Category Archives: Aerial Lift Certification

OSHA Weather Guidelines All Lift Operators Should Know About

OSHA weather guidelinesThe weather forecast can have a serious impact on the average job site. Working on aerial lifts, boom lifts, and scissor lifts all come with their own unique challenges under the best of conditions. Add in high winds, heavy rain, or cold temperatures, and you’ll be facing an entirely new set of challenges. For these reasons, OSHA weather guidelines were created to help workers understand how to keep safe during tough conditions. Being prepared for bad weather can help foster a safer work environment and prevent accidents and injuries.

Why OSHA Weather Guidelines Matter

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration’s mission is to create safer work environments for Americans. While we typically think about OSHA is regards to their frequent inspections and certification requirements, they also work to educate and inform businesses about potential risks. OSHA severe weather guidelines can make all the difference in keeping workers safe on the job. 

For instance, aerial lifts can be risky in high winds or weather that impairs workers’ vision. Once in the air, aerial and scissor lifts can become unstable and tip over. That’s why OSHA has created limits to the type of weather aerial lifts can work in. The #1 goal is always to keep workers away from harm.

Severe weather can make it unsafe for workers to work or travel. At those times, some employers grant workers paid “climate leave”. This is a good practice for outdoor workers who deal with heavy equipment and fall hazards. According to OSHA weather guidelines, workers can’t be forced to man their jobs in unsafe weather. To do so goes against OSHA cold weather regulations. It also puts workers’ lives at risk.

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OSHA Rules for Inclement Weather

There are a number of OSHA weather guidelines to keep in mind while working. Preparing for severe weather begins with weather awareness. Check both short and long-range forecasts for your region so you can take preventative measures ahead of time. With the forecast in mind, you can make the following adjustments in accordance with OSHA regulations:

OSHA Cold Weather Guidelines

Cold weather puts aerial lift operators at risk of hypothermia, frostbite, and other health problems. OSHA cold weather guidelines include:

  • Encourage workers to wear hats, gloves, and other warm clothing and accessories
  • • Schedule workers to complete tasks outdoors during the warmest part of the day
  • • Let employees work in pairs to limit each worker’s time outdoors
  • • Schedule maintenance and repair jobs for warm months
  • • Schedule jobs for warm parts of the day
  • • Limit exposure to extremely cold temperatures
  • • Provide warm areas where workers can take breaks throughout the day
  • Keep employees up to date about cold weather dangers as well. In doing so, workers will be well-equipped to watch for cold weather dangers and protect themselves and others against them

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OSHA Hot Weather Guidelines

OSHA encourages businesses to use the “heat index” to protect outdoor workers in hot weather. The index accounts for humidity and temperature and how they affect the safety of outdoor workers. By studying this index, an employer can take appropriate measures to safeguard its outdoor workers against heat-related illnesses. OSHA weather guidelines for hot days include:

  • Avoid using AWP and aerial lifts when temperatures reach the 90s or above
  • Keep a water supply close to the work site on hot days
  • Workers should consistently drink cool water throughout the day even if they’re not thirsty
  • Ease workers into the hot environment, allowing them to build a tolerance to the heat over the course of a week
  • Breaks in shaded areas are necessary for proper rest and recovery throughout the day
  • Hats and other hot weather attire are recommended to keep workers’ internal body temperatures at a safe place
  • Verbally check in with employees to look for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke

OSHA Rain Regulations

There are no specific guidelines from OSHA regarding rainy inclement weather construction. However, employers are always responsible for maintaining safe, healthy work environments. If a worker believes a rainy work environment is unsafe, they have the right to refuse dangerous work.

When it comes to rain or any other inclement weather conditions, it is always better to err on the side of caution. Harsh weather conditions should not hamper a worker’s ability to safely complete tasks outdoors. Otherwise, if workers are forced to work in poor weather conditions, they could put themselves or others at risk of accidents or injuries.

Tips to Protect Aerial Lift Workers in Severe Weather Conditions

If your area is anticipating severe weather, take action to protect workers from accidents and injuries. OSHA severe weather guidelines are just the beginning. Here are a few practical ways to protect workers from:

Strong winds

Aerial lift workers should use extreme caution when winds get too severe. Or they should stop working until the winds die down. Keep in mind that wind measured at ground level is often less severe than when measured at the height most AWP workers will be at. When in doubt, keep workers on the ground until winds have died down. 

✓ Slippery Surfaces

Snow, sleet, rain, ice – you name it and Mother Nature can create slippery ground in no time. Always ensure your base is stable before going up in a lift. Keep an eye on conditions throughout the day, too. What might have been stable at the start of the work day might no longer be as solid a foundation for AWP workers by noon. 

✓ Hot Temperatures

Don’t operate an aerial lift when it is 90 degrees or hotter. Extreme temps can cause loss of focus on the job. That spells doom when you’re up in an aerial lift! Heat exhaustion is a major concern for lift workers in hot, humid weather. When the temps start to climb, keep a water supply within reach.

✓ Severe Weather Patterns

Storms, hurricanes, and other severe weather systems are major hazards for lift workers. If bad weather is expected, get clearance from your safety supervisor before starting a job. The last thing you need is to be 100 feet up in the air when lightning and thunder strike!

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Help Aerial Lift Operators Work Safely in All Weather

Following OSHA weather guidelines is a great way to keep workers safe, no matter what the forecast has in store. Ongoing training is crucial for aerial lift operators as well, as it keeps workers up to date about weather-related jobsite dangers. That way, aerial lift operators can  avoid weather-related accidents. At the same time, businesses can do their part to protect their aerial lift operators against severe weather conditions.

Businesses are responsible for providing their workers with safe and healthy work environments.  Failure to do so puts employees in danger and can lead to OSHA penalties and fines. If your business employs aerial lift operators, you should provide training that teaches them how to safely perform tasks in various weather conditions. offers an aerial lift training program that teaches workers about all aspects of lift safety. Upon completion, workers can earn aerial lift safety training certification that verifies they know how to safely use a lift in myriad weather conditions. For more information about our program, please contact us online or call us today at (602) 277-0615.

A Comprehensive Guide to Warehouse Safety

Staying in compliance with OSHA regulations means avoiding expensive penalties and fines. Compliance also helps foster a safe work environment. When it comes to warehouse safety, following industry best practices can keep employees safe and productive. Fail to live up to such guidelines and your warehouse can quickly become a dangerous place to work. If you’re hoping to up the safety standards in your warehouse, allow CertifyMeOnline to be your guide.

Why Warehouse Safety Matters

osha guidelines for warehousesThere are more than 20,000 warehouses in the United States employing more than eight million workers, and these figures continue to increase. The rate of fatal injuries due to accidents in the warehouse industry is higher than the national average for all industries as well. These statistics speak volumes about why warehouse safety matters.

OSHA is responsible for the implementation of warehouse health and safety guidelines in the USA. This agency has the power to levy fines as high as $30,000 to employers for willful or repeated violations of OSHA guidelines for warehouses.

When it comes to being compliant and preventing accidents in your warehouse, you need to take certain precautions and follow our tips for OSHA warehouse safety. OSHA’s general warehouse rules and regulations are a big part of this learning and training process. Since OSHA warehouse regulations constantly change – updated rules and regulations are common with OSHA – you need a training program that’ll keep you on top of OSHA warehouse regulations and safety guidelines. Remember, CMO’s training and certification courses automatically include any updates to OSHA guidelines for warehouses. Our classes are created by people with decades of experience dealing with OSHA warehouse safety, guidelines & regulations and much more!

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Warehouse Safety Hazards

Warehouse safety relies on workers being aware of their surroundings and being prepared to respond to hazards that arise. OSHA warehouse rules and regulations address the varying dangers that can affect the safety of workers. Here are a few of the most common hazards faced by warehouse employees:

✓ Slips, Trips, and Falls

Forklifts, slips and falls, and falling objects are among the most prominent hazards in warehouses. Each is associated with thousands of injuries and fatalities every year but may be prevented. Slips and falls are high-occurring hazards in warehouses that cause major injuries. Unsafe areas in a warehouse can contribute to slips and falls, but they often result from workers not having the proper training.

✓ Falling Objects

A falling object from aerial lifts and shelves in warehouses is another prominent warehouse hazard. Falling objects can seriously injure or kill workers when they aren’t properly cared for on a forklift or haven’t been properly handled and stacked.

✓ Repetitive Motion Injuries

 Repetitive motion injuries from lifting, reaching, pushing, and pulling inside of a warehouse are often the result of poor ergonomics. Training can teach workers how to properly handle tasks on the job and avoid strenuous activities.

✓ Inadequate Fire Safety Provisions

Various operational practices along with proper worker safety equipment can help prevent fire-related accidents and injuries.

✓ Improper Product Stacking

Stacking products improperly in a warehouse can affect the efficiency of a warehouse and put workers at risk. Improper product stacking can lead to unstable products that become crushing hazards, too.

✓ Failure to use Protective Clothing and Equipment

Personal protective clothing and equipment protects workers from many types of hazards, including respiratory, impact, and crushing hazards. One of the most commonly cited violations in warehouses is the lack of respiratory protection for workers.

There are many different aspects of OSHA warehouse health and safety guidelines. Some OSHA regulations directly impact warehouse operations. The key is to find a training partner that keeps you ahead of the curve with OSHA warehouse safety guidelines.

OSHA Warehouse Safety Regulations

A look into OSHA warehouse safety regulations can help shed light on the kinds of standards that warehouse teams must live up to. A list of the most common safety violations offers unique insight into the challenges faced by warehouse workers:

Hazard Communication

This standard addresses chemical hazards and the communication of these hazards to workers. By clearly identifying the hazards nearby, signage can help workers avoid injury while staying in compliance with OSHA warehouse regulations.

Electrical Wiring Methods

The standard covers the grounding of electrical equipment, wiring, and insulation. It includes temporary wiring and splicing.

Electrical System Design

This covers the general safety requirements for designing electrical systems. Given how dangerous improperly installed electrical systems can be, this is one OSHA safety rule that should not be overlooked.

Guarding Floor and Wall Openings and Holes

Properly protecting workers from hazards from floor and wall openings and holes is what this standard addresses. When not informed of possible hazards, workers may forget about openings and fall through.


This standard addresses the importance of establishing exits for workers in the case of an emergency. Clearly labeled exit doors can help warehouse employees stay in compliance with OSHA warehouse safety recommendations.

Respiratory Protection

The respiratory protection standard addresses the establishment or maintenance of respiratory protection problems. This is a critical safety aspect in regards to OSHA guidelines for warehouses.


This standard outlines the minimum performance requirements for the control of hazardous energy during servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment.

Portable Fire Extinguishers

The requirements of this section apply to the placement, use, maintenance, and testing of portable fire extinguishers. While these warehouse safety recommendations might seem like common sense, they can be a real life saver to employees.

Emergency Management

OSHA warehouse regulations require all employers to have a crisis plan in place for all emergencies. You never know when disaster may strike. One of the smartest warehouse safety tips is to have an actionable, easy to follow emergency plan ready to go. Have a warehouse safety checklist easily accessible for any situation that endangers employees. This includes everything from fire & electrical hazards to severe weather protocols and more. For more information, check out CMO’s article on this subject.

For more information on each of the areas of OSHA warehouse regulations, the various hazards associated with each, and how to avoid them, read OSHA’s Worker Safety Series Warehousing guide.

Warehouse Safety PPE

Employers are responsible for providing warehouse workers with appropriate PPE based on worksite hazards. Because PPE is so instrumental to warehouse safety, it can’t be overlooked. Protective equipment that may be required at a jobsite include:

warehouse safety tips Eye and Face Protection

Safety glasses and other eye and face protection is crucial for warehouse workers who perform tasks in which foreign objects can get into the eyes or strike the face. Proper eye protection is required for employees who work with concrete or harmful chemicals or are exposed to electrical hazards as well.

– Foot Protection

Shoes or boots with slip- and puncture-resistant soles are critical for many warehouse workers. They can also help these workers minimize the risk of crushed toes due to falling objects or heavy equipment. 

– Hand Protection

Work gloves should be worn based on the task; for instance, insulated gloves and sleeves are necessary for warehouse workers who face electrical dangers. While warehouse health and safety guidelines like this might seem like overkill, proper PPE can truly save lives.

– Head Protection

Hard hats are required for warehouse workers who are exposed to falling objects, bumps to the head caused by fixed objects, or electrical hazards.

– Hearing Protection

Earplugs or earmuffs are vital for warehouse workers who are exposed to loud noises. Warehouse safety rules have to factor in all aspects of worker health, which is why hearing protection isn’t neglected in OSHA’s recommendations. 

– Respiratory Protection

Respirators safeguard warehouse workers against toxic substances, and they are necessary in workspaces where there is insufficient oxygen or dangerous substances are present in the air.

In addition to supplying appropriate PPE, employers must ensure that warehouse workers understand how to use this equipment and wear their protective equipment when they complete everyday tasks. That way, employers can comply with OSHA warehouse rules and regulations, as well as minimize the risk of on-the-job accidents, injuries, and fatalities.

Meeting Warehouse Safety Standards

If you’re eager to stay in compliance with OSHA warehouse regulations, be sure to follow these recommendations:

Make Preventative Maintenance a Priority

Lifts should be inspected daily for any condition that might adversely affect the safety of the vehicle. Vehicles should be clean and free from grease, lint, or excess oil. If at any time a powered industrial truck is found to be in need of repair or in any way unsafe, it should be removed from service immediately.

Ensure Workers are Adequately Trained

All aerial lift and scissor lift operators should be trained, evaluated and certified to ensure they can safely operate the equipment. No one under the age of 18 should be allowed to drive an aerial lift or scissor lift truck. This is one warehouse safety rule that should never be violated, as the outcomes can be deadly.

Mitigate Hazards When Possible

Warehouse floors, surfaces, and aisles must be free of debris, clutter, hoses, electrical cords, spills, and other materials that can cause falls, slips, and trips. Encourage proper ergonomics for all workers, including MEWP & aerial lift operators. Poor ergonomics are a leading cause of injuries on the job, and OSHA’s guidelines for warehouses address different ways to improve ergonomics.

Prioritize a Culture of Safety

Guardrails must be provided for exposed or open loading dock doors and other areas that can cause workers to fall 4 ft. or more. All facilities must have proper lockout/tagout procedures. By taking a proactive approach to OSHA warehouse regulations, employees can help promote a safer work environment for everyone.

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Make Warehouse Safety a Priority with CMO

If you and your team are eager to make warehouse safety a true priority, consider partnering with We can assist with the training and certification your workers need to perform their duties in accordance with OSHA warehouse regulations. Our course catalog is robust, with offerings for experienced and inexperienced operators alike. Our Train the Trainer class, for instance, is great for organizations looking to bring future safety trainings in-house. Fall Protection courses are available in both English and Spanish, allowing learners of all backgrounds to discover safety best practices. Best of all, most of CMO’s courses can be completed in the span of an afternoon. 

Each of our course offerings provides your organization with the OSHA warehouse safety training necessary to keep your workplace accident and injury-free. To learn more or to enroll your employees in our certification training program, please contact us online or call us today at (602) 277-0615. CMO looks forward to getting your company OSHA compliant.

How Scissor Lifts vs. Aerials Lifts Match Up

Ever wondered about the differences between scissor lifts vs. aerial lifts? Both types of forklifts are essential to the modern construction and logistics industries. The key difference between these lifts lies in their functionality. A scissor lift is a type of aerial lift that allows workers to complete tasks at heights. But, the lift moves only up and down. Comparatively, an aerial lift can move in different directions. It also comes in many forms.

Scissor Lift vs. Aerial Lift: What’s the Difference?

Aerial lifts and aerial scissor lifts are more alike than they are different. Even aerial work platform workers often fail to understand what makes each piece of equipment unique. Ultimately, the differences between scissor lifts vs. aerial lifts come down to OSHA definitions. 

OSHA defines an aerial lift as a machine used to lift workers. An aerial lift lets operators complete tasks at heights. In addition, the machine should only be used by an OSHA-approved operator. Otherwise, an unlicensed aerial lift operator risks operational or maintenance errors that can lead to accidents, injuries, and fatalities. Aerial lifts are frequently used for construction, maintenance, by those working on power or phone lines, while fighting fires in tall structures, for window washing, during safety inspections, and for orchard and tree care.

A scissor lift is similar to a standard aerial lift. This type of lift can move workers and equipment vertically. As such, a scissor lift enables operators to safely access work areas that commonly require a ladder, tower, or scaffolding. Professionals rely on scissor lifts to repair signs, clean gutters, provide safe access to high shelves, and for routine maintenance chores

It pays to know the similarities and differences between scissor and aerial lifts. Regardless of the type of lifts used across your business, your workers need OSHA-approved certification training, too. This training verifies that your employees know how to use different types of aerial lifts. It also confirms that your workers can do their part to identify scissor and aerial lift hazards and address them right away. 

What is an Aerial Lift?

OSHA’s aerial lift definition is the same as the one from the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), which considers the following vehicle-mounted rotating and elevating platforms as aerial lifts:

– Vertical towers

– Aerial ladders

– Articulating boom platforms

– Any combination of the above

Aerial lifts, or boom lifts, are classified as vehicle-mounted devices used to elevate personnel. They can lift workers both vertically and horizontally to reach exterior building structures, windows, trees, and power lines. They can be articulated to reach up and over structures, as well as access the top of roller coasters. The difference between an aerial lift and a scissor lift is that scissor lifts can only extend horizontally, and do not have the same reach power. 

Think of aerial lifts as a more versatile elevated work platform. Aerial lifts, unlike aerial scissor lifts or vertical scissor lifts, are typically used outdoors. However, they’re also used in some indoor facilities, such as heavy equipment manufacturing centers. 

What is a Scissor Lift?

Just what is a scissor lift, exactly? They do not fall within any of the above categories of aerial lifts, nor are there any OSHA provisions exclusive to scissor lifts. They do, however, meet the definition of a scaffold. Unfortunately, if you look at the general requirements for scaffolds (§1926.451), you won’t find scissor lifts mentioned. Anywhere on the page. Luckily, OSHA has made some improvements with their Scaffolding eTool. This page on the OSHA website makes it easier to understand what is a scissor lift and where it falls within the standards. It gives industry professionals some helpful background information on what makes a scissor lift.

According to OSHA, scissor lifts are “mobile supported scaffold work platforms used to safely move workers vertically and to different locations in a variety of industries including construction, retail, entertainment, and manufacturing.” Unlike aerial lifts, scissor lifts can only move vertically, directly above the base. It’s the recognizable criss-cross style beams that move the lift platform straight up and down. 

All scissor lifts are considered scaffolding, whether it’s a vertical scissor lift or aerial scissor lift

Additional differences between what is a scissor lift and an aerial lift are the use of fall protection. OSHA requires that operators use body harnesses and lanyards on aerial lifts at all times, but these personal protection tools aren’t requirements for scissor lifts. As long as there are functioning guardrails present, scissor lift operators don’t need to wear harnesses while on the platform. This applies to aerial scissor lifts and vertical scissor lifts

Why Use a Scissor Lift vs. an Aerial Lift?

Both of these unique tools come with their own pros and cons. Scissor lifts are simple to use and easy to move from one location to the next. They’re also easy to operate and can be used in diverse work environments – including the outdoors. Scissor lifts have bigger platforms, allowing more than one person to safely work on the lift at the same time. They’re cheaper than aerial lifts and are easier to store.

Aerial lifts, on the other hand, can reach up and around structures to access even the most difficult of areas. They can work at heights of 180 feet or greater. They allow workers to perform their duties safely, even on rough or uneven terrain. Small platforms mean operators can work in tight areas, and the ability to extend long distances horizontally allows for even more versatility. 

The Importance of Aerial Lift and Scissor Lift Safety

Perhaps the most important difference in scissor lifts vs. aerial lifts is their operation. Each lift has unique safety standards that operators must follow in order to prevent accidents. A little education can go a long way in keeping workers safe on the job.

We at have made it our mission to understand all OSHA standards and regulations completely, and we want to share what we know with your team. Our scissor lift training program covers what is a scissor lift, how to operate the various types of scissor lifts, how to perform inspections, and how to recognize and avoid hazards. 

We cover all the necessary scissor lift topics to be 100% OSHA-compliant, including fall protection, stabilization, and positioning for scissor lifts. To ensure students retain the information they learn, our program is self-paced and can be reviewed at any time. However, it typically takes trainees only about one hour to complete. And once they’ve worked through all the modules and have passed all quizzes and tests, students can print their operator certification card. 

OSHA compliance is paramount. It’s illegal to have anyone operate a scissor lift or aerial lift without proper training. With, we’ll take care of all your training needs. Plus, with refresher training, affordable prices and lifetime support, you’ll enjoy an OSHA compliance partner for life! 

Training for Scissor Lifts vs. Aerial Lifts

Regardless of whether you’re using aerial or scissor lifts on the job, it’s important to pursue the appropriate safety training. Failure to do so could put worker safety at risk and lead to expensive fines for your organization. Protect workers and your business with professional training via Our convenient online training makes it fast and easy to get in compliance with OSHA regulations – and it costs less than you might expect. Have questions about our offerings? Click here to contact us online or give us a call at (602) 277-0615

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!

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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!

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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!

Is Your Company Due for an OSHA Inspection?

osha inspection checklistBusiness is going well. Your aerial lift workers are up to speed with their safety training. You can’t recall the last time you had an accident. Then, out of the blue, OSHA says they want to inspect your work site.

A visit from OSHA is a real cause for concern. Even a single violation can result in a costly fine up to tens of thousand of dollars. If you have a track record of violations, or one that causes a serious injury or death, it gets worse. For example, OSHA fined the supermarket chain Wegmans $188,000 for repeated safety violations.

The best way to avoid accidents and other situations that would trigger an OSHA inspection is to have top-notch training and certification. has a full selection of training courses and complete certification programs for your entire aerial work platform (AWP) and mobile elevating work platform (MEWP) fleet. Register your company today and enjoy the numerous benefit that come with 100% OSHA certification, including: 

  • • Total preparedness before and during an OSHA inspection
  • • Knowing what an OSHA inspection consists of
  • • The latest safety standards and guidelines, explained in an easy to learn format
  • • Lifetime support
  • • Affordable prices
  • • And much more

CMO prepares your company for all interactions with OSHA, including what to do during an OSHA inspection. CMO knows the ins and outs of OSHA, including a total understanding of their day-to-day functions.  If you know how to prepare for an OSHA inspection, you can take steps to protect your business. Part of this has to do with making sure your aerial lift operators are trained and certified.

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What Triggers an OSHA Inspection?

OSHA safety is all about fair and effective enforcement of health and safety regulations in the workplace. Even though the agency constantly tweaks and changes guidelines related to equipment use, safety and workplace management, their constant goal is to ensure EVERY U.S. business provides a safe workplace for their employees. Obviously, since scissor lifts, aerial lifts, AWPs and MEWPs pose unique safety challenges, any enterprise with this type of equipment may be scrutinized more than other companies.

So what exactly will trigger an OSHA inspection?

Imminent danger

When does OSHA inspect? One major reason is imminent danger. This involves a workplace report that describes any condition that can cause serious injuries or fatalities. These are common in the construction industry, but also happen in industrial settings and similar workplaces. When imminent danger is present, you may find out what you’re doing wrong during an OSHA inspection…not an ideal place for any business owner or supervisor!

Direct complaints

One of the most common reasons for OSHA inspections is direct complaints. Since any employee can report to OSHA in complete anonymity – one of OSHA’s main initiatives is to protect workers’ rights – don’t be surprised if your company is cited for a violation that could trigger a visit from OSHA. Keep in mind, if there is a complaint filed against your company, you are entitled to a written copy of the report. You can always decline the inspection if you don’t think OSHA has probable cause. 

Severe injuries & fatalities

At the top of any OSHA inspection checklist is severe injuries & fatalities from aerial lift accidents. Any serious injury (amputation, loss of eye or hospitalization) or death on the job requires the employer reaching out to OSHA – not the other way around. Think of this type of OSHA inspection trigger as a “reverse notification,” as it is the employer’s responsibility to get the ball rolling and set up 

Programmed inspections

Sometimes, the answer to the question “when does OSHA inspect” is more straightforward than you’d think. Regularly scheduled (“programmed”) inspections occur in heavily regulated industries like manufacturing, construction, shipping, and other workplaces that require the use of heavy machinery such as AWPs and MEWPs. In this instance, at least you can create your own OSHA inspection checklist to ensure you have all your bases covered.

In most cases, OSHA conducts inspections without advance notice. Employers have the right to require compliance officers to obtain an inspection warrant before entering the worksite. If OSHA contacts you about an inspection, you can say no. OSHA must then obtain a warrant to conduct the inspection.

OSHA will provide advance notice of an inspection for only a few reasons. These include:

– Urgent safety matters

– Accidents that involve fatalities

– Scheduling conflicts with managers

– When “special preparations” are needed

What an OSHA Inspection Consists Of

All OSHA inspections consist of a 3-tiered process. This occurs whether or not the inspection is scheduled in advance.

1. Initial meeting or conference call.

When the OSHA compliance officer shows up at your door, he or she will:

– Explain the purpose of the inspection

– Ask to meet with management and workers

– Check the log of work-related injuries and illnesses

– Conduct a walkaround of the work site

– This process can take anywhere from 30 minutes to a few hours.

2. The walkaround.

osha inspectionThe OSHA safety inspector examines all manner of your operations. This can include those you may not consider safety violations, including any conditions related to aerial lift safety violations. If there was an accident or other type of incident, the inspector will want to talk to affected workers. This may be in the form of private interviews with the safety manager, but can also include any employees. The inspector may also test for dust, fumes, or other hazard risks. You have the right to ask about these tests and to receive a summary of the samplings.

The walkaround phase of the OSHA safety inspection could also deal with employee training records. OSHA may ask to see worker human resource files, including training credentials. If you have untrained aerial lift operators, OSHA may levy a costly fine.

During the walkaround, OSHA can inspect the following areas related to aerial or scissor lifts:

– Mechanical operation

– Maintenance plans for scissor lifts, AWP, MEWPs, cherry pickers and more.

– Employee training records

Anything that is out of compliance in these areas can be deemed a violation.

3. Closing meeting.

Here, the OSHA inspector will discuss any violations and how to correct them. This may include deadlines for the fixes and any fines OSHA levies. It may also include future actions on the part of OSHA. During the inspection, it’s a good idea to keep detailed notes of what the inspector does and says.

How to Prepare for an OSHA Inspection

If you’re lucky enough to have OSHA announce an inspection, you will have time to prepare. If the inspection is a surprise, there are still things you can do to avoid costly mistakes.

Know your rights.

When an OSHA safety officer shows up at your door unannounced, you have the right to ask two things. One is to see the officer’s credentials. The other is the reason for the inspection.

OSHA can’t inspect your work site without good reason. They must have probable cause. This can result from a worker complaint or accident. It can also result from an OSHA program where they inspect companies that meet certain criteria.

OSHA must explain the reason for the inspection. If someone filed a complaint, you are entitled to a written copy of it. If the inspection is part of an OSHA program, the officer must provide information about it. If you think OSHA does not have probable cause, you can decline the inspection.

Plan your response.

When an OSHA safety officer shows up unannounced, the management team needs to make three big decisions:

– Should we allow the inspection

– If so, what should be the scope of the inspection

– Who should accompany the OSHA rep on the walkaround team

You can ask OSHA for a reasonable amount of time to plan your response. Once your team reaches a decision, let the inspector know whether or not you will allow the inspection. If not, OSHA will need to obtain a search warrant to proceed.

Determine the scope of the investigation. 

osha inspection consists of

Don’t make the mistake of letting the OSHA safety inspector roam your work site at will. You have the right to decide where the inspector can go and what he or she can observe. Access needs to be broad enough for the officer to evaluate the area of probable cause. But you can restrict access to certain areas. To determine probable cause, OSHA needs access to:

– The hazards stated in an employee complaint

 The accident site area

– Hazards that fall within the OSHA program criteria

Allowing a broader inspection could put you at risk for citations that aren’t part of the probable cause.

This may come as a surprise, but some employers ask OSHA to perform an inspection. This often occurs when a worker expresses a safety concern, and the company contacts OSHA as a means of resolving it. It’s also a good way to ensure they stay in compliance.

OSHA may not state the exact day and time of the visit. But for serious concerns, it’s usually within 30 days of contacting them. You may want to inform co-workers and union members of the filed complaint.  That way, they can gather their comments and questions for the inspector.

Training: The Best Preparation of All

There are more ways you can prepare for surprise OSHA inspections. These include:

– Have clear, written safety policies and procedures

– Maintain a clean, organized work site

– Remove hazards when possible

– Mark hazards that can’t be removed with warning signs

– Keep aerial lifts and other equipment well maintained

– Make sure all aerial lift operators are trained and certified

As you can see, these aren’t preparation tasks. They are things you should be doing every day. So if you get hit with a surprise inspection, your risk of being out of compliance will be low.

In other words, you can get the necessary training to safely operate your equipment from CMO. As you can see, these aren’t preparation tasks. They are things you should be doing every day. So if you get hit with a surprise inspection, your risk of being out of compliance will be low.

Now that you know what triggers an OSHA inspection, what inspections involve, what happens during inspections, and your unique rights as an employer, it’s clear that a comprehensive safety program is a requirement in today’s heavily regulated environment. CMO has all the training and certification you need to ensure positive, productive, professional communications with OSHA in the event of an audit or inspection.

aerial lift certification

Be Prepared Before and During an OSHA Inspection – Get Trained with CMO Today!

Training your aerial lift operators to work safely and avoid accidents is crucial. You also need documentation to prove your compliance. With OSHA-compliant training from, you’ll have everything you need. Our OSHA-inspection compliant training provides everything you need to ensure compliance, awareness and enhance overall safety, from information & training to create your own company OSHA inspection checklist to complete training and certification for your entire aerial lift fleet.

Keep your workers and your business safe and compliant. Give our aerial lift experts a call today at (602) 277-0615, or check out the contact page. Be prepared TODAY for an OSHA inspectionregister your company with CMO! Thanks for considering CMO as your total safety and training solution for MEWPs, AWPs, scissor lifts and other elevated work platforms. Make sure your OSHA inspections are successful and sign up with CMO now! We look forward to hearing from you soon.