Reviewing the New Standards for (MEWPs)
ANSI – The New American National Standards Institute updated standards earlier this year for Mobile Elevated Work Platforms (MEWPs) like scissor lifts and boom lifts. The changes at this time are still considered voluntary but require that owners supervisors be trained. Generally ANSI standards are adopted by OSHA so it is likely a matter of time before these standards are mandatory.
The new standard took affect June 1, 2020 but it is important to know that OSHA regulations have not yet changed, though:
“Regarding them being voluntary, how can you support being compliant with OSHA’s employer requirement to provide a workplace free from harm if you are not following industry best practices?” Tony Groat, North American regional manager for the International Powered Access Federation,… “I guarantee every plaintiff’s attorney will be ready to refer to the standards!”*
MEWP manufacturers need to comply with the ANSI standard for liability reasons and users of rented equipment are also directly affected by the new standard. Training includes general knowledge and application components.
Operators must demonstrate proficiency in operating the aerial lifts (MEWP). Anyone operating an aerial lift including Supervisors must undergo the same training as the operator, but without the hands-on component.
ANSI defines different roles related to MEWP operations. The “owner” is the person or business entity that owns or rents the MEWP. The “user” is the person or business entity who has ultimate care and custody of the MEWP. In many cases the owner and the user will be the same, such as a small business owner who rents a scissor lift for employees. The user can also be someone the owner has designated to oversee the MEWP, such as a general manager or a foreman. An “operator” is a person qualified to operate MEWP controls.
One new role in ANSI A92-2018 is the “occupant,” which is any person on the work platform who is not an “operator.” Finally, a “supervisor” is any person assigned to monitor the operator’s performance during work with the MEWP. In many cases the user will also be a supervisor, but in larger operations the user may designate others as supervisors.**
The new requirements under ANSI A92-2018 include:
Occupant: MEWP occupants need a basic site orientation including onsite hazards and hazardous locations, various warning signs and any other rules that must be observed. They do not need formal training or certification however before working on a MEWP. There needs to be a pre-job safety briefing to explain the risks and controls involved, and the task to be performed. At least one occupant of a MEWP must be trained lower the platform in the case of an emergency.
Operator: Along with existing requirements, operators must have knowledge of controls and procedures for any new MEWP on their site including inspection procedures. They must also assure that an operator is on the ground level to lower the MEWP in case of emergency.
Supervisors: Supervisors are considered anyone who directly supervises any number of operators. Supervisors must be trained in identifying hazards and risks as well as be able to follow instructions from the MEWP’s manual.
Remember that Elite provides MEWPS training to the most current standards. Don’t risk the danger or liability that could come from having untrained workers. Call to enquire about classes and certifications.