Work platform is a type of equipment that allows an individual to perform tasks at height without the need for ladders or scaffolding. A work platform can be a portable unit or a permanent installation. It can be designed to accommodate one person or multiple people and may be used in construction, maintenance or other applications. It can also be modified to support different tools or equipment.
The type of work platform you choose depends on the task at hand and how long you plan to stay in it. A quick paint job or replacement of light bulbs might be better suited to a scissor lift or a scaffolding, while jobs that require indefinite access to elevated work areas might be best served by a prefabricated, permanent work platform.
There are several types of work platforms, including aerial work platforms (AWPs), mechanized access platforms, or cherry pickers. Each has a slightly different function but all provide safe access to work at height. These machines are powered by either hydraulics or pneumatics and are used for tasks such as building facade repairs, painting, repairing, inspecting, and maintenance tasks. They are usually equipped with a cage to protect workers.
Some types of work at height can be done using portable trestles or staging boards. These are generally preferred by decorators and builders, and can be used to access a wider area than can be achieved using a ladder or stepladder alone. If the trestles or staging are not erected properly or if they are not fitted with proper guard rails, falls from these systems can be dangerous and potentially fatal. The trestles or staging boards must be of a standard size and of sufficient length to adequately support the weight of any people or equipment on them. They must also be free from any trip hazards or gaps and be suitably fitted with handrails and toe boards if needed.
Often, temporary trestles or staging are not stable enough to support the weight of workers and equipment. For this reason, a mechanized access platform is frequently used for work at height. These machines are commonly known as cherry pickers, boom lifts or mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs) and are typically powered by hydraulics or pneumatics. They are usually able to travel over a variety of surfaces, although they are not suitable for navigating slopes or other uneven surface conditions.
Bespoke access platforms allow workers to safely carry out maintenance or other tasks where off the shelf fabricated work platforms are not available. These are usually made from aluminium and are able to support a wide range of tools and equipment. They are usually fitted with antimicrobial protection, which prevents the growth of bacteria and other microbes. They can also be customised with attachment points for lighting or other appliances.
When using any type of work platform, it is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for safety and maintenance. The operator must be trained to use the device properly and to check the equipment regularly for signs of damage or wear. It is also vital to check the weather conditions before using any work platform. Inappropriate weather can make it unsafe to use and can result in injury or even death. Piattaforma lavoro