New equipment is always being designed to make materials handling much easier on anyone who works in or manages a warehouse or production facility. The right equipment can make moving items not just easier but also safer, as relying on sturdy equipment rather than the strength of your workers can mean less risk of items toppling while in transit and less risk of physical injury for your staff. Note a few pieces of materials handling equipment that you may not have realized were on the market today and how they can make your facility run more smoothly and more productively.
1. Stair climbing appliance hand trucks
If your warehouse or production facility doesn't have a lift or elevator, or if your facility delivers appliances and other heavy objects to any facility that may have stairs, you need to invest in a stair climbing hand truck. This is a motorized hand truck that pushes itself up stairs rather than needing to be dragged up the steps. This in turn reduces fatigue on your workers and also doesn't rely on their strength alone to get heavy objects up steps. When selecting a stair climbing hand truck, choose one with industrial-strength chains rather than rubber belts for added durability, and be sure you note the weight limit before buying.
2. Wheel or tire dollies
Hand trucks can manage to hold many tires of varying sizes and weights, but a wheel or tire dolly offers added protection for tires in particular. These dollies are built with a type of dip that holds the wheels upright and provides a lip so that they don't roll off the dolly or hand truck. They may also have added straps for keeping them in place. If your facility transports tires, drums, canisters, or any such rounded items, don't try to keep stacking them on a standard hand truck but invest in a wheel dolly instead.
3. Pry bar lever dollies
A standard hand truck or dolly doesn't do much good if you're trying to move a large object that sits directly on the ground. A pry bar lever dolly is a much better option; this has a small prying surface that you can easily slide under a large shipping container or box or other such heavy and bulky item, and which may work with a type of hydraulic pump to aid you in lifting the item off the floor. This too can help you avoid having your staff try to lift items onto a dolly or hand truck when there is no room for it to be slid under the item.