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When selecting a ladder, thoroughly inspect your job site for hazards, like exposed electrical equipment or power lines. If any electrical hazards exist in the working area, choose a non-conductive ladder, being a wood or reinforced plastic ladder. Maintain at least ten feet of clearance from the hazard at all times. If you suspect that a structure may not be stable enough to support a leaning straight ladder, then choose a self-supporting step ladder instead. Also, never use a step ladder as a straight ladder by leaning it against a supporting structure. Step ladders are not designed to function in this manner.