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September 19, 2011

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IPAF spreads outrigger safety message

The International Powered Access Federation (IPAF) has launched a campaign calling for the proper assessment of ground conditions and the correct use of stabilisers, outriggers and spreader plates.

IPAF’s ‘Spread the load!’ campaign aims to drive home the message that spreader plates should always be used with boom-type mobile-elevating work platforms (MEWPs) when fully supported on their outriggers. Spreader plates should be used with all other MEWPs that have outriggers unless a risk assessment indicates they are not necessary, says the organisation.

Several campaign tools – including leaflets, posters, stickers and a video – have been developed to promote the message and are available in different languages.

IPAF chief executive Tim Whiteman said: “MEWPs are generally very safe and stable, however, incorrect set-up can cause instability and lead to overturning. This is often the result of inadequate ground assessment, poor selection of spreader plates, or incorrect positioning of outriggers. The ‘Spread the load!’ campaign sets out to give clear and practical guidance on when and how to use spreader plates.”

For more information on the campaign, or to download the tools, visit 

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12 years ago

If IPAF assess the control mechanism as being the use pf spreader plates, why are these not dispatched with the MEWP upon hire?