Working Safely with Aerial Lifts
Jobsites are not always at ground level. Sometimes workers need to use aerial platforms. All work has hazards and risks involved in it, but when you work at an elevated height, extra training and attention to safety procedures is a necessity.
The most important tip to remember before operating any aerial lift platform is always read and follow the manufacturer’s safety and operation manual! This information must be kept on the rig and can usually be found somewhere on the lift.
In order to work safely with aerial platforms, get training on the operating procedures for your job site and task. Get specialized training on each aerial lift model you will use. Know the risks and hazards involved with aerial work, including your own risk of falling and the hazard of dropping objects on to coworkers below.
Safe Operating Procedures for Both Man-lifts and Scissor Lifts:
Only trained and authorized people should operate the lift. A qualified instructor must make sure that every operator reads and/or understands the equipment’s safety and operating instructions. This includes all of the warning decals and labels mounted on the machine.
Always check for overhead obstructions before driving or elevating the platform.
Refuel tanks only when the unit is turned off. If battery powered, the batteries should be charged only in a well-ventilated area, away from any open flame.
Prior to each shift a safety inspection should be completed by the operator; this includes both a visual inspection and a function test. If a problem is found, get the lift repaired.
- Elevate the platform only when it is on a firm, level surface. Although many lifts look like rough terrain pieces of equipment, they are not. Their large tires do allow the equipment to access somewhat difficult areas, but once in position they are designed to be out of level only 5o while in operation. This amounts to 10 inches in a 10-foot wheel span. In addition, the lift must have a tilt alarm that activates when the machine is more than 5o out of level.
Used correctly, aerial work platforms can be priceless, timesaving assets. Operate them without regard to their limitations and this same equipment will put you, and those around you, at undue risk.
When you gamble with safety, you bet your life!
Download flyer: STOTW_443_Working Safely with Aerial Lifts.pdf (398.99 kb)
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