It can be quite the challenge ensuring that the loading dock is safe. There are rules to follow and equipment like loading dock ladders that make access on and off the dock safer. DockLadderDepot.com offers the following safety checklist to ensure safety is priority # 1 when using your loading dock.
- All personnel need to be trained in dock safety and ALL rules must be enforced.
- The wheel chocks on ALL vehicles must be used at the dock.
- Train all powered industrial truck operators to yield the right away to pedestrians.
- Identify overhead obstacles, parking aisles, doorways, and walkway barriers with yellow tape.
- Place guards or padding around sharp corners to protect those traveling throughout the facility.
- Put into place an inspection program that will include the review palletized materials. Product should be removed from defective pallets and placed on a safe one.
- Conduct a review of the ergonomics of the warehouse. The height of conveyors should be adjusted in order to alleviate stress to the lower back. Heavier products will need to be placed at knee to chest level and the amount of weight a worker carries should be limited. Assisted lifting will also need to be a practice.
- Guards need to be installed on rollers, gears and conveyor sprockets. Moreover, all pinch points are to be labeled and protected.
- For storage or transportation, metal or plastic banding is to be used in order to secure products to pallets.
- Product that is loose will need to be shrink wrapped for storage or transport. This will prevent smaller items from falling through the overhead guard of the lift truck.
- Dock areas need to be periodically cleaned out. This will keep them free of debris accumulation.
- Forklifts, hand jacks, and/or powered hand trucks should ONLY be operated by employees that have been authorized, documented and trained via OSHA standards.
- Conduct a dock inspection in order to ensure that the emergency equipment is neither damaged nor blocked.
- Trailer restraints or wheel chocks are required to be used at every bay and all employees are made aware of this. (Keep in mind that this is the LAW).
- For a better view of the dock, the edge will need to be painted a reflective yellow.
- Confirm that the loading dock ladders from the dock floor to the dock are in compliance with OSHA specifications.
- Proper illumination for the following needs to be in compliance with OSHA 1910.24: steps, handrails and exit doors.
- Mark and identify overhead hazards that include: electric wires, doors and pipes
- Do NOT permit dock jumping. This can lead to serious injuries to the back, knee and ankle.
- Verify that the dock boards and plates have been designed for lift trucks and loads.
One of the most dangerous times on your boat could be getting on or off the dock. Dock ladders make this process safer by giving you a stable surface to climb up as you move between your boat and the dock. Five-step dock ladders are available for longer distances than shorter ladders. If you want one of these ladders for your boat, think about what features you need before you buy.
Materials for a Dock Ladder
Dock ladders are made from different materials to suit particular needs. If you want a portable dock ladder, look for something made from strong, yet lightweight aluminum. For a dock ladder you will permanently install on either your boat or the dock, heavier materials will suffice. Ladders made from heavier materials may hold more than a portable ladder. Be sure that any ladder you get will be able to withstand prolonged exposure to the elements. Check that saltwater or salt spray will not damage a ladder if you plan to use it near the ocean.
Step It Up
When choosing a dock ladder, the number of steps is important. The number of steps should allow you to reach the water or your boat safely from the dock without jumping. Five-step dock ladders are great for areas that have a long space between the dock and water’s surface.
Get a Grip
Look for non-skid steps on your new dock ladder. Because people use the ladder in and around water, chances of slipping on wet steps increase, unless the ladder had added traction. The handrails should also be easy to use without hands losing their grip on them.
A five-step dock ladder will provide you with a safe means of getting to or out of the water from the dock. Make sure your ladder fulfills your particular needs. Do you have to have a lightweight, portable ladder? Do you require something that is durable and long lasting for permanent installation? There are dock ladders available for you. Decide what you need before you go shopping for one to ensure that you come home with the right ladder for your dock.
All auto shops need some type of ladder to allow workers to access the tallest trucks or cars that are lifted above the ground. Typical A-frame ladders are large and inefficient. A better option is a three-step ladder with a handrail. A three-step ladder with a handrail has several benefits over other options.
More Vertical Range
A three-step ladder with handrails provides more vertical range than simple step stools. Workers can get higher on the ladder in order to work on tall trucks or on cars that are on hydraulic lifts. Turning the ladder so it is parallel with the vehicle being worked on allows a mechanic or technician to move up and down between the three different steps as the job requires. The ladder can be used for a variety of purposes from sanding and welding a vehicle to applying graphics or pin striping.
Better Safety and Stability
A number of three-step ladders are available that are nothing more than stairs on top of a base. The addition of handrails to each side of the steps will increase safety and stability. Workers who are climbing the stairs can hold to rails to prevent falling. The rails also act as guides while working so a person does not accidentally step too far to the right or left and fall off the ladder. The handrails provide some extra stability while working. The handrails can be used to support the arms when performing delicate tasks like precision welding.
Some models of three-step ladders with handrails are very mobile when compared to other options. A number of ladders come with wheels under the base. These wheels make it possible to roll the ladder around a vehicle or through the shop with very little effort. A single ladder can be used to perform many small and fast tasks without forcing a person to constantly take down and set up the steps. The added mobility will increase efficiency.
Anyone working in an auto shop has several different options when it comes to ladders. A number of traditional options like A-frame ladders or rolling staircases are very large and cumbersome. This makes those options impractical in small and medium shops. A three-step ladder with a handrail can be stored in any size shop or garage. They roll easily into a corner and take up little space. Some ladders even fold flat so they can be hung on a wall or stored in a closet.
Handrail usually refers to the guard alongside a series a steps, such as those commonly installed on the steps leading up to a home, a deck or a pool. People also use the term to refer to some stepladders and platform ladders, particularly in instances where the handrail is a defining feature.
A 3-step handrail is one of the most popular types of step handrails because it usually provides a step height of at least 3.75 feet but isn’t so large that it becomes heavy or unwieldy. A 3-step handrail is a great tool to have around the home because it simplifies many household chores but is small enough to store away easily and light enough to take out whenever the need arises.
A 3-step handrail will generally have a step width of at least 24 inches, but many have steps that are much wider. Step width provides a greater standing area for the user and thus increases the safety and convenience of the unit significantly. Greater step width can increase overall weight, but when dealing with just three steps, that additional weight is usually an insignificant factor.
On many such ladders, the handrail simply extends out in front of the user. The design goal is to provide the user with a handhold while standing on the top step. Some ladders will have a full handrail, which means that the handrails extend all the way down to the final step. This design is convenient for children, and it provides adult users with an easy handhold regardless of which step they’re standing on.
Weight and Load Capacity
Handrails can be made using a wide range of materials, but aluminum is the most popular choice for 3-step handrails because it’s durable, lightweight and has a high load capacity. Load capacity is an important consideration; some 3-step handrails are rated for only 200 pounds, and that’s likely not enough for a full-grown man with a compliment of tools and supplies. Overall weight is an important consideration, particularly for indoor use, because you want to be able to access it, use it and stow it away with ease.
The Optional Tray
Not all 3-step handrails will have a tray and/or bucket. With those that do, it’ll generally be attached to the highest point of the handrail. Whether a tray makes sense for you depends on how you’ll use it. For dusting, it likely just adds unnecessary weight, but for painting and other chores, it can be a big help.
One of the best investments for any garage or auto shop is a 2 steps ladder. These ladders have only two steps in a solid frame that is free from extraneous materials or components. The ladders are very functional and efficient. There are several reasons to choose a 2 steps ladder for an auto shop or garage.
A number of ladder systems are available that require a long and complex setup. This can take up valuable time in an auto shop leaving less time to work on the vehicle. A 2 steps ladder is very simple to use and does not require any extensive setup. Workers do not need to be trained how to use the ladder. It can simply be taken out when needed, used and then returned. This simplicity will allow workers to use the ladder fast whenever necessary.
There are a number of ladders available for auto shops that have features and accessories attached that will never be used. These ladders usually command a premium price even though the extra features provide no real value. A 2 steps ladder is usually priced very reasonably because the design and materials are simple and functional. This allows auto shops to purchase as many of the ladders as necessary.
A 2 steps ladder is usually smaller and more portable than most other options. The portability makes it possible to shuttle the ladder around the shop during the day as it is needed. It can be used in tight spaces under or around vehicles in the garage. Additionally, the ladders can be easily loaded into a car or truck and taken to another garage or outdoor worksite. The small footprint and profile of the ladders makes them a good option for smaller shops with limited space since they can be stored or stacked easily.
Few Safety Issues
Tall ladders or stairs often present safety issues for anyone using the equipment. A fall from a high step can cause serious injuries and broken bones. A 2 steps ladder has far fewer safety issues. The ladders are tall enough to provide access to high areas without lifting a person too far off the ground. Falls from the top step of the ladder will not normally cause serious injuries.
A 2 steps ladder is far more durable than other complex models. There are very few bolts and hinges. The simple design means the ladder has a high weight capacity. The ladder is not likely to bend or break from normal use. This allows a 2 steps ladder to be used in an auto shop for many years with proper care.
A 2-step step ladder is one of the safest and most durable pieces of equipment available. It presents very few issues for anyone working in a garage or car repair shop. It is still necessary to follow proper safety guidelines in order to avoid any potential accidents. Several tips will help anyone to remain safe while using a 2-step step ladder.
Use on Clear and Flat Surfaces
A 2-step step ladder should always be used on a clear and flat surface. The floor of a garage or auto shop sometimes contains areas that have worn down over time. These areas should be avoided since just one leg of the ladder that is not on a flat surface can make the entire unit unstable. Additionally, anyone using the ladder should make sure there are no items like bolts or cables on the ground that could cause the ladder to shift later.
Anyone using a 2-step step ladder is likely to lean forward or to the side at some point. It is important to never lean beyond the edges of the ladder. Leaning forward just a short distance past the edge of the ladder can move the center of gravity forward. The weight of the person can then cause the ladder to tilt and eventually fall. It is safer to get down and move the ladder rather than lean too far.
Stay In the Center of Steps
One of the few real safety issues with a 2-step step ladder is walking off the edge. This occurs when someone starts taking small steps to the left or right. One step too far will cause a person to fall off the ladder. The way to avoid this is to always stay in the center of the steps. A person working on the ladder should keep the feet firmly planted in place. Any steps to the side that are necessary should be done carefully while looking down. This will prevent accidents in the shop or garage.
Watch Equipment and Power Cords
Anyone who is working with equipment needs to remain aware of the ladder to make sure cords or other parts do not create safety issues. The cord on an item like a sander or welding torch could become frayed and cause electrical hazards if they touch the metal of the ladder. Cords that become caught in the ladder can pull on the tool unexpectedly causing it to fall. Tools and cords should always be kept clear of the 2-step step ladder.
A platform ladder is a self-supporting unit, which means that it doesn’t need to lean against another structure for support. It has two sides, and once open in a v-shaped formation, each side supports the other. A platform ladder is similar to a stepladder except that it uses platform steps or mobile safety steps and often has a handrail. The second step on a 2-step platform ladder will generally be 27 to 36 inches. With the handrail included, the ladder may be 54 inches or even higher altogether.
Advantages of a 2-Step Platform Ladder
A 2-step platform ladder is typically used wherever a stepstool would be practical. The big advantages of a platform ladder over a stepstool are that it’s far more stable and provides the user additional support and stability by being able to hold the handrail or brace against the ladder legs. The big advantages that a platform ladder has over a basic stepladder are that it’s much smaller and more lightweight.
Uses for a 2-Step Platform Ladder
A 2-step platform ladder can be used indoors and out, and it’s a perfect option for small tasks that aren’t too high. No one wants to carry out a heavy ladder for a 30-second chore that’s only six-feet or so off the ground. Since larger, heavier ladders aren’t practical indoors, a 2-step platform ladder is a great choice for household chores. Another benefit is that they have a very small footprint when folded up, which means that you can easily store them in a closet or alongside a washing machine or similar appliance.
Choosing a 2-Step Platform Ladder
The main items to look for when choosing a 2-step platform ladder are weight, load capacity and convenience features. Keep in mind that weight and load capacity aren’t necessarily correlated. A reason why aluminum is a popular choice for ladders is that it’s both very strong and very light. Make sure the ladder is rated to carry your weight and the weight of your supplies but not so heavy that you have difficulty carrying it up the stairs.
When it comes to the convenience features, the two important considerations are the handrail and the tray. The handrail should be sturdy and easy to reach, and the tray should be sturdy enough to hold at least ten pounds, which is about what a gallon of paint weighs. If you use the ladder a lot, wheels may be a worthwhile investment.
Two-step platforms are very popular pieces of equipment for anyone needing a helping hand around the house or on the job. Mechanics, carpenters, painters and many others use these daily in the performance of their duties. Whether it’s reaching a high shelf for some supplies or needing to reach a high part of a wall to paint some trim, these platforms come in very handy.
Most platforms are made from heavy-duty steel with hard injection-molded resin steps to ensure ease of use and safety. In addition to the two steps, many have a utility tray at the top for tools, paint and other items needed for a job. Designed to be durable, they are made for easy opening and closing with their one-hand fold and lock operation. Weight capacities of users vary among different models, but most usually have a capacity of 200-275 pounds. Very compact, they make a perfect companion to most ladders and are an excellent addition to those in the construction or building trades industries as well as people needing extra help around the house.
Useful for numerous household chores, two-step platforms are a great choice for those living in apartments or small homes. Rather than trying to find something to stand on to change a light bulb or putting away dishes in cabinets, these devices are simple and inexpensive pieces of equipment that make many household chores easier. To make completing tasks that much easier, most of these platforms have an extra-large top step designed to let a person stand on with both feet if necessary.
Many warehouses and retail stores use two-step platforms when re-stocking their shelves. The platforms are lightweight and easy for employees to carry around, and they also take up little room in a shopping aisle to leave plenty of room for customers to do their shopping. Warehouses are also extensive users of these platforms, finding them very useful when needing to stock their shelves or pull merchandise or supplies to fill orders.
Two-step platforms are made to withstand daily wear and tear both at home and on the job, making them as essential to many as a hammer or screwdriver. The cost of these platforms ranges from $30 for basic models to as much as $100 for deluxe models designed for heavy-duty use. No matter the job needing to be done, a sturdy two-step platform is always up to the challenge.
2 step ladders are ideal for providing an additional amount of height to reach items. These ladders are great to have in the home to use in the kitchen, garage, bedroom and other rooms. They are also good to have on hand in the office for reaching cabinets and for other practical uses. Most 2 step ladders are quite light so that they can easily be carried from one room to another. In addition, many of them fold flat so that they can conveniently be stored in a closet, basement or other area without taking up much available space.
2 step ladders are produced from a variety of manufacturers and can be found at most hardware stores, as well as in some department stores. The price of 2 step ladders is usually very reasonable so many consumers have one of these ladders in their home. They are normally designed with a solid lightweight steel frame to provide a sturdy structure. The steps are often a hard plastic material and a hand grip is available for added stability when climbing the steps. 2 step ladders have a high weight capacity, depending upon the actual manufacturer. In general, the ladders can hold approximately 200 pounds of weight.
The 2 step ladders are specifically designed with consumer safety in mind so that a user can feel comfortable and safe when trying to access hard to reach places. They feature non-skid treads at the base that will stand firmly in position and not slide across the floor. The second step is a larger standing platform that can automatically be locked in place so that the consumer will not have to be worried about falling or that the ladder will collapse. When folded, the majority of 2 step ladders have a convenient handgrip where the user can easily move the ladder from one room to another.
In addition to the 2 step ladders that many consumers have in their home, some businesses purchase commercial 2 step ladders that have additional strength to hold 300 pounds or more. These are great for those companies that might require heavy boxes and other products to be lowered from a shelf. Regardless of the use, 2 step ladders are an ideal product for both businesses and the home.
You can buy different types of 2 step handrails and install them yourself. You also can use a 2 step handrail for retrofitting existing buildings for insurance and accessibility compliance. A basic wooden handrail is relatively inexpensive and can add safety to a home or business. If you, family members or customers slip occasionally on steps while walking on your property you can take action to prevent a serious accident in the future. Adding a 2 step handrail is one way to ensure safety for your family and all visitors. Customized variations are available at home improvement stores and online. Information about 4 types of handrails and pricing is below.
•A Surface Mount Railing is installed using uprights to mount it to a surface that is made of wood, concrete or asphalt. The features include: 1.A railing that has open ends and a smooth surface. 2. A railing that has D-return or open ends. 3. A railing with a smooth surface that flows into the posts. 4. An ADA compliant railing that mounts to uprights. The prices range from$130 to $700.
•A Wall Mounted Railing can be mounted on a wall or post. The prices range from $65 to $450. The options to choose from are: 1. a railing that mounts to an existing post or wall. The fittings do not wrap around the grab rail. 2. A railing that curves backward into an existing wall or post. No pipe cutting or drilling is required. 3. An ADA compliant railing that attaches and curves back into the wall.
•Hybrid Mount Railings are mounted to a wall or post on one end and surface mounted on the other end. You can use them at standard stair angles or at any angle with open ends.
•An ADA Handrail Kit is a simple handrail for stairs and ramps. You can buy one that mounts to uprights or attaches to a wall. It is a smooth type and the installation difficulty level is medium.
The Surface 518-Stair Handrail is, arguably, the most popular model on the market. It is very easy to install and it can be used on almost any set of stairs in your home or business.