Although not a common occurrence, aerial equipment — like all machinery — can be involved in an incident that causes damage to the unit. When this occurs, it’s critical that action is taken to ensure that any damage is repaired before it is returned to service.
Upon notification of an incident involving a mobile elevating work platform (MEWP), a qualified service or engineering technician should perform an inspection and damage assessment. While there may or may not be visible damage, depending on the type of incident that occurred, a thorough inspection and/or disassembly could uncover problems that would otherwise have gone undetected.
Once the machine has been fully inspected, all damaged components should be repaired or replaced by a qualified professional. Until these repairs occur, if another party takes possession of the unit for any purpose, any inspections or repair documentation must be provided with the unit.
While the damage inspections and repairs are being performed, an annual inspection should also be performed, per the machine’s Service Manual. This will allow any additional service needs or defects to be addressed before the machine is put back into service.
Ensuring that all damage is repaired and that all maintenance needs are addressed will help ensure that the MEWP is able to be operated safely, as well as improving uptime by protecting against any unforeseen issues or damage that could result from deferred repairs or maintenance.
Ultimately, the equipment owner’s is responsible for all maintenance and repairs, as well as safe operation of the MEWP.