Scissor lifts are aerial work platforms where the platform is on top of elevating scissors.  The scissors are then mounted on top of a chassis.  An ARCCA expert was called to investigate an incident in which a worker using a scissor lift pinched his head between the guard rail on the platform of the scissor lift and the top of a door frame.

Steps Taken:

  • ARCCA’s expert inspected the site and the lift still in place.
  • The expert performed a full walk-around visual inspection of the lift, followed by a ground control and platform control checkout of the lift.
  • During the site and lift inspection, the injured worker had actually returned to work. The expert was able to speak with the worker.

Final Findings:

Based on the site and evidence inspection, the incident was not caused by a malfunction of the lift.  The lift was designed to fit through standard doorways, and the incident occurred at a frame for a standard double fire door.   The expert observed that the worker was close to 6.5 feet tall.  When kneeling down on the platform, the worker’s head was still above the guard rail.  The worker did not look where he was going and disengaged the drive only when he felt his hard hat hit the door frame.  The cause of the incident was operator error.  The scissor lift had the capability of being operated from the ground.  With the operator’s height, he should have operated the controls from the ground when going through the doorway.

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