Like many of life’s challenges, preparation and anticipation is the best way to achieve your professional goals! If you are familiar with renting booms and aerial work platform, you may well know these 6 tips and questions to ask, but if you are a first-time lift renter, you should take 5 minutes to ask yourself the right questions before calling your favorite rental supplier!
There are many topics to consider before your job. The more complex the job and the more unknown parameters, the more you will need to evaluate your equipment needs. Asking yourself the right questions brings 3 major benefits:
- Ensure the safety of all operators on your jobsite
- Obtain the most appropriate and efficient machine, and thus productivity and deliverability gains
- Send a clear and precise request to the rental company to obtain the best price offer. 2 main topics will influence the price: the transport of the machine and the duration of the rental.
In this article we suggest a few questions to prepare your request and help the rental company to select the right equipment for your jobsite. Today there’s lifting equipment for every application and situation, thanks to the wide variety of products available on the market.
Listing your needs, evaluating the jobsite constraints and asking relevant questions before selecting a machine can help you save time and money!
1 – How high do you want to go?
Imagine if a few centimetres were all that was missing to reach the ceiling that needs to be changed! The question of height and the type of material to be carried both influence the model needed.
A rental company wouldn’t suggest the same boom if you need to hang Christmas decorations or if you need to assemble a metal frame building.
Is an offset required to access the work area? Articulating boom are well suited to complex environments and working around obstructions, you should use it if a high offset is needed. In the case of a small obstacle, requiring a small offset, a scissor lift with a platform extension would be adequate.
The height and the type of work site will help you choose the correct model of boom lift. If the work is very high (more than 18m / 59 ft) above the ground, the choice will be between telescopic and articulated boom lifts. Determine in advance the necessary working height and ask the rental company to have the most suitable machine for your jobsite.
The boom lift is chosen according to the working height which corresponds to the platform floor height (distance between the ground and the surface of the platform) to which is added the average height of an operator (with arms outstretched in working position), about 2 meters.
2 - What do you want to lift?
Whether it’s people or people + equipment, it’s important to think about the total weight you want to carry and lift using the machine.
Concerning the people who will climb in the basket, it is necessary to consider that their number is limited according to the chosen model, for example in an articulating boom such as the HA16 RTJ, the capacity is 230kg (500 lb) and 2 persons.
An electric rough terrain scissor lift like the HS15 E PRO can accommodate 4 people in the platform while respecting the maximum load capacity of 750kg (1,650 lb). For Haulotte products, maximum load capacity is always found in the product datasheet. All rental companies should provide this information and may help you choose the best machine based on the total weight you need to lift. For your total weight of the load should be known with a reasonable level of accuracy.
This information is necessary to anticipate the movements of the operators, the weight of the tools and of the materials which will be transported and used by operators.
The dimension of the load is also a topic to anticipate. For example, if you need to carry plasterboard or insulation panels along with the operators, consider asking the rental company for a boom with specific and helpful options. On Haulotte electric rough terrain scissor lifts, we have developed options to gain productivity in this kind of configuration:
- XL platform with dual extensions: the broad work platforms equipped with two extensions reach up to 7,4 meters (24 ft 4 in) long for a big work area
- Glazier pack & piple cradle: to carry all the material safely
- AC power: a plug directly integrated in the basket to power tools in the elevated platform
3 – Is the jobsite inside or out?
If the work will be done inside, the aerial work platforms should be electric because they are gas and emissions free, and work in silence.
For all indoor work it is important to check that the weight of the machine will fit within the floor loading limits, this parameter can be a decisive factor choice especially in multi-storied buildings.
For outdoor work, both electric and diesel models are suitable. For electric machines, the Haulotte Range Extender allows you to get around the constraints of having access to the electrical grid on your work site by charging the batteries directly. Fully removable and interchangeable between the models of the HSE range. To work outdoor, the Pulseo rough terrain scissor lifts and articulating booms are useful because they adapt to all conditions.
4 – On what type of ground will the boom be used?
The risk assessment plan of the jobsite will help you check the type of ground that the boom will face. Is the ground compact and stable? Flat? Sloping? What is the maximum slope that the MEWP will have to climb? On all manufacturer’s product datasheets, the maximum gradeability is indicated. Remember that the MEWP can’t be fully extended when driving on slopes. Poor weather conditions have an impact on the choice of machine. For muddy conditions, the best platforms are those with four-wheel drive and an oscillating axle.
Tires are where the rubber meets the road, and you want to make sure you ask for a MEWP with the most suitable tires for your job. Foam tires will be your best ally to provide stability and avoid slow puncture on uneven terrain. For an inside jobsite, non-marking tires are highly recommended if you are working on sensitive floors or in a building that has already been built and finished.
Consider all the details! Does the jobsite have a ceiling height limitation, or are there any obstacles (electrical wires, pipes)? Think about the narrowest models if you need to access difficult and tight areas.
Anticipating your need for indoor work is even more important, double door access may be helpful to get a lift into the building.
6 – Who will use MEWP?
To use a cherry picker there are standards to follow: personal safety must be ensured, and personnel must be trained to drive the machine. Lift equipment must only be handled by trained and authorized persons, in compliance with the rules of use and with the authorized CACES PEMP (in France – Certificat d’Aptitude à la Conduite En Sécurité) or with the license issued by the IPAF (PAL card: Powered Access License). The IPAF PAL card is the most widely recognized training certificate at the international level. This training must be updated every five years.
In addition to training operators to drive the aerial platform, it is essential to brief the teams to inform them of all the constraints, difficulties, and particularities of the jobsite. Anticipating changing conditions such as the weather, or the movement of objects, people or loads is a key to success.
For more information about permit, you can read our full article: boom lift permit all you need to know.