How to Use Ladders Safely

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If you plan on doing any work off the ground, you need to learn how to use ladders safely, including proper placement, testing for stability and keeping your weight centered. Get expert tips in this free video on home repair instructions.

Part of the Video Series: Home Help
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Chris Palmer. Today, we're going to talk about how to be safe when you're using a ladder. There's lots of things to think about, when you're climbing up on a ladder, to keep you safe. One is the angle at which you set it up. You want to keep it shallow enough that it's not going to tip back on you, but straight up and down enough that the feet don't go skidding out from underneath you. Before you get up on the ladder, stand on the first step, and hold on with your hands, and shift your weight around a little bit, and really test the stability of the ladder. If there is a little bit of unevenness going on, that first step will be enough to point it out to you, and you can fix it before you go any higher. Also, once you're up on the ladder, keep your body weight centered in between the rungs of the ladder. Sometimes, it's tempting to try to reach out and do something outside of that center of weight, but it's not worth it. It doesn't take that much time to get down from the ladder, move it over a little bit, and then come back up. Also, it's a really good idea to hold on to the legs of the ladder, as opposed to the steps. That way, you don't have to remove your hand to reach for the next step, but they're always in contact. I'm Chris Palmer, that's how to be safe when you're on a ladder.

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