Fall Protection From Bucket Trucks and Boom Trucks
Working in a bucket truck can be a thrilling experience. These specialized vehicles allow public service workers to reach high places with minimal effort. A high quality bucket truck or boom truck can be a huge time saver, and if the truck is operated correctly and used safely, the risk of falling or other injuries is very small. There are a few simple safety tasks that bucket truck operators can complete to eliminate fall hazards and other common threats.
Daily Equipment Checks
The easiest way to eliminate fall risks and other safety hazards is to perform a daily equipment and maintenance check on the bucket truck or boom truck. By checking equipment daily, potential problems can be identified and eliminated. Boom truck operators should perform a “walk around check” each morning before the truck is taken to the worksite. Check for loose or damaged vehicle parts, leaks in hydraulic equipment, rusted or worn out welded areas, bulges or leaks in the vehicles’ tires, and issues with lighting, safety lights, or warning decals. Identifying any issues with the maintenance of the vehicle will greatly reduce the occurrence of accidents.
Inspect the Worksite
After the vehicle has been effectively checked for damage or disrepair, the next important safety task is to inspect the worksite. Rushing to and beginning a job without an awareness of worksite hazards is a huge risk that cannot be afforded. Bucket truck and boom truck operators should patiently and thoroughly examine the area surrounding the worksite for potential hazards. Things to look out for include uneven ground that can tip the truck, surface hazards such as potholes, crumbled rock or pavement, and debris, heavy gusts of wind or other inclement weather, and blind spots that may affect driver visibility. Being aware of these hazards will allow workers in the truck bucket to remain safe during the job.
Bucket Truck and Boom Truck Hazards
Another important way to eliminate fall hazards while operating a bucket or boom truck is to follow safe operation guidelines. Fall hazards can be caused by exceeding the weight limit of the bucket, placing ladders or other reaching devices in the bucket, climbing on the edge of the bucket, or tripping over debris in the bucket. Electrocution hazards, collision hazards, and tipping hazards are other potential problems that can affect the safety of bucket truck operation.
By checking the vehicle for maintenance issues, establishing a clear and safe workspace that is free of debris and damage to the pavement or ground, and following the precise safety guidelines associated with bucket truck operation, the risk of falling or otherwise injuring oneself can be greatly reduced and even eliminated.
Don’t forget to check out our Bucket Truck Safety Guide for more safety information.