How Proper Training Reduces Scissor Lift Accidents on Construction Sites

by | Aug 5, 2023 | Construction Accident, Firm News

Scissor lifts are indispensable for reaching elevated work areas safely and efficiently on construction sites. However, these machines can be hazardous when workers lack proper training, leading to accidents that often result in severe injuries or fatalities. Comprehensive training is crucial for scissor lift operators to navigate these platforms safely and prevent accidents. This article explores how proper training can reduce scissor lift accidents and provides key elements of an effective training program.

Key Accidents Prevented by Training

  1. Tip-Overs: Operators without training may position scissor lifts on unstable ground or slopes, increasing the risk of tip-overs. Training helps workers identify and address ground instability before setup.
  2. Falls: Falls occur when workers don’t use fall protection equipment or engage in risky behaviors like standing on guardrails. Training emphasizes the importance of personal protective equipment (PPE) and safe working habits.
  3. Electrocutions: Lack of awareness of power lines or other electrical hazards can lead to accidental contact, resulting in severe injuries or fatalities. Training teaches operators to maintain safe distances and identify overhead obstacles.
  4. Crushing Injuries: Operators may accidentally raise the lift into overhead structures or cause pinch injuries if unaware of the lift’s movement. Training ensures proper maneuvering and emphasizes maintaining safe distances.

Elements of an Effective Scissor Lift Training Program

  1. Equipment Familiarization: Operators should learn the specific scissor lift models they’ll be using, including their controls, weight limits, stabilizers, and emergency features.
  2. Pre-Operation Inspections: Training should include how to inspect lifts before use, covering ground conditions, mechanical components, safety switches, and hydraulic systems.
  3. Fall Protection Protocols: Workers must understand how to properly wear and secure harnesses, lanyards, and other PPE, as well as the importance of maintaining guardrails.
  4. Safe Maneuvering Techniques: Operators must know how to position the lift for maximum stability, avoid obstacles, and drive at safe speeds when moving between work areas.
  5. Electrical Hazard Awareness: Training must include identifying power lines and other electrical hazards and maintaining a minimum clearance of 10 feet from overhead lines.
  6. Emergency Procedures: Operators and ground crew should be familiar with emergency lowering controls and evacuation procedures to quickly and safely respond to accidents.
  7. Spotting and Communication: Teach workers the importance of using spotters in tight areas and establishing clear communication signals to guide the lift safely.


Comprehensive training is essential for reducing scissor lift accidents and ensuring safe construction work. By understanding the equipment, identifying hazards, and practicing safe maneuvering techniques, operators can significantly minimize the risks of tip-overs, falls, and crushing injuries. Providing effective training programs not only ensures compliance with safety regulations but also creates a safer environment for workers and bystanders. Workers injured due to inadequate training or unsafe practices should consult a personal injury attorney to understand their rights and seek fair compensation.

Our experienced lawyers have handled personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits of all kinds and have the skills needed to represent the families of loved ones who have lost their lives or those who have been seriously hurt.  The experienced scissor lift personal injury and wrongful death attorneys at Spagnoletti Law Firm can help you understand your rights if you or a loved one was a victim of an accident involving a scissor lift.

Our lawyers have represented numerous workers who have sustained serious and catastrophic injuries on a job site as a result of the negligence of another party.  There are strict and short time limits on making claims, so please contact us online or call 713-804-9306 or to learn more about your legal rights.