Types of mobile platforms

Escalators, otherwise known as cranes, are construction machines that are used to move materials or people to their work stations. Escalators are used during construction or assembly work that takes place at heights.  

aerial lift on the road

They have the ability to move the platform horizontally and vertically. Cranes consist of a platform (known as a basket or gondola) that is lifted on a crane or suspended from a linkage.  

We can separate the platforms into two groups based on the type of drive:  

  • electrically powered platforms (energy drawn from the mains or battery banks);   
  • diesel-powered platforms. 

The colloquial names for aerial work platforms that we hear most often are aerial work platform or high lift.  

We can classify mobile platforms in several different ways through their various design features.

We distinguish between mobile platforms: 

  • hanging, 
  • masthead, 
  • scissors,  
  • telescopic, 
  • articulated, 
  • telescopic-articulated, 
  • loading. 


high rise at a tall building

Hanging mobile platforms  

They consist of a platform, safety cables, a winch and a platform support structure. They are either permanently installed on a structure for the purpose of maintaining that structure or temporarily, for a specific duration of the job.  

The platforms of the hanging platforms are hooked to the suspension cables by means of a hanger, which may have a single point of attachment (so-called single-point suspension), or several points (so-called two-point or multi-point suspension). 

Mast climbing platforms  

They consist of a mast (known as a single mast platform) or masts (double mast) on which the work platform moves, a chassis on which the mast rests, and a drive mechanism that is used to move the work platform at height. The most commonly used mechanism is the rack-and-pinion jack, which is responsible for moving the mast extension platform. 

Mobile mobile platforms are one of the most common types of platform. They are divided into: 

  • self-propelled mobile platforms - mounted on a vehicle chassis and approved for use under the road,  
  • mobile platforms - platforms mounted on a trailer chassis and designed to be towed behind a vehicle. They are categorised as special trailers and are therefore approved for road traffic, 
  • free-running mobile platforms - constructed with a chassis that is connected to a support structure on which the work platform is located. Free-moving platforms, due to the type of support structure, can be: telescopic, articulated, articulated-telescopic and scissor. 


mobile platform on site

Appropriate qualifications are required to operate handling equipment, including mobile platforms. The qualifications, granted by the Office of Technical Inspection, are valid for a period of 10 or five years, depending on the type of platform.  

To become competent as a platform operator, you need to undertake specialised vocational training. This includes theoretical and practical preparation for the work and examination. (Such training is offered, for example, by our training centre). 

The candidate then takes the UDT exam. This consists of a test and a practical part taken before an examination board. After passing both parts, the operator candidate obtains the UDT qualification and a course completion certificate. 

Questions and answers

Are mobile platforms subject to technical supervision?

Yes, mobile platforms (self-propelled, mobile and freewheeling) are subject to technical supervision.

What does the technical inspection authority check during the periodic inspection of the mobile platform?

During the periodic inspection of the mobile platform, the inspection book and the maintenance log of the equipment are checked, as well as the qualification certificate of the maintainers and operators of the equipment, among other things.

What is a mobile hanging platform used for?

The suspended mobile platform is used to lift people and materials during construction or installation work at height. It is characterised by the fact that the platform is suspended and lowered by suspension cables attached to girders located on the roof of the building.