Another holiday season is almost upon us. For many municipalities and commercial and residential property owners, the approach of Christmas means it's time to start the decorating process.
While ladders make hanging lights and decorations at lower heights easier, you may need other equipment to reach higher places like tall trees and rooftops. An aerial work platform can provide a safe, practical solution for these more challenging decorating tasks. There are various aerial equipment options, so you can choose the best machine for the job.
Types of Aerial Equipment for Decorating
You can use several types of construction equipment to hang Christmas lights and decorations:
- Straight boom lifts: A straight lift features a bucket for holding workers and an arm called a boom that "telescopes" outward and upward from a hoist attached to the machine's chassis. Consider this option for outdoor Christmas decorating tasks that require reaching elevations of up to 180-185 feet.
- Articulating boom lifts: These machines, also referred to as knuckle booms, offer more flexibility than a straight lift. They have a bendable arm that allows you to navigate the bucket around objects and access hard-to-reach areas. While articulating boom lifts offer additional flexibility when hanging outdoor lighting, they have more limited horizontal reach.
- Scissor lifts: If you need to hang decorations in indoor facilities like shopping malls or office buildings with an atrium, a scissor lift can handle the job. These machines consist of a platform supported by crisscrossed metal beams that expand or contract to raise or lower workers and supplies. Depending on the model, a scissor lift can reach up to 19-50 feet.
- Telehandlers: A telescopic handler is a combination crane and forklift. You can use this equipment to transport and lift heavier objects like Christmas trees or decorations you plan to install at elevated locations.
Who Should Use Aerial Equipment for Decorating?
Private homeowners can benefit from renting construction equipment to hang Christmas lights and decorations in high areas. If you decide to rent aerial equipment, ensure you have a license and receive appropriate training. Otherwise, you can hire a professional contractor to perform the task.
If you're planning to use aerial equipment to hang lighting on or in a commercial building or around your city or town, you may already have trained and licensed operators who can handle the job. If not, you can enlist the services of a business or contracting company with experience in this area.
Tips for Using Aerial Equipment to Hang Holiday Decorations
If you're considering working with boom lifts, scissor lifts or telehandlers for holiday decorating, you'll need to plan the job carefully. Whether you use in-house crews or professional contractors, make sure they share your vision of the completed project and choose the right equipment to execute the job.
Safety should always be a top priority when using aerial equipment, whether you're hanging Christmas lights or performing any other task that requires working at heights. Besides protecting your workers, ensuring your job site is safe can help you remain compliant with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations.
Safety tips to follow include:
- Inspect the equipment: Conduct a comprehensive inspection before each use. Check the fluid levels and ensure the hydraulic, electrical and air systems are functioning correctly.
- Keep the base clear: Ensure the ground surrounding the lift is clear of workers and passersby to prevent falling objects from striking them.
- Choose level ground: Place the machine on a flat surface and apply its brakes for additional stability.
- Work in calm conditions: Keep workers on the ground during high winds that could knock the equipment over.
- Wear harnesses: All workers should have access to appropriate fall protection equipment, including safety harnesses with a lanyard secured to the platform.
- Avoid overloading: Know the machinery's load limit and ensure the combined weight of the workers and their tools and supplies does not exceed it.
- Stay clear of power lines: Some decorating projects may require working in proximity of electrical wires. Maintain a distance of at least 10 feet from anything that could carry an electrical charge.
Rent Aerial Equipment From The Cat® Rental Store
Does your business or organization only need construction equipment to hang Christmas lights or perform other seasonal tasks? Renting can provide a practical and cost-effective solution. The Cat® Rental Store offers an extensive selection of aerial lifts at competitive rates from leading manufacturers like JLG and Genie.
Call us at 1-800-RENT-CAT or contact us online for more information and a quick quote today.
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