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Escape Ladders

What to Look For

Fire escape ladders provide a second means of escape from second and third floor rooms. One of the most important features of a home fire escape ladder is the presence of standoffs. These are protrusions which help steady the ladder and allow room for a secure toehold. The more standoffs on a ladder the better.

Home escape ladders come in two standard lengths - 15 feet and 25 feet. The shorter length is adequate for most two-story bedrooms, while the longer is used for three story rooms. Check the load limit, ladders should be rated for at least 1,000 pounds.

Where to Get Them

  • Look in the yellow pages under safety equipment
  • .
  • Local home improvement and department stores carry escape ladders on a periodic basis.

How to Use Them

Read the manufacturer's instructions before you use the ladder. After purchasing a ladder, make sure that it fits the specific window for which its intended. If the ladder is for a child’s room, have the child practice putting the ladder out the window. Then have them practice climbing out from a ground floor window. Do this as part of a family fire drill.

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Last Modified:   June 14, 2006

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