Ladder Falls Are Preventable

Recently we heard about another accident when working at height – and access and roof ladder system failed to prevent fall.

Nature’s Power Ltd was prosecuted after a trainee employee suffered multiple fractures in an 8m roof fall in the incident in Highbury, North London.

The investigation found that the access ladder wasn't long enough to clear the guttering, and so didn't extend to a point from which he could step off safely. The roof ladder began to slip away in his hands and pulled him off the access ladder. He was unable to hold on to anything to regain his balance, and fell three floors to the ground sustaining serious injuries.

Nature’s Power Ltd was fined a total of £30,000 and ordered to pay a further £5,840 in costs after being found guilty in absentia of two separate breaches of the Work at Height Regulations 2005.

The HSE Inspector commented: “It was clear the access ladder had been used unsafely and that Nature’s Power Ltd had failed to plan the work properly, taking into account the specific issues that arose from using that site.

If used correctly, access and roof ladders can provide safe access to chimneys. However, this one could not clear the guttering, which led to this entirely preventable incident and a trainee worker suffering serious injuries. It is only a matter of good fortune that these injuries were not fatal.

Where necessary, ancillary equipment such as adjustable ladder stays, and straps for securing it to the building should be used.”

Easi-Dec offers a variety of ladder safety solutions designed to overcome common issues involving ladder. We also offer a range of ladder safety accessories – clever devices to fit onto existing ladders in line with HSE guidelines.

More advice and information about safe use of ladders can be found on the HSE website.