At Browns Ladders, we want to give you a quick guide to carrying out pre-use window cleaning ladder safety inspections.
Hundreds of workers are killed or seriously injured ever year from falling off ladders while cleaning windows – and sometimes it’s down to a faulty ladder. That’s why you should carry out inspections every time carry out a window cleaning job.
Why is it important to carry out ladder safety inspections?
Since ladders are just everyday objects, it’s easy to take them for granted. But like any work equipment, people must be trained and competent in order to use them safely.
It’s recommended that you have them thoroughly checked by a competent person at least every 6 months. You or your window cleaning employees must also carry out pre-use ladder safety inspections before using the equipment.
Pre-use ladder safety checks before window cleaning
Make sure the stiles are not dented, splintered or creased. Any deformed or stiles are a sign your ladder may snap or bend.
Are they feet worn, damaged or missing? That’s a recipe for disaster. You need to be able to rest the feet on the surface without it wobbling.
3. Steps and rungs
Missing splintered or bent steps and rungs weaken the ladder. It may cause it to collapse while in use
4. Side Stays, braces or handrails
If they are bent, loose or damaged or not firmly attached, you definitely need to check them properly.
5. The platform
Again, if this is bent, or rivets aren’t attached properly, they’ll be trouble because the structural integrity will be compromised. Also, check the platform’s support bar is not compromised in any way
6. General ladder/stepladder inspections
Check the entire ladder/stepladder for cracks, loose rivets, and splinters, ensuring it’s on a level surface and that the steps are clean & dry – because of wear or due to spills in prior use.
7. Paint on ladders
Don’t paint your ladders or use ones they are already painted – it covers up defects.
8. Safe Working Load
Even if the ladder looks ok… check its load capacity before cleaning the windows – and stay well within that range.