Visible alert systems for live excavator machinery

Safety provision is a primary concern for operatives and the public, therefore all measures should be taken to establish an effective safety system.

Visible warning systems are effective in providing a clear message, to help maintain high levels of awareness and comply to the necessary safety procedures in place.

Below is an example of how visible alerts increased excavator machinery use on site:

  • Balfour Beatty’s current safety procedures require excavators to shut down when a pedestrian enters a excavation exclusion area. However new machinery technology does not allow an immediate shut down due to the cooling time required for turbo fans;
  • Therefore a new device was specifically designed which links directly into the excavator’s computer (so that it is tamper proof), which activates a warning light indicating the machine is still live;
  • The flashing light will not extinguish until the machine is either fully isolated or the ignition key has been removed. This avoids the common misconception of mistaking an excavator as shut down;
  • An additional benefit is a reduced need to stop and start the machinery, which in turn improves mechanical durability and lifespan;
  • This design was extensively tested and observed until it was granted approval for all excavators on this one particular site. The design is now currently being tendered for the award of one company to supply all Balfour Beatty sites in the future.

Footer Reference

Monitor report, Balfour Beatty, Tyne & Wear, December 2015


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