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Ten Uses for Bucket Trucks

Bucket trucks are commonly seen on the streets and highways of America, but what exactly are these trucks used for? This article looks at some of the common, unusual, and sometimes fun uses for these trucks.

Ten Uses of Bucket Trucks

Use number 1: Maintenance of telecommunications lines and electrical services

The most obvious use of bucket trucks is to lift workers onto electrical and telecommunications utility lines for maintenance. Trucks with special insulation are used for these jobs to protect workers from the dangerous high voltage cables that the job requires them to work with.

Use number 2: window washing

Since these trucks have arms that can sometimes extend 60 ‘or more, they can be used to wash exterior windows in medium-sized office buildings up to 5 stories high. These trucks allow window cleaners to safely reach windows at heights that are inaccessible with ladders.

Use number 3: fruit picking

Cherry pickers were originally designed to collect fruit from orchards (though not just from cherry orchards). These trucks are still widely used by fruit pickers in today’s orchards.

Use Number 4: Animal Rescue

Help Wildlife, a site dedicated to showing the devastating effects of fishing line on wildlife, documents a case in which a seagull was rescued using a bucket truck. The gull had a hook and fishing line caught in its wing and got tangled in a 50-foot-tall tree. Animal rescuers were able to rescue the bird using a bucket truck.

Use number 5: Hanging decorations

From hanging Christmas decorations in your town square to banners on the field of your favorite local teams, these trucks are used to hang all kinds of decorations.

Use number 6: Tree pruning

Bucket trucks are often seen on city streets after major storms, when loose and broken tree branches endanger power lines. Workers pruning trees near power lines use trucks with special insulated buckets to keep them safe from dangerous high-voltage lines that are likely to be nearby in the course of their jobs. Arborists also use bucket trucks to reach the very tall treetops that need routine care.

Use Number 7: Stage Performance Tools

Michael Jackson has a long history of including cherry pickers in his stage performances and music videos dating back to his 1987 Bad Tour. Most recently, he was seen rehearsing “Beat It” on a cherry picker in the documentary film This is It by Michael Jackson. This was the last known footage of Michael Jackson before his death in 2009.

Use number 8: Security detail

Some retail stores have security guards stationed on specially modified trucks that give the guards a panoramic view of the parking lot.

Use number 9: Exterior paint

Like window cleaners, some painters use these trucks to reach high places on the exteriors of the buildings they are painting. These trucks allow painters to safely reach heights of up to 5 stories to safely paint the exterior of buildings.

Use Number 10: Fire Rescue

Some fire trucks are equipped with a boom and bucket, which technically makes these fire trucks special purpose bucket trucks. These specially designed trucks allow firefighters to reach tall buildings to put out fires and sometimes rescue people from places that would otherwise be inaccessible.

These trucks are versatile machines that can be used for many things! But the operators of these powerful utility trucks must be properly trained to operate them safely. Before renting or purchasing a truck for any of the uses outlined in this article, take the time to learn about aerial lift safety and invest in a trained and experienced operator for your bucket truck.


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