Saturday, August 21, 2010

Hand Signals for Overhead Bridge Cranes

There are quite a few hand singles for overhead bridge cranes. These signals are used for both safety and day to day work purposes.
It is vital that a workplace that uses an overhead bridge crane develop and adopt a uniform set of hand signals for overhead bridge cranes. These signals let the overhead bridge crane operator know what is going which ensures safety in the workplace. Such signals enable workers to communicate effectively and safely with the bridge crane operator.
If an effective set of hand signals for overhead bridge cranes is not adopted and implemented. Workers and the bridge crane operator may not be able to understand each other. This can lead to some very tragic consequences including accidents, injuries and even deaths.

The Signaler

The best way to ensure safety is to have only one person in the work area make signals to the operator at once. There should only be one signaler in the work area to prevent mixed signals and confusion.
Having one signaler enables the crane operator to know who to pay attention to and who to ignore. It also ensures that only individuals who know what they are doing will be sending signals to the overhead crane operator. One way to make sure that the crane operator knows who the signaler is to have the signaler always wear a specific piece of clothing such as an orange vest.
Signalers should also be as familiar with the operation of the crane as possible. The best way to ensure familiarity with the crane is to have the signaler operate the crane. Having the signaler and the crane operator trade places occasionally will make sure that both the signaler and the crane operator are familiar with each other’s jobs.
Designating a few signalers who are familiar with crane operation and hand signals for overhead cranes is the first step in crane safety. The next step is to never allow anybody but the signalers to signal the crane.

Hand Signals for Overhead Cranes

The hand signals for overhead cranes are pretty simple and very basic. Generally pointing a finger up indicates that they want to move something up. Pointing down means that the workers want something lowered. Two raised fingers will usually indicate a need for multiple crane trolleys.
Other common signals include pointing the thumb up for bridge travel and making the hitchhiker’s signal for trolley travel. A flat outstretched arm usually indicates stop. Moving a flat outstretched arm back and forth usually indicates emergency stop. Holding hands together on the front of the chest indicates that an operator should “dog” everything while both arms outstretched means the magnet is disconnected or turned off.
Even though hand signals for overhead cranes can be a very effective means of communication they do have their limits. It is always a very good idea to have another means of direct communication between an overhead crane operator and the workers on the floor available. Radio telephones and walky talkies are ideal for this purpose. Headsets that workers can put under their helmets and wear at all times will make communication even easier.

1 comment:

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