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May 7, 2022

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safety alert

HSE safety alert: Mast climbing work platforms (MCWPs) 

The HSE has issued a safety alert advising of a serious technical fault found with mast climbing work platforms (MCWPs). 

 MCWPs are used widely across construction projects and in other industries. This alert is intended for:  

  • construction and all other industry users 
  • employers, dutyholders and anyone else who has responsibility and/or control – directly or indirectly – for supply, installation, use, inspection, servicing, maintenance, and thorough examination of mast climbing work platforms (MCWPs) 

The HSE has found a serious technical fault with MCWPs used widely across construction projects. These can be used in other industries for access and to maintain large plant. 

Platforms could fall from height where mechanical faults in drive units go undetected. If not rectified quickly, the fault could cause serious injury, or even death. 

The alert requires those involved in MCWP activities to check that MCWPs comply with Regulation 4 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998, specifically, to ensure that undetected mechanical failure in drive units cannot lead to the uncontrolled fall of the platform. 

It includes advice on detection and prevention of potential failure where MCWPs rely on two drive units per mast as the means to ensure safety. 

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