Safety in the Sky

If aerial equipment is part of your rental inventory, review these safety guidelines recommended by JLG Industries. Then make sure that your employees as well as your customers have reviewed them to ensure safe operation of your aerial equipment.

  • Read your manual. Understand what you have read, then begin operations.
  • Allow only authorized and qualified personnel who have demonstrated that they understand safe and proper operation and maintenance of the unit to operate the machine.
  • Read and obey all dangers, warnings, cautions and operating instructions on the machine and in the operators and safety manual.
  • Be familiar with the location and operation of ground station controls.
  • Always position the boom over the rear (drive) axle in line with direction of travel. Remember, if the boom is over the front (steer) axle, the direction of steer and drive movement will be opposite from normal operation.
  • Keep non-operating personnel at least six feet (2 m) away from the machine during driving operations.
  • Check the travel path for persons, holes, bumps, drop-offs, depressions, debris and coverings that may conceal holes and other hazards.
  • When riding in or working from the platform, both feet must be firmly positioned on the floor.
  • Ensure the machine is positioned on a firm, level and uniform supporting surface before raising or extending boom.
  • Never slam a control switch or lever through neutral to the opposite direction. Always return the switch to neutral and stop, then move the switch to the desired position. Operate levers with slow, even pressure.
  • Ensure that operators of other overhead and floor machines are aware of the aerial platform's presence. Disconnect power to overhead cranes. Position barricades on the floor if necessary.
  • To avoid falling, use extreme caution when entering or leaving the platform above ground. Enter or exit through the gate only. The platform floor must be within 1 foot (30 cm) of adjacent — safe and secure — structure. Allow for platform vertical movement as weight is transferred to or from it.
  • Transfers between a structure and the aerial platform expose operators to fall hazards. This practice should be discouraged wherever possible. Where a transfer must be accomplished to perform the job, two lanyards with an approved fall protection device should be used. One lanyard should be attached to the aerial platform, the other to the structure. The lanyard that is attached to the aerial platform should not be disconnected until such time as the transfer to the structure is complete. Otherwise do not step outside the platform.
  • Ensure that ground conditions are adequate to support the maximum tire load indicated on the tire load decals located on the chassis adjacent to each wheel.
  • Never exceed manufacturers rated platform capacity — refer to capacity decal on machine. Distribute loads evenly on the platform floor.
  • Do not operate aerial machines when wind conditions exceed 30 mph (48 kph).
  • Maintain safe clearance from electrical lines and apparatus. Allow for boom sway, rock or sag and electrical line swaying. The machine does not provide protection from contact with or proximity to an electrically charged conductor.
  • Never walk the boom to gain access to or leave the platform.
  • Never push or pull the machine or other objects by telescoping the boom.
  • Never attempt using the boom as a crane. Structural damage or tipping may occur.

Information reprinted from the JLG Industries Inc. Web site,

Got Tips?

If you have maintenance tips to pass along to RER readers, please contact Brandey Smith, managing editor at [email protected] or 913/967-7458.

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