Load sway is one of the more dangerous concerns that operators of crane trucks must deal with on a daily basis. When a lifted load starts moving unpredictably, this not only increases the danger of the lift, but also reduces job efficiently considerably. Fortunately, today there is important technology available to help avoid this issue. Installed into new or used crane trucks, safe load indicators increase the safety and efficiency of these vehicles.
The Problem with Load Lifting
Regardless of the size of the crane, they all experience one similar, significant problem: load sway. Load sway is when a load is lifted off the ground and, due to forces experienced while it is being relocated, it begins to sway as it hangs off the end of the crane. This movement is extremely dangerous, especially when encountered with crane trucks, as it can cause the entire load to unbalance and potentially tip the truck.
Based on this risk, operators of these vehicles must be highly trained to control their cranes in such a way as to reduce the amount of sway their load experiences.
The Challenge of Reducing Load Sway
The physics involved in load sway indicate that it is caused from the momentum a load can gain when it is in motion. This occurs when lifted items are maneuvered with the boom, moving them either forward or sideways depending on where they must be set down. This unintentional sway during relocation, as well as the possibility of other types of shifting, can be reduced through slow, careful movements made with the boom controls. It does require highly experienced load handling and judgment.
In many instances, operators of new and used crane trucks must actually suspend movement of the boom to wait for the load to stabilize before going on. While this will reduce the chance of further sway or shifting by bringing the lift back under control, it greatly reduces work efficiency when crews are forced to wait for a lifted load to stop swaying.
Modern Technology to Reduce Load Sway
Safe lifting with reduced sway and shifting is possible using the more efficient capabilities of safe load indicators designed for crane trucks of all sizes. Integrated with the crane controls, safe load indicators prevent movement of the load until it is properly rigged and balanced for safe lifting while helping to eliminate dangerous swaying and shifting during movement.
Using input data on load size, weight, and other details, SLIs assist operators by controlling the boom to keep all motions slow and smooth enough to prevent unwanted motion of the load as it is relocated. This detailed control provides the greatest amount of load handling efficiency without the risk of dangerous sway or shifting.
Safe load indicators can increase safety for many crane trucks and provide the benefit of increased productivity. These devices improve lifting efficiency, remove the need to wait for loads to stabilize, and prevent dangerous accidents that could result from load sway or shifting. Services that rely on new and used crane trucks should consider the different types of safe load indicators available to improve lifting capability and install them in their trucks today!