Ladders are estimated to cause more than half a million hospital treatments and more than 100 fatalities each year in the EU Member States. Two thirds of the accidents concern consumer’s use of ladders. This places portable ladders and stepladders among the most risky consumer products on the market.
The primary objective of the action is to build knowledge about the market for ladders, the standards applied and to what degree the ladders on the market comply with the standards.
Secondary objectives were to generate information on e.g. safety requirements to go into the standardisation work on ladders presently undertaken by CEN and to raise awareness amongst the Member States for the need for increased safety and harmonisation in this area.
Action was undertaken by 5 participating countries: Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Spain, Slovenia (Leader) and the Netherlands.
The project also foresaw the testing of extending/leaning ladders and stepladders, the results of which were fed into the European Commission’s Ladders Expert group as well as the CEN Technical Committee with a view to helping to provide input to the revision of the standard EN131.