Home attic spaces are probably among the most dangerous places, as homeowners can sustain injuries from serious accidents that occur here. Thus, when you are storing things in the attic, it is critical that you exercise a large degree of caution to avoid hurting yourself. You should frequently inspect the pull-down attic ladder for loose bolts and screws as well as cracks in the wood that occur over time. There are a number of things you can do to lessen the chance of injury or even death—check out these must-know tips for attic safety.
Check Attic Areas for Safety
Most attic accidents were a result of people shoving items up the stairs and losing their balance or missing a step during entry or exit of the pull-down ladder. Furthermore, some of the accidents happened while pulling the ladder down from the ceiling and getting hit on the head by it. There are a couple of things you can do to lessen the chance of injury, such as check the steps for secure fasteners and make sure the ladder is on solid footing before you ascend. Additionally, installing a handle to hold at the top of the ladder is important so you can securely plant a foot on the steps while entering or exiting the attic. It is also important to wear protective clothing to avoid coming in contact with the attic insulation, which can cause allergic reactions and even a rash. This could include a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, work shoes, safety goggles, and a face mask.
Don’t Disturb the Insulation
You’ll want to constantly be aware of where the exposed insulation is as well so that you don’t accidentally brush up against it. When disturbed, this material releases a series of things into the air such as dust, dirt, mold, and fine insulation fibers—all incredibly unhealthy to breathe in. Even direct skin contact has been known to develop itchy surface rashes that require treatment. So, move slowly and deliberately through heavily insulated areas.
Make Sure You Have Enough Light and Headroom
Ensuring you have enough light to work with is also a must-know tip for working safely in your attic. This is because, without light, you’re at an increased chance of losing your footing and falling on something that could hurt you. Flashlights are typically sufficient, but larger floodlights are also a good idea if you’re performing extensive work on your attic. Further, be aware of head room to avoid hitting your head on a low hanging rafter or roof nail. Often, there are roof shingle nails protruding through the roof that can puncture.
Keep the Entrance Easily Accessible
Ultimately, you want to be able to enter and exit comfortably. Attic doors are typically very small and require you to slouch or stoop. As such, it’s important that you keep this area not only clear to move around, but also that you have something to grip as you use it. On the plus side, there are several different methods available to you to accomplish this.
If you’re looking for a way to make your attic a safer place to navigate and work in, look no further than VersaLift. Our elevator lifting systems allow you to freely move your belongings in and out of the space—taking the hassle out of you carrying them up a narrow staircase. We also provide customizable attic safety railings that you can install along your attic’s entrance. This way, you have something to hang onto as you ascend and descend.