Shoshone County Solid Waste purchases new man lift
HomeHome > News > Shoshone County Solid Waste purchases new man lift

Shoshone County Solid Waste purchases new man lift

Sep 20, 2023

Shoshone County Solid Waste will be purchasing a lift similar to this one to help them around their facility. The need for such a lift became evident after an accident saw one of their employees fall off a ladder during a routine part of their daily job. Courtesy photo

WALLACE — The Shoshone Board of County Commissioners approved the purchase of a $17,950 man lift by Shoshone County Solid Waste director Richard Brenner.

The purchase addressed a serious safety need for the solid waste department and the county's transfer station.

"Back in December, we were changing out trailer cover tarps and one of our employees fell off a ladder," Brenner said. "It's been an issue that we knew of, it's not a great way to do it (using a ladder), but it was the only way that we had to do it."

The trailers in question are those driven through the main garbage repository of the transfer station where they are parked in a way that trash can be pushed into them from ground level until they are filled and driven out.

These trailers must be covered when they’re full and not in use. The covers prevent them from being filled with rainwater and keep animals out of them.

After the accident, Brenner began looking into potential ways to prevent another one from happening.

His first idea was to build a catwalk around the area at the transfer station where the waste is placed into the container, but after looking into it he realized the process would require a lot more than simply constructing a walkway.

"It would work … to a point. But it's a one-spot, one-use type of thing," Brenner said. "It would still cost quite a bit, especially if we have to go through engineering to have it actually spec’d out and OSHA-approved."

The location of a catwalk would also affect the amount of material the facility is able to take in, specifically the storage area for their barrels, which are used to collect old, dirty oil.

After scrapping that idea, he realized that a scissor-style man lift would not only be easier but would have functionality beyond just getting the tarps on the 14-foot tall trailers.

"It would help us out around the property, especially changing out the lights," Brenner told the county commissioners. "We have street lights, bay lights. Our highest bay light is at 36 feet, so it's nothing you can do with a ladder. We also have roof issues that we’ve been dealing with, so this will help us be able to address those."

Commissioner Dave Dose heard all Brenner's comments and still contended that the primary goal of purchasing such a machine was the safety of the county employees at the transfer station.

Brenner presented the board with three options. The first two were used man lifts with low operating hours and a maximum platform of 40 feet. The other option was also a used lift with lower operating hours and a maximum platform of 32 feet, but this one was refurbished and had a three-month warranty.

Brand new, these machines cost more than $20,000, so the county is getting a better price than if it purchased a new one.

The board's main concern was a budgetary one, but the solid waste department was able to cover the cost of a new lift with grant funding Brenner secured through the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality.

The board unanimously approved funding for the purchase of the 32-foot, refurbished man lift.