Friday, February 19, 2010

Chutes and Ladders

Ladder wells can be dangerous places, as they are a transition point from a stable work space and a location where you are on uneven footing and must use your hands as well as your feet. In the picture below you can see a ladder-to-catwalk transition that does not meet the ANSI standard / OSHA required railing arrangement. You have to climb between the railing and the toe board (kick-plate) to make the transition. It is really quite awkward, and therefore, dangerous.
Here is a ladder transfer platform that is clearly marked and has a spring-hinged safety gate.
PS Doors Safety Gate
This is a gravity-hinged safety gate.
Intrepid Industries DG series Safety Gate
As mentioned in other posts, it always a good idea to have both emergency lighting (i.e. 'frog-eye' battery-powered light packs) and photoluminescent marking stripes along your catwalks and ladders so when the lights go out and your battery-pack fails, you still can find your way to the ladder - and down it.

ANSI A14.3 - "American National Standard for Ladders−Fixed−Safety Requirements"
OSHA - U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration – "Regulations 29 CFR 1910 Subpart D (Walking-Working Surfaces)"
PIP - Process Industry Practices document "STF05501 - Fixed Ladders and Cages"

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