HEAVY-LOAD MATERIAL HANDLING: FOCUS ON SAFETY
Posted on November 17, 2020
For any company looking for successful investment in heavy load equipment for material handling, plenty of various factors influence the purchase decision: cost-effectiveness, productivity, maintenance and environmental issues, skills and training of the operator, space optimization, energy consumption, distance and more. We define SAFETY as the key aspect for any company that put people as the main company asset.
Among the categories of equipment for handling extremely heavy loads we focus on
self-propelled heavy duty trolleys on wheels or rails, bridge and jib cranes, upenders, heavy duty forklifts and more.
Extremely heavy loads bring extreme risks that should not be underestimated. Main risks are related to following situation:
- Crushes caused by falling loads
- Danger caused by ground conditions like poor materials or obstacles
- Equipment failure
- Operator risks: poor training and distractions
- Personnel and accident risk caused by inadequate operating procedures or equipment
- Same unsafe operations or collisions create risk of damage to the factory
- Risks based on work environment: slippery floors, obstacles along the path, suspended wires, wind and more factors
Being a leading manufacturer of self-propelled trolleys for industrial heavy loads, Morello offers unique expertise in new technologies for indoor and outdoor heavy load material handling in production plants.
LOW RISK SOLUTION: SELF PROPELLED TROLLEYS FOR HEAVY LOADS
Battery-powered trolleys represent most safe solution for moving overload objects inside a plant, for a wide range of reasons:
- The platform is supported by and moves on industrial wheels
- The operator works remotely, using a special control interface
- The load is placed in completely stable position on a large steel platform
- Movement is fluid and easily manageable, braking is safe and gradual
Thanks to the high sensor technology, the self-propelled trolleys for heavy loads detect the presence of any obstacles or people in its path and respond to the situation accordingly. Many types of sensors can be added to the cart depending on the environment and application.
Among the main advantages is movement precision eliminating any damage risks, silent operation and zero air pollution, electric motors eliminate the problem of oil leaks or spills. Minimum operator training, since a truck can be used efficiently after about an hour of basic training.
Morello OMNI trolleys are equipped with individual wheel control. Each wheel has its own motor, its own braking system, its own hydraulic height adjustment system suitable for uneven surfaces and slopes, in order to always keep the load horizontal.
Use in confined spaces is part of the normal operating procedures of self-propelled trucks. AGV trolleys provide even greater level of safety and precision including all the most advanced technologies to optimize safety and efficiency. ATEX trolleys can be supplied for use in explosive environments with volatile substances.
OVERHANGING AND BRIDGE CRANES – LOW RISK SOLUTION
Cranes represent most risky operations with heavy material handling equipment and must be performed by properly trained and experienced operators. This is essential to avoid damaged load, plant and most of all – personnel including operator.
Cranes involve the suspension of the load at height, the stabilization of the load, the minimization of oscillation movements and the movement of the load to a certain distance within the system, above other equipment or people present in working area.
The chains or shackles must be solid and strong enough to be able to withstand extreme loads. The use of chains is very risky, as there is a risk of serious injuries to the fingers. Operators must work in direct contact with the chains and the load. Fatal accidents due to the use of cranes occur every year in the workplace.
LOW RISK MATERIAL HANDLING ON RAILS
Self-propelled trucks for industrial rail loads can be a fairly efficient solution in some work environments. The additional risk compared to self-propelled trolleys on wheels is the presence of rails inside the work environment. These involve a possible risk of stumbling and can be an obstacle to moving some small equipment on wheels.
However, a safety advantage can be the awareness that the trolley and extreme loads move along a fixed path that is easily visible inside the plant.
LOW RISK WITH FORKLIFTS
Among all technologies for handling of heavy materials, forklifts are widely used in industry and up to certain weights can be an interesting choice for some production plants. Aside from the obvious weight limitations, a forklift truck can be a flexible solution. However, the safety implications for extreme loads can be quite serious.
Standards for safety risks using forklifts can be totally eliminated with self-propelled material handling equipment.
Battery-powered trolleys cover following issues:
- Maneuvers and blind spots cause limited turning radius for the front of the forklift, but the rear of the forklift widens when cornering. At the same time transported cargo can create blind spots for operators
- Load stability caused by transportation on slopes, wet and oily surfaces and rough terrain.
- Speed is related to truck and load weight together with the achievable speed, involving serious risks. A forklift that operates at low speed can cause the same damage as a car that travels much faster.
- Refueling for diesel forklifts is particularly dangerous.
SAFETY FACTORS TO BE TAKEN INTO CONSIDERATION
The variety of safety factors to consider when choosing the right solution for heavy load material handling. Make sure that safety is the priority factor in your choice.
Having list of question to make the right decision? Please contact us. We are looking forward to make your choice perfectly clear and successful.
Morello Customer Loyalty Team: Amedeo Morello, Luca Tibaldi, Stefano Rizzo.