When you are running a metal fabrication facility, then amongst the most important pieces of equipment to have for your operations are overhead cranes. While you might think that you can just use lift trucks to carry and transfer steel material within your premises, this is not always the case. For example, if you have a tight space, then it is not feasible to have these trucks. This is where a crane truly makes a difference. It can make your operations more efficient.
However, like with many other industrial machines, there are also safety risks that come with using cranes. To keep accidents at bay, here are some tips that you should share with the people handling such pieces of equipment:
- Spend some time and money training your operators.
No matter what type of overhead crane you are going to use in your facility—gantry crane, vacuum sheet lifter, etc.—you should not hover a load over someone’s head. Well, this is only one of the many important safety rules that crane operators should know. While other people think that operating a crane is a simple task, it is not! So, make sure all people who are expected to handle your crane undergo proper training.
- Clear your space of power lines.
According to records, nearly half of the accidents that happened while using a crane are the result of the equipment coming into contact with a high-voltage power line. And, these accidents usually happened when the boom or hoist line of the crane touches the cable while moving material, and someone was touching the equipment. The danger of electrocution extends to all personnel near the equipment. To avoid such an unfavourable situation, it is best to clear out power lines where your crane will be operating.
- Make sure every operator knows the capacity of your crane.
Before you assign someone to handle overhead cranes, you should make sure he already know their rated capacities. During the training, bring in an expert to educate them about the units you will be having in your facility. Also, make sure your operators will be observant about the amount of weight they should be lifting with your cranes. Visit at Millsom
- Observe regular maintenance.
From the small vacuum tube lifter to the huge gantry crane, all cranes need regular maintenance to ensure functionality and efficiency. Aside from these, ensuring that they are in good working condition will reduce the risk of falling materials. Maintenance should include load testing, which will let you know how much weight a crane’s hoist can handle. Also, when the time comes when a moving part has been worn out, replace it right away to avoid serious damage and accidents.
- Use a crane with an overload limit or install an overload circuit for the rope hoists.
Until today, some crane models still do not have any requirement for overload protection on the chain hoist. So, when choosing your crane, ask the supplier if it has an overload limit. This is very important when an operator makes a bad judgement that can threaten the safety of other personnel working nearby. In case you are buying a crane that does not have an overload protection feature, you should at least install an overload circuit on its hoist.
Of course, you should also ensure that the overhead crane or any other lifting equipment that you buy is of good quality. Remember that good models, especially those from trusted brands, are safer than their cheaper counterparts.