One assistive device that is seen with great frequency around the work site is the ladder. Whether it is a small step ladder you use to grab office supplies off of a high shelf or a 20-foot extension ladder used to access a roof, ladders are crucial tools for workers. They are also dangerous, causing thousands of injuries every year. The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics found that in 2020, ladders were involved in 22,710 nonfatal injury accidents. They were involved in another 161 fatal accidents on the job site. The vast majority of both fatal and nonfatal accidents involve movable or portable ladders that can be carried around the workplace. Please keep reading to learn how a workplace injury lawyer can help if you have suffered a ladder accident at work.
Injuries from Ladder Accidents Commonly Seen
By far, the most common workplace accident that occurs with ladder use is a fall. Falls can produce a wide variety of injuries, including:
- Bumps, bruises, and scrapes
- Broken bones, especially in the arms or legs
- Injuries to the back, spinal column, and spinal cord
- Concussions and other head trauma
The higher the height from which you fall, the greater the risk of severe or fatal injuries. However, even a fall from a six-foot ladder can sometimes be fatal.
Safety Tips for Avoiding Falls Off Ladders at Work
Avoiding a fall from a ladder at work begins before you set foot on the ladder. Inspect the ladder for obvious signs of damage, wear, or other safety issues. If steps are broken, supports are damaged or not locking properly, or the ladder feels unstable, do not use it.
Make sure you use the correct ladder for the job. If you are working near power lines or electricity, you must use a fiberglass ladder or another ladder that will not conduct electricity.
You should also ensure that you do not exceed the weight limit for the ladder. Consider not just your body weight but also the weight of any supplies or tools you plan to use while on the ladder.
Other safety tips for safe ladder from our workplace injury lawyer include:
- Ensuring you wear appropriate footwear with good tread
- Keeping your body weight centered between the rails of the ladder
- Avoiding reaching over the side of the ladder
- Not standing on top of the ladder or on the upper rungs
If you find a ladder is in disrepair, or if the ladder your employer provides is not adequate for your task, bring the matter up with your employer.
When Should You Call a Workplace Injury Lawyer?
In South Carolina, employees hurt while on the job can pursue compensation through the state’s workers’ compensation program. This program can provide you with the money needed to replace the income you lost due to missing work as well as the cost of medical care.
Not all claims are submitted properly or approved promptly. Whenever you have a concern about your workers’ compensation claim, consider speaking with Lowcountry Law, LLC. We represent injured workers in Myrtle Beach, Mount Pleasant, and all over South Carolina.
Our legal team can provide high-quality representation no matter whether your claim has been denied or you haven’t even submitted it yet. Let us discuss your circumstances and needs with you during a free case evaluation.