Aerial Lifts & Elevated Work Platforms

Program Overview

As defined by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), an aerial lift is any vehicle-mounted device used to elevate personnel, including:

  • extendable boom platforms,
  • aerial ladders,
  • articulating (jointed) boom platforms,
  • vertical towers, and
  • any combination of the above.

Although OSHA does not specifically address scissor lifts, they do meet the definition of mobile scaffolding and have similar hazards as other elevated work platforms; therefore, Emory University includes scissor lifts in the Aerial and Scissor Lift Program. 

Aerial lifts have replaced ladders and scaffolding on many job sites due to their mobility and flexibility. They may be powered or manually operated, and are considered to be aerial lifts whether or not they can rotate around a primarily vertical axis. The Aerial and Scissor Lift Program provides guidance in the protection of all Emory employees assigned to operate such equipment.  Aerial work platforms must be inspected prior to each work shift to verify the equipment and all its components are in safe operating condition. Operator training is provided annually, but is required at least once every five (5) years.