Most construction and manufacturing sites have some type of rigging hardware. This is because rigging and lifting heavy loads are necessary for multiple industries. Experienced riggers can make it look easy, but the reality is rigging and lifting heavy loads can be a difficult task. Human error is the most common reason for rigging accidents. Rigging accidents can cause damage to equipment, which can hurt the bottom line. Accidents can also lead to injuries or death. That’s why it’s important to know the most common rigging mistakes and how to avoid them.
Choosing the Wrong Rigging Equipment
Rigging hardware comes in many capacities and weight limits to meet the needs of loads that come in different shapes, weights, and sizes. Due to this, you must ensure that you use the proper rigging hardware for the load you’re lifting. Before purchasing rigging hardware, you must check the requirements of the loads it will be used for. Compare the dimensions of your load to the lifting equipment’s capacity to ensure it’s suitable for the task.
Not Reading Identification Tags
Rigging hardware should typically have detailed identification tags that display load limits and other information in detail. It’s a serious red flag if the equipment doesn’t have this tag. Be sure your riggers check for identification tags on the rigging supplies. It’s also important that your riggers know how to read and understand the information on the tags. They should also be advised to report any issues immediately.
Failing to Clean and Store Equipment Properly
A lot of times, workers store rigging equipment without cleaning it first. This can have long-lasting effects on the equipment. This includes corroding the rigging hardware, which leads to a weakening device. Rigging equipment that isn’t stored properly can also start to lose its integrity. Keep lifting devices somewhere that’s dry, cool, and free from movement.
Using Rigging Equipment Without Inspections
Properly inspecting rigging equipment before use can help you prevent many accidents. It can also minimize the risk of equipment failure.
Here are some things to look out for during inspections:
- Missing or unreadable identification tags
- Cuts, tears, and chemically damaged synthetic slings
- Stretched links on alloy chain slings
- Signs of deformation on wire ropes
- Indications of welding repair
- Amateur below-the-hook lifting devices
Ignoring the Load’s Structural Integrity
Not all heavy loads are made the same. When containers are only partially filled, their contents might shift mid-air from one side to the other. Others can even disassemble when hoisted. These circumstances can cause the rigger to lose control of the load. The rigger needs to take account of the load’s contents and take adequate precautions to stabilize it the best they can.
Not Paying Enough Attention to the Load’s Weight
Most objects are lifted to rigging equipment’s working load limit or WLL. This is the maximum weight a lifting device can handle under normal conditions. While this may seem straightforward enough, some riggers struggle with determining the weight of the load. This is why it’s imperative to ensure heavy loads have been carefully weighed before they’re lifted.
Using the Wrong Slings for the Lifting Job
Industrial lifting slings play key roles in rigging and lifting heavy loads. These slings are often combined with other rigging equipment and can help enhance capacity while supporting the load. However, choosing the wrong sling for the job can throw the overhead lifting job off-balance, destroying expensive equipment and putting lives at risk. It can also cause damage to the load itself.
It’s important to consider the multiple variables associated with the load before choosing the appropriate sling for the job. Slings should also be paired with appropriate protection, such as edge guards and sleeves.
Hiring Untrained Workers
Hiring untrained workers is one of the worst mistakes you can make during an overhead lifting project. Untrained workers are at greater risk of making mistakes. Since the room for error is minimal when lifting heavy loads, it’s important to hire qualified riggers to ensure workplace safety.
Trust the Professionals
When dealing with rigging and lifting equipment, you must ensure you have as many advantages as possible when you start the job. At Silver State Wire Rope and Rigging, our professionals can help make sure that process is as smooth as possible. All our equipment is inspected and safe to use. Contact us for more information.