19 Aug Work Safely On Powered Platforms
Performing maintenance work while using a powered platform presents special hazards. One type of hazard is walking and working surfaces where the potential for falls exists.
Maintaining a safe work atmosphere on a powered platform involves proper inspection and maintenance, as well as a thorough understanding of emergency procedures.
How can I protect myself?
Follow the manufacture’s guidelines when operating and using a powered platform. Some basic rules to follow for any type of powered platform include the following:
- Do not exceed the load rating for the powered platform in use. (The load rating is found on the platform load rating plate).
- Clear platforms of ice, snow, and other slippery materials.
- Protect the platform, its components, wire ropes, and lifelines from damage.
- Do not use the platform in winds exceeding 25 miles per hour.
- Use the mounted anemometer to measure wind velocities during the use of the platform.
- Keep the platform free of debris, unused tools, and materials.
To ensure the proper operation of a powered platform, competent persons must inspect it at regular intervals. Inspections of a powered platform consist of the following:
- Checking the platform and its components for visual defects in a daily inspection before use.
- Inspecting the building supporting structures for the powered platform on a yearly basis.
- Inspecting all parts of the powered platform according to manufacturer’s guidelines at least yearly.
- Inspecting and testing the governors and secondary brakes according to manufacturer’s guidelines at least yearly.
- Inspecting all suspension wire ropes visually after each use and after each incident that might affect the rope’s integrity.
- Examining all ropes that have not been in service for more than 30 days.
Use a personal fall arrest system
Another factor in safe powered platform work is the use of personal fall arrest systems. A personal fall arrest system limits the fall of a worker from the platform. The personal fall arrest system consists of a full body harness, lanyard, rope grabs, lifeline, lifeline anchorage points, and riggings.
When using a personal fall arrest system, you should know and understand the following items:
- Application limits.
- Proper anchoring and tie-off techniques.
- Deceleration distance.
- Elongation distance.
- Other deterioration.