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How to safely secure a ladder

A video showing how to safely secure a ladder using rope or bungee cords. Failure to secure the ladder is possibly the most common cause of serious injury on ladders. Proper ladder safety is very important in gutter cleaning and roof access. See our video regarding high ladder usage.

Grayson’s take safety very seriously when cleaning your gutters. For more information about our gutter cleaning services, call us now on 03 9899 5886

Video Transcript

Hi, I’m from Grayson’s Gutter Cleaning.

Today, I’m following up on my video from last week. In my previous video, I mentioned that my aluminium ladder was tied on at the top with a strap, and today I want to show you how that was done.

It is extremely important to tie the ladder on at the top before climbing on to the roof. Lots of people lose their balance and fall, just as they are trying to climb from the ladder to the roof as the ladder slips away. Failure to tie the ladder on at the top is possibly the most common way that people hurt themselves on ladders.

Now, here’s a 98 centimetre octopus strap, or 38 inches, and I’ll use this strap to tie my ladder on. In some countries they call these ‘bungie cords’, these straps can actually be an eye injury hazard if they break or if you allow your face to be in the recoil path, so I’m wearing my goggles for protection. Hopefully this will highlight the risk and keep you aware of the risk.

The metal hooks actually fit into the lip of the gutter. I put my hook into the lip of the gutter, wrap it around the ladder, and I place the hook on each side of the ladder.

For extra strength, you could use two or more straps. Of course, this method of tying on is really only as strong as the gutter, or the straps themselves.

A better method of tying on for added safety is to use a strong rope and actually tie the ladder to the roof truss behind the first row of tiles behind the gutter.

Now I’ve moved my roof tile, and I wrap the rope around the timber underneath to tie it to the ladder. Here I have a short piece of rope with a figure 8 on a bite at each end. I then join the two knots with my carabiner, and the ladder’s secured, but of course you could use other knots to tie your ladder on. So basically, I’ll move one of these tiles, and then tie the ladder to the roof. This will only work if you can actually move the roof tiles.

For accessing, the ladder should reach at least 90 centimetres above the roof edge so you don’t have to step on the second rung from the top as you climb onto the roof. You should never stand on a ladder rung that is less than 90 centimetres, or less than 36 inches, from the top of an extension ladder. By standing too close to the top of the ladder, you end up with nothing to hang on to, and this can again cause you to lose your balance and fall.

Thanks for watching, and stay safe on your ladders! Remember to only use properly trained people to work on your roof.