Planning a lifting operation

Lesson Progress:

All lifting operations must be properly planned by a competent person (sometimes called the appointed person) who will decide on how best to complete a lifting operation safely. This information will be recorded in a lift plan as part of the safe system of work.

The lift plan will need to consider the following (this list is not exhaustive).

  • Weight of load to be lifted.
  • The ground conditions and surrounding environment (such as waterways, railways and highways).
  • Overhead hazards (for example, a power line).
  • Height of the lift required.
  • Type of lifting equipment to be used.
  • Selection of lifting accessories (for example, chains and shackles).
  • Lifting team (for example, crane operators and slinger/signallers).
  • Level of supervision required.
  • Means of communication (for example, hand signals or two-way radios).

The lift plan will give information about any exclusion zones that are required to ensure the safety of people on site and off site. You must not enter these zones unless you are authorised to do so by the lift supervisor.

If you are involved in any lifting operation you must be briefed on the contents of the lift plan before work starts.