Many workplaces have ladders that an employer may ask you to climb. It might be an occasional request or something they require you to do various times per day.
Regardless, you need to ask some questions before you go up, as ladders can be dangerous. Here are some things to consider:
Is it necessary, or is there a safer alternative
Not every employer can afford to bring in a mobile elevated work platform or set up scaffolding to carry out work at height. The costs, time, or access sometimes make it impractical, especially for something as quick as changing a lightbulb. Yet many employers rely on ladders for longer complex tasks, where a safer option is warranted.
Do I know how to use it?
Not all ladders are as simple as they seem. People have fallen because they failed to understand how to lock the sections correctly, among other things.
Is this particular ladder safe?
Maybe you have been climbing up ladders for your employer for years. Yet today they ask you to go up an old wooden one because the others are all in use. If a rung breaks while you are on it, your experience will count for nothing.
Is it a safe place to use it?
Examine the ground where you need to set up the ladder. Feel free to refuse if you cannot set it up there safely.
Does my employer have workers’ compensation covering me if I fall?
Hopefully, they do, but it is better to be sure. Claiming can be challenging even when they do, so either way, get legal help to fight for the compensation you need if injured in a ladder fall at work.