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Tail-lift safety Instruction:


The tail-lift fitted to your van is dangerous to you and others. Please make sure you understand its operation before you leave. We highly recommend that you speak to a member of staff before you set off. We have included a general guide for safely using tail lifts. Please read below.

Each manufacturer of lifts has its controls but the basic principles remain the same. Make sure you have been instructed in the one you are using and fully understand those instructions.

Before using any lift make sure that its safe working load, shown on the unit, is acceptable for what you are intending on lifting. Typically, 500Kg is what you would expect to find on a 3.5ton van. If you are riding on the lift at the same time as your load, then this will reduce its capacity.

The key points relating to safety apply to every lift every time they are used:

Make sure the vehicle and lift are level and the area around where it is being used is safe. Solid ground, no children, pets, vehicles, or members of the public who could get injured in any way by the lift.

Consider how the weather may impact safety. Rain, ice, or snow will all make the lift platform more slippery. The user must select the most appropriate footwear for grip and protection.

Injuries caused by, falling, tripping, being struck by a falling load, or crushing. Of these the most common injuries are caused by trips and falls:

Trips and falls. Do not get too close to any edge of the lift’s platform. It is recommended to always stay at least 10cm away from any edge. Some lifts have a yellow square showing a pair of feet inside which is where the manufacturers recommend the operator stands when controlling the lift.

Never jump off the raised platform.

Be mindful that items falling from the platform could cause injury to anyone too close including yourself.

Lowering a heavily laden platform onto someone’s feet. Not necessarily yours! If you are lowering the platform, loaded, it will not stop coming down until something stops it.

Standing on the platform whilst lifting and having your toes over the front edge where the platform comes up to the rear of the load area. Again the lift will only stop when it reaches its top buffers or the up button is released.

When raising the platform, if using your right hand lifting the platform, from horizontal to vertical make sure your left hand or other body parts are not in its closing arc of the platform.

When loading a van ensure that items are secured well to stop any movement when in transit. Should you suspect that there is any possibility the load may have shifted during transit take extra care when opening the doors or shutters so nothing falls onto you.

Do not leave keys in the ignition of an unattended vehicle. The vehicle would not be covered on insurance but more importantly if someone were to drive off whilst people were unloading serious injuries could be sustained.

Please Note: The tail lift is operated by the battery only. Using it for prolonged periods will flatten the battery and it’s possible that the vehicle will not start after unloading. Although running the engine unattended is illegal it may be necessary to start the engine and allow the battery to recharge. The insured driver should consider taking a break from the loading whilst sitting in the vehicle cab charging the battery using the running engines alternator.