When installing a new, substantially repaired, or modified overhead crane or hoist into service, a rated load test shall be performed.OSHA states in 1910.179(k)(2) “Rated load test. Test loads shall not be more than 125 percent of the rated load unless otherwise recommended by the manufacturer. The test reports shall be placed on file where readily available to appointed personnel.” This was further defined in 1989 in an interpretation as: “Overhead and gantry cranes should not be rated in excess of 80 percent of the test load. Therefore, in order to rate a crane to 100 percent of the design intended loading, the test load must be 125 percent of the rated load. The only exception to this requirement would be when a crane manufacturer specifies a different test loading criteria. In that case, the crane manufacturer’s procedures shall be adhered to.”
It is important as a manager of hoist and crane equipment to understand the requirement for load testing as it applies to your crane equipment. Most small hoist manufacturers provide certification that their hoist was load tested at the factory. That was the case of the above 2-tons hoists. However, that testing did not certify the new monorail (structure) supporting the hoists. So both hoists (or see below, Gad-zooks!) had to be tested while suspended from the monorail at 125%.
Larger equipment cannot be load tested at the factory and must be certified in the field. Typically either concrete, water (see below) certified test weights, or steel can be used as test weights. It is important not only to document the test, but have data on the load you are using confirming its weight. With the above clarification from OSHA, you cannot rate a crane or hoist’s capacity at more than 80% of the rated load test, and the maximum load for the rated load test is 125% of the manufacturers stated crane capacity. As an example, the picture below shows a 15-ton crane being load tested after installation at 37,500# (125% of 30,000 lbs) using a bag rated for 45,000#, filled with 4,434 gallons of water (1 gallon US = 8.345404 lbs) and 500# of bag and rigging.
When having repair work done, or a new crane installed, discuss load testing with your crane/hoist supplier, and how the requirements will be met.Or, contact Your Crane Doctor…..Engineered Lifting