Common Aerial Lift Accidents & How To Prevent Them
For you to access high job sites such as roofs and HVAC equipment, you need to rent an aerial lift from your local crane hire companies.
Common Aerial Lift Accidents
Just like with the other types of cranes, aerial lifts are prone to accidents with the most common ones being:
Tip-overs: They happen when the aerial lift’s bucket cable or boom breaks or the boom falls over. You can prevent the tip-overs by never exceeding the load capacity limits, never operating lifts on uneven terrain, and not raising the platforms in windy conditions.
Falls: Crane workers will fall from the lift when the lift is struck by an external object or piece of equipment. You can prevent injuries by wearing the right protective gear and ensuring that the cables and harnesses are properly and securely fastened to the lift. Keeping all the access gates closed can go a long way towards reducing unnecessary injuries.
Workers getting caught between the lift and object: This is a common problem with boom lifts, and they happen when you’re moving the bucket. You can prevent this problem by inspecting the job site for any hazards before commencing with your work. You also should ensure everyone remains at a safe distance from the load.
Collapsing material injuries: Injuries occurring from collapsing materials usually occur from scissor lifts that are commonly used in indoor industrial construction projects. Other than the unfinished or loose building materials falling onto workers, contact with larger materials can also cause the lift to tip over. You can prevent injuries from coming about by being fully aware of loose materials before you begin the lifting process.
Electrocution: As you might guess, electrocutions come about when the workers come into contact with a live overhead powerline. In most cases, electrocution accidents happen with telescopic booms. These accidents will also occur when you don’t correctly set up the lift on stable ground, or you aren’t wearing the correct protective gear. You can prevent the accident from happening by ensuring the lift is on stable ground. You also should stay at a safe distance from the live power lines.
Due to the risks involved with aerial lifts, take measures to prevent accidents from happening. Some of the things you can do include:
Inspect The Work Zone
Before you begin the lifting, take time to inspect and identify any hazards on the worksite. These can be:
- Overhead obstructions
- Loose dirt and gravel
- Holes, unstable terrain or drop-offs
- Electrical power lines
- High foot traffic
- Ice on the surface
- Bumps on the road or nearby ditches
Correctly Set Up The List
It’s vital that you set up the lift to prevent accidents from happening. Some of the things you can do include:
- Inspect the lift components and bucket before you begin the lifting job
- Take care not to position the lift between the overhead objects and bucket
- Keep the bucket at least 10 feet from the power lines
- Use outriggers and stabilizers to ensure the level ground
Be Cautious When The Bucket Is In The Air
Once the bucket is in the air, take care that you don’t hurt yourself and the other people in the area. You can do this by:
- Never exceed the load capacity of the lift
- Always wear insulating gloves, helmet, boots, and other protective gear when working near the power lines
- Don’t move the life when the bucket is raised
- Keep the bucket within the horizontal and vertical limits at all times
- When bucking up the aerial lift, always use a spotter
- Don’t exceed the gradeability factor of the lift when traveling
- Don’t put objects larger than the platform in the bucket
- You shouldn’t operate the lift in high winds or bad weather. You also should never override the lift’s safety devices.
Protect The Workers From Falling
As mentioned above, falls are one of the leading accidents with aerial lifts. Luckily, there are plenty of things you can do to prevent them from happening. Some of the things you can do include:
- Ensure that the safety guardrails are securely in place
- Ensure that the workers wear a full-body harness all the time they are in the bucket
- Regularly inspect the fall protection equipment
- Ensure the lift you rent is of high-quality and operated by an expert.