Can Anyone Use a Cherry Picker?

If you're thinking about cherry picker hire for your work site or personal use, you or the operator need to be fully licensed. To use any type of elevated work platform (EWP), you must have completed the appropriate training and hold a valid ticket recognised in your state or nationally.

The good news is that EWP training courses can usually be completed in just 1 or 2 days.

What are the dangers of elevated work platforms (EWPs)?

Working at height on a boom lift or other access equipment puts you at risk of various hazards. These include falls from height, being crushed or injured by overhead objects and electrocution when coming into contact with live power lines. These may result in serious injuries or death.

Falls can happen for a number of reasons, from mechanical failure of the lift to improper use such as
driving too fast or balancing on the rails for extended reach. Completing a training course with a registered training organisation will make you more aware of these hazards and how to prevent them or
minimise the risks to yourself and others.

The training and licensing you'll need for cherry picker hire and other EWP use is largely based on the height of the platform you'll be working on.

Platforms under 11 metres

If you're hiring a small scissor lift, vertical lift or small boom-type EWP less than 11 metres in total height, you won't need a high risk work licence. However, you'll still need a Yellow Card to operate this equipment.

EWPA Yellow Card training (EWPYC)

A Yellow Card course takes 6–8 hours and is usually completed in a single day. On completion, the trainee will receive a Statement of Attainment for RIIHAN301D and a photo card issued by the Elevating Work Platform Association (EWPA). This certifies the card holder to operate all types of elevating work platforms under 11 metres only. Scissor lift training combines theory and practical work and covers the safe operation of the equipment, knowledge of safety features, pre-operative checks and shutting down procedures. Yellow Card training is open to anyone aged 16 and over, with a restricted card being issued to those aged 16–17.

Find out more about Yellow Card training

Platforms over 11 metres

Cherry pickers and other boom-type elevating platforms over 11 metres in total height require a WP high risk work licence to operate in addition to equipment-specific training.

EWP licence training

Before applying for a high risk work licence, you'll need to complete specialised training for the type of platform you'll be operating. Training courses to operate and secure boom-type EWPs usually span 2 days and cover the safe use of this equipment in accordance with the most recent WHS Regulation. Trainees will also learn emergency procedures, the proper use of safety equipment, how to conduct checks and how to assess and manage risks. Applicants must be 18 or over.

Find out more about EWP training

High risk work licence (HRW)

After completing an EWP training course or informal on-the-job training under a licensed supervisor, you should apply for a high risk work licence online or through Australia Post within 60 days and pay the required fee. This licence is issued by WorkCover in your state or territory and recognised nationwide.

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