The new ANSI A92.22-2018 and CSA B354.7:17 Standards should have everyone who uses mobile elevating work platforms reevaluating or creating a safe use plan. A critical element of a MEWP Safe Use Plan is a step-by-step process for assessing risks and hazards on a job. Any risks associated with a task specific to MEWP operations must be identified before work begins, and the following steps will help you create your own process for doing so.
1) A workplace inspection should be performed before transporting a MEWP to the workplace. Common hazards that need to be identified include, but are not limited to, the following.
Inspect the working area to identify:
Drop-offs or holes, including those concealed by water, ice or mud
Bumps, floor obstructions and electrical cables
Potential inadequacy to sustain ground-bearing pressure imposed by the MEWP in all operating configurations.
Assess the surroundings
Note confined spaces so appropriately sized MEWP can be used
Look for overhead obstructions
Identify electrical conductors
Inspect for hazardous atmospheres and/or hazardous locations
Look for traffic hazards
Identify the presence of personnel (authorized or unauthorized) and other mobile equipment.
Assess weather conditions.
Control measures must be taken if any hazardous conditions are identified. For example, if there are power lines within the work area, there is a risk of electrocution, so the operator must make sure they have reviewed the appropriate operator’s manual and maintain a safe distance from the power lines in accordance with the Required Clearance chart.
2) Secure and maintain a controlled area below and around the MEWP to prevent persons and objects from being struck by the MEWP itself or objects that may fall from the elevated platform. Here are a few precautions to consider:
When loading and unloading a MEWP from a transport vehicle on a public road, users and operators must take appropriate measures to protect everyone near the area.
Use warning cones or hazard tape to help secure the area.
Make sure signs and/or signal personnel wearing reflecting clothing are visible to everyone working at a site or nearby.
Use flag personnel to warn people and other vehicles about the presence of the MEWP and transport vehicle when operating near roadways.
This is only an overview of steps you should take to help assess risk at a MEWP workplace. Additional information can be found in the ANSI A92.22‐2018 and CSA B354.7:17 Standards. It would be helpful for you to purchase a copy of the standards and read them in their entirety before developing your Safe Use Plan.