New Linde forklifts aim to raise safety and efficiency standards

Published:  10 August, 2015

Linde Material Handling has added the option of an elevating cabin to its forklift range, designed for heavy forklift trucks in the load capacity range from 10 to 18 tonnes.

The cabin can be raised steplessly to a maximum height of 5.5m in less than ten seconds. From this position, the driver has an unobstructed view of the load and can drive forwards.

The elevating cabin is especially beneficial when it comes to stacking as well as the storage and retrieval of heavy goods, or when placing them into small loading docks, such as aircraft side loading doors.

Moving bulkier loads can be a problem for forklift truck operators when the driver’s view is obstructed, requiring operators to drive in reverse and leading to them adopting poor posture.

German accident prevention instructions (BGV D27) for industrial trucks stipulate that “the driver should reverse if, by way of exception, a front forklift truck is used to take and move a large load that blocks the view of the drive lane. Since the load cannot be kept in sight when driving backwards, the driver should refrain from reversing when loads protrude laterally beyond the forklift truck. Frequent reversing should be avoided, since the torsion effect will excessively burden the driver’s spine – especially in conjunction with vibrations.”

With the new elevating cabin, drivers can avoid reversing if the view in the direction of travel is obstructed. Driving forwards can be faster as well as safer, particularly over longer distances. Moreover, the risk of collision damage caused by loads protruding laterally beyond the truck is minimized.

The elevating cabin can be operated via a separate joystick or via four preset position buttons that can be individually programmed to a specific height. The cabin elevates at 0.24 m/s and can thus reach its maximum height of 5.5 metres in less than ten seconds. This position allows a full range of vision even when transporting long, bulky and heavy goods, Linde says. Automatic speed limiting, corresponding to the cabin height, ensures safe operation. The maximum speed of travel can also be reduced via the default settings.

Linde heavy trucks are also available with an alternative, rotating cabin, that allows the driver to manoeuvre the entire cabin by 180 degrees. This locates the load behind the operator to give an unobstructed view of the drive direction. In addition he can select any intermediate angles and view areas.

These rotatable driver workplaces have been developed for Linde electric forklifts in the load capacity range of 2.5 to 5 tonnes and combustion-engine Linde trucks in the load range from two to eight tonnes. Depending on the model and design, the driver’s seat including steering column and pedals can be continuously rotated by up to 90 degrees to the side so the driver is positioned sideways to the direction of travel.

According to a survey by the German Employers’ Liability Insurance Association of Trade and Logistics (BGHW), this feature improves driver ergonomics by around 60%, on top of helping ensure the safety of logistics staff.

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