NewsCovering Colorado


Local expert says ladder injuries are climbing

Posted at 5:30 AM, Dec 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-07 07:58:18-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — Families are looking for a little extra cheer to get them through this pandemic holiday, but there's a right way and a safe way to decorate your home, especially if you find yourself climbing a ladder.

Local experts say it's important to use the right tool for the job, and that includes ladders!

Ladders come in different types and sizes for different applications. You have to use caution while using a ladder, otherwise, a fall can lead to serious injury and even death. Some common causes of ladder injuries are mounting or dismounting the ladder improperly, losing one's balance, and misstepping while climbing or descending.

News5 spoke to Paul Bernier, the safety manager at General Air in Colorado Springs. He says ladder injuries are rising especially among homeowners in residential areas.

"Not many people are training homeowners how to use ladders properly. In a typical year we have about 165,000 ER visits from ladder injuries alone, and about 300 plus deaths a year," Bernier explained.

Bernier says ladders should extend a minimum of three feet over the roof-line or work surface. To make sure the ladder is at the right angle, just place your toes at the base of the ladder and stretch your arm at shoulder height. If the angle is right, your hand should just touch the ladder.

Bernier also says the common injuries he sees are homeowners fracturing or breaking their wrists from trying to lessen the impact of their fall.

For more info on how to properly use a ladder, click here.