What is a Loading ramp?
A loading ramp is a device used to load and unload goods on a transport vehicle. They are inclined in nature. This helps in loading and unloading the goods. They are highly durable and can handle the heavy stuff. Apart from using them for loading/ unloading goods, good quality ramps can bare light to medium machinery. For Example: In the Middle Eastern countries such as Qatar, Oman, Saudi Arabia etc., loading ramps are used to load/ unload cars. For safety and making jobs easy, they are also widely used in warehouses. Loading ramps come in various sizes. They don’t have a specific material from which they are made but, the best ones are made from steel. Depending on the type of job, loading ramps come in various designs. The designs are best suited to the purpose of the job.
The loading ramps also allow easy loading/ unloading from the ground. This is crucial, especially for warehouses that don’t have loading ramps built in them. Without the help of loading ramps, it becomes very difficult to load/ unload goods to and from the truck, etc.
Types of Loading ramps
Loading ramps are divided into two major categories:
- Heavy-Duty Loading Ramps
- Mobile Loading Ramps
Heavy-Duty Loading ramps:
This type of ramp is ultra-strong and durable in construction. This is because it is made to carry heavy loads. Keeping in mind the type of load they carry; they are more focused on load bearing rather than mobility. However, it does not mean they cannot be moved from one place to another. They can be moved easily but they must be disassembled first. When needed they can be assembled again and adjusted as per required. They come in different lengths and sizes. They vary from 2000 mm to 4000 mm to be specific.
Mobile Loading ramps:
Although capable of carrying a good amount of weight, they have an extra feature as well. That being the mobility of the ramp. These types of loading ramps come with wheels attached to them. This makes them easy to move. They can be moved at medium speeds. The durability and the strong build ensure they don’t wobble around while you carry them. They can be easily connected to the back of your truck. All you need is tow and a hinge. Such types of ramps don’t need a specific load/ unload site. They can be easily set up. The easy mobility of the ramp allows smooth loading and unloading at any place. Granted that the site you choose has enough space to fit the ramp and your vehicle.
Benefits of Loading ramps:
- Easy to carry
- Makes loading/ unloading jobs easy
- Safe to use
- Come in different sizes
- Don’t need special vehicles. Can be connected to the back of a truck
- Mobile loading ramps can be moved with the help of the truck’s towing mechanism
- Can be used to store stuff while not in use
How to correctly use a Loading ramp?
It is crucial to learn how to use a loading ramp before going near one. A lot of people face accidents with loading ramps just because they do not know how to use them.
- First, identify the correct type of ramp for your use.
- Position the ramp against the back of your vehicle.
- Make sure your ramp is properly hooked.
- Properly align your ramp by placing it flat on the ground.
- Lower the ramp to the bed of your vehicle.
- Attach the hook and tension chain repeatedly on both sides of the loading ramp.
- Chock the wheels of your ramp.
Another important thing to note is the maximum weight limit. Before loading your ramp, check the maximum weight limit for your ramp suggested by the manufacturer. If the load you wish to carry exceeds the maximum load capacity, look for another ramp. It may not seem to be that big of a problem, but it can be dangerous in the long run. Although ramps are strong and durable, they can break if you carry an excessive load over a long period of time.
An important thing to keep in mind is maintenance. Just like when we buy a car we maintain it, we should maintain our loading ramps to get the most out of them. Any piece of machinery performs best and for the longest time when it is maintained properly.
Loading ramps should be properly cleaned at least once every week. Debris can fall in the cracks and crevices of the ramp during loading/ unloading procedures. It should be properly cleaned at least once a week. A simple cleaning job on your ramp can take you a long way.
Lubricating the adjustable legs of the ramps can keep your ramps just brand new. They will be easier to lift and will remain smooth throughout. This will not only be good for your ramp but will provide you with a smooth experience.
Checking and maintaining the tire pressure of your loading ramp is crucial, especially during the summers. When under load, low tire pressure can cause early wear on your tires and damage them. Ever seen an 18-wheeler or a truck upside down on the freeway? It is mostly because of negligence to the tire pressure. Always keep your tire pressure up to date. Only fill your tires as much as they are recommended by the manufacturing company. Another important thing to keep in mind is tire condition. Do not drag worn-out tires till their last breath. Keep an eye on your tire tread and replace them when they show signs of wear. These simple maintenances will keep your ramps in optimal condition. Moreover, they will also keep you safe and sound.
Safety concerns of Loading ramps:
Even more important than the machinery itself is its correct usage. Loading ramps are built with safety standards in mind. However, human negligence can cause problems. When operating any machinery, be careful. People who work around ramps face the following security issues:
Ramp falling on workers under it
This issue is caused because of poor installation. Always make sure your ramp is properly installed before using it. Follow all instructions properly and review the safety manual provided by the manufacturer thoroughly. Moreover, always avoid going under a suspended load. Even if it is properly installed, one should not go under a loading ramp.
Avoid using ramps during snowy and rainy weather. Operating machinery such as forklifts on ramps while the ramp is slippery can cause a safety hazard. Dry conditions are best for using loading ramps. Although they can be used during slippery conditions, extra caution should be practiced.
Improper use of equipment
Always make sure you are following the security guidelines when working on a ramp. Proper maintenance should be ensured. Only professionals should be allowed to operate machinery such as forklifts etc. If you are unsure about the safety guidelines of a loading ramp, consult the user manual provided by the manufacturer.
What Al-Safrik Steel has to offer?
Al-Safrik Steels manufactures loading ramps in UAE along with many other products. Our highly qualified team of engineers makes sure we produce only the best products. We use the best material to manufacture our products, loading ramps being one of them. We manufacture all sizes of loading ramps specially targeted toward the Middle Eastern and Saudi Arabian communities.
We manufacture and test our products to only provide customers with the best ones. Do you run a small business and need a mobile loading ramp? We manufacture some of the best quality ones. Do you need a heavy weight loading ramp? We use the best material that can handle enough weight for your jobs. We at Al-Safrik Steel take pride in our products. Not only because of the quantity we produce but mainly because of the quality of our products.
Frequently Asked Questions:
How do you keep ramps from sliding?
To keep the ramps from sliding, place a square of plywood on top. The legs of the ramp cut into the wood. It is enough to keep it from moving. If your ramp is experiencing more movements and the above-mentioned solution isn’t enough, use strong wood. The strong pieces of wood should be able to secure it against the wall and prevent it from moving.
How steep can a loading ramp be?
In case of heavy loads, the slope of the ramp should be within 3 – 5 %. However, if you are working in tighter spaces, you may increase the slope to an absolute maximum of 10%. This will work only for lighter loads.
How to secure ramps on a trailer?
Tie-down straps prove effective in securing ramps on a trailer. Tie-down straps also known as ratchet straps or cables are commonly used in this regard. However, if you can get your hands on an adjustable steel safety cable it would also get the job done.
How long should loading ramps be?
It depends on the type of job you need loading ramps for. However, in general, they can be anywhere between 20 ft to 30 ft long. If you just want to load an ATV bike or a car on the back of your truck, you probably don’t need this much of ramp length.