How to operate an access platform safely?

Here are some tips from our experts to make sure you know how to work safely with your equipment

We all know access platforms are a safer and more efficient alternative to other methods, when carrying out temporary work at height. Although it is proven as the safest option, it can still prove to be dangerous if adequate control measures have not been taken. Here are some tips from our experts to make sure you know how to work safely with your equipment.

1. Select the right equipment that you need

Choosing the right equipment and thorough planning for its use is one of the most important part of any work at height task. 

Sometimes a task requires you to work vertically, whereas other times you may need to go up and over obstacles. Some tasks need to be done indoors, which calls for battery-powered machines with non-marking tyres. Alternatively, other activities call for the machine to work outside on rough terrain surfaces. 

There are various factors to consider when choosing the right equipment. If you’re not sure what equipment you need, ask our expert team at Rapid Access. Not only can we help you find the right access platform for your task, we will conduct a site survey to make sure the ground conditions are safe, and the selected platform can work safely and efficiently within on your site.

2. Go through the safety check-list

Always check the equipment before you start work. Before every shift, check oil and other fluid levels, wheels, batteries, controls, brakes, and steering. Report any problem and get it repaired before you try to use the equipment. Make sure operators are cautious and know how to deal with hazards and understand the ground controls and have shown to a nominated colleague in case of an emergency.

Checking the surrounding area where work needs to be done is equally important. Access platforms should stay at safe distances from energized power lines or other overhead hazards. If you’re working outdoors, make sure to check wind speeds.
When you calculate safe working loads, make sure you have accounted for the weight of the tools, attachments and accessories along with the operator’s weight.

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3. Use correct PPE

Use of correct personal protective equipment has been emphasized so many times yet we see several cases where accidents could have been prevented if the right PPE was used.

Harnesses are extremely crucial when working on a boom lift due to the possibility of a catapult. While it is not recommended to use a harness on a scissor lift, one should still wear helmets, reflective vests, and depending on the work being done, eye protection, face masks, and gloves are also recommended.


4. Get Trained

TRAINING is the most important requirement of safe working at height. All companies involved with working at height must ensure that everyone involved in the operation and management of the equipment is properly trained for the job.

Training is crucial not only for the operator, but also for the supervisor or project manager and other personnel involved in working with the equipment. Everyone involved in the operation must undergo TRAINING to internationally recognised standards.

Rapid Access not only has the largest fleet of access platforms in the region but is also the largest supplier of safe work at height training. In 2018, Rapid Access provided over 60% of all IPAF training in the Middle East region, making it the largest IPAF training supplier once again.

For any queries on access platforms, site surveys or training, please get in touch with us