Monthly Archives: June 2022

A Comprehensive Guide to Boom Lifts

Boom trucks are commonly seen around construction sites and tall structures to lift workers up in the air for areas beyond the reach of a ladder. Any operator driving a boom lift must be certified to do so to maintain compliance with OSHA. So, what is a boom lift, exactly? Let’s dive a little deeper.

Understanding What is a Boom Lift

What is a Boom LiftBoom lifts are vehicles that carry workers, their tools, and supplies to their worksite off the ground. There are two main types of boom lifts. Telescopic boom lifts, also known as a straight boom lift or stick boom, have single arms that reach a long distance. They work best in an open area and are stable enough for various terrain.

The second type of boom lift is the articulating boom lift, which is also called a knuckle lift. This lift has segmented arms, which works in tight areas and fits around obstacles. This design allows them to work on more complicated structures and in crowded areas, such as downtown of a busy city.

Boom lifts have the option of diesel, gas, electric and even hybrid power for their source. They may be two- or four-wheel drive to handle all kinds of terrain. They can also come with tires or treads to fit various conditions. You can also choose from various sizes, starting from 30-footers that are low enough and thin enough to fit through a doorway. For the big jobs, you can use a 180-foot boom lift, which has a reach of 19 stories. There is a wide range of boom lift uses, and just as many unique makes and models from which to choose.

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What Types of Boom Lifts Are Available?

With “what is a boom lift” answered, you may be wondering about the types of boom lifts available for use on construction sites and in warehouses. The three main kinds include:

1. Articulating Boom Lifts

Also called a “knuckle” boom, this type of lift uses a bucket on a swiveling turntable at the end of an articulating arm. The unique design provides vertical and horizontal flexibility.

An articulating boom has a max vertical reach of 125 ft. and can extend horizontally to 75% of its height. The boom can also be extended in sections, allowing workers to maneuver up and over obstacles.Articulating booms can be used for indoor and outdoor jobs. Indoor models are electrically powered and tend to be smaller than their outdoor counterparts. Outdoor knuckle booms are usually diesel-powered or can be towed to a worksite. Whether used indoor or out, the boom lift uses are endless.

2. Telescopic Boom Lifts

One of the most useful types of boom lifts are the telescopic variety. Telescopic boom lifts provide more vertical height than other boom lifts. Like knuckle lifts, telescopic boom lifts have a bucket situated on the end of a telescopic arm, but the arm can only extend in a straight line. During use, the arm goes straight out horizontally, then goes up and down as needed. Because the arm can only move in one direction, telescopic booms are sometimes called “stick” booms.

With platform heights that range from 40 ft. to 80 ft, telescopic booms are ideal for work at tall buildings and other elevated work environments. However, the biggest telescopic boom lifts can reach up to 185 ft. in vertical height, which makes them ideal for a wide range of industrial projects.

To support working safely at heights, telescoping booms tend to have wider bases than articulating lifts. Rough-terrain telescoping booms that use stabilization require a work surface of 10 ft. or more. Yet, because they have a single boom, telescoping booms are easier to operate than articulating booms.

3. Atrium Lifts

Atrium lifts are a special type of boom lift, since they don’t have wheels. Instead, atrium lifts use tracks (like those on excavators) for mobility. This ensures atrium lifts are safe to use on different terrains.

In terms of size and weight, atrium lifts are narrower and lighter than other boom lifts. This lets atrium lifts reach maximum heights up to 60 ft. In addition, atrium lifts can handle heavy loads and use folding outriggers to keep them anchored in place.

Also, the low ground pressure of atrium lifts allows them to be used indoors and outdoors. The chassis disperses an atrium lift’s weight over a wide area, so it can safely be used on lawns, pavement, marble, and other surfaces. Atrium lifts can be deployed in tight areas and where steep surface inclines make it unsafe to use self-propelled or scissor booms as well.

Selecting the Right Boom Lift

As you evaluate the various types of boom lifts and try to determine which is right for your needs, it’s important to ask as many questions as possible. Is the jobsite indoors or outside? Is the terrain smooth or uneven? What is access to the jobsite like? Will employees work head-on, underneath, or overhead? Consider mobility, too – will horizontal or vertical mobility be necessary, or will operators simply move straight up and down?

Work requirements should also play a factor in determining which type of boom lift is right for the job. Consider how many workers will need to be on the platform and the types of tools they’ll need to complete their duties. This plays into weight considerations, too. Factor in how much weight the lift will need to carry and the limitations of the job surface. Only once you’ve addressed each of these factors can you truly begin to select the right lift for the job.

How to Drive a Boom Lift

Before starting to operate the boom lift, inspect the condition and ensure all components are operational. This includes checking the fuel level, condition of the tires, and hoses. To start the lift, turn the remote key switch to Platform Control on the ground control panel. This is the panel to control the operation of the lift. Pull the red Kill Switch button.

Latch the gate after getting into a work basket. Fasten the lanyard to the D ring, which you’ll find on the platform. Pull the red kill switch, which allows the engine to start and power up the console. Push the start switch for the engine, which usually has a symbol of an engine. Place your foot in the control engage lever, which has a boot-like enclosure. The engine should rev up once you press down.

Begin raising the boom by toggling the joystick, starting out slowly. Select a slow speed if the lift has a speed control, which may be identified by a turtle and rabbit. Toggle the joystick in the direction where you want the boom to move. Then, toggle the right joystick to turn the wheels. The faster you move the joysticks, the faster the machine will move. If you want to operate a boom lift, you will need proper training and certification. This is a dangerous machine, which can cause harm to others and yourself while also putting your worksite in danger of fines from OSHA.

Boom Lift Uses and Advantages

boom lift in actionUnderstanding what is a boom lift is truly just the beginning. To really grasp why these machines are so powerful, it’s important to see their advantages. Extended lift heights are one of the most important aspects of this technology. By elevating work platforms, boom lifts allow workers to reach areas that might once have remained just out of reach. 

Articulating boom lifts come with their own unique advantages, increased flexibility and maneuverability chief among them. The operator platform and basket can be moved precisely through confined spaces. These tight spaces are part of why it’s so important to learn how to operate a boom lift before using them!

Boom lifts run off a range of different fuel types, too. This diversification allows operators to pick and choose which is best for the job at hand. Diesel lifts are ideal for outdoor projects, while battery electric units are fume free and safe to use indoors. Hybrid solutions offer additional flexibility, as you can switch back and forth between electric and diesel, depending on whether you’re working indoors or out. 

Boom Lifts in Action

Boom lift uses are truly endless. Reporters in Boston were curious about the number of hits the Green Monster wall had taken in its years at Fenway Park. To count the dimples on the face of the wall, the Boston Globe rented a two-person telescopic boom lift to find out. They counted more than 211,000 dents, dings, and dimples. It’s a unique way to use boom lift technology, but hardly the first time such equipment has come in handy at Fenway.

Whether you work for the Boston Globe, Fenway Park, or another organization that uses boom lifts on the job, you’ll need to be properly trained and certified before climbing aboard. OSHA requires every operator to be certified in order to use boom lifts legally. Operators need training to learn how to inspect the vehicle, check for hazards, and avoid accidents. Fail to comply with OSHA regulations, and your business could face expensive penalties. Even if you manage to avoid OSHA inspections, employing uncertified and untrained operators is a fast track to injuries and accidents. 

Why Boom Lift Certification Matters

If you or a person you are hiring plans to drive a boom lift, they need to learn how to operate a boom lift first. If a company allows an uncertified operator on a boom lift, they are in violation of OSHA rules. Businesses are audited by OSHA all the time and face penalties and fines if their operators aren’t all certified.

A survey was conducted by CertifyMe with 100 participants. Out of those, 53 had an audit of their safety plan. A total of 85 had been fined by OSHA some time before with 57 of them paying out more than $100,000.

You want to avoid those fines for your business or for your employer by getting certified as a boom lift operator. Boom lift certification protects you, others around you, and your employer.

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Learn How to Operate a Boom Lift Now

Regardless of which type of boom lift you choose, be sure to train and certify each operator on the specific model in use. In doing so, you can foster a safe work environment and guard against aerial lift accidents that can lead to injuries and fatalities.

At CertifyMeOnline.net, we offer many safety training courses for all types of aerial lifts. Whether you’re brand new to operating boom lifts or have years of experience under your belt, it’s important to get OSHA certified every three years. Convenient, affordable online courses make it easier than ever to stay in compliance with OSHA regulations. In about one hour, you can learn everything you need to know about how to operate a boom lift and be ready to get to work. 

We even offer a “Train the Trainer” course that’s perfect for educating an entire team of lift operators. If you’re hoping to invest in safety in your organization without shelling out individual training fees for each member of the team, this option is an excellent choice.

To find out more, please contact us online or call us today at (602) 277-0615.

How to Avoid Heat Stress in the Workplace

Hot temperatures can make it tough for aerial lift operators to stay focused. As an employer, you are responsible for educating your aerial lift operators about heat stress in the workplace. By educating your employees about heat stress prevention, you can help them avoid heat-related illnesses that lead to workplace accidents, injuries, and fatalities.

Aerial lift TipsWhat is Heat Stress in the Workplace?

Heat stress in the workplace occurs if the body cannot get rid of excess heat. In this instance, the body’s core temperature and heart rate rises. High humidity and air temperatures are key contributors to heat stress. Also, heat stress can affect those who come into contact with hot objects or perform strenuous physical activities.

Initially, working in the heat can cause operators to lose concentration. Heat stress can and cause operators to become irritable or sick or lose the desire to consume water or other liquids. It can even be fatal if it goes unaddressed for an extended period of time.

It’s important to stay fit when you’re working outdoors or in the heat. Even the most athletic workers can find it hard to maintain their usual rate of productivity when temperatures are high. Aerial lift operators age 65 years and older are more susceptible to heat stress than others. Those who are overweight, have heart disease or high blood pressure, or take medications also face a higher risk of heat stress symptoms.

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Heat Stress Prevention Tips

Heat stress prevention is critical for all businesses that employ aerial lift operators. Since operators may spend long periods of time in hot temperatures, their employers must take steps to protect these workers against heat stress. Otherwise, prolonged exposure to extreme heat can increase the risk of aerial lift accidents.

1. Offer Regular Breaks

Heat stress prevention in the workplace begins with regular breaks. If working in the sun, make sure employees have some shade or access to air conditioning for their breaks. Reducing your body’s core temperature – even for ten minutes or so – can help you stay alert and active for the rest of your shift.

2. Help Your Workers Stay Hydrated

Working in the heat warrants constant water consumption. By sipping on cool water throughout the day, workers are less inclined to become dehydrated. Encourage employees to bring in their own bottles, but make sure to have your own cooler full of water available as backup, too. 

3. Go Beyond Water

While water is an excellent choice for hydration, it can lack the punch that’s necessary for industrial athletes. We lose electrolytes through our sweat, and water doesn’t replace them. That’s why you see so many people turn to sports drinks to help refuel. Gatorade and other drinks with added electrolytes can go a long way when it comes to heat stress prevention.

4. Wear Light-Colored Clothing

Encourage your operators to wear light-colored clothing that helps them stay cool. This heat stress prevention tip works because light-colored surfaces absorb less heat. Moisture-wicking fabrics can also come in handy on hot days.

5. Do the Right PPE

The right clothing can make all the difference when it comes to avoiding heat stress in the workplace. Sunglasses or safety glasses protect eyes from the harsh rays of the sun. Wide-brimmed hats provide additional protection. If hard hats are required, consider investing in PPE that includes sun visors or neck shades.

6. Use Sunblock and Reapply Frequently

Protecting workers from heat stress means staying safe in the sun. If employees are working outdoors, it’s important that they use sunblock of at least SPF 15. Waterproof varieties are especially useful for those who work up a sweat on the job. Keep in mind that sunblock needs to be reapplied every two hours for it to be effective.

7. Keep an Eye Out for Warning Signs of Heat Stress

Be on the lookout for symptoms of heat stress, including cramps, sudden tiredness, rapid heartbeat, and blurred vision. If any workers begin experiencing such symptoms, seek medical treatment. While that may sound like overkill, downplaying the impact of heat stress in the workplace can be incredibly dangerous. 

8. Educate Your Workers About Heat Stress Safety

Provide aerial lift safety training to educate your workers about working in the heat and the dangers associated with it. 

Remain persistent in your efforts to protect your workers against heat stress. That way, you can help your employees guard against heat stress and comply with OSHA regulations.

OSHA Heat Stress Safety Requirements

Up to 70% of outdoor fatalities occur in the first few days after employees work in hot temperatures, according to OSHA. Fortunately, you can establish a heat stress prevention program that aligns with OSHA requirements.

OSHA offers guidance to help businesses comply with heat stress safety regulations. Follow this guidance, and your business will be well-equipped to protect its workers against heat stress.

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Learn More About Heat Stress Prevention in the Workplace

For those who want to learn more about heat stress in the workplace, CertifyMeOnline.net can help. We offer an OSHA-approved certification training program for aerial lift operators that provides insights into heat stress prevention and other safety topics.

We are happy to provide additional details about our training program, how it works, and its benefits. For more information about our program or to enroll your workers in it, please contact us online or call us today at (602) 277-0615.

Industrial Machinery: Info, Purchaser Guide & More

industrial machineryIf you’re in the market for industrial equipment, making the right purchasing decisions is critical for long-term business success.

(Not to put pressure on you or anything!)

Let’s say you make the wrong choice with your industrial machinery purchase. Just some of the negative consequences include:

Endless maintenance. If your equipment is always in the shop, it’s not on the production floor, construction site, or another place it’s supposed to be. This lost productivity has a ripple effect that impacts your ability to minimize expenses.

Lost productivityIf you don’t select the “right” industrial machinery, even simple tasks can be difficult. For example, if your landscape company requires occasional telescopic aerial lift capability, but your purchase doesn’t include this feature, it’s tough to complete everyday work – let alone those specialized, high paying projects. 

Higher costs, less profit. Just like automobile owners try to avoid those dreaded “lemon” purchases, purchasing departments likewise need to stay away from “clunkers.” Whether it’s industrial machinery or aerial lifts, the “wrong” piece of equipment creates negative equity.

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Those are just three reasons why it’s so important to have a system in place when shopping for industrial equipment. In many ways, shopping for your company’s equipment isn’t much different than everyday household shopping. You need a budget. You should have a general idea of what you’re looking for, as far as features and benefits.

Many of our customers are involved with industrial equipment purchases on a regular basis (scissor lifts, aerial lifts and similar machinery). Since CertifyMeOnline.net is involved with OSHA compliant training for industrial machinery and equipment, we’re well-versed on what industrial equipment is, how to purchase this equipment, and other valuable information. We figured it would be a good idea to publish a shopping guide for machinery.

What is Industrial Machinery?

So what is industrial equipment? In a nutshell, industrial machinery and equipment refers to any machine or vehicle used for explicitly industrial and commercial work. Examples include production, assembly, maintenance, cleaning, landscaping and other tasks that require equipment not typically found in a residential setting. 

Think of it like this: if you wouldn’t normally use it around your own house, it’s probably industrial machinery and equipment.

What are Examples of Industrial Equipment?

Aerial lifts, mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs), aerial work platforms (AWPs), scissor lifts, and similar industrial machinery are prime examples of industrial equipment. Other common equipment also includes forklifts, warehouse accessories, industrial personal protective equipment (PPE), and more.

CMO provides comprehensive, 100% OSHA compliant training for a specific type of industrial equipment – aerial lifts, MEWPs, scissor lifts and more. Sign up today if your company needs to get your operators trained and compliant!

Industrial Equipment Shopping 101: What You Need to Know

The purchasing process is much easier when divided into three specific categories:

-Pre-purchase research

-Purchase

-Post-purchase activities

Too often, only that second bullet point, the actual purchase, gets the required attention from purchasing agents, CEOs and others involved with purchasing industrial equipment.

Pre-purchase research

For pre-purchase research, we recommend:

Go the extra mile with your research.  Read reviews. Test drive or simulate any equipment you can. Talk to your friends in the industry for valuable perspective on reliability, maintenance requirements, and more. Expand your network in your industry; for companies that use aerial lifts, connect with other “sub-industries” for info on a particular brand or model. For example, even if you’re involved with landscaping, it doesn’t hurt to see what construction or maintenance companies are using for their aerial lifts or scissor lifts.

Attend trade shows. If you have enough time before your purchase, go to an industrial equipment trade show. Trade shows are the perfect opportunity to ask questions directly to the manufacturer, see the equipment firsthand, and ultimately make a better decision! Trade shows are a great way to learn more about relevant brands and models that align with your industry. For example, if your line of work requires scissor lifts, a trade show will have timely, actionable intelligence on the top brands to consider for your industrial machinery and equipment purchase.

Check the maintenance records. For used equipment, this is a must. Ideally, you’d like to have a comprehensive record of all major repair work, regular fluid changes, and more.

Consider purchasing used equipment. You could save hundreds or thousands of dollars with used equipment. A few things to consider with used equipment: warranty coverage might not be comprehensive and obvious signs of wear & tear should be carefully examined. Oh, and make sure the title is clear for ownership transfer.

Purchase

Once your research is complete and you’ve decided to move forward with your purchase, it’s time to re-focus on the actual transaction. Purchasing day can be quite hectic, so make sure you:

Double-check the purchasing terms. Dot your I’s and cross your T’s. Make sure financing numbers are accurate before you sign the dotted line!

Test the equipment. If possible, test run your new equipment. For equipment like aerial lifts, work all the controls to ensure smooth movement, no funny noises, etc.

Confirm shipment and deliveryNothing is more frustrating than expecting industrial equipment on a certain day, and it not arriving. Make sure the dealer/owner has the delivery process in place and ready to go!

Post-purchase activities

Congratulations! Your new equipment is now in place and performing as it should, thanks to your diligent pre-purchase and purchase day preparation. So what happens afterward? A few post-purchase items to take care of:

Keep your warranty paperwork handy. If anything goes wrong with your new equipment, hopefully, it’s covered by your warranty. Figuring out warranty terms should’ve already been handled during your pre-purchase process.

Operate your equipment to manufacturer’s recommended specs. This not only ensures a longer operating window, but you’ll also enjoy higher resale value down the road, should you decide to sell or trade in your equipment!

Report any issues to the manufacturer – immediately. For example, if your aerial lift isn’t extending fully, or your scissor lift is making a funny noise, make sure you notify the dealer or manufacturer right away. Failure to do so may void your warranty altogether. This tip holds true for all industrial machinery purchases.

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Need Training on Industrial Machinery? We Can Help!

If your shopping list also includes aerial lift and scissor lift training, look no further than CMO.

Check out our courses and choose the best packages for your company. With a great selection of aerial lift and scissor lift training classes, along with fall protection instruction, CMO has everything you need to promote safety – all while gaining productivity!

Register today to get started with your aerial lift and scissor lift safety program! We’ll help your entire AWP fleet achieve OSHA compliance, which means a safer workplace for everyone involved! 

Much like purchasing industrial machinery and equipment, getting your scissor lift and aerial lift certification is all about quality, value and customer satisfaction. And that’s exactly what CMO delivers for your OSHA compliance requirements!

 For any questions about our training programs, or to finalize your online training shopping list, give our aerial lift training experts a call at (602) 277-0615. Thanks for visiting CertifyMeOnline.net, the leader in OSHA complaint aerial lift and scissor lift certification!

Lean Construction Principles, Benefits & More

The principle behind lean construction is quite simple – the goal is to minimize waste of resources and money while maximizing the value for the client and maintaining industry compliance. While this may make perfect sense in theory, it can be rather difficult to enact in the real world with new approaches than what has been the traditional method.

What is Lean Construction?

preparing for lean constructionWhile it may be easy to recognize the benefits of lean construction, it isn’t always easy to understand the concept. It’s not uncommon for companies to ask themselves “What is lean construction for them?”

The focus is on reducing waste in resources, time, and other aspects of a project without taking away from the value for the customer. For example, a company may need to find unique ways to maximize the productivity of the workers while being more efficient in getting tasks done. Even the materials used may be more innovative and improve efficiency.

Here’s another way to think about lean construction: it’s the process of doing the most with the least amount of wasted time and resources. In other words, lean construction principles start from a foundation of efficiency. 

Companies are always looking to do things better. To accomplish more while worrying less. And that starts with understanding how to approach your construction work from a standpoint of minimal waste with optimal results.

That is the core culture of CertifyMeOnline.net – giving our customers the most affordable, efficient, effective OSHA compliant training available for aerial lifts & scissor lifts. After all, how else could we train and certify hundreds of companies all over the United States with the most affordable rates and best customer service?

Need help with OSHA compliance and training? Create an account with CMO today, and discover a less-stressful, “lean” method of getting your employees up to speed with the latest OSHA safety regulations!

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Benefits of Lean Construction

To understand the answer to “what is lean construction?” you can look at the benefits. When implemented successfully, lean construction will result in a business practice that is sustainable with employees being better able to solve problems. The amount of waste is decreased, which results in reduced loss. This method can also improve the ability to innovate and adapt to challenges. Employee morale is also improved in a company that achieves success and has found a better way to accomplish goals.

And remember, the benefits of lean construction extend well beyond actual workplace policies, procedures and best work practices. Once lean construction methods are fully established, your company is better suited for everything else related to efficient construction work, including safety programs and much more.

Lean Construction Principles

 Once you have defined “what is lean construction,” the next step is to define those principles. Four basic components make up lean construction principles, starting with planning. You must identify areas in the company where processes may be improved. The next step is to enact changes to make those improvements.

After implementing strategies for improvement, you should take the time to study the impact and make adjustments as needed. 

So for a quick recap, the four main lean construction principles are:

Pre-planning / planning

 Identify processes and actions that need improvement

 Take concrete action to address the issues and implement necessary steps

 Adjust, if required, on the steps taken to improve the construction process

While these are the four basic steps, they are cyclical in nature, meaning they are done over and over. At the same time, you must identify client values to ensure you are providing what matters most to them while eliminating waste from your processes. As you streamline workflow, you will naturally see the results of lean construction.

Identifying waste is one of the most important principles in lean construction. Several types of waste exist, which can be reduced and possibly eliminated.

– Time waste – caused by overproduction, poor scheduling, or waste of production

– Production waste – tasks are done in excess or completed ahead of schedule

– Defects – tasks aren’t completed correctly or errors in workmanship occur

– Talent waste – a worker’s skills are underutilized

– Inventory waste – too much inventory is maintained, which is not used up in a timely manner

– Process waste – unnecessary steps are included in the project, which don’t add value

Quick Lean Construction FAQs

Is lean construction popular?

When first introduced, many companies were hesitant to adopt lean construction principles. But since the benefits of lean construction are more evident every day – a recent study found that lean construction projects were three times as likely to finish on time than regular projects – its popularity is increasing!

Are there any disadvantages of lean construction?

The only (slight) setback would be the initial implementation of lean construction principles. There is some upfront training involved, and adapting to new techniques, but these small drawbacks are dwarfed by the immense benefits of lean construction.

How did lean construction get started?

The IGLC (International Group for Lean Construction) was founded in 1993. Ever since then, more and more companies have become aware of this groundbreaking concept. 

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Need Safety Upgrades with Lean Construction? We Can Help!

Much like improving lean construction principles, CertifyMeOnline.net is all about improving your company’s safety platform. And no other company gives you the affordable prices, complete customer service, free renewal training and other benefits that we offer.

CertifyMeOnline.net provides a streamlined process for training and certifying employees on aerial and scissor lifts for improved safety. Instead of spending extra time organizing training, the workers can get it done online. Contact us today to find out more about our courses. For any questions about how we can help, give us a call at (602) 277-0615. Thanks for considering CMO for your locked-in, “lean” safety program!