As the mining industry – both surface and subsurface – becomes increasingly reliant on heavy-duty hydraulics for vehicle cleaning and maintenance, vehicle lift leader Stertil-Koni announced a five-step plan to ensure that lifts are properly installed and will function properly for years.
In a recent analysis of the mining industry, Peter Bowers, Technical Support Manager at Stertil-Koni, stated, “The mining industry is heavy by design and aggressive by environment. When dirt and debris adhere to large mining vehicles, they can overheat and breakdown much more quickly. Therefore, conducting routine maintenance and cleaning vehicles on schedule will improve not only their fuel efficiency but keep them operational for a longer period of time.”
Based on its industry experience, Stertil-Koni recommends the following five-step program when planning for the implementation and use of heavy duty lifts in the mining industry:
- Evaluate the fleet and determine how the vehicles are utilized in and around the mine. It is critical that maximum weight calculations are considered up front.
- Conduct site evaluations above and below ground in advance. For subsurface lift use, understand how the lift or lifts will need to travel through a shaft to be subsequently assembled inside the mine.
- Carefully inspect the location in which the lift will be installed. This ensures that the dimensions of the space are adequate. Pay particular attention to the ceiling height, thus permitting the lift to operate to full lifting height.
- Conduct load tests. Ensure lifts are tested at the manufacturer to 150% capacity for added safety margin.
- Ensure the lift machinery selected can safely withstand the rigors of the underground environment. Lifts with hot galvanized finish are recommended for use in mining operations to protect against corrosion.
Concluded Bowers, “To maintain a successful lift operation in both surface and subsurface mining there must be careful planning, close consultation with the mining operation and meticulous fabrication followed by routine maintenance of the heavy-duty lifting equipment.”