What Can Crane Mats Do?


Outrigger pads for cranes

Cranes are an important part of all of our lives, whether or not we realize that. Most of what we consume was transported via shipping containers, and lifted off of those containers with cranes. Basically all mass commerce depends on shipping of some kind, and therefore on cranes. Cranes probably had a large part in the building of the house or apartment building you live in, and in the buildings you work in. Those cranes have to rest on something, and that something is called a crane mat.

There are, of course, several factors to consider when setting up your crane pad. It is very important, for the safety of everyone working on a given project, to make sure that you set it up right. Check out the essential considerations here:

What Are the Ground Conditions?
Before you begin setting up a crane or a crane mat, you must survey the surrounding ground. Ground conditions play a major part in determining the placement and orientation of your crane mat. Consider topography, subterranean hazards, ground material and hardness, and weather. For this stage, it would be wise to enlist in the aid of a geotechnical engineer to determine ground strength and more. OSHA states that cranes must be assembled on ground that is firm, drained and graded sufficiently, in conjunction with supporting materials, such as blocking, cribbing, pads, mats, to provide adequate support and levelness.

Outrigger Foot
When trying to determine the size of your outrigger crane pads and mats, it is a great rule of thumb to se the size of the outrigger crane pad to figure out exactly what size you’ll need. It is also wide to factor in the outrigger load. Since crane mats are intended to distribute the wight of the load over a wide enough area, the best possible crane pad will be one that is sturdy enough to bear and distribute the weight and yet light enough to be easily moved.

Overall, three factors must be considered when selecting an outrigger pad: ground conditions, size of outrigger foot, and outrigger load of the equipment. Between 1997 and 2006, there was an average of about 82 crane-related fatalities a year, according to the most recent data (PDF) from the Bureau of Labor Statistics — don’t let any fatalities happen at your site, by setting crane mats up well.


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