Historically ladders have been extensively used when working at heights. However ladders do come with a cost with regards to injury.
In Australia from 2009 to 2011 there were a total of 3,830 serious compensation claims for injuries sustained as a result of falling from ladders.*
WorkCover (NSW) Safety Guidelines No.4503 Feb. 1999 states that a person should always have three limbs on the ladder at all times.
This means that when working on a ladder with tools, this requirement may be extremely difficult to meet. Occupational Health and Safety Regulation 2001 states that you should only consider using a ladder if other alternatives cannot be used or are not reasonably practicable and a ladder can be used safely.
Access Holdings International P/L (AHI), an Australian company based in Sydney has developed a range of Quick Lift® mini scissor ladder replacement lifts, which provide a high level of operator safety.
These lifts are available in a push around (UB series) or a self- propelled (UBM series) configurations. Working heights range from 3.8m to 5.0m. They eliminate the need for “three point contact”, have a heavier load rating than ladders (240kg vs 120kg), provide a safer working environment for longer duration jobs (where worker fatigue may be factor) and where slippery surfaces are present.
* Source – Safe Work Australia
Work – Related Injuries and Fatalities involving a fall from height.