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Safely loading and unloading elevating work platforms

Loading elevating work platforms, or EWPs, onto tilt trays can expose workers to a unique set of very serious risks. This film explains how to control the risks of loading and unloading EWPs onto tilt trays.

Download a copy of this film (ZIP/MP4, 71MB)

Voice over: Loading elevating work platforms, or EWPs, onto tilt trays can expose workers to a unique set of very serious risks.

Around one third of all serious incidents involving EWPs each year happens in the construction industry.

In one case, a worker was seriously injured when an EWP he was loading onto a truck slipped down the tilt tray. The basket hit the ground and he was crushed by the handrail.

Don't let this happen in your workplace. Manage the risks of loading and unloading EWPs effectively.

Operators must be competent to safely load EWPs onto tilt trays.

They must be provided with adequate training so that they are familiar with each type of EWP they use.

EWP controls can differ between makers and models, so operators need to know four things in particular:

  • where the operator's manual is kept, and what's in it
  • the purpose and function of all controls
  • what safety devices are fitted that are specific to that make and model; and
  • how to lower the platform in an emergency.

The truck needs to be the right size and have the right weight capacity to transport the EWP. The tray should be long enough for the boom and basket, and the mass of the EWP must not exceed the capacity of the winch.

Make sure the truck is on firm, level ground with minimal side slope.

If it's not, the EWP could slide and fall off the tray.

Lock the EWP's covers and remove debris such as building materials from the area. The slew locking pin should be engaged if one is fitted.

Always use the winch when loading and unloading the EWP. Using the winch while driving the EWP onto the tray helps with control, especially if the tray surface is slippery or the EWP's tyres are wet or muddy.

The operator should secure themselves to the basket using a short lanyard to reduce the risk of being thrown out of it if something does go wrong.

EWPs should be stowed in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions.

Take care not to place downward pressure on the basket when stowing. It should be secured using an appropriate ratchet strap.

If placing the basket onto the tray is recommended by the manufacturer, make sure the tilt tray is levelled, then use the ground controls to move the basket onto the tray.

Keep your workers safe - manage the risks when loading EWPs onto tilt trays.

Work safe. Home safe.


RUN TIME: 3 mins 08 seconds