Ladder Safety While Painting: Is it Important?

Ladder Safety When Painting!

Fear, uncertainty and physical danger go hand in hand when it comes to house painting unless you are a professional painter.

Whether inside or out, most houses have areas higher than you can easily reach, even when standing on tippy-toes! That means you must stand on some platform or ladder device to reach them.

And that is where the danger begins …

Unless you are 100% comfortable working off-the-ground, this is something to consider carefully before you embark on your do-it-yourself project. Even standing on a chair, you might suddenly experience vertigo (dizziness), become unbalanced, and fall. That means paint all over you, the floor, the furniture and possibly a painful or serious injury.

And even if you don’t lose your balance but are still slightly nervous at heights, that shaky brush is not going to make a nice straight line around your light fixture or the corner of the wall.

A housepainter stands on a ladder to paint the walls inside a residential home.

Professional Painters are Trained in Safety

Professional painters are trained and familiar with safety issues when working at heights and can do a good job, use a steady hand, and not suffer incidents in the home where they are working. They are practised and relaxed.

Outside, it is even more important that confidence and safety exist.

Usually, taller ladders of 24’, 32’ or even 40’ are needed to paint the exterior of a house. These are big, long, heavy, and definitely not that easy to move around. You wouldn’t be the first person to knock out a picture window or ding the neighbour’s car with a ladder swinging out of control. It’s funny in a comedy film but not in real life!

Then once you get ‘way up there’, the ladder must be secure, safe, and on solid ground.

On a sloping hill? That can create other problems.

Need to get up on the roof to access some siding or trim? Again there are challenges but safe solutions.

Professional Painters Know Their Way Around Ladders

To sum up:

• Professional painters know the rules, such as the safe ratio between height and angle (normally 4:1) and other procedures for ladder safety, such as tying the ladder off etc.

• Professional painters use their equipment every day. It’s maintained and replaced when needed.

• Their ladders have levellers and other safety devices.

• They are confident and familiar with the limitations of their equipment and their own body.

• They are relaxed and proficient in working at heights.

• They should have completed basic Workers Compensation Board training on common risks and safety. If unsure about that, ask them directly if they have this training.

• Professional painters have also solved many of the difficult access problems on other jobs, so your job won’t be your first time up the ladder.

Not sure you are 100% confident working at heights? Then don’t risk your personal safety and job quality to save a few bucks. It’s just not worth it. A professional may cost a bit more upfront, but you can save a lot in the end, even your life!

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