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Telescopic or Articulating Boom Lift: What One Should You Choose?

When you are planning a construction, window cleaning, harvesting or another project, which requires height access, you have to choose the right equipment. If you haven’t had experience with boom lifts, you need to learn the specifics of these machines. This information can help you with the selection process.

A boom lift is also called a cherry picker. It’s the choice of many managers for numerous project sites. This height access equipment is an excellent choice for tasks when workers need to stay at a certain height for an extended period of time.

Essentially, a boom lift is a platform attached at a top of a mechanical arm, which is operated from a cabin below.

Two different types of boom lifts exist,Telescopic and Articulating. Choosing one over the other depends on the nature of your project. Making the right selection doesn’t just boost the efficiency of the work done, it improves the safety of the employees and the structures around them.

 

  1. Telescopic Boom Lift

A telescopic boom lift, also called a straight boom lift, employs a boom (a mechanical arm), which extends straight up from the base. These lifts are often employed for projects, which require the height access equipment to move around objects.

Telescopic boom extends upward without an ability to maneuver sideways.

  1. Articulating Boom Lift

In these lifts, a boom has several sections, which allow it to bend. These lifts are highly maneuverable. They are used for projects requiring high maneuverability around certain objects.

When extended, articulating boom lifts can’t be moved as easily as telescopic boom lifts.

 

Which Lift Is The Best For Your Project?

Both telescopic and articulating boom lifts are highly demanded. More often than not, both of them can be required to complete a certain project. When choosing which lift to rent, you have to consider the environment you’ll be working in.

Articulating boom is a good choice for small spaces, in which you need maneuverability. Telescopic boom lifts are excellent when you need to reach certain heights. Due to their structure, articulating boom lifts can’t reach as high up as their telescopic counterparts.

Telescopic lifts are more stable than articulating lifts so they are excellent for rough terrains.

If you aren’t sure which boom lift suits your project the best, always get a professional opinion about the matter. A respectable rental company can evaluate your needs and help you make the right decision.

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4 Spring Weather Hazards To Consider For Height Access Projects

Spring seems to be one of the best times of year for many people. Construction projects, which may have seemed long and never-ending in the winter, pick up the pace as the sun starts shining brighter.

Window cleaning, painting, façade repair are very popular in the spring. However, as this time of the year comes, it brings numerous hazards, which people tend to overlook. Let’s review a few of them.

  1. Slippery Roads

Even when the snow is gone, roads remain highly dangerous in the spring. Sudden rain can make the road slippery in seconds. Using height access equipment, which involves driving to the worksite and around it, needs special attention.

When the rain is in the forecast, the equipment operators need to be extra careful about moving around the site.

In case the height-access project is planned for rough terrain, it’s important to have a backup plan. Wet and loose soil can lead to accidents.

  1. Thunderstorms

Thunderstorms are common in the spring. They usually come with damaging winds and dangerous lightning. Anything unsecured becomes a hazard. At a construction site, a thunderstorm can wreak havoc.

Wind-driven rain can blind the equipment operator and lead to an accident. Lightning can strike tall objects at the work sites. It’s highly important to avoid height-access work when a thunderstorm is in the forecast.

  1. Flooding

When spring comes, floods aren’t far behind. Even if the area you are working in hasn’t been flooded in the past couple of years, there is still a chance it might be this spring. Watch the weather conditions carefully, especially when leaving your height access equipment in hazardous zones.

Moving water is so strong that it can easily sweep away any equipment, including boom lifts and trucks with platforms.

  1. Strong Winds

Strong winds may not seem as hazardous as floods or thunderstorms, but they are highly dangerous for people working at heights. When renting height-access equipment, make sure to ask the company what weather conditions it can withstand.

Some of the scissor and boom lifts can easily topple over when strong winds occur. Follow the wind limitations carefully to ensure workers’ and equipment safety.

For height-access projects, spring is often more dangerous than winter. It’s important to check the forecast and practice safety.

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Choosing The Best Fall Protection Equipment For Height Access Projects

Even if you are using the best height access equipment, personal protection is still highly important. Baskets with high rails may not protect the worker fully without extra gear.

Regardless of the height access project you are working on, you may want to consider the following personal fall protection equipment.

  1. Safety Harness

Several types of safety harnesses exist, starting from full-body harnesses and ending with one-point harnesses. A safety harness should have an excellent fit in order not to interfere with the work process.

For example, a vest-type harness is a good choice for construction workers since you can put it on like a jacket. Meanwhile, a cross-chest harness may not suit everyone because you have to put it on over the head.

Shoulder and leg strap connections should also be given some thought. From traditional buckles to auto-locks, it’s all a matter of convenience for the worker.

Ideally, each safety harness should be fitted to each worker individually to ensure a perfect fit. The more comfortable the harness is, the faster the worker can complete any task, from façade repair to window washing.

  1. Lanyards

While choosing the right harness depends on convenience and budget, lanyards require a much simpler approach.

If the possible free fall distance is over 2 feet, you need to invest in a shock-absorbing lanyard.

In case the free fall distance is less than 2 feet, you can take advantage of restraint or positioning lanyards. However, a shock absorbing property for these lanyards is still highly welcome.

You need to ensure that the lanyard has a proper length in order to provide comfortable positioning of the worker.

Pay close attention to the materials your lanyard is made of. For example, if you are working in high heat environments, you may want to use cable. For other uses, except projects involving sharp edges, rope or webbing can do fine.

  1. Anchorage

Choosing the right anchorage depends on the project you are working on. You need to take some time to evaluate the environment and determine where you will attach the connector.

Pay special attention to the weight of the anchorage. Remember, a worker may need to carry it around for many hours.

Consider the number of workers. Usually, one anchorage is designed for one person. However, several types of 2-person anchorages exist as well.

Safety always comes first. Taking the time to find the right equipment can improve the work output and save lives.

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How To Prevent Objects Dropping When Working At Heights

Aerial lifts have significantly improved the security of workers, doing their job at heights. However, they haven’t done anything to prevent one of the most common hazards for construction, fruit picking, and façade cleaning sites. Dropped objects. They require additional attention.

Falling objects can lead to injuries and death of both people working at the site and innocent passerby. Companies often don’t pay sufficient attention to training their employees on how to avoid the dropped object hazard. After all, it’s human error, isn’t it? With the right information, it’s an error, which can be prevented.

  1. Synchronizing Duties

The most common situation for dropped objects is when two or more workers are performing their duties in one basket since they must work around one another. With all the protection equipment and tools around, workers often end up getting in each other’s way and causing the tools to drop.

Learning how to work with each other without bumping and pushing requires experience. Toeboards just require an investment. Make sure a toeboard is an essential part of your height access equipment.

  1. Secure Tools

Tool belts and tool bags are essential parts of every worker’s equipment. Each team member should be carefully trained to put the tool back in the belt/bag once it’s not in the hand. Even if they are planning to use it once again a second later.

It only takes a second to knock a tool over and send it flying to the ground, or worse, someone’s head.

A place to keep the tools secure doesn’t just prevent objects from falling, it saves the workers from tripping and injuring themselves inside the basket.

Another wonderful way to keep the tools safe is a tether. Tool tethers keep the small equipment attached to the workers wrist, saving the time it would take to place it inside the bag. Tethers come in different lengths, making the work comfortable for all types of tasks.

  1. Passive Safeguards

Besides toeboards, companies may think about installing screens and nets around the basket to prevent objects from falling over. Such screens are easy to attach. They encompass the basket to make sure no accidents happen.

However, such nets and screens may somewhat interfere with the work process for some tasks. So they should be carefully chosen according to the project needs.

When you are renting height access equipment, ask the company about the passive safeguards they are ready to provide.

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What You Need To Know About Façade Maintenance

If you make the right decision about timely façade maintenance, it’s easy to avoid eventual replacement or repair of the components, which are unlikely to be reasonably priced. Facades don’t need daily maintenance and usually stay intact for many years before showing the first signs of decay.

Unfortunately, when the signs do appear, it may be too late to do any preventive maintenance and save money. That’s why any commercial building owner should set up a maintenance schedule, organize inspections, and deal with minor problems timely. Renting height access equipment from a respectable company can simplify the process.

  1. Start With An Inspection

Building managers should inspect the building’s current condition. It should include reviewing the original design of the building as well as the documentation of the previous repairs. Then a simple visual inspection is performed. A report of the inspection should be made to ensure a proper maintenance schedule setup.

  1. Discuss Each Issue Separately

Each problem with the façade requires evaluation to understand which one needs immediate attention. For example, such safety issues as crumbling masonry must be dealt with first. Minor façade cracks can be left off for later.

  1. Establish A Schedule

Once the work scope is identified, you can establish a repair and maintenance schedule according to the budget. The schedule should include maintenance of the potential problem areas as well as repair of immediate issues.

While establishing a schedule, you should learn the expected material deterioration time and lifespan information.

  1. Arrange Façade Cleaning

Façade cleaning is not just an integral part of its maintenance, it can keep your building looking appealing while allowing the cleaners to identify the problem if any. It’s important to clean the façade before each inspection in order not to have dirt and grime interfere with identifying the problem areas.

After the restoration and repairs are done, additional cleaning is required to remove the unwanted material residue. The only reason why you shouldn’t clean the façade before the repair is if the problem you are dealing with are leaks.

  1. Hire Professional Repairmen

It’s the owner’s responsibility to follow the state Construction Codeto keep the building in good shape. So it’s important to hire repairmen, who are familiar with the state requirements. Trying to save on façade repair can lead to unfortunate consequences.

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4 Fall Hazards You Should Prepare For

Falls from height are a common workplace injury for many companies practicing projects involving height access. Construction workers, roof repairmen, window cleaners, harvesters, and many more employees risk their lives every day.

Even though the height access equipment is becoming safer and safer every year while the fall protection gear is improving even faster, some workers still manage to risk their lives needlessly. The reason is not the lack of equipment but an improper understanding of possible fall hazards.

Each employer must provide their workers with adequate training and information about such hazards. The tendency to rush the work process often leaves people vulnerable to seemingly obvious worksite problems.

  1. Low Height Is A Hazard

While everyone knows that falls from heights are dangerous, not many workers consider such heights as 2 feet as problematic. However, falls from lower heights can cause terrible consequences, including death. The body doesn’t have the time to react to the fall before it hits the ground.

It’s highly important to be aware that working at any height is a risk. Awareness is the key to safety, even if you are washing the windows on the first floor.

  1. Skylights

Workers often overlook skylights, deeming them far from being dangerous. However, they forget that skylights aren’t made to withstand a person’s weight. Even though the surface may seem solid, essentially, skylights are holes.

Sometimes skylights blend in with the surroundings so well that workers have no idea what surface they are standing on. Guardrails and safety nets can prevent falling through skylights. Meanwhile, workers should have a plan of the building in order to know where skylights are located.

  1. Deteriorating Materials

Fiber-cement roofs and other fragile surfaces are frequent causes of falls and serious injuries. Meanwhile, deteriorating surfaces are even more dangerous. With fragile materials, a fall can be prevented by acquiring the right information. Deteriorating materials are often unnoticeable until it’s too late.

It’s highly important to raise the awareness about possible deterioration. Workers should test the surfaces before stepping on them. A smart approach is to consider all the roofs fragile. The best way to avoid injuries is to work from a height access platform instead of stepping on the fragile surfaces.

  1. Falling Objects

Working at heights involves numerous tools and materials. These tools and materials are a fall hazard. Workers or the people walking near the worksite may be injured by such objects.

Preventing tools and materials from falling is easy by using tool cords and aerial platforms with space to keep them inside a basket.

 

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Winter Height Access Reassessment

Winter is already here, and the weather conditions are changing at the speed of light. New York and other Northeastern states experience chilly, slippery, and icy weather conditions. Heavy snowfalls aren’t rare in December. Roads get blocked, happy school kids get days off, and homeowners get an excellent shoveling exercise.

In construction, window cleaning, façade repair, and other businesses that require height access, the work never stops. Since time is money, taking a break is hardly possible. When you are forced to work in winter, you need to prepare for the project in a different manner than you would in other seasons.

Unfortunately, many companies ignore the weather condition changes and continue working as they usually do. As a result, they risk the welfare of their workers and the integrity of their height access equipment. Let’s discuss the important points of winter height access reassessment.

  1. A Higher Risk Of Slips

As the weather worsens, the surfaces get slippery. Even though the workers carry numerous safety equipment, the increased number of slips and falls can delay the work process even if everyone stays safe in the end.

It’s important to consider the tripping and slipping hazards and teach the workers to react accordingly. The overall speed of the project may be reduced, but not as much as it would with constant slipping.

  1. The Weight Of Snow

Snow adds a certain weight to the construction equipment, especially when it falls heavily. You have to reconsider the weight limits with the snow in mind. Cleaning the height access equipment on a regular basis is vital to keeping it working properly after a snowfall.

  1. Hazardous Conditions

Even though the majority of high-quality height access equipment can do its job regardless of the weather, it’s important to assess the conditions before allowing the workers to go on site. Heavy snow and strong winds can drastically decrease the output while making the work truly dangerous.

Another thing to consider in the winter is low temperatures. Even though OSHA doesn’t provide a framework for the weather conditions, the Occupational Safety And Health Act (1970)states that employers must protect workers from recognized hazards, including cold stress, which can lead to serious harm.

Overall, it’s up to the employer to care about the workers’ safety in the winter. In the majority of cases, striving to work in bad conditions leads to unsatisfactory results while endangering the employees.

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Aerial Lift Maintenance Information

Aerial equipment often becomes the only tool you can rely on to perform certain jobs, including servicing cables, washing windows, painting buildings, harvesting fruits, and much more. No matter which purpose you use the lifts for and how often you do it, proper maintenance is a must.

In fact, performing timely maintenance for an aerial lift is often more critical than for any other equipment since it’s exploited at substantial heights, thus needing to be as safe as possible. One seemingly insignificant maintenance mistake could cost workers their lives.

Whether you own the height-access machinery or rent it, you have to comply with the federal laws and industry guidelines in order to have the equipment safe and in working order.

What Are The Risks?

When working with heavy machinery, the risk of accidents and severe injuries is high. A faulty outrigger, an oil leak or defective lifting controls can lead to unfortunate consequences. Damaged guardrails and slippery floors may result in deathly falls.

All off the above can be avoided if you keep to the maintenance schedule. In fact, maintaining an aerial lift doesn’t take too much time. Just a few minutes a day can help avoid risky situations, such as falls, tip-overs, and electrocutions.

Following The Standards

In order to ensure the proper safety and flawless operation of your aerial lift, you need to follow American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) guidelines. Both of them help you set up the right maintenance and inspection schedule for your equipment.

ANSI defines the inspection frequency and gives directions to follow when performing the inspections. All of them should be done by professionals. By law, you should arrange inspections after 150 hours of equipment work or 90 days, whichever occurs first.

Plan your maintenance based on the average operations hours. Remember that different types of height-access equipment may require different inspection schedules.

OSHA lists aerial lift maintenance requirements. It’s important to read the manual to find the manufacturer’s recommendations as well. OSHA also offers extensive information about height-access equipment safety in order to set a proper maintenance schedule. It gives daily inspection checklists for different equipment types.

If you are renting an aerial lift, don’t hesitate to ask the company about the inspection schedule and compliance in order to avoid unexpected problems.

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5 Ways Keep Your Aerial Equipment Safe From Robbers

Aerial lifts, platforms, and the like are expensive pieces of machinery, which often seem appealing to criminals. Since this equipment stays on work sites overnight, it’s highly important to think about protection.

Whether you own the height-access equipment or rent it, it’s your responsibility to keep it safe while in use. Even if you have a large project, it’s possible to take advantage of simple security measures to ensure aerial equipment safety.

  1. Make A List And Check It Twice

If you just have one machine working at the site, you don’t have to worry about losing track of it. However, sizeable projects often require dozens of aerial equipment pieces installed at different locations.

Make a list of all the machines working at your site and keep a record of incoming and outgoing equipment. Pay special attention to the parts, which are easy to remove.

Check the list on a regular basis. Make sure the operators inspect each machine before use. Removing essential parts can endanger all workers at the site.

  1. Install Cameras

Installing cameras can ward the robbers off your site. Make sure some cameras are visible and use “camera protected” signs.  Together with the cameras, you can opt for motion sensors that trigger alerts, emergency lights, and an alarm system.

A large “no trespassing” sign is another way to keep unwanted people away from the territory. Fence the location if possible.

  1. Secure The Equipment

While you are taking safety measures on the location site, think of securing the machines as well. While installing an alarm on each piece of equipment is not always possible, a simple lock and key system can keep your machines safe.

When you are renting the equipment, make sure to talk to the company about security options available for it.

  1. Mark Your Machines

If you mark your machines with stickers, it could be helpful for the recovery efforts in case the equipment is stolen. Use hard-to-remove makings, which make the machines easy to identify. All expensive tools should be marked in the same manner.

  1. Hire A Guard

A person guarding the territory is often more helpful that numerous security technologies. A professional guard can keep the territory safe at all times, prevent break-ins or call for assistance when necessary.

Aerial lifts require special security regardless of the

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Which Aerial Lift Should I Rent?

The ability to rent an aerial lift for a height-access project has simplified the work of many companies over the years. The renting party usually gives advice about proper lift rental, delivers the equipment to the work site, keeps it in mint condition, and arranges transportation from the site. However, it’s up to the manager to evaluate the project and consider which aerial lift types are most suitable. Aerial lifts aren’t manufactured specifically for a certain type of industry or job. For example, manufacturing companies can use these lifts to reach overhead details. Window cleaning companies use them to wash windows on high-rise buildings. General contractors take advantage of aerial lifts to get to hard-to-reach repair areas. Construction companies usually can’t do their work without several types of aerial lifts. Other workers using aerial lifts are emergency crews, HVAC contractors, advertisers hanging banners, and many more. So which aerial lift should you rent? Going over the common lift types can help you understand which one is the best for your project.

  • Electric Scissor Lift – This lift can move up and down, which makes it more flexible than scaffolding. The working heights of electric scissor lifts vary so always check the specs before renting.
  • Rough Terrain Scissor Lift– As the name implies, this aerial lift is created to deal with rough terrain and harsh environmental elements. These lifts are usually rented for construction projects.
  • Personnel Lift – These lifts are suitable for projects that require one person to use it. The height of such lift reaches 26 feet. They are highly useful for indoor tasks.
  • Electric Boom Lift– These lifts have a platform, which can move horizontally and vertically. It can provide an impressive reach and better versatility than the majority of other aerial lift types.
  • Straight Telescopic Boom Lift – Such lifts are mostly used outdoors. They are great for reaching tough areas in places where scaffolding is useless.
  • Towable Boom Lift– A truck can tow these lifts in order to transport them between the work sites within one project.
  • Atrium Lift – These lifts can fold to have a compact size, allowing them to pass through a doorway. Then the lift opens up to reach formidable heights.

Knowing which lift to rent can simplify your project and keep you from making unnecessary payments. You can always test a model first in order to see if it gives you the results you are looking for.