New Guidance on Work Platforms

Sept. 30, 2010
Statement of Best Practices of General Training and Familiarization for Aerial Work Platform Equipment reminds readers why regular inspections are so important. The American National Standards Institute (ANSI), which creates voluntary consensus standards to ensure safety, mandates that aerial work platform equipment that has been in service for at least three months, be inspected every 90 days.  The mandate applies to owners, dealers, users, operators and trainers of all types of lift equipment including boom lifts and scissor lifts.

While many equipment outlets follow a 90-day inspection schedule for equipment in use in accordance with this ANSI standard, the OSHA inspection mandate for such equipment is less specific.

“Although ANSI standards are technically voluntary, it is in every company’s best interest to comply with them,” the new publication states. The document, developed by the American Rental Association, the Association of Equipment Manufacturers, The Scaffold Industry Association, the Associated Equipment Distributors and the International Powered Access Federation, also says, “Noncompliance can equate to negligence and legal liability in the event of an injury.”

New Jersey-based Trico Lift, which helped author the document and provides equipment fleets to many process industries, has been conducting routine quarterly inspections on the company’s rentals and on customer-owned equipment in the field for more than 10 years. The company also originated a program involving the recording of inspection dates on decals affixed to the outside of each lift unit.

According to company officials, regular equipment maintenance and inspections as well as proper operator training, are necessary for 100% compliance and reliability.