A metal finishing plant in central Indiana was the scene of a catastrophic runway failure. When our emergency service technicians arrived, the bridge and spreader bar was hanging precariously over caustic dipping vats. One of the runways had broken loose and fallen. Caustic environments tend to increase the chances of equipment failure. A Runway survey, as part of a regular preventive inspection, could have possibly prevented this failure resulting in a need for an emergency rehab.
A review showed that the crane system had operated under poor conditions. The original installation of the runway was tied into the building structure and improperly supported. With the caustic chemicals immediately below the crane system, you have a situation that requires frequent inspections.
As a result, CraneWerks designed a beefed-up runway system for Service Crane Company. The new system was installed as a freestanding workstation, independent from the building structure. Support columns and runway beams were designed to better support future tonnage while providing an additional support structure on top of the runway to enhance stability. The bridge runway is independent of the support structure, with safety ties added to provide an additional measure of safety. The bridge is a dual-girder design, with stationary Yale Lode King hoists on each end, that support various spreader bar.
Multiple challenges had to be overcome in this project:
- Safely Remove the Existing Bridge: CraneWerks first needed to safely remove the hanging bridge and spreader beam and any product left in the dip tank. Since the bridge was situated over caustic tanks, special care was taken to secure and control the bridge for its removal. All technicians were also safely positioned. Upon removal of the bridge, all support runway beams were removed.
- Expedite New Crane System: With this unexpected crane failure, our customer needed a new crane quickly.
The customer is officially fully operational after approximately 5 weeks of using CraneWerks operators and mobile crane. As noted in the photos below, this was a tight workspace that required patience and experience to complete. The total installation, including setting support columns, runway beams, bridge crane, redundant safety cables, and electrification encompassed three days. With proper operation, annual inspections, and preventative maintenance, this system is poised to provide many years of operation.
Ready to optimize your lifting operations with tailored solutions like our customer in the metal industry? CraneWerks is here to engineer custom lifting solutions that meet your unique needs, even in challenging spaces.
Contact us today for a personalized consultation and quote. Let’s work together to transform your lifting capabilities, enhance efficiency, and boost your bottom line. Don’t let space constraints limit your potential – reach out to CraneWerks now!