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Using a cherry picker on damp ground?

You can use a cherry picker on damp or soft ground, as long as you take precautions and the ground is not too soft.

Many access platforms have outriggers - arms which swing out from the machine with feet on. These spread the load of the cherry picker out over a wider area, which gives the machine more stability. If you are using it on soft ground, the feet may sink in to the earth, rendering them pointless. In this case, use outrigger mats - square boards which fit under the feet and spread the load some more, and/or sole boards - again spreading the load. Extra timbers can also be used underneath to spread the load further.

Freezing conditions

If the ground is frozen, treat it as if it is damp and use outriggers and mats. Frozen ground can soften during the day as the sun heats the earth (even through clouds) and you don't want to discover the boom you're working in has become unstable because the ground has softened when you're up in the air. It is easy to avoid this situation if you treat the ground as if it is soft and use outriggers in case conditions change.

High wind or thunder storms

Do not use a cherry picker or boom lift in high wind or thunder storms.

The problems of high wind are made worse when you are high up in a cage. Gusts of wind can easily exceed the manufacturers safe limits and you are in danger of a fall or the whole machine becoming unstable and toppling over. Check the wind speeds a machine is built to deal with in its instruction manual before setting up for work.

Thunderstorms are very dangerous as most cherry pickers are not insulated, so if you use one in lightning you are standing in a long steel pole waiting to be struck. If lightning is coming close, the machine should be grounded until the storm has passed.

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