The safe and legal transportation of heavy machinery and equipment to construction shades is probably one of the most stressful events in the life of a contractor. These are some of the most massive pieces of machinery ever built by mankind. When transporting heavy machinery to the construction site, it is important to choose the right transport equipment. A low loader trailer is very close to the ground and makes it easy for contractors to deliver tall—as large as 12 feet in height—equipment to construction sites.
There are other types of trailers such as flatbed trailers, drop deck trailers, extendable drop deck trailers, and gooseneck trailers. When choosing the right vehicle to transport heavy machinery, it is important to talk with an expert. Find out what the legal requirements of transporting the construction equipment are.
Comply with Regulations
Check the existing laws and regulations of your state. Every state has a different set of guidelines for transporting heavy machinery to construction sites. As a general rule, you need to remove any accessories such as the scoop and the bucket because they make the equipment look bulkier than it already is. Anything that will make the equipment extra heavy or wide should be removed and transported separately. You may think that it’s a good idea to ship them all together because it is less costly, but the truth is that it’s cheaper and safer to deliver the accessories separately.
Prepare Your Machinery for Transport
There are three things that you need to do when preparing your machinery for transport: one is to perform a risk assessment; two is to make sure that your workers are wearing safety gear; and three is to inspect the capacity of the trailer. The risk assessment must be routinely done to get a detailed idea of your fleet management processes and what can be done to improve them. Usually, the assessment is done by the supervisor or a senior manager. The reports must contain the operation and transportation timeline, as well as the weight loads and relevant risks that should be avoided along the route.
Many construction companies overlook the importance of their workers wearing personal protective equipment during the loading and transportation of heavy machinery. But this is a mistake that can cost the company and the workers dearly. According to studies, the transportation of construction machinery was one of the primary sources of fatal collisions recorded between 1992 and 2010. Between 2003 and 2007, there were nearly 500 construction workers who died from accidents related to the use and the transportation of heavy machinery. Finally, it is also your responsibility to check the hauling capacity of the truck or trailer that you have hired or purchased. You must check the condition of the tires, lights, brake system, and weight capacity.
Load the Equipment According to State Regulations
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety publishes guidelines on how to transport heavy construction machinery. It also has a guide on how to correctly load and store the machinery on the trailer. You need to check and double-check if the machinery is secured properly on the trailer. You are responsible not only for the safety of your workers but also for the general public that will be sharing the road with the trailer carrying the heavy equipment. If your machinery is carrying chemicals and other hazardous metals, you must avoid any kind of spills that will put people in danger.
Plan Your Route
After you have obtained all the necessary permits and licenses and hired the right driver to transfer the machinery, it is now the time to plan your route. You need to minimise the risk of accidents along the way. This means transporting the heavy equipment during non-rush hours. You might also want to check the weather and any traffic reports to identify potential problems that your driver may encounter.
It is completely understandable to be overwhelmed by the number of things you need to do before transporting heavy machinery. You can ask for help and advice from experts in the industry. Remember that one minor oversight can put someone’s life in danger. It is always best to gather all the information you need to transport the construction machinery safely.