A review of the occupational safety literature suggested a list of factors potentially associated with increased risk of falls from ladders on the job. These factors were investigated in 123 cases where falls from ladders had occurred. Cases were identified through the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System. Over 200 items were compared between these 123 cases and 142 comparison subjects who also worked with ladders but who had not suffered a fall. These 200 items were classified into four categories of variables: personal but nonoccupationally related, such as personality and life stress factors, risk taking indicators; personal and occupationally related, such as job experience, prior on the job injuries, and job stressors; working condition related, such as work schedule and work demands, and ladder use related, such as hours spent on the ladder, and the surface on which the ladder is set up. The results confirmed the hypothesis that factors temporally closest to the accident event were stronger predictors of ladder falls than variables further away from the event, such as individual characteristics.