What gets Tested?

  1. Visual Inspection / Operational
    Each Aerial Ladder shall pass a visual inspection, and everything is checked to make sure it is in working order. These include:

    A) Outriggers
    Inspection of the pads, connections, welds, and the structure of the outriggers

    B) Chassis
    Making sure the frame can stabilize, is sturdy, and all of the electrical works. Also making sure that all of the components operate correctly on
    the body of the truck.

    C) Turntable
    Operates accordingly, with smooth operation and all electrical is operating correctly

    D) Lower Boom, Center, and Upper Boom
    Checking all of the welds, visual on all of the railings, rungs, hydraulic lines, supports, rollers, and all of the cables and rods.

    E) Platform
    Electrical equipment, the gate, and railings are all operational

    F) Other Ladders
    All ground ladders on the Aerial ladder must be tested as well

    Some 5 year NDT work, such as:
    - Magnetic Particle
    - Dye Penetrant
    - Ultrasonic
    - Hardness Testing
    are required by NFPA 1911, Chapter 19

  2. Load Test
    In the same manner as the ground ladders, the aerial ladder must be load tested as well. This includes:

    Step 1: Inserting the proper amount of weight on the platform section (while extended, on the ground)

    Step 2: Raising the aerial to its maximum extended position, and than a line is marked on the hydraulics.

    Step 3: The aerial is spun in a 360 motion, and then let sit for 1 hour

    Step 4: Once completed, the previously marked line is checked, to see if the hydraulics collapsed at all.

When Should Aerial Ladders be Tested?

  1. 1 and 5 year aerial ladder inspections PER NFPA 1911
  2. Any time a visual indication is observed
  3. Any time there is heavy weight for an extended period on a ladder
  4. Any time the ladder is subjected to heat
  5. Any time the heat sensors are expired, worn off, or appear "used'
  6. Any time the ladder is repaired
  7. Any time an operational error has occured
  8. Any new ladders should be tested before they are used


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