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Aluminium Ladders

Home |  Aluminium Ladders

Aluminium Ladders: Important Safety Considerations



In the UK and throughout the EU, there are a number of important rules and standards that apply to the manufacture and use of ladders. Aluminium ladders are included in these standards. It's important to understand that the classifications depend on how the ladder is being used as well as the type of work being done. There are 3 applicable classifications that fall within the purview of BS 2037. Here's some information from the experts as BPS Access Solutions you might find helpful if you're shopping for an aluminium ladder.

Aluminium Ladders

Aluminium Ladders: The BS and EN Classifications



Class 1 ladders carry an industrial rating that means the ladders in this category are designed for heavy duty use. The maximum safe load of these ladders is 175kg. Although Class 1 ladders are appropriate for site work or heavy industrial applications, there's no reason that they can't be used for domestic or DIY use. The EN131 class (formerly Class 2) includes trade ladders and is the most popular UK and EU category. These ladders carry a load rating of 150kg and are appropriate for workplace or home use as well as for trade applications. Class 3 ladders are for domestic use only, and should never be used in trade or industrial applications. They have a load rating of 95kg, which means they're very easy to carry and deploy.

Aluminium Ladders: Scaffold Tower Classifications

Scaffold towers are good choices over ladders for work at height applications of extended duration. They're safer and more comfortable for users, and have their own set of standards, known as BSEN1004. Unfortunately there are no UK standards for scaffold towers, but the HSE does rely on the WAHR (Work at Height Regulations) to enforce basic compliance. Fortunately, some ladder manufacturers have chosen to conform, despite the lack of rules.

Aluminium Ladders: An Overview of the WAHR

The WAHR have been in effect in the UK since 2005 and are a consolidation of both the UK and EU work at height rules. The WAHR applies to any situation in which working at height includes a significant danger or risk of falling. Those to whom the WAHR apply is a broad range that specifies any person that controls the work of others, including both employers and the self-employed. An example of such persons includes building owners and facilities managers. The rules cite standards for the competence of and risks associated with work at height. BPS Access Solutions' experts ensure that their customers correctly assess, organise and plan their projects, along with helping them to choose the appropriate equipment.

Aluminium Ladders: More about the WAHR

Although aluminium is a more durable material than timber, and less brittle than the glass fibre from which some ladders are made, ladders made from this metal still must conform to specific rules. How to know whether the rules apply to you? The HSE has set a simple framework that describes how work at height equipment is selected and managed. Aluminium ladders, as well as ladders made from other materials, should be used in conjunction with other measures to prevent falls. In fact, the HSE recommends avoiding work at height whenever possible. In cases where the risk of falls is great, it's important to take measures or use equipment that's designed to minimise the distance and consequences of such falls. One regulation that's particularly relevant to ladders made from aluminium is that users are required to provide appropriate equipment. With the exception of working around electrical sources, an aluminium ladder is the ideal choice. It's also incumbent upon employers and other entities to provide adequate supervision, training, instruction or information to those who use ladders in trade or industrial settings.

Aluminium Ladders: Key Factors for Safe Use

It's vitally important to do a risk assessment before using any type of ladder, including aluminium ladders. Even if you're just going up the ladder to clean the gutters or wash the windows, be sure to choose the correct one and use it only according to the manufacturer's stated recommendations. Do be sure to take all the actions you need to prevent a fall or to mitigate the circumstances in which a fall may occur. BPS Access Solutions recommends the use of corrective measures whenever possible, such as employing ladders with guardrails or scaffold towers with platforms. For the latest information on ladder safety and the WAHR, be sure to contact the helpful staff at BPS Access Solutions on 08712 000 369 or email sales@bpsaccesssolutions.co.uk.

Home |  Aluminium Ladders


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