The proper and safe operation of cranes mainly falls to the operator. This means that both operators and managers must understand crane load charts.
Foremen, along with other managers, need to not only understand the charts but be able to use them to plan the lift and make sure the loads are positioned in a way where the equipment can lift the load safely and move it where it should go.
One example of this is if you have a truck full of pipe located too far from the crane being used. If this is the case, it may not be safe to lift the pipe from the truck and place it in or next to the trench.
In addition to safety, there are several other reasons you need to know how to read and use the crane load chart.
Understanding the Crane Load Chart is Mandated by OSHA
According to the OSHA Crane Standard – subpart N mandates that all crane operators be certified. To pass the certification, operators must demonstrate their ability to use modern load charts. This is necessary for each crane type the operator is using.
Load Charts Ensure Proper Use and Safe Operation
Crane load charts are unique from the backhoe and excavator load charts. While the basic concepts are similar, there are some essential differences.
For example, the closer a crane is located to the load, and the higher the boom angle is, the more lifting capacity the crane has. This rule isn’t always applicable to excavators.
Before making a lift safely, the operator needs to know the load’s weight and how far the load is from the boom’s turntable. This is called the load radius. If the load is being lifted from a point that is higher than ground level, knowing this height is also necessary.
The use of a crane load chart makes this easier. With this, an operator can figure out the angle the boom needs to be at to make sure they are positioned directly over the load. Before lifting the load, operators must check the boom angle indicator, which provides the boom angle from horizontal.
Avoid Injuries and Liabilities
Injuries and liabilities are a serious issue on any construction site. This is exacerbated when cranes are used.
Understanding how to safely use a crane load charge reduces the possibility of these issues. If operators are unclear on the purpose of these charts or the purpose they serve, serious problems may arise.
The Importance of Crane Load Charts
A crane load chart is a vital tool that managers and operators need to understand fully. With this knowledge, they can safely operate any crane while ensuring the safety of others on the worksite.
To learn more about crane use and operation, along with crane repairs and maintenance, contact us. We provide an array of information, resources, and parts for all types of heavy equipment and can answer questions related to care and operation.