During the construction and use of such scaffolds and work platforms, certain levels of the working platform may be required to be restricted for any number of reasons, including; dangerous or incomplete scaffolds, restrictions due to lower level works, etc.. without removing the ladders between the levels, it can prove difficult to manage and police staff and contractors to prevent access to the restricted levels of the working platform.
Also, when works are not being performed, ladders can present a serious risk to the business as they allow trespassers and other unauthorised persons to gain access to the work platforms and scaffolds – these unauthorised persons can potentially include children.
At height, unauthorised persons may then cause themselves, or others, injury by accessing dangerous or incomplete scaffold resulting in a scaffold collapse, a fall from height, dropping tools and materials onto passers by, or knocking debris and other items from the work platform.
In the uk, the law demands that should they enter your site, trespassers, and other unauthorised persons, are to be protected from being exposed, and exposing others, to such hazards, i.e., trespassers should be stopped from accessing such work platforms. to meet this legal requirement several practices are currently employed which include;
Removing access ladders from a scaffold or other area, which can involve; loss of time whilst the ladder is being removed and re-fitted, increased risk of the ladder not being correctly secured, and the requirement for a competent person to complete these works.
Boarding the ladder, i.e., lashing a scaffold board to the ladder rungs to render the ladder unusable, boarding the ladder also has a number of disadvantages as the board is typically only tied to the ladder and can therefore be easily removed by undoing the knots or cutting the lashing.
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