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Inspections of Aerial Equipment

Milton J. Luttrell, III Aspen Aerials, Inc.

I nspections of aerial equipment are a requirement as set forth by the American Nations Standards Institute (ANSI). Owners of aerial equipment need to make themselves familiar with the standards that apply to their particular make and model of equipment.

The purpose of this paper is to generate a basic understanding of inspection procedures for aerial equipment and to help owners and users develop inspection procedures that will ensure the safety of personnel charged with handling equipment.

OPERATION SYSTEMS AND COMPONENTS

Operating systems allow the aerial equipment to be positioned at work locations not normally accessible by means of ladders or scaffolding. To fully appreciate the importance of a sound inspection program for aerial equipment it helps to understand how aerial equipment works. The normal system configuration of an aerial device includes

  • Chassis,

  • Stabilizers,

  • Counterweight,

  • Boom(s),

  • Turntable(s),

  • Platform,

  • Hydraulic system,

  • Limit system,

  • Remote control system, and

  • Safety shutdown system.

Chassis

The chassis is used for transportation of the unit to the desired work location.

Stabilizers

Stabilizers differ in design and location. On some overhead aerial equipment, outriggers are used to prevent the equipment from becoming unstable during operation. Axle locks (spring locks) are used in some applications to prevent instability. Most stabilizer systems are engaged using a hydraulic valve. However, there are some stabilizers that are moved manually.

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