Toolbox talks are an essential approach for workplace safety because workers often tend to ignore the precautions while working. This can be extremely dangerous for them, other workers and potentially people of the public could be affected.
An issue like this, could be when working with step ladders. Step ladders are common equipment used for many tasks across various workplaces, but it is equally dangerous, if not used in the right setting. Step ladders allow workers to climb up and carry out tasks at height, with a possible risk of falling down or tumbling over.
Making the workers realise the dangers when using a step ladder should be in focus while writing a step ladder safety toolbox talk. After that, you can move on with talking about the right ways to use a step ladder safely.
Talk About the Dangers of Working with a Step Ladder
Tell the workers about the consequences and hazards that can occur if the ladder is not being used responsibly and with the right precautions. Emphasise the injuries your body might have to face if, unfortunately, you somehow fell down from the step ladder due to not following the safety instructions.
Hit them with the statistics because people have a weird fascination with numbers, and they tend to listen more intently and follow the instructions more responsibly when they are bombarded with the number of people affected by something.
According to data, most of the injuries or deaths that happen due to working with a step ladder occur by falling from the height of 10 or fewer feet. So, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you will only face an injury if you are working with extreme heights.
You should work on making people understand the severities of not following the instructions and the long-term problems and affect it can have on their lives.
Ask the Workers to Inspect the Ladders Carefully in the Step Ladder Safety Toolboxtalk
Be sure to cover inspection in the step ladder safety toolbox talk. This should be an unsaid rule, and it should come across as second nature to people frequently working with step ladders. All kinds of step ladders should be inspected for any possible defects or damage that may have occurred over time through excessive use of the ladder.
A competent person should inspect the ladders, but workers should check the ladders before each use if such person is not available. Any ladder that doesn’t pass the quality check should be discarded, and using it for one last time should not be the case because we don’t know when an accident will happen. Taking precautions is the best chance we have to keep ourselves safe from any possible mishap.
Make the Workers Aware About the Do’s of Using a Step Ladder
Using a ladder might be considered a simple task, but like any other thing, this also requires proper instructions. You should discuss some Do’s with the workers to put the steps into perspective.
Here are some of the Do’s you should talk about.
- Do look for any power lines overhead before placing and climbing the ladder.
- Do use ladders that are made of wood or other materials that are non-conductive when you are working on or near power lines. Not following this instruction may lead to electrical hazards.
- Do put your ladder on a stable surface such as a flat floor or ground.
- Do climb the ladder one rung at a time carefully and slowly.
- Do use something for carrying equipment or other things to keep your hands free.
Make the Workers Aware About the Don’ts of Using a Step Ladder
- Don’t ever assume that the area you are working at is free from hazards.
- Don’t use ladders made up of conductive materials such as aluminum when working around power lines.
- Don’t put your ladder on a slippery or uneven surface, as the chance of losing the balance will increase.
- Don’t skip rungs while climbing up the ladder or be in a rush, as you might miss one step and fall down.
- Don’t carry equipment or objects that are too heavy for you to handle.
Lastly, you can talk to the workers about how to use the ladder properly as part of the step ladder toolbox talk, to ensure they understood the instructions and follow them in the future. You will have a successful toolbox talk if you engage workers and make sure they are not losing their interest.
If you need a provide a toolbox talk related to step ladders, then our Step Ladder Toolbox Talk might be of interest to you.
Alternatively, if you are looking for a range of ready to deliver toolbox talks, then you might be interested in our toolbox talk packages. These include a range of toolbox talks at a cost-effective price.