Powering access platforms – things to consider

Powering access platforms needs energy or fuel and different power options are available, for working at height in different locations.

Choosing the right access equipment for the needs of your job is essential and powering access platforms is a major consideration. Different makes and models offer a choice of power sources to work safely in different environments. The power supply is used to travel & operate the lifting and extending of equipment while carrying the maximum weight load of people and equipment.

The main varieties of power supply are:
– An internal combustion engine powered by fuel such as diesel or petrol
– Electrical power supply (AC) that can be plugged into the mains
– Electric power supply (DC) with lead acid or lithium batteries
– Dual power hybrid with battery power and combustion engine for additional power

Choices For powering access platforms

The choice of power supply and type of access platform depend on the specific requirements of a job. There are a number of things to consider which should be evident from the pre-job risk assessment.

Noise levels are a major concern as there are both UK and EU regulations that govern how much noise you can make in specific environments, including indoor working and densely populated areas. In confined spaces, such as narrow streets or indoors, noise echoes off walls, ceilings and floors and the roar of a diesel engine can sound even louder than usual.

All access platforms are marked with their sound power level so it is easy to tell when a particular machine is unsuitable for a particular working environment.

Electrical power supplies are quieter than a diesel engine and are powered by either a mains supply or battery. Most models of spider lift, tracked access platform or other equipment which is designed to work indoors have an electric or duel fuel engine.

Wherever you are working, you need to make sure there is a sufficient fuel supply to complete the necessary tasks.  A rapid battery charging system provides fume free operation for confined working spaces without the need to rely on AC power and trailing cables and is available on some newer models of machine such as the Spider 18.9 PRO-E which has a 300Ah lithium battery for an extended working lifespan.

Engines are louder and are most common form of power supply on powered access platforms but need diesel or petrol to operate. They are suitable for use in a vast range of working environments and temperatures, on and off site and throughout the seasons.

Whatever the job or working environment, select the type of powered access platform with the right power supply to meet the needs of the job and make sure it has sufficient fuel or access to energy to work safely and efficiently.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]