Many manufacturing plants and warehouses use industrial cranes (grúas industriales) to help them lift and move heavy loads. These cranes are machines designed to raise and lower materials and to move them horizontally along a rail. Most cranes are used in construction, transportation, and manufacturing, but they can also be found in shipyards and on factory floors. Overhead cranes are also popular for moving and assembling heavy equipment since they are able to lift a much heavier load than a human. The cranes will lift and position the pieces for assembly helping with a quick and efficient process.
The type of crane needed to complete a task will depend on what is being done. There are many varieties of overhead cranes and each has a specific purpose.
The jib crane is usually fixed to a column or pillar or attached to a wall. The crane includes a movable hoist which is raised and lowered to lift the load. These types of cranes are generally smaller and used in areas where there is limited space or overhead obstructions. Jib cranes can also be installed in the upper area of a warehouse or factory and used to lift loads to the upper levels or shelves.
A gantry crane is an overhead crane used to lift extremely heavy loads. These types of overhead cranes are generally found in big industrial facilities such as a steel yard or ship building facility. Most gantry cranes are operated electrically and have a weight lifting capacity of several tons. Some can lift loads as heavy as 200 tons. This type of overhead crane is generally a big piece of equipment requiring a lot of room to maneuver. There are smaller models which may be used in facilities with limited space and lighter loads to lift.
Overhead cranes have grown in popularity over the years and are used in almost every industry. There are many manufacturers offering different models (Diferentes modelos) of overhead cranes. The average lifting capacity of an overhead crane is anywhere from three tons to several hundred tons.
Overhead cranes should only be operated by trained personnel. These are huge machines and can cause injury or even death if not operated properly. Crane operators must be aware of all possible hazards and have a clear view of the moving crane. Any other employees involved in the lifting operation (operación de elevación) should also be trained on working with an overhead crane. Crane operators should always know the maximum lift capacity of the crane and should never exceed it. When the crane is operating, all other employees should be clear of the entire area around the crane and should know where the emergency shut off button is located and how to operate it.
Overhead cranes are safe to use as long as proper operating procedures are followed. All cranes must be properly maintained to ensure safe operations and any repairs should be made before the overhead crane is returned to operations.
Overhead cranes are an essential piece of equipment anywhere large loads need to be lifted. There are many different models and each one has a specific purpose.