New Fixed Ladder Rule! | Climbing Safety System, Fall Protection, Fall Arrest, Training, Oregon OSHA

November 6, 2019 posted by


Bryon: First of all, a fixed ladder is defined
in the rule. A fixed ladder means a ladder with rails or
individual rungs that is permanently attached to a structure, building, or equipment. Fixed ladders include individual rung ladders,
but not ship stairs, step bolts, or manhole steps. You commonly find fixed ladders in locations
where there is a permanent piece of equipment and there isn’t enough room for a stairway. So, a means of access, in the form of a ladder
that is permanent, will be installed, so it becomes a fixed ladder. So, instead of using a portable ladder to
get to the elevation between different runways, you’ll have a fixed ladder that is installed
and is left behind as a permanent structure. Protection from falls are required in the
rules, and there is a specific section just for fixed ladders. And that’s one of the trigger heights, so
anytime that an employee is going to be climbing a length that is 24 feet or greater above
a lower level, some sort of protection is going to need to be provided for that employee
when they’re climbing the ladder. And so, that lower level is really the important
part when you’re making the measurement. That 24-foot climb is going to be taking into
account whether or not the platform below is large enough to reasonably catch the employee. If it’s not, then you would measure to the
level that is below that platform. The walking-working surfaces require that
when the length of climb up a fixed ladder is greater than 24 feet, the employer needs
to provide protection for the employees from falls. In the future, that’s going to be limited
to a ladder climbing safety system, or a personal fall arrest system. Currently the use of a cage or well is still
allowed as a form of fall protection; that there is a definitive date where the cage
or the well will no longer be allowed to be used as a form of fall protection when climbing a ladder.

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