MSHA shares ladder safety guidelines

February 7, 2014

The U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) released its new guide on ladder safety in a effort to “provide greater clarity and assistance for complying with MSHA ladder safety standards.”

As it has done before with similar initiatives developed in 2010 and 2012, the ladder guide consists of a slide presentation that is being posted on the administrations website.

The slide show will serve as the basis for a series of inspector trainings on ladder safety in the coming months, and will ensure that MSHA inspectors, miners and mine operators are all working with the same information, MSHA said in a post at its website.

The guide was developed in response to inquiries from stakeholders seeking clarification about ladders and ladder use, and was piloted with stakeholders.

“The improper use and maintenance of ladders in metal/nonmetal mines can have serious consequences, including injuries and death,” said assistant secretary Joe Main. “As with other compliance initiatives undertaken by the agency in recent years, I expect our ladder safety guide will result in improved compliance, more consistent enforcement, and, ultimately, reduced injuries and deaths of miners.”

Major areas covered include: Ladder construction and maintenance; requirements specific to fixed and portable ladders; underground ladders and travelways; and the differentiation between ladder standards and safe access standards. Photographs in the presentation clearly show proper and improper practices, and note which conditions would be cited in an inspection.


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