Subscribe to our free, weekly email newsletter!


Workstation cranes lighten the load

Canadian utility manufacturer employs freestanding workstation cranes that move steel trays safely and eliminate worker injuries
By Lorie King Rogers, Associate Editor
February 01, 2010

In the last stage of manufacturing, workers perform the final welds then lift the trays onto a cart to be prepared for shipping. The best way to lift the trays is from both ends at one time. The problem is that the trays are heavy, long and difficult for one person to lift.

“They are awkward to pick up,” says Ken Conrad, maintenance coordinator. “The way you have to bend and lift the trays puts a lot of strain on your back. If the same person did that job all day they'd be hurting by the end of the shift.”

The problem was evident and productivity was decreasing. Additionally, five lost-time injuries each year were attributed to this task. So, Thomas & Betts installed a freestanding workstation crane (Gorbel, 800-821-0086, http://www.gorbel.com)) to safely lift and transport the trays.

The crane system measures 20 x 30 x 17 feet tall and has two aluminum bridges, each with a 165-pound capacity. The crane features remote mounted pendant handles attached to the master unit that controls the movement of two handles simultaneously. The bridges move easily and independently along the runways so that one worker can lift even the longest, heaviest trays from both ends at once while guiding it to the cart.

“Reducing product damage was important, but it was a secondary compared to the safety of the people handling the products,” says Conrad. Since installing the freestanding crane system, productivity is consistently high and workers are no longer at risk of injury.

About the Author

image
Lorie King Rogers
Associate Editor

Lorie King Rogers, associate editor, joined Modern in 2009 after working as a freelance writer for the Casebook issue and show daily at tradeshows. A graduate of Emerson College, she has also worked as an editor on Stock Car Racing Magazine.


Subscribe to Modern Materials Handling magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Find out what the world’s most innovative companies are doing to improve productivity in their plants and distribution centers.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

MHEM forecasts 9% growth for 2015 and 7% growth in 2016.

Event marks the 70th anniversary of industry association and event organizer MHI.

Large consumer packaged goods customer approves 24-volt packs for use in Class III pallet jacks.

2015 programs established for five committees: Education, Marketing and Communications, Membership, Industry Affairs and Standards, and End User Advisory Committee.

With lower energy prices sparking domestic economic gains, coupled with solid manufacturing and industrial production activity, improving jobs numbers, and a GDP number that shows progress, there is much to be enthused about when it comes to the economy . But that enthusiasm needs to be tempered, because big headline themes seldom tell the full story.



© Copyright 2013 Peerless Media LLC, a division of EH Publishing, Inc • 111 Speen Street, Ste 200, Framingham, MA 01701 USA