High performance even with low temperatures
The winter months can be particularly challenging for those working in the construction and industrial sectors, especially when it comes to operating an aerial platform. Ice, snow and wind can have adverse effects on the platform and cause dangerous slippages or worse. To keep safe when working at height in winter, a few more precautions should be taken. In this article, we’ll explore some of the best ways to stay safe when operating an aerial platform in winter.
It would seem obvious, but too often the importance of the right clothing is underestimated. The first thing to do when planning an intervention on an aerial platform in the winter season is to protect yourself from the cold by wearing the right clothing. In fact, some types of clothing are better than others at retaining heat, so choose carefully.
Thermal shirts, neck warmers to protect you from the wind and cold, waterproof and insulated boots to keep your feet warm and dry. A hat and earmuffs to prevent heat loss from the head (…especially for bald people!). When working with your hands, it is essential to wear gloves that protect against the cold and at the same time allow for sufficient flexibility.
Inspect the aerial platform before use
Before use, the aerial platform should be thoroughly inspected. This will help you determine any equipment issues, and allow you to take the necessary steps to avoid troubles. It is necessary to check the safety devices, such as the locking system, the brake and the rotation mechanisms. It is also advisable to check the equipment, the state of the ropes and cables and the condition of the basket:
– Make sure the electrical controls are free from moisture which could cause short circuits or sparks;
– Check the tires pressure;
– Keep the equipment adequately lubricated, excessive cold could cause blockages;
– Check that all work surfaces are free from ice to prevent potential slips;
– Check the battery status;
– If you foresee an intervention in particularly harsh weather conditions, consider refueling your vehicle with specific winter diesel oil;
– Regularly clean your fuel filters to ensure smooth and efficient operation;
– Hydraulic equipment does not like cold, you need to allow for adequate warming up time so that fuel and oil can circulate properly. Please note that it is normal for the platform to need longer to warm up in extreme cold conditions!