eliminated with a vertical ladder system, as it cannot be employed without a completely fixed ladder, and the ladder itself is prevented from moving not only by its own attachments to the wall or walkway, but by its vertical ladder system as well, which often provides additional bolting and security to the wall.
As mentioned above, a vertical ladder system does nothing to impede the mobility and ease of access that your workers would enjoy with a completely unenclosed ladder. There are no additional platforms or breaks in vertical movement, and their speed and efficiency will be completely unimpeded.
So if you have ladders on your premises, and you want to make sure that your staff are as safe as they can be, get in contact with the experts at Guardrail Group today by calling019028712080 to discuss a safety solution that suits you.