Monthly Archives: June 2020

An In-Depth Look at the New ANSI A92 Standard

The new ANSI A92 standard takes effect next month, and it affects businesses that own and operate mobile elevated work platforms (MEWPs). To better understand the updated standard, let’s answer some of the key questions surrounding it.

What Is A92?

A92 offers guidance for equipment design and manufacturing. It also defines user roles for equipment, such as operator, owner, and dealer.

ANSI has implemented several changes with A92, including:

Aerial work platforms (AWPs) are now referred to as MEWPs.

✓ New guidelines replace existing guidelines related to the following product types: manually propelled, self-propelled booms and scissors, and under-bridge inspection devices.

✓ New safe use and training mandates apply to MEWPs.

✓ New training classifications have been developed based on a combination of group and type. Groups a and b are used based on potential MEWP configuration; group a MEWPs have a platform that is inside the tipping line, and group b MEWPs have a platform that can be positioned beyond the tipping line. Meanwhile, types 1,2, and 3 are based on an MEWP’s ability to travel; type 1 MEWPs cannot travel out of a stowed position, type 2 MEWPs have travel controlled by a chassis, and type 3 MEWPs can travel when elevated.

Compliance with the new version of A92 is crucial. If businesses understand what the updated standard covers, they can provide their workers with the proper training to safely use MEWPs going forward.

What Does New A92 Standard Cover?

The new A92 standard is divided into three sections:

1. Design (A92.20)

Section 20 of standard A92 provides design, calculations, safety requirements, and testing methods for MEWPs. It helps MEWP manufacturers and engineers develop and deliver safe machines.

Key factors included in A92.20 include:

✓ Load Sensing:

MEWPs must offer active load monitoring; if an MEWP becomes overloaded, the machine will stop working.

✓ Wind Force:

MEWPs intended for outdoor use require a lower platform capacity and/or increased rate in comparison to machines designed for indoor use. Also, MEWPs intended for indoor use must be clearly marked as such.

✓ Tires:

MEWPs designed for rough terrain must have solid and/or foam-filled tires.

✓ Tilt Sensing:

MEWPs must have a tilt sensor alarm, along with a mechanism that stops boom functions in the event that a machine’s incline exceeds a designated slope limit.

✓ Machine Markings:

MEWPs must be marked to designate when their most recent annual inspection was completed. They must also have an up-to-date manual on board.

MEWP manufacturers have been working diligently to update their equipment to meet A92.20 requirements before the standard takes effect. In doing so, they have dedicated time and resources to enhance the safety of machines and lower the risk of platform accidents.

2. Safe Use (A92.22)

A92.22 requires businesses to develop a safe use program for MEWPs. It also stipulates that businesses must perform a worksite risk assessment before work is completed.

During a worksite risk assessment, workers must:

✓ Determine the task that needs to be completed, along with the location and timing of assigned work

✓ Select the proper MEWP(s) for the job

✓ Examine risks to MEWP(s), work tasks, and other job requirements

✓ Identify rescue planning and other controls that can be used to help minimize risk

A safety plan must also be developed and shared with all workers. This plan must define the roles of those involved in an MEWP safe use program, including:

✓ Operator:

Trained and authorized to use an MEWP

✓ Occupant:

Understands MEWP use and safety

✓ Supervisor:

Tracks MEWP use and ensures safety protocols and processes are followed

✓ Technician:

Conducts MEWP maintenance based on the manufacturer’s requirements

A92.22 is an important consideration for workers who regularly use scissor lifts, boom lifts, and other MEWPs, along with worksite supervisors and safety managers. Together, these parties can develop and implement an MEWP safe use program to ensure that all work platforms are securely operated and managed at worksites.

3. Training (A92.24)

A92.24 outlines MEWP training requirements. It explains how businesses can prepare MEWP training materials, as well as how these materials should be delivered. Also, the standard defines the necessary elements to ensure workers receive effective MEWP training.

According to A92.24, all MEWP training must be performed by a qualified instructor who understands the following aspects as they relate to MEWPs:

✓ Safe use practices

✓ Manufacturer’s requirements

✓ Hazards

Additional training may be necessary to ensure a business has qualified instructors on hand to educate workers about MEWPs. Or, businesses can provide their workers with training courses to ensure they gain the insights they need to comply with A92.

How Can You Teach Your Workers About the New A92 Standard?

Workers must stay up to date about the new A92 standard, so they can properly use MEWPs. By developing and implementing a training program, a business can educate its workers about the updated standard. That way, workers can safely use MEWPs and minimize the risk of platform accidents.

At CertifyMe.net, we offer a large collection of online training courses for businesses that use forklifts and other MEWPs. Our courses are taught by industry professionals and enable workers to learn how to safely operate MEWPs. To learn more about our training courses, please contact us online or call us today at 1-888-699-4800.

Propane Safety: What You Need to Know

Propane, commonly referred to as liquefied petroleum gas, is often used to fuel forklifts. The substance is colorless, nontoxic, and virtually odorless, which may make it seem harmless. Yet, if propane safety measures are not followed, the consequences can be dire.

Why Is Propane Safety Important?

Propane is flammable, and as such, businesses that store, use, or transport propane must follow CGA (Compressed Gas Association) and OSHA propane safety guidelines. In doing so, these companies can limit the risk of propane explosions, spills, and other propane-related accidents.

A Closer Look at CGA and OSHA Propane Safety Guidelines

CGA and OSHA propane safety guidelines can be classified into three categories:

1. Storage

To properly store propane, workers must:

Limit the amount of propane stored in an industrial facility to 300 lbs.; in buildings with designated areas for propane storage, workers can store up to 10,000 lbs. of propane

Avoid storing propane cylinders in high-traffic and busy areas, such as near stairways or exits

Keep propane cylinders away from any flammable or combustible materials

Store propane in cylinder safety cages or cabinets; propane cylinders must be kept off the ground and in flat areas where they cannot collect water

Keep any propane cylinders that are not currently in use outside in an open air storage space or cage; these cylinders must be stored under a protective roof and remain a minimum of 20 ft. away from all buildings

Keep propane tanks away from areas where they may be exposed to excessive heat (temperatures of 120°F or higher)

Use a chain or other support systems to prevent propane cylinders from falling

Check the date on a propane cylinder’s collar periodically to ensure that the cylinder’s re-qualification date has not passed

Keep an eye out for rust and other signs of leaks on propane tanks

Ensure fire extinguishers are placed near areas where propane cylinders are stored

Protect propane cylinder valves to limit the risk of damage if cylinders are dropped or fall

In addition to these storage requirements, propane cylinders used for forklifts must be stored horizontally or vertically. If these cylinders are placed horizontally, their relief device must be pointed upward in the 12 o’clock position.

2. Use

In terms of propane tank use, CGA and OSHA require workers to:

✓ Follow the manufacturer’s instructions any time they use a forklift or other propane-powered equipment

✓ Ensure only trained and authorized personnel use propane-powered equipment and replace propane tanks

✓ Wear hand, face, and eye protection when connecting or disconnecting a propane tank from equipment

✓ Avoid using metal tools when they change a propane tank

✓ Avoid using too much force when they open a propane tank valve

✓ Avoid rolling, dropping, or dragging a propane cylinder

✓ Close a propane tank’s valve any time the cylinder is not in use

✓ Perform periodic inspections of any propane-powered equipment

✓ Avoid smoking or any other potential ignition sources when working near a propane tank

✓ Avoid disassembling a propane tank

✓ Avoid letting a propane tank overheat

✓ Avoid modifying or repairing a propane tank valve or regulator

✓ Treat empty propane cylinders with the same level of care and attention as if they were full

Propane tank safety is vital, particularly when it comes to businesses that use propane every day. By prioritizing safe use of propane, these businesses can take measures to prevent propane-related accidents.

3. Transportation

To ensure safe transport of propane tanks, CGA and OSHA advise workers to:

✓ Keep propane tanks upright and secure them during transport

✓ Close all propane tank valves and seal them with a plug as needed, even if the cylinders are empty

✓ Avoid leaving propane tanks in closed vehicles

✓ Ventilate propane tanks during transport

✓ Avoid smoking when handling or transporting propane tanks

When a vehicle transporting propane tanks reaches its final destination, CGA and OSHA require workers to keep the vehicle at least 5 ft. away from propane tank storage containers. This ensures that propane tank valves are easily accessible.

Propane Tank Safety Tips

Along with CGA and OSHA propane tank safety requirements, businesses can use the following tips to further reduce their risk of propane-related accidents:

1. Beware Damaged Propane Tanks

Never use a damaged propane tank. Instead, notify a propane supplier to safely dispose of the defective tank.

2. Take Advantage of an Overfill Protection Device

Use a propane tank that has an overfill protection device in place. This device ensures the tank is filled to the proper level; otherwise, if the tank is overfilled, propane in the cylinder won’t have sufficient room to expand and may combust.

3. Test for Propane Tank Leaks

Apply a leak detector solution or soapy water to a propane tank’s connector valve and outlet. Then, open the cylinder valve to see if bubbles start to form. If bubbles develop, double-check the connection by closing the valve, tightening it, and opening the valve again. At this point, if bubbles still develop, the tank is defective and must be replaced.

The Bottom Line on Propane Safety

Propane safety is a key consideration, especially if a business uses propane-powered forklifts. By educating workers about propane tank safety, a business can lower its risk of propane-related accidents.

At CertifyMe.net, we offer comprehensive forklift safety training courses for workers of all skill and experience levels. Our courses teach workers about all aspects of forklift safety — from how to properly operate a forklift to safe storage, use, and transport of propane that powers forklifts. To learn more about our forklift safety training courses, please contact us online or call us at 1-888-699-4800.