“Ensure that no person engages in any activity, including organisation, planning and supervision, in relation to work at height or work equipment for use in such work unless he is competent to do so” – Work at Height Regulations 2005
“In 2013/14 falls from height were the most common cause of fatalities, accounting for nearly three in ten fatal injuries to workers” – HSE
The Work at Height Regulations 2005 single out competence as a requirement for working at height – if someone is not competent, they should not be on a ladder at work.
Competence comes from training, knowledge and experience. That is why a LadderCard – awarded after a Ladder Association training course and valid for five years after the training is completed – is used as a way to demonstrate competence. It proves that holders have been trained, and helps show that they have been exposed to the right technical knowledge.
Without adequate training, have you really done as much as possible to avoid an accident? Without a LadderCard, are you sure you can prove that if one does take place?
The HSE’s slips, trips and falls summary is available for anyone to see, and it is grim reading.
In recent years most fatal injuries in the workplace have been falling, but work at height is still killing around as many people as it was 13 years ago.
Injuries are also in the thousands, and while people might assume that they are not in much danger while working at low levels on a ladder, those falls can make up a large number of these injuries. RIDDOR statistics released before the Work at Height Regulations 2005 showed that 60% of falls recorded were “low falls” from below head height.
The results of an injury can be devastating. One of the clearest ways of showing these results is to hear from someone who a fall happened to – such as in the powerful Jason Anker video below.