In the royal bucket

Spotted by one of our readers in the UK while attending a Heritage show on the King’s Sandringham estate in Norfolk, a man rigging up cameras, lights and other jobs around the entrance booths at a height of between three and five metres, working in a bucket on a telehandler.

The team of apparently “experienced riggers”, have wisely chosen to rent a telehandler, probably for both lifting and jobs such as this. It is absolutely ideal for moving around the job quickly while having plenty of reach for such tasks that require it. However, even though riggers will have known that the installation work would involve work at height, they have failed to order the telehandler with a platform attachment. So, they have borrowed a waste bin, put it on the forks and strapped it on.

At the risk of being shot down, let’s be honest about this:
- The man and his bucket are well within the telehandler’s lift capacity
- The team have double strapped it to the fork carriage with canvas straps and tensioners, with a third strap holding it to the fork ends - this bucket is going nowhere.
- There is no doubt that the job would have been completed without incident and safely, but perhaps not as efficiently as with a platform.


You have the think that this part of the job was not planned, it is hard to imagine a risk assessment/job plan saying, “take straps and tensioners with you and use one of the waste bins as a platform”. Lack of planning is one of the biggest causes of injuries and deaths on site.
Properly certified platform attachments can be rented fairly easily, if not from the telehandler supplier then a rigging equipment specialist.

It sends the wrong message to everyone on site and those working for the company involved....'Bodging and making-do is OK with us'. Next time the employee doing the ‘bodging’ might not be as diligent.
Lastly - and I have to say it - it breaks all the rules and regulations aimed at keeping people safe at work. Using the proper equipment is much cheaper than a fine.

As to our comment on a plan - perhaps the company was uber diligent and rented a boom or scissor lift for this job, but it became stuck in the mud? When working to a show deadline a safe alternative must be found quickly.

I would argue that this solution may have been safer that using a ladder, especially if the ground was soft in places, and yet for this type of work a ladder would be classified as acceptable equipment.

It scrapes into our Death Wish series, purely on a technicality

Have a safe weekend


A Mobile Crane & man basket should be considered here, yes more costly, cant put a price on safety plus inserted in the RAMS would be more professional.

Dec 22, 2023

Good point Barecat
Where is his remote control from the basket?

Dec 18, 2023

Main issue, the person in the "bucket" can not control the movements as the unit is operated by the person in the cabin. This is one of the main causes for accidents.
" please move a little bit, oeps too much "

Dec 17, 2023

Although you say this may look safe and sound, even without a lift plan, I would say the rachet straps are around angled edges with no protection and the bin is made of plastic, so not a solid floor or safe environment at all. I am surprised the IPAF are not all over this, as they are with the suitability of cranes & manbaskets.

Dec 17, 2023