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Ladders falls on the job run risk of serious injury

Research from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that falls off of ladders while on the job account for a large percentage of accidents in Pennsylvania and across the nation. A research team reported that 43 percent of deaths from falls in the past 10 years have been related to ladders. In total, workplace accident injuries from ladders account for about 20 percent of on-the-job tumbles.

The study looked at data from across the nation for 2011. Ladder falls while on the clock accounted for more than 110 deaths, nearly 15,500 injuries that included time off of work and around 34,000 injuries that required a visit to the emergency room. Those at the greatest risk of falling included men, Hispanics and older workers; the fields with the highest risk of ladder falls included mining and extraction occupations, repair, maintenance and installation. Construction workers took the brunt of the data, with a staggering 81 percent of work-related injuries involving a ladder.

Additional information indicates that most of the injuries were avoidable. Specialists encourage that education and training could help businesses prevent ladder falls while at work. Other safety tips include working on the ground when possible, using alternate equipment like scaffolds and lifts, ensuring that ladders have undergone a complete inspection and using necessary safety accessories.

If a worker dies or suffers a serious injury from an on-the-job accident, one might question whether or not the company was negligent in safety practices. For workers who have suffered financially and physically due to their injuries, an attorney might be able to help seek compensation for them and file a claim.

Source: Philly.com, "Workplace Ladder Falls a Major Cause of Deaths, Injuries: CDC", April 24, 2014

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