A global incident reporting system for powered access equipment provides crucial insight on the main causes of accidents — and how to avoid them, explains Brian Parker.

Accidents can teach us a lot about how to safely operate powered access equipment to conduct temporary work at height. That’s why, 10 years ago, IPAF (the International Powered Access Federation) launched its dedicated reporting portal.

The www.ipafaccidentreporting.org portal enables — and encourages — users around the world to confidentially report accidents, incidents and near misses involving powered access machines. This includes mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs), which range from small push-around verticals, scissor lifts, articulated booms, truck, track and van- mounted booms, Mast Climbing Work Platforms (MCWPs) and hoists. The aim of encouraging reporting is to identify areas of risk and common trends globally, so lessons can be learned and shared with MEWP users to prevent future accidents. The knowledge gained is also used to create safety awareness campaigns and inform all the work IPAF does, including developing industry guidance and training.

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