A new safety campaign to encourage all users of boom-type platforms to wear full body harnesses with a short lanyard attached to a suitable anchor point has been launched by Aerial Work Platform Training (AWPT) in North America. Called “Click It!”, the campaign has received the approval of the Scaffold Industry Association (SIA) and is similar to successful promotional campaigns that encourage people to wear their seatbelts when riding in a car.
The new program's initiative came from companies frustrated with the fact that people are dying in boom-type lifts because they are not wearing a harness that would keep them from being thrown or catapulted from the platform. To remind and encourage people to wear a harness, AWPT had that advice printed on stickers that can be placed on the boom lift where they can be seen by all occupants in the platform. In addition, AWPT has made available a document titled “Technical Guidance Note AWPT H1” that provides information on its recommendation for the proper use of harnesses and lanyards on different types of aerial platforms. Information on both can be found at www.awpt.org.
Called “Clunk Click!” in the United Kingdom where it was first introduced, the campaign is being promoted worldwide by the International Powered Access Federation (IPAF), AWPT's parent organization. To date, thousands of stickers have been printed and distributed throughout the U.K., and the program has spread rapidly. At the recent Bauma show, international versions of the program were launched at the IPAF stand including the German “Click Clack!”, Italian “Clic Clac!”, French “Un petit Clic!” and other versions of the program in Dutch and Spanish.
“In countries where the program has already been introduced, major rental companies and others took the initiative to promote the program because unnecessary fatal accidents were happening when occupants were catapulted out of boom platforms because they were not wearing harnesses,” said Tim Whiteman, IPAF managing director. “These simple stickers can save lives.”
Although the “Click It!” program is officially being introduced in North America at the Saf-T Conference that follows the Scaffold Industry Association (SIA) Convention in Long Beach, California on July 20, the program is already starting to gain momentum. Skyjack, a major aerial work platform manufacturer, has committed to placing the “Click It!” stickers on all boom lifts that leave its factory, and a number of major rental companies have expressed interest in placing this vital message on all boom lifts in their rental fleet.
Organizations can obtain “Click It!” stickers and copies of “Technical Guidance Note AWPT H1” at www.awpt.org. Small quantities of stickers are available free of charge and larger quantities or custom-printed versions can be ordered for a nominal price. Downloadable artwork is also available online for printing your own stickers.