Frequently Asked Questions

What is a MEWP?

MEWP is an acronym for "Mobile Elevating Work Platform". It is the industry recognized standard for all types of elevated or aerial work platforms commonly referred to as manlifts, scissorlifts, cherry-pickers, etc.

What do the MEWP Classifications "Group" and "Type" mean?

MEWPs are classified into two “groups” and sub-divided into three “types.” "Group" classification is determined by whether the lift stays within the tipping lines or moves beyond the tipping lines.

  • Group A MEWPs move vertically but stay within the chassis or tipping lines. This could be a Vertical Mast Lift or a Scissor lift.
  • Group B MEWPs can move beyond the machine’s chassis or tipping lines (wheels or outriggers). Group B generally refers to Boom lifts.

The "Type" is determined by whether the lift can travel when stowed or elevated and the location of the controls which allow such travel.

  • Type 1 - travel is only allowed with the platform in a stowed position.
  • Type 2 - can travel with the platform elevated and is controlled from the chassis.
  • Type 3 - can travel elevated and is controlled from the platform.
            (Note: Type 2 and type 3 MEWPs can be combined.)


  • A Vertical Mast Lift or Scissor Lift would be Group A - Type 3
  • A Boom Lift would be Group B - Type 3
What do the CSA Standards mean?

The CSA group develops standards in 57 areas, and publishes standards in print and electronic form. CSA B354 is the standard for MEWPS.  In 2018 CSA B354.1/.2/.4 was withdrawn and replaced by the following suite of standards:

  • B354.6:17 Mobile elevating work platforms - Design, calculations, safety requirements, and test methods (Adopted ISO 16368:2010, second edition, 2010-05-15, with Canadian deviations)
  • B354.7:17 Mobile elevating work platforms — Safety principles, inspection, maintenance and operation (Adopted ISO 18893:2014, second edition, 2014-04-15, with Canadian deviations)
  • B354.8:17 Mobile elevating work platforms — Operator (driver) training (Adopted ISO 18878:2013, second edition, 2013-08-01, with Canadian deviations)

MEWP Equipment Changes with the new CSA Standards:

Additional safety design features are now required on all MEWPs manufactured after 2018. These new safety features include:

  • load and tilt sensing
  • stability test for pneumatic tires
  • wind force requirements for outdoor use
  • toe-boards on all platform areas
  • non-flexible MEWP Lift entrance gates
  • taller platform railings
  • and sustained involuntary operation controls.

Existing equipment is not required to be retrofitted to meet the new design requirements, therefore it is important for operators to know the differences between the various MEWPs and are properly trained on both as needed.

Click here for information on Skyrider Equipment's Safety Training programs.

How do I know what height machine I need?

MEWPS are usually rated by the Platform Height - the maximum height of the actual platform in feet, and the width of the machine in inches.

The Working Height of a MEWP refers to 6' above the platform height - often referred to as eye-level. When determining what machine you need make sure that you are referring to the correct term - Platform Height or Working Height. 

Most manufacturers use these two factors in their model numbers - but they often use them in different order. For example - a Skyjack model SJ3220 refers to a 32" wide machine with a 20' platform height, whereas a Hybrid model PS1930 refers to a machine with a 19' platform height that is 30" wide. Haulotte and JLG also follow the same model naming practice as Hybrid. Go figure.

Do I need a licence to operate a MEWP?

Occupants of a MEWP must be provided instructions and a basic level of knowledge to work safely. The responsibility for providing this information falls to the Operator. In addition, at least one occupant must be taught how to operate the MEWP controls in case of an emergency where the operator becomes incapacitated.Some of the knowledge required includes:

  • The use of fall protection and the location of fall protection anchors
  • Stability factors
  • Site-specific work procedures
  • Rescue plans and procedures in the event of an accident or failure
  • Hazards related to the task at hand
  • General knowledge of the intended purpose and function of the MEWP cotnrols and safety-related items (only needs to be taught to one occupant.)
  • Manufacturer’s warnings and instructions

Click here for information on Skyrider Equipment's Safety Training programs.

What does Floor Load Rating refer to?

There are two types of floor load ratings.

  1. Locally Concentrated Pressure (LCP) – is a measure of how hard the MEWP tire tread presses on the area in direct contact with the floor. The floor covering (tile, carpet, etc.) must be able to withstand more than this value.
  2. Overall Uniform Pressure (OUP) – is a measure of the average load the MEWP imparts on the whole surface projected directly underneath it. The structure of the operating surface (beams, etc.) must be able to withstand more than this value.

Floor loading information can be found in the operating manual for the particular machine you are using.

Is Rental Equipment covered by insurance?

Non-Owned Equipment Insurance. Whenever you rent any equipment, from any rental company, you become responsible for this equipment once you take possession of it. This can be by either by leaving the rental company's facility with it, or receiving it via delivery on your job site. All rental agreements from all rental companies have you sign that you are responsible to insure the equipment while in your possession.

Most contractors insurance policies, for contracting companies that own some equipment of their own, will have NON-OWNED equipment coverage as part of the equipment coverage section. Some Insurance companies will offer this on a Floater basis, some may want specific information with regard to type of equipment rented, value of equipment, and model or serial number.

Some General rental equipment companies provide a damage waiver coverage which is an additional rental charge, usually calculated as a percentage of the total rental charge that covers minor damage that may occur to the equipment while in your possession. This damage waiver does not provide coverage for Fire, Theft, Vandalism, or damage deemed to be from misuse.

Skyrider Equipment will be pleased to provide any information regarding the equipment rented from us to your insurance company.

Please check with your insurance company to ensure you have adequate coverage for Non Owned Construction Equipment.

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