Aerial Safety: Be Careful Up There

OSHA has some tips for when work pulls you off the ground.

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Bucket trucks, cherry pickers, aerial lifts-if you run a sign shop there’s a decent chance you’ve had to at least rent one at one time or another, if you don’t already own one.

Being able to do install jobs high above the ground will definitely boost your bottom line, but you should always put safety first. Electrocution, tip-overs and falls are real hazards you need to be aware of; here are a few tips from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration for working “up there.”

  • Training-Make sure your workers who use aerial lifts are properly trained.
  • Maintenance-Follow the manufacturer’s instructions, and if you’re renting, double-check to make sure the equipment you’re renting receives regular maintenance.
  • Never Override-Never override hydraulic, mechanical, or electrical safety devices. You’re asking for trouble.
  • Follow Recommendations-Never move the equipment with workers in an elevated platform unless this is permitted by the manufacturer.
  • Be Conscious of Overhead Hazards-Do not allow workers to position themselves between overhead hazards, such as joists and beams, and the rails of the basket. Movement of the lift could crush the worker(s).
  • Keep Safe Clearances-Maintain a minimum clearance of at least 10 feet, or 3 meters, away from the nearest overhead power lines.
  • Assume Power Lines Are Live-Always treat power lines, wires and other conductors as energized, even if they are down or appear to be insulated.
  • Always Belt Up-Always use a body harness or restraining belt with a lanyard attached to the boom or basket to prevent the worker(s) from being ejected or pulled from the basket.
  • Brake and Chock-Set the brakes, and use wheel chocks when appropriate.
  • Use Outriggers-You should always use outriggers if provided.
  • Stay Within Load Limits-Do not exceed the load limits of the equipment. Allow for the combined weight of the worker, tools, and materials.

For more information on this topic from Eddie Wieber, Click HERE

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Tony Kindelspire

Tony Kindelspire is digital content editor of Sign & Digital Graphics & WRAPS magazines.

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