Use of boom lifts has become a common practice in the tower industry for providing quick and, seemingly, safe access to monopoles and low level work on free standing towers. Kathy Gill of Tower Safety and Rescue cautions that not understanding what the rigging capacity is for a given truck, and not having a rigging plan to go with it, can prove fatal. “We do not want another 2020, where several fatal accidents occurred caused by overloading or operating in unsafe conditions,” she said.
Gill broke down the seven different types of lifts for Inside Towers. “Some have a vertical reach of 65 feet and can safely put workers in position to service almost any electrical distribution,” she said. “Depending on the type of lift, some can be equipped with a manufacturer jib and winch, which allows for material handling. Material may range from working heights of a capacity of 1,000-2,000 lbs. Always refer to manufacturer guidelines.”
Boom lifts are designed and manufactured to the standards covered by ANSI 92.2 A Category C lift, Gill said, refers to the design of the boom, not the use. Category C is a boom with a lower test electrode, and the boom and basket are designed as secondary protection, whereas insulated tools are primary protection for the worker. Category C is limited to work on electrical systems below 46 kV.
The different types of lifts are: