A reader has sent us a brief report of a narrow aisle spider lift that tipped over in Crewe UK as it was being moved in the transport position.
The lift a CTE 170 rented directly or indirectly from spider lift specialist Higher Access – was, according to the reader that sent us the photograph, driven over a kerb while turning and onto an open pallet that naturally gave way under the 2,000kgs weight of the machine, causing it to overturn.
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The fallen machine - note the kerb and the crushed pallet
As far as we understand no one was injured in this incident, the fact that it is equipped with an umbilical cod controller, allowing the person driving it to stand well clear may have helped.
In the words of our reader “Another example of a poorly trained operator - toolbox talks and the 1b are a must” – the 1b is a reference to the IPAF training course for static booms (this with outriggers such as this).
Narrow spider lifts are truly fantastic pieces of equipment and very versatile, they can go through the narrowest of doors and yet cross very soft or difficult terrain. However they do need particular care when driving them due to the fact that they are as narrow as 600mm overall (this unit is 800mm).
A sharp turn at speed, driving over an obstacle on one side or over a kerb at an angle (rather than head on) especially quickly or jerkily, can all cause such machines to tip. The same applies to spider cranes
However with sensible precautions or care they are perfectly safe in travel mode and if being used regularly on rough or uneven ground models are available with extending tracks for additional stability.
Driving off a kerb requires a ramp or a solid platform, the weight of most aerial lifts will crush a standard pallet and if this happens on one side, most narrow models will tip.