There are many statutory regulations concerning the material and its use. The most commonly occurring rules are given below.
Use in general
- Ensure a stable and flat base.
- Take extra precautions if the climbing material needs to be placed in front of a door; prevent the use of the door.
- In the case of metal climbing materials look out for non-insulated electrical sources; place the climbing material at least 2 metres from these.
- Wear safe footwear, preferably shoes with profiled soles or safety shoes.
- Use head protection if there is a large chance of hitting your head (safety helmet).
Quality climbing material
- Check the climbing material before use; note the approval date when doing this.
- Ensure regular maintenance and inspection by approved experts.
Use of stepladders
- Ensure that stepladders are fully unfolded.
- Do not use the top steps unless you can hold on safely.
- A stepladder with platform must have a support brace of at least 60 cm.
Use of ladders
Ladders may only be used for incidental jobs (shorter than 4 hours) in case little strength is needed and the relevant task can be carried out at an arm's length. Otherwise scaffolding or a tower wagon must be used.
- Place a ladder at about 70º to the ground (a measure for this is: stand upright with the toes against the ladder; with outstretched arms you should just be able to grab the ladder).
- Ensure a ladder cannot slip or use a ladder with ladder shoes.
- Place a ladder against a firm, weight-bearing surface.
- Do not lean too far to one side; work within your span.
- Stand with both feet on the ladder.
- Use ladders of the right height. The ladder must stick out at least 1 metre above the place where you want to work.
- The pull-up rope from an extension ladder must be fixed to a step; the overlap between parts must be at least two steps.
- In the case of a three-part combination ladder, which is used as an ordinary stepladder, never climb the third part of the ladder above the pivoting point.
Use of scaffolding
When working at a height of 2.5 metres or more, use scaffolding, a tower scaffold, platform or a working floor.
- Scaffolding may only be erected by an experienced scaffolder.
- If there is a chance of electrocution then the scaffolding must be earthed.
- Climb the scaffolding correctly.
- Material may not be stacked up to more than a height of 0.55 metres on the scaffolding unless fencing is used.
- Ensure the stability of the scaffolding by paying due attention to the base, the locking of the wheels and the surroundings (doors, people passing by).
A safety harness must be worn at locations that cannot be made safe enough, such as work locations at height and sloping roofs.