The tall stature of the overhead bridge crane makes it ideal for use as a work platform in some situations. If you are in the middle of a construction project where an overhead bridge crane is involved, you may be tempted to just have your employees go ahead and use the top frame of the crane to reach necessary heights during certain aspects of the project. While this is allowed by OSHA in some settings, there are specific conditions that must be met and rules that are to be followed if you plan to use your overhead bridge crane as a work platform during construction.
1. Work is only allowed to be performed from the bridge of the crane itself.
At no time should an employee be allowed to use any other part of the crane to reach a certain height other than the stationary part of the crane itself. You should never allow employees to climb on the crane’s hoist, from a load suspended on the crane, or any other component because this could cause a safety concern. A platform can be added to the bridge only, along with safety rails for protection from falls.
2. All of the same rules apply when using a crane bridge as a work platform.
Before an employee is allowed to traverse to the top of the crane bridge via a ladder or lift, they should be adequately fitted with the proper safety gear to prevent them from falling. This should include a four-point harness that attaches to the crane bridge via a standard safety hook. Your employees should be trained on how to use the harness system to secure themselves to the platform before they begin working at all.
3. Implement safety notifications to use when an employee will be working from the bridge of the crane.
It is not safe for the crane to be in operation while it is being used as a reach platform on a work site. Therefore, it is imperative that you make sure you have a standard system in place to alert crane operators when the bridge of the crane is being use for platform purposes so they know not to start operation until they are certain the employee on the bridge is out of the way of any danger. Additionally, any other crane operators of other cranes within the vicinity should also be alerted to employees being on the bridge of a crane that is not currently in operation.
To learn more about the proper use of cranes as platforms, it may be helpful to speak to a company like American Equipment Inc.