We have noticed a trend over the last year where contractors are turning to stairs in lieu of ladders to access their scaffolding. We see a number of advantages to stair towers over ladders. First, they are much safer! According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1/7th of all fatal fall injuries are falls off ladders. https://www.bls.gov/iif/oshwc/cfoi/cfch0009.pdf. Stair towers offer fall protection in the form of side rails all the way up.
Stairs provide faster access to the scaffolding platform because multiple workers can use them simultaneously and even in different directions. Ladders are like a slow one-way street and stairs are like a two lane road. Last, workers can carry tools and equipment with them up the stairs, which is safer than carrying them up a ladder and potentially keeps them from being brought up by a forklift.
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