Knowing bucket capacity and understanding how to read a jib load chart are two critical elements of aerial jib crane operation, as explained in this Incident Prevention article.
Here are three important highlights on jib crane safety from the article:
- It is crucial to stay within the allowable capacity of the unit, they are not recommendations – they are absolute maximum capacities. Doing so requires some advance work. However, knowing your numbers is critical to avoid accidental overloading, which can result in overturning, boom failure, equipment damage, and a shortened usable life for the aerial device. A fully equipped line worker with PPE plus tools and materials can quickly add up to 700 pounds or more for distribution work, and upward of 1,000 pounds for transmission work. Lineworkers should verify their weight plus anything else going into the bucket does not exceed the bucket’s capacity before climbing in.
- Proper jib crane operation requires an understanding of how to read a load chart, plus knowing the specified upper boom angle, jib angle, and load radius. It’s necessary to verify weight and bucket capacities and jib limits before taking the bucket up for operation. Aerial device operators need to understand the different capacities of dual-rated buckets with different capacities based on the configuration and use.
- Technology can help change behavior. Manufactures such as Terex have been designing new equipment with active working range monitors and other systems to provide immediate feedback to operators. Technology can be a wonderful too. However, ultimately, it’s all about the numbers. Operators are responsible for calculating loads in the bucket and on the jib and verifying them against available capacity. New technologies can aid in the process, but they cannot replace the operator’s knowledge and following of safe work practices.
Knowing your numbers is critical to all facets of jib crane safety and, in general, safe worksite operations. DICA’s industry-leading focus on understanding outrigger and crane pad sizing is shedding new light on the topic. Our goal is to make the process simple and effective: Customers provide their equipment make and model and DICA provides product options specific to the equipment and ground bearing pressure objectives.