Aerial Work Platforms
The aerial work platform or AWP is a machinery engineered and designed to raise employees and gear to a certain height for the completion of jobs. The type of machinery varies with the specific make and unit. Before aerial work platforms were developed, all tasks which require work at high levels needed to be carried out with scaffolding. Therefore, the invention of aerial work platforms has kept a lot of workers safe and increased the overall productivity of similar jobs.
The three main types of aerial work platforms are boomlifts, mechanical lifts and scissorlifts. These equipment can be operated with pneumatics, mechanically utilizing a rack and pinion system or by hydraulics or with screws. These units may be self-propelled with controls located at the platform, they may be unpowered units requiring an external force to move them or be mounted to a vehicle so as to be transported.
The aerial work platform was developed by John L. Grove, an American inventor and industrialist. Nonetheless, during 1966, before JLG's very first model, a company referred to as Selma Manlift introduced an aerial lift unit.
During the year 1967, after selling his previous company Grove Manufacturing, John L. Grove and his wife decided to take a road trip. They opted to make a stop at Hoover Dam. While the couple was there, Grove unfortunately witnessed 2 employees electrocuted while they were working on scaffolding. This terrible event led John Grove to discover an untapped market for a new product that could safely lift workers in the air for them to do construction and maintenance tasks in a better way.
When John returned home from his vacation, he bought a small metal fabrication company and formed a partnership together with 2 friends. They soon started designing ideas for the aerial work platform. The new company was called JLG Industries Inc. They proudly launched their very first aerial work platform in the year 1920 with the aid of 20 workers.