Product Suitability (fit for purpose)
The type of product you use depends on the purpose for which it is intended to be used.
The increasing impetus on regulations means that it is unacceptable to be using inappropriate
equipment. Legal proceedings may be applied by the Health and Safety Executive if the
regulations are not adhered to.
DIY: This product is only suitable for occasional use around the domestic home.
Please check the duty rating to ensure the product meets the necessary loadings.
A DIY product is not suitable for use by a tradesman.
Trade: If you are selecting an access product as a tool for your work, this product
will be sufficient for general-purpose applications. The product is designed to withstand
day-to-day use and the wear and tear of trade conditions. Please check the duty rating
to ensure the product meets the necessary loadings.
Industrial: Where the product is to be used in extreme conditions where weight,
environment or frequency demands the most solid equipment, then an ‘Industrial’ rated product should be suitable. This type of product is also suitable for use within a rental fleet. Please check the duty rating to ensure the product meets the necessary loadings.
WHICH TYPE OF LADDER PRODUCT SHOULD I USE?
To determine the best and safest type of product to use there are a number of factors to take into account.
● Nature of task (what type of use is required).
● Safe working height (maximum working height required without overstretching).
● Duration of task (how long you are expecting to be working on the access product).
● Frequency of use (how often the product will be used).
● Weight the product will need to carry, including the weight of the person and relevant tools (also referred to as Duty Rating).
● Site conditions at ground level.
STEP LADDERS/EXTENSION LADDERS BS2037 Class 3: Duty Rating 95kg (15 stone) BS2037 Class 3 is the lightest UK duty
category. These ladders and steps are
built for occasional use around the home.
They are NOT designed for Trade and
Industrial use. Using them in these
circumstances contravenes the Health& Safety Regulations. Insurance companies
often state that using domestic ladders and
steps for commercial work will invalidate
claims for personal injury.
BS EN131: Duty Rating 110kg (17.3 stone)Max Safe Working Load 150kg (23.5 stone)
BS2037 Class 2 is now replaced by
the European-wide EN131. This is a
European-wide recognised standard.
You may note other letters prefixing
EN131, which is to highlight the country
or test house where the product was
approved. However, all certifications
are the same.
Manufacturers often subdivide this standard
into several unofficial strength categories
from light duty to heavy duty and produce
ranges of ladders and steps of the same
general design in each category. All,
however, will be of EN131 standard.
BS2037 Class 1: Duty Rating 130kg (20.5 stone)
BS2037 Class 1 is the strongest UK category.
These ladders and steps are built for the most
rugged and frequent use.
When selecting a piece
of access equipment the
weight of the user, the tools and
materials that will be applied to the
product must be calculated.
Movement up or down a product
creates additional load. However,
you would be unable to calculate
what this is therefore the Duty Rating
load takes this into account.
Maximum Static Load
This is the maximum certified static
vertical load and only applies under
test conditions. A safety factor is
built into this.