Tips for the Safe Use of Vacuum Lifters

Vacuum lifting equipment is extremely useful for handling heavy or unwieldy loads. However, it is important that it is used safely. Here’s a quick overview of the general rules for the safe use of vacuum lifting equipment.

Condition of the Lifter

Before the lifter is operated for each shift, it must be inspected and tested. If any safety concerns or potential problems are identified, a suitably qualified person should be notified and the vacuum lifting equipment labelled as ‘out of order’ until the problem has been rectified.

If any safety markings are not visible on the lifter, it should not be used.

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Safe Lifting

The supporting structure and load fixing devices, such as chains, hooks etc, must be appropriately rated in order to support the weight of the lifter and the load.

When calculating the net capacity of the system, subtract the weight of the lifter from the crane.

You should only use the vacuum lifting equipment on non-porous, or slightly porous smooth loads. Be sure to brush off any loose debris from the load and don’t use the lifter on very badly pitted or rusted loads, as there is a danger that the load may become unstable.

The lifter should only be used for free overhead transport or for horizontal lifting; it should not be used to drag loads across the floor. Never lift loads higher than necessary.

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Personal Safety

Always alert others when a lift is about to commence. Keep well clear of the load with your feet and hands well out from underneath it. Never bend down or walk under the load in case of accidental release. Never allow anyone to ride on the load during lifting.

Never leave lifted loads unattended. Be sure that everyone involved in the lifting process understands the operating instructions for the vacuum lifting equipment.

When using vacuum lifting equipment, it’s vital that operatives carry out lifting procedures in accordance with the above safety guidelines. For more advice on the safe operation of vacuum lifting equipment, contact us today.

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