We often get to see a number of heavy lifting equipments at construction sites, scrap yards, ship building and container yards, automobile industries and other such sites. These equipments like overhead crane help the workers to do their jobs quicker and safely. Although the lifting is done by the machine, it is not as easy as it seems. The operating of the machine is a very responsible and tricky job, the ground conditions, machine capacity and the area of the material has to be considered. The risk is higher when the material is large and lifting is high, although by now various new technologies have been introduced, these new technologies have made it easier for the operators to control the machine and even the efficiency of the machine has improved drastically.
Listed here are some main types of heavy lifting equipments:
- Forklifts: Forklifts are small vehicles that can lift materials, up to 50 tons and carry them from one place to another in warehouses and other storage areas.
- Hoist: A hoist is equipment that helps in lifting smaller materials, such as car engines or other small metallic materials using a rope or strong chains.
- Vacuum lifts: Vacuum lifts are machines that use vacuum pressure to lift material, it is also used while loading and unloading ships in the ship ports.
- Winch: Winch works as a tow; with the help of rope it helps the workers to pull a material from one place to another.
- Cranes: A crane is a most commonly used heavy lifting equipment( equipo de elevacion pesado ) which has different types. It’s very versatile equipment that comes in designs and sizes, depending upon the purpose.
Different types of cranes
•Mobile Cranes: Like the name suggests a mobile crane has mobile platform which could be moved according to the requirement.
•Tower Crane: Tower cranes are mostly used while the construction of tall buildings.
•Truck Mounted Crane: A truck mounted crane is known for its mobility and flexibility.
•Loader Crane: It functions through hydraulic power and is used to load heavy equipments.
•Overhead Crane: This kind of crane is generally used in factories and construction sites; it has the capacity of lifting heavy loads on a great height.
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Precautions while using Gantry and overhead crane:
There are three major hazards while lifting heavy materials at a site:
- Electrical Hazard: It is very important to make sure that the overhead crane does not comes in contact with any power line; it is a very common accident that occurs while working with overhead crane. Considering an Explosion proof overhead crane( puente grúa antiexplosivo ) could be a wise decision. Explosion proof doesn’t mean that the crane can withstand an explosion caused outside, but rather it means that the crane is capable of preventing any internal malfunction that might cause an explosion. Machines that are explosion proof have to go through several tests in testing labs like Underwriters laboratories and Intertek etc, if they meet the standards set by the NFPA and other international standards organizations, they are provided with the marks UL, CSA, ETL and others. You may check it while choosing the right machine.
- Overloading: While lifting heavy material, the operator should make sure that it does not exceed the lifting capacity of the crane, to avoid mechanical damages.
- Materials falling: If a crane is overloaded it might suffer a mishap and the material might fall down, it will cause severe damages of material and also the workers can get hurt.
How to choose the right equipment for your project
Purchasing an overhead crane requires equal consideration as we do while buying any new machinery or an automobile. Below are the factors that you should consider before investing in a crane for your project.
- Capacity: Make sure that the capacity of crane is enough for your requirement.
- Access: The accessibility( accesibilidad ) of the overhead crane shall be convenient for your operator to control.
- Lifting height: In case of lifting material to great heights it is also necessary that you check the lifting height of the machine before you purchase it.
- Safety: It is a factor that should be considered primarily, machine as huge as an overhead crane is also capable of causing as big damages. Hence, considering safety would be a good decision.