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History and the pioneers of Access equipment.

Crude first Beginnings

Arial Work Platforms (AWPs) have come a long way since there crude beginnings in the 1920s as large wooden platforms mounted into the back of trucks.

These original truck mounted lifts were found in every country, there design driven by a need from local authorities for street lights, tree trimming and with fire departments.

1929 – street light maintenance - Sweden

Jay Eitel gets frustrated with cherries

The original ‘cherry picker’ style truck and trailer mounted platform came in 1944 after Jay Eitel set about creating the world’s very first “cherry picker”. He was 28 years old and was frustrated and exhausted at having to move and reposition his ladder countless times during the day to pick cherries.

The initial bucket lift structure of Jay’s mounted platform comprised of a highly manuverable, telescopic steel arm mounted onto the back of a truck and was controlled simply by a single lever.

Sometimes all you need is a little frustration with fruit to invent something remarkable…

This type of telescopic or articulating boom lift ‘Cherry picker’ remains one of the most popular access lifts in production today!

John L Grove and the idea generated from tragedy.

In 1967 John L. Grove and his wife visited the Hoover Dam and witnessed two workers electrocuted while working on scaffolding.

It was a tragic event that propelled him to create a product that could put workers in the air more safely to perform construction and maintenance tasks. He had just sold his previous business, Grove Manufacturing, when he returned home from his trip, he partnered up with two friends, they bought metal fabrication business, and began design on the first ever concepts for the aerial work platform.

The company was named JLG Industries Inc. and 3 years later after witnessing the Hoover Dam tragedy it released its first aerial work platform in 1970.

Bud Bushnell’s “magic in a bottle”

In 1966 Bud Bushnell bought the manufacturing rights to a material lift that operated on compressed air (air kept under a pressure that is greater than atmospheric pressure).

Customers were impressed with the “magic in the bottle” that was used to raise and lower the hoist, hence the name “Genie” was born and Genie Industries was founded.

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