Make a Payment
Report a Claim
Find An Agent
Why Choose Amerisure
Partners For Success
Communication Is Key
Find an Agency
Board of Directors
Products & Services
Amerisure Command Coverage
Contractors Advantage Program
Manufacturers Advantage Program
Fleet Safety Tips
Observational Safety Program
Organizational Safety Culture Survey
Hogan Behavioral Safety Assessment
Claim Cost Reduction
Report a Claim
Annual Premium Audit Service
Life at Amerisure
Diversity and Inclusion
Total Rewards Program
Students & Graduates
Internships and Development Programs
Amerisure Insights Blog
PROPERTY & CASUALTY
OCT 24, 2017
Aerial Lift Safety
Working with heights and operating machinery are both dangerous duties for your workers, but when these tasks are done simultaneously, the risk for injury or death doubles. To maintain the safety of your workers, you need to recognize the unique hazards aerial lifts pose. Keep your workers safe by remaining aware of the proper uses of aerial lifts, as well as the possible dangers you may face if you violate them.
What is an Aerial Lift?
is any vehicle-mounted machine that is designed to elevate personnel, such as extendable boom platforms, aerial ladders, scissor lifts and cherry pickers. Aerial lifts can be made from plastic, fiberglass or metal and are ideal when working extended periods at an above-ground worksite, such as during electrical installation or repair. On many jobsites, aerial lifts have become more popular than ladders and scaffolding due to their flexibility and mobility, so knowing the risks associated with them is essential to your employees’ safety.
Aerial Lift Hazards
The risks associated with aerial lifts go beyond a fall. In fact, falling from an aerial lift is
the highest cause
of fatalities among construction workers, but electrocution comes in a close second. Between 1992-1999, falling caused 26 percent of deaths for all boom-supported lifts and 44 percent of deaths for all scissor lifts, while electrocution caused 43 percent of all boom-related fatalities and 11 percent of all scissor lift fatalities. Collapses accounting for 17 percent of boom-supported and 30 percent scissor lift deaths.
Other common hazards include:
Ejections from the lift platform
Getting struck by or striking overhead objects, including ceilings
Becoming caught in or between a bucket edge and a roof joist or beam
Before You Operate
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires you complete all proper maintenance checks by certified personnel before operating an aerial lift. Before each use, also make sure to properly inspect the machine for safety devices and operating controls. Aerial lifts should only be operated on a level, stable surface and you should check the overhead worksite for any overhanging obstructions and power lines.
Protecting your workers from death or injury while working on an aerial lift is your responsibility. You can keep them safe by following the
for maintenance, inspection and hazard prevention.
To protect against falls, be sure that your employees stand firmly, and always use a harness or other tether device in the bucket. Advise them to never climb over or lean on handrails, and to always check that the gates are closed before ascension.
While loading the bucket, it’s important to remember that the worker’s weight, tools and gear should be considered, in addition to the necessary materials, when calculating load limits. Never exceed the load limit as provided by the manufacturer, or carry objects that are larger than the platform of the lift. When it’s time to move the lift, do not allow your workers to drive it while the platform is raised or use it as a crane.
Finally, make sure your workers are aware of their environment, including overhead obstructions and uneven surfaces. When working outdoors, workers should always treat power lines as energized and remain a minimum of ten feet away. If working on a hill, be sure that your employees are using wheel-chocks to stabilize the lift.
For more information about aerial lift safety, please contact your agency or local Amerisure Risk Management Consultant at 800-257-1900 or