Ground Ladder Testing & Inspection Service

Call  888.595.8323

Ohio CAT provides third party inspections on ground ladders according to NFPA guidelines utilizing state-of-the-art test equipment and certified inspectors. After ground ladder inspection tests are completed, we will provide an electronic report. Upon completion of any necessary repairs, we will then issue certification.

Ground Ladder Inspection:

  • NFPA 1932
  • Visual Inspection
  • Horizontal Bend Test
  • Hardware Test
  • Heat Sensors & Hazard Warning Labels Available

According to NFPA 1932 standards, all ground ladders shall be service tested on the following schedule:

  1. Before the ladder is placed in service for the first time
  2. At least annually
  3. At any time a ground ladder is suspected of being unsafe
  4. After the ground ladder has been subjected to overloading
  5. After the ground ladder has been subjected to impact loading or unusual conditions of use
  6. Whenever the ground ladder has been exposed or is suspected of having been exposed to direct flame contact
  7. Whenever the heat sensor label has changed to indicate heat exposure
  8. After any repairs have been completed, unless the only repair was replacing the halyard

Ground Ladder Test Inspections Include:

I. STRUCTURAL

A. Visual Inspection: A complete visual inspection of:

  1. Base Section–side rail condition, rail alignment, rung condition, rung to rail attachment, butt spurs/foot pads, ladder stops, stay poles, toggles, raid guides/lubrication.
  2. Second Section–side rail condition, rail alignment, rung condition, rung to rail attachment, ladder stops, pawl operation and lubrication, rail guides/lubrication.
  3. Third Section–side rail condition, rail alignment rung condition, rung to rail attachment, ladder stops, pawl operation and lubrication, rail guides/lubrication.
  4. Fly Section: side rail condition, rail alignment, rung condition, rung to rail attachment, ladder stops, pawl operation and lubrication, rail guides/lubrication.
  5. Halyard Condition–rope size and condition, anchors, thimbles, clamps, pulleys, and adjustment.
  6. Roof Hooks–hook size, hook condition, operation and sharpness, hook housing and adjustment
  7. General–heat sensor labels, NFPA 1931 certification, electrical hazard sticker, serial number identification, and ladder length marking within 12 inches of butt.

B. Hardness Testing: (Metal ground ladders only when needed) Heat affected (annealed) areas on aluminum ladders are not visible to the naked eye, thus it is necessary to perform a hardness test, or conductivity test, and a load test to determine its strength. The hardness service test is performed along the top and bottom of both beams.

C. Liquid Penetrant Testing: This test method is used on ground ladders made of aluminum material to verify discontinuities determined by visual inspection.


II. LOAD TESTS

A. Horizontal Bending Test: (For all ladders except pompier ladders)

The following test procedures are performed:

The ladder shall be placed in a flat, horizontal position supported under the first rung from each end of the ladder. Extension and combination ladders shall be extended to their maximum extended length with pawls engaged for this test.

  1. Procedure of Metal and Fiberglass Ladders
  2. The ladder shall be loaded with a preload. The load shall be allowed to remain for at least one minute to “set” the ladder prior to completing the rest of the test.
  3. After removing the preload, the distance between the bottom edge of each side rail and the surface upon which the ladder supports are placed shall be measured. All measurements shall be taken at a consistent location and near as practical to the center of the ladder.
  4. The ladder test load shall be applied equally to the center span over a specified distance from the center. The test load shall remain in place for five minutes.
  5. The test load shall then be removed and the distance between the bottom of each side rail and surface upon which the ladder supports are placed shall be measured. Differences between measurements taken in Step 2 and Step 4 shall not exceed specifications. There shall be no visible permanent change or failure of any hardware.
  6. Procedure for Wood Ground Ladders
  7. The ladder shall be loaded with a test load applied equally to a center span covering the specified distance each side of the center. The test load shall remain in place for five minutes and then removed. To pass the test, the ladder and all components shall not show ultimate failure. Any ladder that fails the test shall be removed from fire service use and destroyed.

B. Ladder Hardware Test (Extension ladders only)

The ladder shall be extended approximately five rungs to apply a specially designed test fixture at each end of the ladder. The ladder locks must be in the set or locked position. The test load shall be applied for a minimum of one minute. Ladders shall sustain this test with no permanent deformation or other visible weakening of the structure.


C. Roof Ladder Hook Test
(Ladders with roof hooks)

Apply the test load for a period of one minute to the roof hooks. The ladder and hooks shall sustain this test load with no permanent deformation or other visible weakening of the structure. Deformation to the hooks shall not exceed specifications. Note: Roof hooks should measure 3/4 inch diameter or 5/8 inch should be made of alloy steel.

D. Hardness Testing: (Metal ground ladders only when needed)

Heat affected (annealed) areas on aluminum ladders are not visible to the naked eye, thus it is necessary to perform a hardness test, or conductivity test, and a load test to determine its strength. The hardness service test is performed along the top and bottom of both beams.

III. REPORT and CERTIFICATION

A comprehensive record shall be completed for all inspections and tests and signed for by the person responsible for the test.