Tips for Working Safely with Scissor Lifts

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When you opt for scissor lift hire, you’re getting a versatile work platform that allows for vertical movement in a safe way for workers. But in order for scissor lifts to have safe outcomes, safe work protocols need to be implemented when working with them. These pieces of machinery are often used in construction, retail, entertainment and manufacturing, but no matter where they’re applied, they can offer a safe way of reaching heights, provided all safety measures are followed. Scissor lifts are so called because their lifting mechanism is made of crossed beams that look like scissors. Scissor lift hire is often sought out as an alternative to ladders or scaffolding, and they can be a much better choice when employees and managers seek to use them as intended. The following are some important safety tips to take into consideration next time you’re working with scissor lifts. 

Fall Protection

It’s standard practice to have guardrails installed on scissor lifts, so when you look for scissor lift hire, always choose a model with guardrails for optimum safety. Workers who are involved with scissor lift hire or the usage of the scissor lift must be properly qualified to use this equipment to prevent injury and even death. Every time they use a scissor lift, they should check that the machinery has guardrails installed. They must know to only stand on the work platform, and to never stand on the rails. Reaching over the rails can cause a worker to lose their centre of gravity and fall over the side, so they must be sure to keep within easy reach of their work when conducting activities at heights. 

 Stabilisation

It’s vital when using scissor lifts that your workers ensure the scissor lift does not tip over or collapse, as this could endanger lives. The goal is for maximum stabilisation. First of all, you should abide by the manufacturer’s instructions – for example, don’t move the scissor lift while it is elevated. Use traffic control interventions to ensure no vehicles can impact the area where your scissor lift is operating. Ensure you park the scissor lift on stable ground, away from holes, slopes and bumps in the ground surface. Use your scissor lift only in fine weather conditions, as they should not be used during wind speeds of more than 28 miles per hour.  

Positioning

Positioning of scissor lifts is imperative when it comes to using scissor lift hire safely. There can be many possible hazards in the environment surrounding a scissor lift, such as power lines, other vehicles, door frames and support beams. It is worth noting that power lines are of particular concern with scissor lifts, as contact isn’t always required for electrocution to occur. Any worker who needs to conduct work near an electricity source must have the relevant electrical training.  Other potential hazards to watch out for include overhead aspects such as utilities, branches and overhangs. These should be avoided to prevent injury and damage to the scissor lift.