The Right Crane and Rigging Service Creates Successful Lifts
If you simply watch a crane lifting a heavy load, such as a rooftop air conditioning unit, a good crew will make it look easy. Seemingly, they just attached the crane’s arm to the load, and then it’s up up and away.
However, that “easy’ lift actually involved hours, or even days, of planning – and that plan had to be executed by a full team of certified experts in cranes and rigging. Every aspect of the job must be carefully considered for it to happen properly and without any accidents. That’s why it’s vital to hire a great crane lifting service with extensive experience to ensure your own lift goes off flawlessly.
Just some of the major considerations include:
Understanding The Load
Every lift, even the most seemingly basic, has to be deeply examined and understood for the load to happen properly. This includes a wide range of basic attributes of the load, including its weight, dimensions, center of gravity, and safe places for lift/sling attachments.
In addition, the movement of the load must be considered as well. How high will the load be lifted? How much lateral movement will be involved? This must be correlated with the mechanical properties of the load so that its physical movement can be entirely predicted before the lift begins.
Understanding The Location
Where the lift is happening is just as important as what is being lifted. Every job site brings its own challenges. What sort of terrain will the crane be sitting on? Can the ground hold the combined weight without shifting? What nearby objects could cause hazards, or risk fouling the rigging?
The requirements for a crane lifting logs in a forest are going to be completely different from a crane lifting objects from a company’s parking lot. The location must be understood as well as the load.
Choosing A Crane
Cranes are not one-size-fits-all. In fact, a great crane and rigging contractor will likely have a fleet with a dozen or more cranes, specifically so they can fulfill the greatest number of jobs. Every crane has different lifting capabilities and different boom lengths. There’s also the matter of their own locomotion, whether they’re on wheels, using treads, or mounted on a truck. These must be matched to the load and the location to ensure everything works properly.
Logistics And Crane Transportation
Another crucial aspect of crane lifting services that often goes overlooked is the matter of getting the crane to the site itself. In some cases, the logistical challenge of moving a huge crane will be just as tough as the actual lift, especially if the crane is big enough to be considered an oversized ‘heavy haul’ load.
This requires extensive planning and pre-mapping of the intended route, to make sure there are no hazards along the way which could interfere with transportation. Typically, there will also be numerous bureaucratic hurdles here as well, often with both state and Federal transportation departments needing to be involved for approvals.
Lift Planning and Safety
Once the crane is actually at the job site, there’s still the matter of properly handling the actual lift. This involves extensive pre-planning, based on earlier surveys of the load and the location. Anything in the area which could interfere with the lift must be accounted for, especially objects which could present genuine safety risks such as live power cables.
A great crane and rigging contractor makes safety one of their top priorities, with full safety briefings before any lift. This also involves making sure the crane’s operator, and the ground crew handling rigging and oversight, are entirely on the same page. If the team doesn’t fully understand the job, the plan, and the safety concerns, accidents are likely.
The biggest external influence on crane lift success and safety is the weather, which is not always predictable. A good crane lifting service will do as much research as they can, planning the lift for days when clear skies and calm winds are expected. However, when even a single large gust of wind could potentially knock a load off-balance, a level of flexibility is also called for.
Additionally, should a serious storm develop without warning, a truly great crane contractor knows when to call off the job. Operating a crane in a storm is simply not safe, and can create an absolute disaster, such as the infamous Dallas incident in 2019 where a surprise storm caused a crane to crush a nearby apartment building.
For Top Crane and Rigging Services, Call Bobcat Contracting
Bobcat Contracting is a leader in heavy lifting services, with a focus on the oil and gas industry. We provide full lifting services, crane rentals, and support and repair services. Big or small, we can ensure your crane lift will be a success.