Monthly Archives: February 2022

Scissor Lift Maintenance Requirements & Tips

aerial lift maintenance tips

Scissor lifts are one of the most widely used types of aerial lifts. They provide access to places that are hard to reach, and are a much more versatile option than typical scaffolding. Their compact size creates a small footprint when stored. And they can be used for a wide variety of job tasks, both indoors and outdoors. Like any other industrial equipment, they require regular maintenance. This article explains some different tips & tricks for effective scissor lift maintenance requirements.

One other important thing about scissor lifts: anyone who operates one must be OSHA compliant, meaning they’ve gone through an aerial lift and scissor lift certification program. (CMO) offers a great selection of training courses to ensure your entire scissor lift fleet is 100% OSHA compliant!

There are five basic types of scissor lifts:

  • 1. Hydraulic: These scissor lifts use hydraulic systems powered by hand or engine. Changing the oil pressure in the system moves the platform up and down. Compared to other types, hydraulic lifts are simple to operate.
  • 2. Electric: This type of scissor lift is quieter and doesn’t emit exhaust fumes. This makes it ideal for indoor job sites. Electrics tend to be smaller, which makes them well suited for small, confined spaces. Need some charging tips for your electric scissor lift? Check out this article!
  • 3. Diesel: Diesel scissor lifts are noisy, and they emit exhaust fumes. They are also among the most powerful scissor lifts. They are often found on construction sites and other projects that require lifting heavy tools and equipment.
  • 4. Pneumatic: These scissor lifts use air pressure to raise and lower the platform. They’re not as powerful as other scissor lifts, but don’t emit fumes. They can be used in most work environments, including indoors.
  • 5. Rough terrain: This type of scissor lift is made for outdoor terrain job sites. It can handle heavy weights. It also comes with heavy duty tires and extra safety features. Rough terrain scissor lifts can be powered by gas, diesel, or liquid propane.

Each type has different scissor lift maintenance requirements. It is important to have the correct scissor lift repair & maintenance checklist for each type.

Are There Lift Maintenance Requirements for Scissor Lifts?

aerial lift maintenance tips

Keeping scissor lifts well maintained is vital for good performance and long life. It’s also important for safe & effective use of your scissor lifts. Timely scissor lift maintenance helps reduce accidents on the job. It also ensures that all scissor lift components, safety gear, and other parts are working as they should.

Other reasons to perform scissor lift maintenance include:

  • √ Reduce downtime
  • √ Improve productivity
  • √ Extends the service life of a scissor lift
  • √ Lowers scissor lift repair cost

Scissor lift maintenance and safety also come together in the area of training. Handling any type of scissor lift involves risk. That’s why OSHA requires all lift operators to be trained and certified. This training doesn’t only cover safety techniques. It also covers how to perform maintenance to enhance safety.

Scissor Lift Maintenance Requirements

OSHA states that scissor lift platforms must be maintained according to the manufacturer’s lift maintenance requirements. OSHA provides a handy scissor lift safety worksheet to help employers comply. It explains how proper lift maintenance and other safety techniques can help prevent accidents.

Besides OSHA maintenance requirements, the top five tips for scissor lift maintenance include:

1. Perform Regular Maintenance

Scissor lifts often don’t get as much use as forklifts and other machines. They also don’t go as high as other types of aerial lifts. As a result, many companies think it’s okay to relax on maintenance. This is not true! Proper maintenance should never be overlooked or ignored. If something goes wrong when workers are in the air, it can result in serious injury or death. Without lift maintenance requirements in place, it’s nearly impossible to safely operate scissor lifts – accidents are bound to happen from neglect or poorly maintained equipment.

Inspecting the workplace is a key part of regular scissor lift maintenance as well. Scissor lift operators must be able to use their lifts safely in a workspace, and all worksite hazards must be addressed accordingly.

2. Create a Maintenance Plan

If you don’t have a written scissor lift maintenance plan, your safety manager should create one. The plan should include all maintenance guidelines as outlined by OSHA. It should also include the following for each type of scissor lift you use:

  • ✓ Type of lift
  • ✓  What maintenance is required by the manufacturer
  • ✓ When to perform the maintenance
  • ✓ A scissor lift maintenance checklist

It’s also a good idea to follow American National Standards Institute (ANSI) scissor lift maintenance guidelines. Their updated guidelines are known as the “A92” standards. They outline employer responsibilities regarding inspection, operation, repair, maintenance, and training.

ANSI A92.6 provides guidelines for frequency of scissor lift checkups. For example:

lift inspections should take place every 90 days or 150 hours of use, whichever comes first. Yearly inspections cannot exceed 13 months from the date of the last inspection.

Inspections should be performed by mechanics who are rated on the make and model of the lift. They can also inspect lifts with similar design features.

3. Conduct Daily Scissor Lift Inspections

The key to long-running, dependable lifts starts with scissor lift maintenance requirements – and that means daily visual inspections for obvious operational flaws, safety issues and more. Finding issues before working is the best way to avoid accidents and injuries on the job. With CMO’s aerial lift training and certification, your employees are better prepared to identify potential problems. Inspect every scissor lift before each shift. That way, workers can find and fix problems before starting the job. Daily inspections can also catch problems that might not get noticed until they cause an accident. Make sure all workers who inspect the lifts are trained on what problems to look for and how to correct them.

4. Use a Scissor Lift Maintenance Checklist.

Using a complete checklist will ensure nothing gets overlooked. OSHAs guidelines for this process include:


  • ✓ Check all fluid levels. This includes oil, fuel, coolant, and hydraulics. Keep an eye out for any leaks.
  • ✓ Check the wheels and tires. Look for worn tire treads and cracks or bubbles in the sidewalls. Make sure tire pressure is at the correct PSI. Check the wheels for any structural damage.
  • ✓ Test the steering and brakes to ensure they are fully operational.
  • ✓ Check the battery and charger. You don’t want to lose power in the middle of a job.
  • ✓ Test all emergency controls to make sure they are working. This includes horns, gauges, ✓ lights, and backup alarms.
  • ✓ Make sure all personal protection devices are in place and are working properly. These include safety harnesses, fall protection gear, and more.


Inspect these areas for signs of any problems:

  • ✓ Air, electric, pneumatic, and hydraulic systems
  • ✓ Insulating components
  • ✓ Written warnings, placards, and instructions
  • ✓ Mechanical fasteners and locking pins
  • ✓ Cable and wiring
  • ✓ Outriggers and stabilizers
  • ✓ Guardrails
  • ✓ Loose or missing parts

Work Zone

Look for these hazards:

  • ✓ Drop-offs, potholes, and unstable surfaces
  • ✓ Low ceilings
  • ✓ Slopes, bumps, and ditches
  • ✓ Debris on the floor
  • ✓ Overhead power lines and cables
  • ✓ Overhead obstructions
  • ✓ Blind spots, narrow aisles, and busy traffic areas
  • ✓ High winds and other extreme weather conditions
  • ✓ Nearby pedestrians

If any scissor lift components are damaged, missing, or not working right, do not use the lift until it has been fully repaired. Work zone hazards must be removed or enclosed by barriers to keep the lift at a safe distance. 

5. Maintain a Detailed Maintenance History

Keep a written record every time scissor lift maintenance is performed. Write down what was done, when, and why. This record is required in case of a scissor lift accident. If you can’t prove proper maintenance to OSHA, it could result in increased fines and further legal action. A detailed history or list of your scissor lift maintenance requirements is a great risk management strategy to help prevent accidents and injuries.

The easiest way to keep an accurate log is with maintenance software. These programs are designed to easily create maintenance schedules for scissor lifts and other aerial lifts. They also send advance alerts of upcoming maintenance dates. That way, scissor lift maintenance is always performed on time.

These software programs keep a detailed maintenance history of every scissor lift. They also allow you to compare maintenance and repair costs between lifts. That way you can see which lifts need fewer repairs than others. This helps decide whether it’s more cost-effective to repair or replace a lift. 

Other Scissor Lift Repair and Scissor Lift Safety Tips

  • ✔ Provide the right safety gear. Make sure all workers on the lift have the proper gloves, helmets, harnesses, and other safety gear. If a job requires a certain piece of equipment, make sure it’s always on hand.
  • ✔ Check the stability of a scissor lift. If a scissor lift feels unbalanced or is placed on uneven terrain, it should not be used until the lift is stable.
  • ✔ Evaluate the position of the guardrails. Verify that the guardrails are strong and sturdy. If there is rust or any other signs of wear and tear on the guardrails, they should be repaired or replaced.
  • ✔ Inspect a scissor lift after each job. This ensures that small problems are immediately resolved.
  • ✔ Use manufacturer-approved replacement parts. Don’t skimp on cheap parts that can risk the safety of your workers.

Most importantly, an untrained worker should never operate a scissor lift. Even the best-maintained lift can be deadly in the hands of an untrained worker.

Improve Scissor Lift Safety & Lift Maintenance Requirements Today!

From safe operation techniques to sustainable, easy-to-follow scissor lift maintenance requirements, CMO has everything you need for your operators to safely run your lifts, and also plan and schedule lift maintenance requirements that make sense for your enterprise.

Maintenance is one of the most important aspects of running your aerial lifts. Without practical, purposeful scissor lift maintenance requirements and scissor lift repair policies in place, it’s hard to maximize your company’s investment. But with CMO, it’s affordable to invest in a safety and aerial lift maintenance plan that works for everyone!

See why is #1 for lift maintenance requirements and safety training. To learn more, please contact us online or call us today at (602) 277-0615. You can also click here to register your company and become OSHA compliant before you know it! CMO is here to help with your total aerial lift and scissor lift maintenance requirements – contact us today!

The Most Popular Aerial Work Platforms

CMO - 5 types of aerial work platforms

Aerial work platforms (AWPs) and mobile elevated work platforms (MEWPs) are used by thousands of workers across the country every day for a near-endless list of jobs. Everything from construction to maintenance to cleaning and a million other tasks would be impossible with aerial lifts, AWPs and MEWPs.

But which ones are the most popular? The aerial lift experts here at did some research and came up with the following list…you’ll probably recognize a few types on our list, and your company may even use these on a daily basis.

Regardless of which type of elevated work platform or aerial lift you use, you always need OSHA-compliant training and instruction. If you need to address some training & compliance gaps with your company, register with CMO today!

What Is an Aerial Work Platform?

AWPs provide alternatives to scaffolding and ladders and allow workers to complete tasks at heights. All kinds of industries use aerial work platforms and different types of construction lifts, from landscaping companies to maintenance facilities to industrial cleaning companies and more.

The main components of an aerial work platform include a base structure (typically a wheeled vehicle to move the MEWP or AWP into place), an extending structure with chassis, and a flat workspace with controls for the operator to control the lift. Keep in mind, this is a list of the major parts of an aerial lift. For a detailed glimpse into the different components and accessories that comprise an AWP, check out The Anatomy of an Aerial Lift.

Proper safety precautions must be taken before using an AWP. For instance, workers must wear a body harness and other fall protection any time they use an AWP. They must also keep AWPs away from overhead wires or any other worksite dangers.

Workers must become OSHA-certified AWP operators before they can legally use an AWP. This ensures that employees have received sufficient training to verify they know how to safely operate an AWP.

Aerial Work Platform Options

Aerial work platforms come in a wide range of sizes. From a soaring aerial platform used for maintenance and construction to a lower elevated work platform, many aerial platforms are available.

Ultimately, you need to select an aerial work platform that allows you to perform a specific task, as quickly and efficiently as possible. To help you find the right aerial platform for the task at hand, let’s examine five of the most popular options:


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1. Boom Lift

Also referred to as “the spider,” a boom lift has four legs and a bucket on the end. It is mounted directly to a vehicle and includes durable tires, which make it a great option on uneven terrain. A boom lift is one of the most commonly used aerial work platforms across a wide variety of industries and applications.

The spider consists of a boom lift that has a bucket at the end of the boom where workers stand to access a work area. It was originally designed for orchards and allowed workers to easily pick fruit that was high up in trees. Nowadays, the lift is frequently used for overhead line maintenance, sprucing up tall trees, and even assisting firefighters in areas that are difficult to access.

Maintenance and inspections are important to ensure boom lifts and similar types of construction lifts run properly. CMO’s aerial lift certification includes some helpful tips for adhering to a sensible maintenance schedule. 

2. Articulated Boom Lift

An articulated boom lift, sometimes called a “knuckle lift,” has an extended arm that lets workers reach up and over various obstacles. The boom lift also has a turntable at the base which allows the lift to swivel in a full circle. It is often used for maintenance work and other tasks where access is limited.

Unlike a scissor lift, an articulated boom lift can be used for building repair jobs, including piping. An articulated boom lift can also be used on uneven terrain.

Workers can undergo articulated boom lift training as part of an aerial platform safety program. That way, workers can learn how to safely use an articulated boom lift during maintenance and building repair jobs.

3. Telescopic Boom Lift

For workers who require maximum reach at heights, a telescopic boom lift is ideal. This type of AWP is a terrific option for window washers, electricians, and other workers who need to access areas that are directly above or parallel to them.

Telescopic MEWs are versatile enough to handle work areas directly above or at an angle from the base of the lift. The operator stands in a mobile cockpit to control and customize the lift’s movements.

Before workers begin using a telescopic boom lift, they must complete a safety training program. Telescopic boom lift safety is a key tenet of worker training for aerial lifts, and a safety training program teaches workers how to minimize risk when they use this type of aerial platform.

4. Scissor Lift

A scissor lift is frequently used for indoor work. The lift has a set of supports in a crisscross pattern and offers limited reach in comparison to telescopic and articulated boom lifts.

Typically, scissor lifts only move vertically. A scissor lift’s upward motion is achieved by the application of pressure to the outside of its lowest set of supports, elongating the crossing pattern, and propelling the work platform vertically.

Scissor lifts are commonly used for basic maintenance work and painting. Rough terrain scissor lifts are also available for outdoor work on uneven terrain.

While most people think of scissor lifts as a type of construction lift or other kind of elevated work platform, they’re actually defined by OSHA as a type of scaffolding, since the operator / work platform doesn’t extend horizontally away from the base. Even though scissor lifts aren’t technically aerial lifts, they’re still more versatile and useful than traditional scaffolding.

Meanwhile, scissor lift safety training is available. With this training, workers can learn how to safely move a scissor lift up and down, operate the lift on rough terrain, and more.

5. Aerial Platform

An aerial platform resembles a cherry picker and serves as a vehicle-mounted, boom-supported aerial platform. Workers can use an aerial platform at outdoor jobsites to reach utility lines, trees, and more.

If you are considering an AWP, you should evaluate the aforementioned options closely. This will help you identify the right AWP for your worksite, and ultimately, enable you to maximize the return on your platform investment.

Regardless of which AWP you use, you need to safely operate the platform. Thanks to AWP safety training, workers of all skill and experience levels can become certified lift operators.

Types of Aerial Lifts

Aerial lift can be a blanket term used to describe boom lifts and scissor lifts. However, it is important to note that aerial lifts were originally designed to drive to outdoor jobsites to access electrical lines, trees, and other outdoor objects.

Common types of aerial lifts include:

✓ Personnel Lifts

Also referred to as “people lifts,” personnel lifts function as mechanical ladders. They offer greater stability over traditional ladders and reach heights approaching 50 ft.

✓ Towable Boom Lifts

Towable boom lifts are lightweight and portable. They are frequently used at yards, gyms, and other light industrial worksites.

Scissor Lifts

Scissor lifts are capable of reaching heights of 60 ft. They are ideal for workers who must paint buildings, wash windows, install HVAC systems, and perform other overhead tasks.

By completing an aerial platform training program, workers can gain the insights they need to use an aerial lift without disruption. They can also become more productive and efficient when they use an aerial lift, as well as take elevated work platform precautions to help make a jobsite safe.

Types of Construction Lifts

Along with aerial lifts, construction lifts are available. Common construction lifts include:

√ Bucket Trucks

A bucket truck features a boom that is mounted to the vehicle and a bucket at the end of the boom. It is often used by utility workers who need to reach transmission lines. Along with utility workers, bucket trucks may be utilized by landscapers and pruners who need to trim tall trees.

√ Articulated Boom Lifts

Knuckle lifts are useful for construction workers who need a work platform that allows them to reach around obstacles. For example, if a construction worker needs to repair exterior piping, an articulated boom lift will make it easy to access tough-to-reach spots around the piping. This type of lift is also ideal for construction workers who need to perform work on uneven terrain.

√ Telescoping Boom Lifts

For construction workers who need to complete work at a maximum height, they should consider a telescoping boom lift. This type of lift has an extendable arm and a rotating turntable that allows a single construction worker to complete tasks at high elevations. A telescoping boom lift is often a great choice for electrical repairs, maintenance tasks, and other work performed at extreme heights.

Elevated Work Platforms: Which One Is Right for You?

The right aerial work platform varies based on your application. So, you need to consider the task at hand, what you hope to accomplish, and which elevated work platform can help you complete your job safely and efficiently.

You need to look beyond the financial cost of elevated work platforms, too. An aerial platform may require a significant upfront investment, but you also need to consider workplace safety. If you invest in safety training for aerial work platforms, workers can learn how to properly use an aerial platform. Plus, workers can learn how to comply with aerial lift safety requirements.

The Importance of Compliance for Elevated Work Platforms

Safety is a priority with aerial lifts. OSHA states that the major causes of aerial lift fatalities are falls, electrocutions, collapses, and tip-overs, and employers must take measures to ensure the safe use of aerial lifts by workers who are required to use this equipment.

CMO’s comprehensive aerial lift training and elevated work platform certification give you everything required for full compliance, regardless of the type of construction lifts or aerial lifts your company uses. 

If you allocate the necessary time and resources to learn about aerial platform safety, you can limit the risk of workplace accidents that put yourself and others in danger. You can also use your knowledge of aerial platform safety to foster a workplace culture that prioritizes safety. As a result, you, your peers, and your superiors can benefit from a work environment where safety comes first.

Enroll Your Workers in Elevated Work Platform Training Today

Certification is mandatory for all workers who use an AWP. Failure to complete an elevated work platform safety training program can lead to OSHA compliance violations and fines. It can also result in lift accidents and injuries. offers an extensive AWP safety training program that takes the guesswork out of becoming an OSHA-compliant lift operator. Our program is easily accessible and can be completed in a matter of hours. It allows workers to immediately earn their OSHA certification and ensure they can safely use a lift at any worksite.

We are happy to provide you with additional information about our OSHA-compliant AWP safety training program. To learn more or to sign up your workers for our training program, please contact us online or call us today at (602) 277-0615.

Test Your Knowledge of Elevated Work Platforms 

Ready to test your knowledge on aerial work platforms? CMO created a fun & informative quiz for just this purpose! 

We put together a short quiz of 10 true or false questions that will determine which type of elevated work platform you are. Just click through the questions, and we’ll show you the results!

This is a great way to have some fun while learning more about boom lifts, cherry pickers, scissor lifts, telescopic lifts and other types of elevated work platforms.

OSHA Vertical and Horizontal Standards

osha vertical standardOSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) is an agency of the U.S. Department of Labor. OSHA was created by Congress in 1970 and sets and enforce rules and regulations that protect workers against unsafe or unhealthy working conditions.

OSHA requires all employers to keep their places of work free from known hazards that could cause injury or death to their employees. Regulations set by OSHA are known as standards.

What is the general OSHA standards structure? Your company should have a general idea, even if you’re not totally locked into the latest OSHA updates. But don’t worry – (CMO), the leader in online training and certification for aerial lifts and scissor lifts, always keeps you up to date and informed with OSHA vertical ladder standards, OSHA vertical standards & more.

Here are some of the most common questions we receive regarding OSHA standards:

– What are the OSHA construction standards also called?

– Are OSHA vertical ladder standards and OSHA horizontal standards interchangeable?

– What is the main idea behind OSHA standards implementation?

– And many others

Regardless of your OSHA standards questions, CMO has the answers! Get all of your OSHA vertical standard and OSHA horizontal standard questions taken care of with our OSHA compliant training & certification today!

aerial lift certification

The Sources Behind OSHA Vertical Ladder Standards

Most OSHA standards come from one of three sources. These are National Consensus Standards, Proprietary Standards, and Pre-existing Federal Laws. Here’s a bit of background on each of the three:

National Consensus Standards

These are health and safety standards created by multiple private agencies. The standards the U.S. Secretary of Labor has set for workplace safety have been adopted by OSHA. Regulations established by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) are examples of National Consensus Standards. Rules set by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) and National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) are other examples of National Consensus Standards.

Proprietary Standards

These are standards created by experts in their respective fields. Regulations adopted by the Association of General Contractors (AGC) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) are good examples of proprietary standards.

Pre-existing Federal Laws

These are laws that were enacted before OSHA was created. An example of a pre-existing federal law is the Walsh-Healy Act. Its purpose is to set health and safety standards for government contracts valued at more than $10,000. Another example is the McNamara-O’Hara Act that requires employers to pay workers’ wages and benefits that are least as much as the usual rate in the area. The Construction Safety Act that regulates working hours and safety standards in construction contracts. The Construction Safety Act is also a pre-existing federal law that is enforced by OSHA.

OSHA Horizontal or General Standards

osha vertical ladder standardsThe majority of standards OSHA enforces are horizontal standards. Horizontal standards are also known as general standards because they apply not just to specific industries, but to all industries in general. All businesses have to obey horizontal standards, regardless of the industry sector. Vertical standards, however, apply only to specific industries. More about vertical or particular standards that are specific to different industries later.

OSHA horizontal standards are designed to cover a broad array of safety regulations and prevent accidents across multiple industries. An example of a horizontal standard is the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS). The purpose of HCS is to ensure that all employers and employees can recognize and are aware of the potential dangers of chemical substances you can find in the workplace. HCS also talks about the precautions workers can take to avoid contact with dangerous chemicals and other substances.

OSHA horizontal standards also cover specific overhead tasks for aerial work platform, scissor lift, and aerial lift operators. OSHA defines an aerial lift as any vehicle-mounted device that lifts personnel. These include:

  • Extendable Boom Platforms
  • Articulated Boom Platforms
  • Forklifts
  • Vertical towers

Interestingly, OSHA doesn’t consider scissor lifts to be a type of aerial lift. They’re classified as scaffolds, and are covered under separate horizontal standards.

OSHA’s rules are intended to help reduce the number of accidents related to aerial lifts that result in serious injuries and deaths. Here are a few of them:

  • Falls from platforms
  • Tipovers
  • Equipment collapses
  • Electrocutions
  • Entanglements with overhead lines
  • Collisions

OSHA horizontal standards require all aerial lift operators to be properly trained and certified. The training and certification of workers is the responsibility of the employer. Not complying can result in large fines. Serious breaches can also include prison time. The fastest, most convenient and best way to avoid OSHA violations is to certify operators through’s online OSHA-approved training program.

OSHA Vertical Standards

OSHA vertical standards, which are sometimes called particular standards, apply only to specific industries. Examples of industries for vertical standards include longshoring (loading and unloading cargo from ships), construction, sawmills, and telecommunications. Interestingly, there are no vertical standards for oil and gas exploration and drilling.

For a complete list of special industries that fall under OSHA vertical standards, check Subpart R of Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 1910. Most, if not all, of these industries involve the use of aerial lifts in everyday operations. This makes them subject to OSHA vertical safety standards. When there’s a vertical standard that applies to a certain industry, the vertical standard takes priority over horizontal standards. As with industries covered by horizontal standards, it’s the responsibility of the employer to see that all operators are properly trained and certified. In addition to aerial lift operator training, also offers OSHA approved online Aerial Lift Safety Training courses.

Our training courses are designed to comply with OSHA vertical standards and horizontal standards. They make an ideal foundation of skills and knowledge for beginner aerial lift operators, veteran scissor lift workers, and everyone in between!

Keep the Workplace Safe and Avoid OSHA Fines is the leading online aerial lift training specialist. Since 1999, we’ve trained thousands of clients. CMO also provides safety training online. Our courses are fast, convenient and affordable. Training can be completed in as little as an hour. All materials are available online 24/7, so courses can be taken using a smartphone, tablet or similar device anywhere there’s an Internet connection available. 

If you’re not sure what OSHA construction standards are also called, or you need assistance with OSHA vertical and OSHA horizontal standards, we’re here to put your company on the path to compliance today! To learn more about OSHA-approved Training, speak with one of our safety experts at (602) 277-0615 or contact us online today!

Learn More About OSHA In Articles Linked Below

How to Prepare for an OSHA Inspection

Are you prepared to handan on OSHA inspection? What are the main parts that make up an OSHA inspection? And what about fines and penalties? You have questions, and we have answers! An OSHA inspection can be stressful for any company, especially if you don’t know what to expect going in. The OSHA compliance and training experts know what to expect. We’ve been involved with audits and inspections, and we also know how to help your company prepare accordingly. These inspections can relate to OSHA vertical standards (industry-specific regulations) and horizontal standards (more broad-based safety guidelines). Regardless of your company’s work activity, it helps to know how to prepare for an OSHA investigation. Get up to speed with OSHA vertical standards and inspections with today – check out our informative post!

The Function and Purpose of OSHA

What is OSHA, and what does the agency do? Aside from your company’s safety supervisors and management personnel, does everyone else know OSHA’s primary functions? Or what the agency is responsible for? This CMO article takes a deep dive into OSHA’s formation, purpose, regulatory activities, safety guidelines and much more. How does OSHA improve workplace safety? What can your business do to ensure full compliance with OSHA vertical ladder standards and OSHA horizontal standards? You have questions about OSHA – can CMO has the answers. Read it today and learn more about the ins and outs of OSHA!

Scissor Lift Safety Tips

scissor lift safety

Safety is crucial for businesses that leverage scissor lifts, as well as the employees who use these machines. As an employer, you’re responsible for the safety of your employees, and must provide training & certification to this end. (CMO) has everything your company needs to become OSHA compliant, including:

  • Classroom training
  • ✓ Convenient online access
  • ✓ Affordable prices
  • ✓ All necessary OSHA paperwork
  • ✓ Evaluator forms and hands-on evaluation resources
  • ✓ Great customer support
  • ✓ And much more

All of our courses are 100% OSHA compliant and start at just $75.00 per operator. Contrary to popular belief, getting your scissor lift operators trained and certified won’t break the bank. CMO makes safety affordable for everyone!

Let’s take a look at the basics of a scissor lift, along with some key scissor lift safety rules and general tips to boost safety at your workplace. 

What Is a Scissor Lift?

A scissor lift is a motorized vehicle that features a platform that can be raised vertically. It has crisscrossing metal supports and a platform mounted on folding arms that give the lift a distinct appearance.

Scissor lifts can be gas- or electric-powered and vary in terms of size. In addition, scissor lifts are often used in warehouses and other work areas where limited space is available.

Plus, scissor lifts offer a mobility advantage over traditional scaffolding. In fact, OSHA technically considers scissor lifts as a type of scaffolding, rather than an aerial work platform (AWP) or typical aerial lift.

Scissor Lift Safety Tips

With the goal to prevent scissor lift accidents and reduce the number of injuries and fatalities that occur on worksites across the country, OSHA has created a few categories for using scissor lifts safely and keeping workers away from harm. These scissor lift safety categories are Fall Protection, Stabilization, Positioning, Maintaining Scissor Lifts, and Training for Operators.

Before operating a scissor lift, employers are responsible for assessing the work area to identify any hazards that can cause accidents. It is essential to ensure there are no loose, damaged, or faulty parts of the equipment, and that the surrounding environment is free of hazards. A quick, five-minute risk assessment at ground level could be all it takes to prevent an injury, or worse.

Here are 5 scissor lift safety tips every company should follow. Keep in mind, these are a handful of critical elements of safe, efficient operation. For complete OSHA scissor lift safety information and OSHA compliant training, sign up with CMO today!

1. Fall Protection

Falls are one of the top causes of accidents involving large equipment, and certain aerial lift and scissor lift safety tips need to be considered to prevent workers from falling and getting injured or killed.

– Scissor lifts must have functioning guardrails to prevent operators from falling out of the platform

– Scissor lift workers are not required to have body harnesses and lanyards when guardrails are present, but individual company safety protocols can require scissor lift operators to wear safety harnesses.

– Workers must stand only on the platform, and not on the guardrails

– Workers should keep the work area close to the list to avoid having to lean away from the scissor lift

– Workers should never operate a lift alone.

2. Stabilization

Making sure scissor lifts are stable is the key to preventing tip overs and collapses. Stability is one of the most important parts of construction site safety with scissor lifts.  As one of the most effective ways for preventing the majority of scissor lift accidents, stabilization of the lift can be achieved using the following scissor lift safety tips:

– Follow all manufacturer’s instructions for moving on a scissor lift safely

– Make sure the scissor lift is not close to traffic or other equipment that can come into contact with the lift

– Position the scissor lift on solid, stable ground away from drop-offs, holes, bumps, slopes, and debris

– Only use scissor lifts in good weather conditions and not high winds

– Never exceed weight or height limits

3. Positioning

Proper positioning of a scissor lift will help prevent crushing and electrocution accidents. Workers both on and near a scissor lift are at risk for crushing hazards, which can happen when a moving scissor lift is near a fixed object, a scissor lift is close to moving vehicles, a scissor lift passes underneath a fixed object. Electrocutions can happen to workers on the platform who are near power lines, even if neither the lift nor the worker comes into contact with the live line. Hazards related to scissor lift positioning are directly related to a handful of the most common OSHA safety violations year after year. Scissor lift workers can prevent electrocutions and crushed-by accidents with the following scissor lift safety tips:

– Position the scissor lift at least ten feet away from power lines to avoid electrocution

– Use traffic control measures to separate the scissor lift from other workers or vehicles. Smart planning with traffic cone placement helps route foot traffic away from potentially dangerous areas around a working scissor lift. 

– Use ground guides around the scissor lift in the work zone

– Ensure your overhead is clear of electrical wires and other fixed objects

4. Maintaining Scissor Lifts

Scissor lifts are only kept safe for use through regular maintenance. Workers should review the manufacturer’s instructions to learn how to: 

scissor lift safety tips

– Perform pre-inspection checks and environment inspections

– Perform maintenance on the equipment

– Ensure safety systems are not bypassed

– Ensure guardrails are in good condition

– Verify the emergency stop button is functional

– Test the brakes to ensure the scissor lift can be safely stopped at any time

5. Training for Operators

All employers of scissor lift operators are required to provide training to teach workers how to operate scissor lifts safely and understand all scissor lift safety rules. Training should consist of the following scissor lift safety tips and instructions at the minimum:

– How to understand the manufacturer’s instructions for operating a scissor lift while in the raised position and while traveling

– How to handle materials on the scissor lift, and be aware of the weight limitations

– What worksite hazards to look for and how to avoid them

– How to report any defects that require repairs

Scissor lift training also teaches workers how to perform a thorough assessment of the surrounding environment to check for any red flags. Scissor lift safety tips come into play not only when inspecting the equipment, but also the work area because you truly can never be too careful. Even if the work zone has already been deemed as safe, it is each worker’s responsibility to perform their own inspections to confirm their safety.

OSHA Scissor Lift Safety Tips Your Workers Should Know About

There are several scissor lift safety tips that businesses should share with their scissor lift operators, such as:

  • Evaluate your work environment and address any hazards before operating the lift.
  • ✓ Verify that the lift is working correctly; if the lift malfunctions, take it out of service and have it repaired right away.
  • ✓ Conduct regular maintenance to mitigate any lift operational issues before they escalate.
  • ✓ Confirm that all lift operators have received OSHA safety training certification and that their certification is up to date.

It is an employer’s responsibility to educate its employees about workplace safety. If a business allocates the time, resources, and energy necessary to teach its workers how to safely use a scissor lift, it can minimize risk at its worksites. Plus, the business can avoid scissor lift accidents and injuries, along with associated OSHA fines and penalties.

How Safe Are Scissor Lifts?

The safety of scissor lifts varies based on the employer and lift operator. If an employer provides workers with proper training, it can boost scissor lift safety across its worksites. On the other hand, if scissor lift operators are untrained or ignore safety protocols, they can put themselves and others at risk.

According to the Bureau of Labor, scissor lifts are responsible for eight workplace fatalities each year. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has issued a safety alert focusing specifically on the need to regularly maintain, inspect, and test safety equipment. The HSE warning applies to operators of scissor lifts, scissor lift engineers, and rental and training companies.

What Are Common Scissor Lift Safety Risks?

Common scissor lift safety risks include:

  • ✓ Poor Maintenance: If a scissor lift is not properly maintained, performance issues can arise that put lift operators and bystanders in danger.
  • ✓ Improper Positioning: Using a scissor lift too close to power lines puts an operator at risk of electrocution. Also, positioning a scissor lift too close to a support beam, door frame, or another fixed object could crush an operator.
  • ✓ Insufficient Training: A scissor lift operator who does not know how to safely use a lift puts himself or herself and others at risk of accidents and injuries.

Safety is a top priority for any business that employs scissor lift operators. If these operators know how to identify and alleviate risks, they are well-equipped to guard against accidents and injuries.

Top Causes of Scissor Lift Accidents

When workers ignore scissor lift safety requirements, injuries and accidents are more likely to occur. That’s why training and a basic comprehension of scissor lift safety rules is important. According to OSHA’s Hazard Alert scissor lift bulletin, there are different factors that cause scissor lift accidents, including:

  • – Stability concerns
  • – Overhead hazards
  • – Bad weather
  • – Improperly working safety devices
  • – No fall protection harness

OSHA’s scissor lift safety rules help prevent the most obvious accident causes.

How Can Scissor Lift Certification Training Help Prevent Accidents?

The best way to prevent accidents is to ensure workers are properly trained with scissor lift certification and understand all scissor lift safety requirements. This specialized education is the most effective way to prevent accidents that lead to injuries, fatalities, and costly equipment damage because it teaches all of the essential scissor lift safety tips, including how to operate a scissor lift, how to recognize and avoid hazards, and how to inspect the equipment and surrounding environment.

OSHA mandates that all employers are responsible for their scissor lift operator training, and CMO gives you the tools and resources to protect all of your company assets in the event of an OSHA investigation or audit. And that includes your most important company asset – your employees! Give them the training they deserve – and the law requires – with CMO’s scissor lift and aerial lift training today!

Sign Up With CMO – We’ll Teach Your Company Scissor Lift Safety Rules, OSHA Scissor Lift Safety & More

Scissor lift safety training can be valuable to businesses and employees alike. With the right training program, both parties can reap the benefits of safe, productive work environments. Plus, businesses and employees can leverage scissor lift safety training to learn ways to improve their worksites now and in the future. offers a scissor lift safety training program unlike any other. Our program is accessible online and lets workers earn their OSHA scissor lift certification in as little as one hour. To find out more about our program, please contact us online or call us today at (602) 277-0615.