Occupational and Environmental Safety

Ladder Safety Program

43 percent of fatal falls in the last decade have involved a ladder; a leading cause of unintentional injury mortality nationwide. Among workers, approximately 20 percent of fall injuries involve ladders, and among construction workers, an estimated 81 percent of fall injuries treated in hospital emergency rooms involve a ladder (CDC 2014 report).


Purpose and Scope

The purpose and scope of this document is to put forth the regulations regarding Ladder Safety procedures and training at Skidmore University. CFR 1926. 1950-1960 Subpart X contains specific information on these rules. All employees or students who might be expected to use a ladder during the course of work should be familiar with this document. This standard operating procedure covers all types of ladders, including step, extension, and fixed ladders. Ladder users must be able to recognize and avoid ladder hazards and be aware of safe practices in setting up, storing, moving and working from this equipment.



It is the responsibility of all Supervisors, Department Managers and Staff who have employees or students under their supervision who may have occasion to use any type of ladder during the performance of the work, to assure that all staff and students at Skidmore who may use a ladder, receive ladder safety training.

It is the responsibility of Environmental Health and Safety to provide basic ladder training safety information to all departments in need of that training.

It is the responsibility of all Supervisors, Department Managers, and Staff to assure that all ladders being used at Skidmore are free from defects and the all moving parts are working properly.

It is the responsibility of all Supervisors, Department Managers, Faculty and Staff to maintain records on departmental ladder training.


Ladder Categories


Fixed Ladder – A ladder that cannot be easily moved or carried, and may be an integral part of a structure.




Extension Ladder Safety

The sections of an extension ladder should overlap enough to retain the strength of the ladder. * see table 1 A


Table 1A

Length of Ladder              Required Overlap

Up to 36′                              3 Feet

Over 36’to 48′                    4 Feet

Over 48′ to 60′                   5 Feet