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AWP Training 3: Trainer Attributes, Dealer Roles and Record Retention

Posted by Joshua Fleishman on Mon, Oct 14, 2013 @ 11:00 AM

In today's article, we will finish up our topic of AWPs, or aerial work platforms, with information on the roles of the trainer and of the dealer. Previously, we discussed 'Tips, Training, and Current Issues' and 'Compliance, Training and Familiarization'

Role of the Trainer

As we stated in a previous article, the ANSI A92 Standards have already defined a qualified person. This relates to both operators and trainers:

Qualified person. One who, by possession of a recognized degree, certificate, or professional standing, or by extensive knowledge, training, and experience, has successfully demonstrated his/her ability to solve or resolve problems related to the subject matter, the work, or the project.”


Per the “Statement of Best Practices of General Training and Familiarization for Aerial Work Platform Equipment,” here is a suggested list of attributes a trainer will need in order to successfully educate operators:


    • Must know the rules, regulations and standards.AWP training, aerial lift training, osha training, safety training
    • Needs to have knowledge of the equipment, the operator safety manual, warning decals and placards.
    • Possess awareness of potential hazards and the means to protect against identified hazards.
    • Be able to identify and avoid potential workplace hazards.
    • Understands manufacturer’s guidelines for proper/improper use and application of the equipment.
    • Knows the consequences of improper use and application of the equipment.
    • Has a good safety record that is based on consistent implementation of the rules.


    • Possess good communication and presentation skills when speaking with groups or individuals.
    • Knows and understands the teaching methods and learning styles of adult learners.
    • Be able to obtain acknowledgement from the operator that he/she can implement the training.
    • Has the ability to deliver training in a manner and language appropriate to ensure understanding by the audience.


    • awp training, aerial lift training, osha training, safety trainingPossesses a concern for the welfare of others so trainers can serve as a safety advocate.
    • Be intuitive and perceptive with people, i.e., can “read” the audience.
    • Works in a confident and honest manner with people.

Role of the Dealer

If you were to rent aerial equipment, you may wonder what the role of the dealer who provides you with the rental equipment is. Do they provide training? Familiarization?

General Training

boom lift training, aerial lift, boom lift, awp training, aerial lift trainingIt is the dealer’s responsibility to assist its customers in identifying training resources in order to satisfy its operator training obligations. Some dealers may provide training for their customers; others may choose to offer other training resources such as recommending a training company or getting the customer information on the manufacturer. Potential training resources are any entity offering instruction by a qualified instructor following an appropriate training program. This may be the manufacturer, rental company, independent training company or internal resources of the employer who rented the equipment. 

ANSI/SIA A92 Standards Section 5.7 (Responsibilities of Dealers) state:

Training. The dealer shall offer appropriate training to facilitate owners, users, and operators to comply with requirements set forth in this standard regarding inspection, maintenance, use, application, and operation of the aerial platform.”

Nothing states that the dealer must accomplish this training itself. Remember, the responsibility for conducting proper operator training has always been on the user and the individual employer. The dealer must offer training or direct the customer to a selection of reasonably available resources to ensure proper training of the customer’s personnel.


It is the dealer/rental company’s responsibility to provide familiarization to the designated person(s) receiving the equipment.

ANSI/SIA A92.5 and A92.6 Standards Section 5.8 (Responsibilities of Dealers) state:awp training, scissor lift, scissor lift training, aerial lifts, aerial lift training, genie scissor

Familiarization upon delivery. Upon delivery by sale, lease, rental or any form of use, the dealer shall have the responsibility with the person designated by the receiving entity for accepting the aerial platform to:
    1. Identify the weather resistant compartment (for manual(s)
    2. Confirm that the manual(s), as specified by the manufacturer, are on the aerial platform.
    3. Review control functions.
    4. Review safety devices specific to the model aerial platform being delivered.”

Record Retention

Whenever general training or familiarization takes place, documentation should be made to verify that said training/familiarization has been completed. An optional validation of training may come in the form of a certificate or an ID card. These documents should include the information/standards trained on under ANSI/SIA A92.

Copyright All rights reserved by Dave Wilson CumbriaThe documentation (for verification) of training/familiarization should include the following information and should be retained for a period of four years as required by the ANSI/SIA A92 Standards:

  • Name of the operator or person receiving familiarization
  • Date of training/familiarization
  • Equipment covered in training/familiarization
  • Identity of the person(s) performing the training/familiarization

Image by Horrgakx on Flickr.


Remember Safety Training Services, Inc. the next time you need aerial lift training! If you simply have questions on training, you can click here! Or click the button below to find out more about our AWP Training.

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Tags: osha training, aerial lift safety training, awp training, aerial lift training, aerial lift operator training, aerial work platform training, awp safety, scissor lift safety, boom lift training

Aerial Lift Training (Pt 2): Compliance, Training and Familiarization

Posted by Joshua Fleishman on Fri, Oct 04, 2013 @ 12:00 PM

We wrote last week about the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), what exactly aerial work platforms (AWPs) are, the current issues facing the industry, and some tips to keep you safe on an AWP. This week, we will focus on compliance requirements, operator familiarization and general training.


ANSI standards heavily promote safety by developing recommendations and guidelines; however these standards are to be considered best practices, and are not laws or regulations. Compliance with ANSI standards is voluntary.

OSHA, OSHA training, OSHA safety, AWP OSHAThe Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), a government agency that issues and enforces regulations for employers to ensure workplace health and safety. These regulations are often referred to as standards, but they are in fact laws and compliance is mandatory.

So Why Comply?

It is true that ANSI is voluntary, and OSHA is mandatory, however it is to be noted that the OSHA regulations were in fact based on ANSI standards. Basically, once OSHA adopts the ANSI standards as their own, they no longer are voluntary and become law.

AWP, AWP Safety, AWP Training, aerial lift trainingDespite ANSI standards being voluntary, it is in every company’s best interest to comply. Because OSHA law many times is adopted from ANSI standards, the standards in the ANSI handbook are considered a consensus of what’s best to keep employees safe and because of this OSHA can decide that the company is not “free from recognized hazards” and cite the company for the “general duty” clause for not following ANSI standards. So as it turns out, ANSI standards may not be as “voluntary” as expressed. Keep yourself and your employee’s safe, by following the ANSI guidebooks as mandatory as OSHA law.


Prior to use of an AWP, the operator must be trained before operation of the unit. This training should include the inspection, application, recognition, and avoidance of hazards associated with the equipment. As stated earlier, familiarization of the specific model of equipment should also be received prior to operating. Here is outline of each as stated by ANSI A92 Standards.

TrainingAWP training, AWP safety, aerial lift training

  • Essentially what prepares an operator to operate AWP
  • Can teach multiple pieces of equipment of a particular type
  • Covers broad types (push-around, boom lifts, scissor lifts, trailer-mounted boom lifts), as opposed to specific manufacturer/models
  • Includes classroom/”formal” training as well as “hands-on”/practical

ANSI A92.5 & A92.6 extensively cover instructions for operators regarding the inspection, application and operation of AWP equipment. Proper training should include, but not limited to the following issues and requirements:

  • Actual operation of the aerial platform performed “under the direction of a qualified person.”
  • Trainee is to operate the aerial platform(s) for a sufficient period of time to demonstrate proficiency in the actual operation of all functions of the aerial platform.
  • Much of the training should take place in the classroom.
  • Regulations and standards shall be discussed.
  • The need to perform workplace inspections.
  • Recognition and avoidance of common hazards.
  • Operator warnings and instructions.
  • The purpose, location and use of manuals.
  • A proper, full pre-start inspection.
  • Factors affecting stability.
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE) for use on AWPs.
  • General equipment components.
  • Safe use of equipment.
  • The proper selection of the AWP equipment for the job at hand.
  • The application and understanding of typical options that are likely associated with larger machines: e.g. outriggers/stabilizers, extendable axles, etc.

awp training, awp safety, aerial lift trainingWhen properly trained, an operator is ready to operate any like-type of AWP as long as they are familiarized with the controls/safety devices of the other like-type equipment. Remember, when training takes place on a particular model of equipment, you must become “familiar” with other equipment models that were not included in the initial instruction so as not to put the operator at risk of danger/injury because of failure to know specific controls/safety devices. For example,  certain manufacturers/models have different emergency lowering procedures, so familiarization is just as critical as general training. You wouldn’t want to be stuck up 30 ft in the air on a scissor lift with no one around, not knowing how to get down!

Familiarizationawp training, safety training, aerial lift training

  • Prepares an operator to operate specific manufacturers/models of AWP equipment (once general training has taken place)
  • For use in operating a foreign manufacturer/model of AWP to a qualified operator
  • Example: Manufacturer X Model XXX, Manufacturer Y Model YYY, Manufacturer Z Model ZZZ
  • Prior to use of unfamiliarized AWP; look through/use of manual & a someone familiar with model

ANSI A92.5 and A92.6 Standards (Section 8.5.3, specifically) state that:

“When an operator is directed to operate an aerial platform he/she is not familiar with, the operator shall receive instructions regarding the following items:
  1. The location of the weather resistant compartment (for manual storage).
    1. It is the responsibility of the operator to ensure that the correct manuals are in fact on board the unit as required by Section 8.2 of ANSI A2 Standards and that he/she be familiar with the manuals and reference them as required in Section 8.2.1.
  2. The purpose and function of all controls.
  3. Safety devices and operating characteristics specific to the aerial platform.”

awp training, safety training, osha aerial lift, aerial lift trainingRemember, familiarization must be facilitated by a qualified person. Only someone who is already trained and qualified may self-familiarize by reading and understanding the manual/operating instructions. Always refer to the operator’s manual if you have any questions, you might be surprised to find out how much information is actually in there!





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Tags: osha training, OSHA, aerial lift safety training, awp training, osha compliance, aerial lift training, aerial lift operator training, aerial work platform training, awp safety

Aerial Lift Training: Tips, Training, and Current Issues

Posted by Joshua Fleishman on Thu, Sep 26, 2013 @ 12:00 PM

An aerial work platform is, as ANSI defines it, a mobile or manually propelled device that has an adjustable position platform, supported from ground level by a structure.


Aerial lift training, AWP training, ANSI

ANSI stands for American National Standards Institute, who facilitates the development ofAmerican National Standards (ANS) by accrediting the procedures of standards developing organizations (SDOs). These groups work cooperatively to develop voluntary national consensus standards.

Their mission, according to their website, is “to enhance both the global competitiveness of U.S. business and the U.S. quality of life by promoting and facilitating voluntary consensus standards and conformity assessment systems, and safeguarding their integrity.”

Aerial Work Platforms (AWPs)

Aerial Training, aerial lift training, AWP trainingAWP equipment is very useful. It allows users access to usually inaccessible areas, usually at height. They can be used by maintenance workers, construction workers, firefighters (for emergency access); all while being operated by a single person (most models). AWPs can not only be used for transportation and/or access to certain areas, but also can be equipped with electrical outlets, compressed air (for power tools), and other specialist equipment.

There are many programs available for training operators of this equipment. Many of these training programs offer much to students regardless of their level of experience with AWPs. In fact, it is the differences in experience within the students in the class that usually makes for a great training atmosphere and allows every student to leave the training with some good information they didn’t know before.

Current Issues Facing the Industry

  • Understanding the importance of proper general training and familiarization
    • This is too often overlooked; you wouldn’t want someone on the road who simply ‘skimmed’ a driver’s manual and has not familiarized themselves with the make/model of the vehicle they’re driving, would you? So why send someone onto a machine in which they know very little about?
  • Improper training
    • Does driver’s ed simply show you a 15 minute video presentation, give you a driver’s license and wish you luck on the road? Heck no!
  • Confusion between general training and familiarization
    • Do you know the difference? Here’s how ANSI defines the two:
      • Familiarization: “Providing information regarding the control functions and safety devices for the aerial work platform(s) to a qualified person or operator who controls the movement of the aerial work platform(s) being delivered.”
      • General Training: “Instruction to enable the trainee to become a qualified person regarding the task to be performed, including knowledge regarding potential hazards.”
  • Misunderstanding of who is qualified to be a trainer
    • ANSI defines a ‘qualified person’ as follows (this pertains to operators and trainers alike):
      • “One who, by possession of a recognized degree, certificate, or professional standing, or by extensive knowledge, training, and experience, has successfully demonstrated his/her ability to solve or resolve problems related to the subject matter, the work, or the project.”
  • Need for clarification of all AWP equipment  stakeholders’ responsibilities
    • ANSI is looking to address certain issues in an updated version of the standards.
  • Impact on insurance
    • Although, in a general sense, with appropriate training “accidents” are less likely to happen and therefore less insurance would be claimed/paid out.

Aerial lift training, aerial work platform training, aerial lift safety trainingIn next week’s blog article, we will address many of these issues and shed light upon how to be ‘appropriately’ trained to use an AWP. This should serve as a thought-provoking piece until then, when we will discuss training, being ‘qualified’ and the importance of familiarization for the operator.

I will however, share with you some AWP safety tips. These are very important to follow, as the equipment being operated is potentially dangerous if operated incorrectly. Failure to follow these tips could result in serious injury, or worse. Stay safe, ingrain these in your head, and come back next week for additional best practices for aerial work platforms!

Aerial Work Platform Safety Tips

  1. Make sure that workers who operate aerial lifts are properly trained inAerial lift training, aerial work platform training, aerial lift safety training the safe use of the equipment.
  2. Maintain and operate elevating work platforms according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  3. Never override hydraulic, mechanical, or electrical safety devices.
  4. Never move the equipment with workers in an elevated platform unless this is permitted by the manufacturer.
  5. Do not allow workers to position themselves between overhead hazards, such as joists and beams, and the rails of the basket. Movement of the lift could crush the worker(s).
  6. Aerial lift training, aerial work platform training, aerial lift safety trainingMaintain a minimum clearance of at least 10 feet, or 3 meters, away from the nearest energized overhead lines.
  7. Always treat power lines, wires and other conductors as energized, even if they are down or appear to be insulated.
  8. Use a body harness or restraining belt with a lanyard attached to the boom or basket to prevent the worker(s) from being ejected or pulled from the basket.
  9. Set the brakes and use wheel chocks when on an incline.
  10. Use outriggers, if provided.
  11. Do not exceed the load limits of the equipment. Allow for the combined weight of the worker, tools and materials.






Safety Training Services, Inc. offers aerial work platform training for you and your workers! Our AWP training can be customized to include scissor, boom lift, or both. We provide the participant the necessary knowledge regarding the units operation, hazards and safeguards. This course consists of classwork, written testing and (hands-on) practical evaluation.

Aerial lift training, aerial work platform training, aerial lift safety trainingTraining is administered by professional safety trainers, specialized in delivering operator training for aerial equipment with an engaging course that exposes participants to multi-media content, cause & effect accident videos and current events. We also provide on-site training at your location, alleviating the need for participant travel.

All participants are issued course completion certificate and photo ID cards, (with successful course completion). We provide and maintain all necessary recordkeeping and make it available to our customer whenever you may need it. This training will help to minimize “loss time accidents” and help to maintain or improve your EMR – Experience Modification Rating.



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Tags: osha training, aerial lift safety training, awp training, aerial lift training, aerial work platform training