SPECIALIST ACCESS FLEETS CALL FOR BETTER RISK MANAGEMENT POLICIES
“Sound risk management policies and procedures must be in place when adding large or specialist machines to a standard fleet of booms and scissors,” said IPAF technical officer Chris Wraith at September’s Europlatform access rental conference in Maastricht. He cited a case where men were working over a
roof when the arm of their cherry picker touched the side of the building, activating safety devices that immobilised the machine. Engineers were unable to override the system and the fire and rescue service had to rescue the men. “Specialist access means increased potential
hazards,” said Wraith, “which calls for better management input throughout the cycle of use, from engineering, maintenance and inspections, through to sales, transportation and operator competence.” The next Europlatform conference is on September 20, 2012 in Edinburgh, Scotland.
How to avoid trapping and crushing hazards
Guidance is available on how to prevent rare but dangerous trapping or crushing accidents when MEWPs are used in confined overhead spaces. The Strategic Forum for Construction Plant Safety
Group, of which IPAF is a part, has published Best Practice Guidance that provides clarity about the safe use of MEWPs, including planning, equipment selection, training, provision of information, familiarisation, safe use, supervision and rescue procedures, together with monitoring and management of the work. It is available free at the Publications section of www.ipaf.org.
Is your spider safe?
New posters and leaflets are available from IPAF that illustrate key safety points to observe when moving and using tracked spider-type platforms, also known as atrium lifts. These machines tend to be narrow and could become unstable if proper attention is not given to the extension or retraction of the outriggers when travelling.
In short, IPAF’s advice is: • When moving the machine using tracks, on level ground, and/or in the vicinity of walls or other vertical obstacles, use outriggers extended to within 10cm of their full deployment whenever possible.
• Outriggers must always be used in this way when travelling at an angle to an incline.
• Small obstructions such as kerbs or
abrupt level changes must never be negotiated without using a ramp or other device to smooth out the step change.
• Use track mats or similar material to prevent damage to susceptible surfaces including grassed areas.
• Spreader plates must always be used under the outriggers when the platform is in use.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to obtain free copies of this poster. POWERED ACCESS 2012 | 9