History shows us that working at height had to evolve to become quicker, cheaper and more importantly safer. This entailed moving on from old wooden ladders, wooden gantries and trestles and of course, hanging from ropes. No…not the around the neck type but around the waist or siting on a sling.
We have now progressed to strong alloy ladders, alloy or steel scaffolding, rope access technicians (with purpose made equipment) and of course access platforms.
Most are self-explanatory, but what is an Access Platform? Simply put, an access platform is a temporary work platform attached to the end of a boom and is manoeuvred into position via a system of hydraulically operated arms/booms.
They are known by different names, here are a few;
• Cherry Picker - used by most as a basic description of all access platforms.
• Scissor Lift – a four wheeled vertical platform known by some as a 'flying carpet'.
• Boom Lift - a general term for four-wheeled self-propelled boom type machines.
• Spider - a term used for a tracked access platform with outriggers.
• Trailer Mounted – a road towable platform that can be towed behind a car.
• Truck Mounted – a platform which is fitted to a vehicle chassis.
• Vertical Boom - a term used for stock pickers or manlifts.
• MEWP - Mobile Elevated Work Platform, the descriptive term.