The new, stricter Machinery Directive (2006/42EC) and harmonised loader crane standard EN 12999:2009 are now in force across the European Union. All Cargotec’s new Hiab loader cranes comply with the directive, and the company’s engineers have ensured that the crane operator has the most reliable and easy-to-use safety system available. The result is the VSL – Variable Stability Limit – system.
VSL is an electronic system that automatically senses how far the stabiliser legs are extended and whether they are firmly secured on the ground. This ensures an optimal balance between capacity and stability throughout the operating area, and it allows the crane operator to make full use of the crane without compromising safety – even if there is not enough space to extend one or both stabiliser legs fully. The operator is free to concentrate on manoeuvring the load, confident that the crane itself will take care of stability.
The technical solution was developed with a focus on crane-users’ needs: VSL protects not just the crane but also people in the vicinity – and the vehicle itself. In some cases, VSL can push the stability limit further and extend the work area. Thanks to VSL, a crane can use higher capacities in previously restricted sectors.
Several new safety features
The Hiab crane user’s safety and productivity are further enhanced by additional safety features, which have all been developed in compliance with the new Machinery Directive – and in close cooperation with Cargotec’s customers.
Stabiliser warning lights are fitted on top of each stabiliser leg and are visible over a 270º field – from virtually all positions around the crane. The lights show pedestrians, passing traffic, and people working in the vicinity of the crane that the crane is operating.
A view confirmation button for remote controlled stabilisers is an extra, precautionary, safety function – a button that you press to confirm full view of the stabilisers before you can operate them.
Stabiliser indicators provide the operator with information about the stabilisers’ status. This information is displayed via the user interfaces and on the remote control display.
Swivelling footplates adjust perfectly to ground inclination. This means that the stabilisers always support the crane in the best possible way. The plates’ size is sufficiently large to ensure that the ground pressure is always below the maximum limit.
The upgraded Operator Protection System (OPS) provides additional safety by defining a ‘virtual protection cage’, which electronically prevents the boom from entering restricted space. It is now possible to customise the cage by blocking more spaces or changing their size.
All key personnel at Cargotec have been trained in the Machinery Directive and its effects. Cargotec’s teams are at the forefront of their field, paving the way and sharing their expertise with various partners and customers.