Elevating work platforms have become an essential tool in many industrial environments.
Along with ladders to allow working at heights, they are commonly used in construction, civil construction, electrical installations and electricity distribution where their articulation allows access to difficult work points.
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Working at any height increases the risk of injury to a person, especially in the various types of workplaces these tools are commonly used.
The types of incidents that cause injury include: falls, slips and trips and being hit by falling objects.
Injuries of varying severity can occur and are influenced by the height and size of the platform or ladder.
Serious injury can arise where the operator falls from the EWP working platform due to:
- faulty platform gate catches
- over-balancing while picking fruit or climbing onto platform mid-rails
- mechanical failure of the leveling rod, boom or hydraulic cylinder mounts
- ejection from the platform due to rough or obscured ground surface conditions that is enhanced by higher speed of travel
- machine roll over due to adverse ground surface conditions or higher, less stable machine centre of gravity e.g. travelling with the boom extended
- electric shock from direct contact with, or electrical arcing from, overhead powerlines.
Serious injury also occurs from jarring contact of the operator with platform guard rails when travelling over rough ground and from accidental movement of the platform leading to body compression against a tree branch or other solid object.
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