Research to improve extension ladder angular positioning

A leading cause for extension ladder fall incidents is a slide-out event usually related to suboptimal ladder inclination. An improved ladder positioning method or procedure could reduce the risk of ladder stability failure and the related fall injury. The objective of the study was to comparatively evaluate the effectiveness of a multimodal angle indicator with other existing methods for extension ladder angular positioning. Twenty experienced and 20 inexperienced ladder users participated in the study. Four ladder positioning methods were tested in a controlled laboratory environment with 4.88 m (16 ft) and 7.32 m (24 ft) ladders in extended and retracted positions. The positioning methods included a no-instruction method, the current standard anthropometric method, and two instrumental methods – a bubble level indicator, and a multimodal indicator providing direct feedback with visual and sound signals. Performance measures included positioning angle and time[..]

Source : P. Simeonov, H. Hsiao, J. Powers, I.-J. Kim, T.-Y. Kau, D. Weaver. Research to improve extension ladder angular positioning. Applied Ergonomics, vol. 44, no 3, May 2013, p. 496–502.

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