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Thu June 13 2024

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Spreader plate reminder for MEWP users

16 Sep 11 Users of aerial work platforms are being urged to spreader plates with outriggers in a new industry campaign by the International Powered Access Federation (IPAF).

IPAF launched its Spread the load! campaign at the APEX exhibition in the Netherlands this week. It is calling for the proper assessment of ground conditions and the correct use of stabilisers, outriggers and spreader plates.

Spreader plates should always be used with boom-type mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs) when fully supported on their outriggers.

Spreader plates should be used with all other MEWPs that have outriggers unless a risk assessment indicates they are not necessary.

The campaign started as an initiative of the IPAF UK hire committee’s spreader plates sub-group. Several campaign tools, available in different languages, have been developed to spread the message, including leaflets, posters, stickers and a video. These resources can be viewed and downloaded at

 “MEWPs are generally very safe and stable,” said IPAF chief executive Tim Whiteman. “However, incorrect set-up can cause instability and lead to overturning. This is often the result of inadequate ground assessment, poor selection of spreader plates, or incorrect positioning of outriggers. The Spread the load! campaign sets out to give clear and practical guidance on when and how to use spreader plates.”

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