We want you to be safe at work of course, but statistics show that you’re far more likely to be injured on your own time. The holiday season is in full swing, and the following ladder and decoration safety tips can help keep you safe at work and at home.
’Tis the season to use ladders to hang holiday lights on eaves, trees, tall bushes, or even to hang a star atop large Christmas trees. While falls represent a leading cause of injury and death, most ladder-related injuries can be prevented.
Follow these safety tips:
- Inspect your ladder prior to use
- Obey the 4-to-1 rule: place the base of the ladder one foot from the wall for every four feet between the base and the support point
- Extend extension ladders at least three feet above a support point such as the edge of a roof
- Use stepladders safely, ensure they are fully unfolded with the braces are locked
- Place the ladder on a firm, level surface, and check to make sure the ladder is stable
- Never set a ladder on top of a drum, stack of pallets, or other object to gain more height
- Never set up a ladder in front of a door unless the door is locked or blocked
- Make sure the spreaders on stepladders are fully extended and locked in place
Decorating your office and home is a long-standing tradition around the holiday season. Unfortunately, these same decorations may increase your chances of fire.
Follow these safety tips :
- Limit holiday decorations to areas where they won’t create a fire hazard and won’t block exits
- Make sure decorations are kept away from heat sources, including office equipment
- If you use holiday lights, make sure they’re properly installed, don’t link more than three light strands (unless the directions indicate it’s safe), and turn off ALL lighting when you are not present
- Use only nonflammable decorations and only battery-operated, flameless candles
- Remove all paper and or flammable materials from electrical outlets or ignitable sources
- If you decorate with a live tree: choose a freshly cut tree, refill water often, and discard it promptly it becomes dry
- Place the tree away from heat sources, including fireplaces or heat vents
- Do not plug ground fault interrupters (GFIs) into other GFIs