Pole Handling Operations
Precautions are necessary in handling poles safely. Poles are long, heavy,
and preservative-treated, thus they pose hazards to the workers involved
in installation and dismantling operations. Any mistreatment of poles
during installation will degrade their ability to meet service requirements
and endanger those workers who climb them.
7.3.1 Direction of Aerial Lift for Installations. The foreman should direct the
handling of poles and give all signals when poles are being lifted or handled. Poles should,
whenever possible, be handled starting from the top and the end of the stack. Workers should roll
poles away from them using cant hooks or bars. Poles should not be caught with cant hooks
while in motion. Whenever possible, carrying hooks should be used when carrying poles.
Pole Contact Precautions
Creosote, which is usually applied to poles as a preservative, can cause
skin burns on contact. The following precautions should be taken to
a. Never roll up sleeves when handling poles.
b. Always wear gloves, and keep your neck well covered with a collar or a handkerchief.
c. Always keep trousers well down over your ankles as much as practical.
d. Never rub your eyes or wipe perspiration from your face with your hands or shirt
sleeves when they have been exposed to creosote.
e. Where direct contact with creosote is apt to occur, the hands, arms, and face may be
rubbed with a preparation made up of one part gum acacia or gum tragacanth and three parts
lanolin. If this preparation cannot be obtained, satisfactory protection can be provided by
petroleum jelly (Vaseline). First aid treatment should be obtained immediately if you come in
body contact with creosote.
7.3.3 Facility Receipt. Poles are usually shipped to the facility's pole storage yard on
flatbed cars, on which they are secured with skids, stakes, slings, and bindings. Shipping removal