In this article, I'll quickly sum up some of the key points surrounding telescopic ladders, and briefly explain what their main purpose is. Hopefully by the time you've finished reading this, you'll be better equipped to make the decision regarding which type of ladder is best for your specific requirements. After all, there's a good reason why some industries prefer to use telescopic ladders to do a particular job – because of the ease with which these ladders can be moved around, especially during construction work.
Telescopic ladders have recently come under fire after the tragic incident at London's Heathrow airport in January, where more than a thousand aluminum telescopic ladders were pulled off sale because they were found unsafe to use for commercial practice. For an individual scaffolding worker, this was a huge blow – even if he or she wasn't responsible for pulling down the ladders in question. However, for an industry (like construction) whose safety standards require that certain types of ladders are used exclusively for a specific task, such as scaffolding, this incident highlighted the need to review existing ladders and ensure that they're safe to use.
As far as safety standards go, there are basically three things to consider when purchasing an ordinary ladder, as well as a telescopic ladder. In short, the ladder must be able to:
Telescoping ladders are generally designed with a variety of advantages in mind. First and foremost, they allow a scaffolder to make maximum use of space, rather than being forced to make use of the narrow spaces that are often present on traditional, vertical ladders. This is because telescoping ladders are constructed in such a way that they can be extended vertically or can be positioned on sloping terrain. As the name suggests, this means that a scaffolding worker will not need to exert as much effort to reach the top of the ladder, meaning that the time taken to complete a job will be cut.
Another benefit of using a telescopic ladder is its adaptability. Not only can it be placed on slopes and other awkward terrain, it can also be positioned in a horizontal position to make sure that a person remains comfortable throughout the work. The problem that many workers experience is that using a conventional ladder on an inclined surface or on one side can be extremely uncomfortable. This is something that telescoping ladders don't have.
Finally, a telescopic ladder can be used in a variety of circumstances. When choosing a ladder for a construction site, consider what sort of work you're likely to be doing, how many people you're expected to lift, and whether your construction site is going to be open to the elements. In addition, be aware that there are many different lengths available and prices, so that you can make sure that you get the right type of ladder for your particular needs.