Edwards, David J. and Holt, Gary David
Mini-Excavator Safety: Toward Innovative Stability Testing, Procurement, and Manufacture.
Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, 137
Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)CO.1943-7862.00003...
Mini-excavators (m-excs) are commonly used in construction and allied industries to maximize productivity and reduce costs, but they present considerable health and safety hazards, the greatest of which is arguably their tendency to overturn. Assessment of m-exc stability is not prescribed in recognized standards and is primarily achieved using a “tilt-test.” The tilt-test has considerable limitations and its application in practice varies, indicating that procurers have incomplete information on selecting the most stable (i.e., safest) machine. The purpose of this study was to compare three types of m-exc stability tests (i.e., tilt, operational, slewing) and contrast these to determine the most reliable testing regime. From these results, an innovative mini-excavator procurement model is proffered that incorporates the assessment of machine stability and practical selection criteria. The effect of the study to date (and for the future) on encouraging original equipment manufacturers to engender innovative m-exc design and production is presented; and a call for the development of a new stability testing standard is made.
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