Manitou has created different operating modes in response to the new European standard for telehandlers.
Manitou has gone further in its response to the EN 15000 safety standard for telehandlers that came into effect on 1 October 2010. The French handling solutions company has not only complied with the standard, but has created different operating modes to boost user productivity, comfort and safety.
The company's EN 15000 project manager, Régis Marzin, says the scope of EN 15000, which applies to all of Manitou's telehandlers sold in Europe, was restricted to machines which had stopped moving and did not cover all the longitudinal tipping risks for trucks.
The EN 15000 prevents telescopic trucks from tipping forward because of the load it is carrying when the boom is fully or partially deployed and when lowering or deploying the telescope.
"They are therefore intended to improve the longitudinal stability of trucks, which carry out load positioning operations when stopped. We call this 'disconnecting hazardous movements'," Marzin explains. Only telehandlers that meet the EN 15000 standard will receive CE marking.
"As the EN 15000 scope was restricted to machines which had stopped moving and did not cover all the longitudinal tipping risks for trucks, we decided to look at all these risks according to the multiple applications offered by a telescopic truck," Marzin adds.
Manitou's risk analysis led its development team to create three different operating modes that it claims guarantee users "the maximum levels of productivity and comfort" according to their application.
The default "standard mode", which conforms to the scope of EN 15000, was developed for load positioning with trucks stopped. It is a regulated and progressive boom lowering system, whose speed is adapted according to the load that is handled. It shows the operator that the boom's deployment and lowering limit has been reached in relation to the load and cuts off any hazardous movements by the machine to avoid any tipping.
To prevent risks not covered by EN 15000, Manitou has provided a "bucket mode", which is adapted to picking up loose materials. The mode releases the platform tilting movements and the auxiliary line, enabling the operator to carry out all their loading operations in complete safety.
Lastly, the "suspended mode", which is the safety mode adapted to the use of the lifting hook, jib or winch, corresponds to "standard mode" with an additional safety margin of 10%, taking account of the dynamic effects of the suspended load. In this mode, the platform tilting is locked for more safety. To avoid immobilising the telehandler, in each operating mode it is possible to circumvent the hazardous movement disconnection by holding down a special switch.
Manitou is among the world's largest telehandler makers. In 2010, Manitou achieved a turnover of EUR838 million (USD1.188 billion).