ARE SCISSOR LIFTS USER FRIENDLY?
Yes. The primary function of scissor lifts is to provide an elevated work platform that is safer than ladders and scaffolding. Part of the reason they are safer is that workers can operate them with minimal effort, reducing fatigue and allowing work to continue for longer periods of time with less risk of injury. Traditional scissor lift design can still pose a risk to workers.
Loading and Unloading the Platform
While the scissor lift helps the worker elevate to the work area with relative ease, the equipment and materials they will be working with will be added to the platform manually before the work starts. Many of these tools and materials are heavy, oddly shaped, or both. 5-gallon paint cans are a good example. Standard scissor lift platforms run high and can cause the worker to lift outside of their power zone, increasing the risk of injury.
What is the Power Zone?
The power zone is the safest place to hold items you are lifting. It is the space directly in front of the body, extending from the shoulders to the thigh. By keeping the objects you are lifting in the power zone, you greatly reduce the risk of injury.
Entering and Exiting the Platform
To safely enter the platform, three points of contact must be maintained until firmly standing inside the rails. The safest way to exit the platform is to face the front of the lift and step backward out of the platform while maintaining three points of contact. Many injuries occur when the operator steps forward out of the platform, gets a foot caught somewhere in the step or door, and falls face-first onto the floor. The higher the platform, the more dangerous entry and exit can be.
An easy way to mitigate risks prior to starting work is selecting a scissor lift that is, not only the right size for the type of work you’ll be doing but selecting a scissor lift that has a low step-in height and an entry door that is the full height of the rails, like Hy-Brid Lifts Pro and Zero-Turn Series scissor lifts. The low step-in height makes it easier to load the platform and safer to enter and exit. The full height entry door allows the operator to enter the platform without having to crouch under a fixed bar.
Slide-Out Deck Extension
Slide-out deck extensions are a great way for workers to extend over job site obstacles and into hard-to-reach areas. Often the deck extension will be engaged with a pedal on the deck. Then the platform will be pushed out, into place with the arms. This operation can be made more difficult when debris jams up the rollers and it is even harder to push the platform. Because you only have one foot on the platform deck, care should be taken not to lose balance.
Hy-Brid Lifts Pro and Zero-Turn Series scissor lifts feature an Easy-Glide slide-out deck extension that is engaged with the right hand, allowing both feet to remain balanced on the deck. The extension also slides out on the mid-rail preventing debris from the platform jamming it up.
Selecting user-friendly Hy-Brid Lifts will go a long way in keeping your workers safe and productive.