Potential Hazards to Avoid When Working at Height

Working at height can be a crucial part of many professions from construction to maintenance. However, it’s not without dangers. Safety should always be a top priority when working in elevated environments. In this article, we’ll explore some of the potential hazards when working at height and potential solutions to avoid them.

First and foremost, remember that the working site should always be inspected before starting the work. The inspector must pay attention to the following potential hazards.

Potential Hazards

1. Electricity:

Working near electricity can be extremely dangerous. Always assume that electrical apparatus is live and maintain a safe distance since most platforms are not insulated. If unsure, you should contact the power company to help with risk assessment and method statement.  All operators must be instructed before the start of work by their supervisor.

2. Slopes:

Working on sloped surfaces can lead to instability and slipping. Always approach a slope straight at 90 degrees. When traveling down a slope, do so slowly ensuring the machine does not pick up momentum. Before elevating, ensure that you have proper footing and always use fall protection equipment such as guardrails or safety harnesses if recommended by the manufacturer.  After conducting a risk assessment, your supervisor should instruct you if safety harness in needed when working in Low Level Access platforms.

3. Manholes:

If working outside, check for the manholes and openings in the working surface since they can be easy to overlook. Ensure that they are securely covered and cordoned to prevent the operators positioning the machine on top of a manhole.

4. People Around:

When working at height, it’s crucial to consider the safety of those below. Use barriers or signs to prevent pedestrians from entering the working zone and establish clear communication with ground personnel.

5.  Overhead Obstructions:

Low-hanging objects or structures can pose a hazard when working at height. The operator must check the surroundings for potential overhead obstructions before operating.

6. Entrances and doorways:

If work at height has to be done near the entrances or access points, it can create an unsafe environment for the people using them. Ensure that the entrances are properly marked and secured to prevent the intrusions into the working area.


In conclusion, remember that proper training, proper machine maintenance, and adherence to safety protocols are essential to prevent accidents when working at height. Always conduct a thorough risk assessment before starting any work and use the appropriate protective measures to ensure a safe working environment. Being vigilant and taking necessary precautions can help prevent accidents and ensure a safe working environment for everyone involved.

Please refer to your applicable Operation and Safety Manual for specific information regarding hazards and MEWP operation. Only personnel who have read, understood, and studied the Operation and Safety Manual and received proper training regarding the inspection, application and operation of MEWPs shall be authorized to operate a MEWP.

You can find manuals or contact our support team through the following link: Customer Support – Power Towers

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