While cross-border and international trade were not as common in the past, they are the primary forms of trade nowadays. Optimizing the transportation of cargo and stocks from a manufacturer to the retailer or distributor is one of the crucial elements that will determine your profits in international or cross-border trade. Though most business owners will focus on getting the right paperwork for their cargo, the loading and unloading of the cargo is a critical step that should not be overlooked.
Truck, ship and air cargo loading equipment is thus essential for all transport companies, manufacturers, and even the recipients of their products. With this equipment in place, you are sure the goods will be intact when they get to their end-user. Some companies might opt for manual labor for handling their cargo, to avoid the high initial cost of buying the machines. However, this option could wind up being more expensive in the long run and should be considered carefully by your company. Manual handling opens your company to lawsuits for compensation from workers injured by falling cargo, on the one hand, and on the other, leaves you vulnerable to suits for negligence in handling on the side of the recipients. The following are some of the cargo lifting machines that will prove essential for your logistics department.
Dockside Gantry Cranes
These are large shore-to-shore cranes used at container terminals for the unloading and loading of intermodal containers to and from berths and container ships. With the cranes, an operator runs a trolley along rails from the waterside to the landside. The cranes will then lift the containers using spreaders to and from ships to the dock. Dockside gantry cranes are also used for loading of containers onto trailers for road transport. There exist portal slewing cranes that perform the same functions as gantry cranes but have booms hinged to the waterside.
Rail-Mounted Gantry Cranes
These are specifically designed for intensive container stacking and lifting owing to their strong lifting capacities. They have complex cable systems and gantry frames. Rail-mounted gantry cranes are thus the leading ones used in container storage yards owing to the massive containers lifted and placed here. They can be used in airports and seaside as well.
Rubber Tire Gantry Crane
This is used for the stacking and lifting of heavy containers. It works much like other gantry cranes but is more versatile compared to the latter owing to their rubber tires. They can thus be used in virtually all work environments dealing with containers. Moreover, the tires have a minimal negative impact, even on delicate surfaces like airport runways.
Forklift Trucks, and Reach Stackers
These are used in container terminals for handling the storage of the containers. Forklift trucks are vehicles with fitted forks and wide masts that are mounted into your containers’ slots when lifting, moving, and stacking them. Reach stackers are comprised of steering mechanisms, arms with attached spreaders, and counterweights. These are used to pile empty and loaded containers in rows.
These machines are not as easy to pick and install as the above tidbits might have you believe. You need an expert to assess your needs and recommend the machines that will work best for your containers’ transportation and handling. Moreover, you should pick the machine made by a knowledgeable manufacturer with years of experience and a solid reputation in the industry.