If you are running a construction project, there are several steps you should take before allowing one of your workers to operate a scissor lift, a cherry picker or any other type of elevated work platform. Read on to find out what these steps are.
Check that they have an EWP licence
It is essential to make sure that the person that you allow to use your elevated work platforms has an EWP licence. This type of licence is only awarded to individuals who have successfully undertaken an EWP training course.
These courses teach participants about how to inspect elevated work platforms (to ensure that the equipment is free from potentially dangerous defects) and how to operate them safely. They also teach course participants how to minimise the risk of injuries occurring if the equipment malfunctions or if they encounter a hazard (such as a trench or an overhead electrical line) whilst operating it.
As such, by making sure that only those who hold EWP licences are allowed to use this type of heavy construction equipment, you can drastically reduce the likelihood of both the operator and other nearby site workers getting hurt when this powerful machinery is in use.
Provide them with safety gear
Any type of work that is carried out at a great height is inherently risky (even if it is carried out by a licensed professional, in an elevated work platform that is well-maintained and in great condition).
For example, if there are shards of glass on the ground and an elevated work platform is driven over them, its tyres could rapidly deflate. This, in turn, could throw the equipment off balance and result in the operator being flung from the platform.
As such, it is important to provide those who need to use elevated work platforms with safety gear that will reduce the severity of their injuries, if they are involved in an accident whilst using this equipment.
Examples of safety gear that should be worn in this situation include a hard hat (to prevent serious head injuries if the operator falls from the platform onto the ground) and a harness (the operator can use this to attach themselves to the equipment's guardrails and thus reduce the chance of them falling off the platform).
Operators should also be provided with high-grip gloves, as these can minimise the risk of heavy building materials slipping out of their hands and striking those standing on the ground next to the equipment.