Safe transportation of heavy cargo is not an easy task, particularly in the case of used machinery.
When it comes to handling and transporting such heavy machinery, a set protocol of loading, transport, and unloading is required not just as a best practice, but as an essential one.
When it comes to freight transportation, the trucking industry has a variety of applications in sourcing used machinery.
Safe Loading by Designating Duties
Before loading the used machinery onto the trucks, the shipping company designates duties to all the crew members. These include driving equipment on the deck and spotters for delivering hand signals and directing the driver up the ramp towards the truck bed.
Spotters are an essential part of the process as the equipment drivers don’t always have a clear line of sight to load equipment on their own.
In addition to this, the rest of the crew is also notified when a loading procedure is in progress so that the operation can take place without any interruption.
Ensuring Safety by Chaining Equipment
Once the machinery is loaded safely inside the truck bed, it’s tied down with chains to prevent it from incurring damage in case of bumps and steep terrain.
The loading crew makes sure that there is no room for wiggle and movement in the chain so that the machine cannot shift or bounce while en route.
While most manufacturers usually label the appropriate tie-down points on their machines that the logistics personnel can follow, care is taken that the chains are not tied down near the machine’s hydraulic hoses, brake component, or cylinders.
Not only does this prevent equipment damage, but it also ensures that most compliant and tightest links.
If the used machinery has wheels, then parking brakes are applied to prevent them from rolling back and forth. In of absence of parking brakes, stabilization is achieved by places cradles, and wedges against the wheels.
This simple practice goes a long way in bolstering defenses against weight distribution forces that occur during transport such as:
- Sideway Force: 50% of this force gets applied while turning, braking, and lane changing.
- Upward Force: As much as 20% of upward force comes into action while driving over bumpy terrain or uphill.
- Rearward Force: This is the 50% of the vehicle weight that gets added to the vehicle weight while reversing, accelerating, or shifting gears.
- Forward Force: This is the 80% of vehicle weight that gets added when brakes are applied during transport.
Faster Delivery through Mapped Transport Route
Designated transport routes are planned ahead of time to ensure that lags don’t happen due to low overpasses and bridges. In addition to this, an analysis of bridges and road widths is made in advance to ensure safe travel for the used machinery.
Lesser the number of turns, bridges, and steep terrain faced by the truck, the better. Pre-mapped routes set defined timelines that the truck covers, thus ensuring that the machinery is delivered in time without any damage.
Obtaining Transportation Permit Without Hassles
Transportation permits are required if the load being transported qualifies as being overwidth or oversized, which is mostly the case with used machinery. Transport vehicles like excavators, cranes, grazer, scrapers, dozers, and dump trucks are some of the few that carry permits for overweight equipment by default.
In case the used machinery being transported falls in the overwidth or oversized category, obtaining transportation permit for trucks is much more comfortable as compared to other freight vehicles.
Collision Prevention by Flashing Banners and Lights
Whenever oversized loads like used machinery are transported via trucks, they are done with proper signs, banner, and lights. In special cases of critical machinery, the truck is accompanied by escort vehicles, one guiding the transportation truck and the other following it.
These escort vehicles communicate with one another and with the truck driver, while also alerting other vehicles on the road of the heavy machinery being transported.
It’s also important to note here that the communication is not carried out through cell phones, but through CB or two-way radios, which is the defined industry standard for ensuring safe communication between two drivers.
Regular Inspections and Checks During the Journey
Safety measures for the transport of used machinery don’t stop with the start of the ignition but continue throughout the duration of the journey.
Inspections and checks are made of the secured equipment while on the load, especially when the transport involves covering long distances.
All the tests are made according to the following industry standards:
- Perform one check within the first 50 miles of the journey.
- Perform checks once every 3 hours of the journey or once every 150 miles – whichever of the two comes first during long-distance rides.
- One check at every change of driver station or duty. The new drivers are required to run the full inspection on their own and are also expected to document their inspection on a transport log.
Used machinery can create many logistical constraints for freight transportation. Not only are they extremely heavy, but the nature of their duty requires them to be transported without any disturbances.
With their strict and defined process for loading and transportation, trucks prove as the perfect alternative for sourcing used machinery.