Ladder Safety at Home
Allow me to set the scene for you. You are organizing your closet, when you catch a glimpse of a roll of toilet paper on the top shelf. Now, you have a few options here. Either you leave that coveted roll of toilet paper on the shelf, or you climb up to retrieve it. Do you reach for the stepladder, or do you reach for a chair or something similar that is nearby? If your natural inclination is to just grab the chair, we need to fix that. From years of observation, we’ve seen people go to great lengths to avoid getting the stepladder out of the garage, instead opting for chairs, shelves, boxes, etc. to get to that out-of-reach item. You’ve probably done it yourself. Honestly, we’ve all done it, but it has to stop. It’s impractical, and it’s unsafe. I’m sure everyone has their reasons why they don’t always reach for a ladder for these household tasks, but my initial thought is that maybe the ladder is too big, too heavy, too far away or just out of sight. There isn’t much that we can do to change your mindset that fetching the ladder is a hassle, but there are lots of things that can be done about the other problems.
Start With the Right Ladder
Not every ladder is right for every task, which is why it is important to have a few different ladders in your home. Your multi-position ladder is amazing for big projects but isn’t necessary for small household tasks. If you start by having the right kind of ladder or step stool for your project, you’re already moving in the right direction. A ladder like the Little Giant® MightyLite; or King Kombo; is ultra-lightweight with a slim storage profile, making it easy to carry and store, so you can access the ladder for all your tasks. Alternately, one of Little Giant’s step stools, like the Jumbo Step; is a great option to give you some added height. The Jumbo Step and MightyLite also have comfortable steps and standing platforms, that help you feel as though you are standing on the ground, rather than a climbing tool. By having a small, lightweight, easy-to-store stepladder or step stool inside your home, you will find yourself frequently opting for the ladder to access your out-of-reach items inside your home.
Stop Using ___ as a Ladder
Okay, it had to be done. We have to address the things we’ve seen used as a ladder, that absolutely shouldn’t be used as a ladder.
Here’s the deal- a rolling chair should never be used to climb, even if you are trying to reach something in your home office, and the rolling chair is right next to you. It isn’t a ladder and it’s going to roll out from underneath you.
Although a bed can give you some added height when trying to change the lightbulb above your bed, it isn’t a solid surface. Much like the rolling chair that is listed above, you’re going to lose your balance and hurt yourself.
This is the one we see most frequently in kitchens and bathrooms. Your countertop may be stable and strong enough to support you, but should it? Not only is it gross to stand with your dirty shoes or bare feet on the place where you prepare your food in the kitchen, but it also wasn’t designed with the intention of having a fully-grown adult (or a small child) standing on it. Standing on a countertop is a great way to lose your balance and fall, possibly taking some dishes down with you.
Refer to the section above regarding countertops. The same is true here, and it’s less sturdy than your countertop, so that’s all the more reason why you should never stand on a table.
Look, before we venture into the realm of utter absurdity, let’s just reel this in, and say, if you aren’t using a ladder to climb, don’t climb it. If the thing you are using to climb in order to change the smoke detector batteries could have you wind up with a photo or video on one of those “#FailFriday” pages on YouTube, Reddit, Instagram, etc., or if it is just plain dangerous, you need to stop what you’re doing and switch to a ladder.