7 April 2014
Over the last 10 years the size and weight of glass and window units handled in factories, in transportation, and onsite has grown dramatically. This is partly due to the increase in double (and triple) glazing, and also the trend to making homes and work environments more open and light by the use of larger windows and glass doors.
Over this same period some markets (such as Europe) have adopted automated lifting and carrying equipment far more than some other areas (such as Australia and New Zealand). The key benefits of lifting and carrying equipment is speed to process items, reduced damage and hence rework, less fatigue and injuries, and adherence to health and safety. In my home town of Christchurch we have a major rebuild of the city underway in the aftermath of major earthquakes around 3 years ago. Enmasse European construction workers have come to Christchurch to help, and many comment on the lack of lifting and carrying equipment used on New Zealand sites.
Those that do use automated lifting and carrying equipment (and we have many of them as clients) say that they can't do without the equipment, and question how their competitors manage to get some jobs done. Every time I write a blog on this topic one of my Australian readers sends feedback on a trolley he uses to carry and move windows and doors, and how much better it is than the way others around him work.
You'd think the uptake would be greater. You'd think the number of enquiries we receive for quoting this equipment would be higher. You'd think the number of businesses that simply ask about what we could supply them would be more. Unfortunately this is not the case – there doesn't appear to be momentum towards change. I'm not sure why.