Working safely with mobile platforms
About mobile platforms at a glance
We use mobile platforms for construction or installation work at heights. They are among the vehicles that can only be driven by qualified people who hold a UDT licence. Accidents involving the violation of even one health and safety rule do occur.
The most common accidents that occur are:
- fall from height while on the work platform,
- damage to buildings, pillars through impacts on their structures,
- electric shock,
- impact from inadequately used materials.
Despite our precautions, we must also ensure that the external conditions for working on such a platform are suitable and that the risk of an accident is properly assessed. Such an assessment aims to reduce or eliminate, all factors that pose a risk to mobile platform workers and people in the vicinity.
In order to properly assess the risks, we need to take into account such things as:
- selecting a suitable mobile platform,
- check the machine: that it is working properly (before starting work),
- checking weather conditions (if the work involves being outdoors),
- site survey.
A risk assessment is a mandatory activity and must be carried out before work starts. Every workplace is different and involves distinct conditions. Therefore, it is important to carry out a risk assessment. Without it, we are not able to determine the risks associated with working in a specific environment. The site survey and risk assessment are tasks for which the health and safety inspector or site manager is responsible.
One of the most important factors that will help us avoid danger on the construction site is choosing the right type of mobile platform that is adapted to the requirements of the work.
The right device is beneficial for both the contracting party and the client. In this way, we can properly ensure the safety of property and, above all, of employees. This is why it is so important to be able to choose the right type of platform. What should we look for when making a decision?
To make a choice we need to consider aspects such as:
- the type of task being performed,
- environment (whether the site is outdoors or indoors, type of ground),
- what side overhangs and side heights are required, the dimensions of the mobile platform and the lifting capacity that is required to carry out the contracted work,
- the number of workers needed to perform the task from the platform,
- the presence and type of obstacles present on the ground or at height near the platform.
Taking these elements into account will help complete the task in the most optimal way. It will also minimise the chances of damage to equipment or structures near the work platform.
Questions and answers
Is a risk assessment a mandatory activity before starting work on the platform?
Yes, risk assessment is a mandatory activity. It allows the elimination of potential risks and also ensures the safety of workers.
When working on mobile platforms, is there a high chance of life-threatening injuries?
Working on mobile platforms can only be hazardous to health or life if workers do not follow health and safety rules.
What are the most common accidents in elevator work?
Work involving the operation of mobile platforms is most likely to result in falls from a great height, electric shocks or impacts from the materials used. Work involving the operation of mobile platforms is most likely to result in falls from a great height, electrocution or impacts caused by the materials used.