Job safety is a key concern for everyone. For pipeline construction however, local and regional regulations play a major role in the selection of equipment and this can vary by region. Add to this that many owning companies have their own requirements for equipment used on their jobsite. With this in mind, Cat pipelayers are designed with safety features that protect your pipeline crew in and around the machine regardless of where it is used around the world.
Cat Pipelayers are purpose-built to meet the unique demands of the pipeline industry. PipeLine Machinery International (PLM) presents the Cat PL series model line-up:
- PL61 Pipelayer: Lift Capacity 40,000 lb. (18 145 kg)
- PL72 Pipelayer: Lift Capacity 90,000 lb. (40 823 kg)
- PL83 Pipelayer: Lift Capacity 170,000 lb. (77 111 kg)
- PL87 Pipelayer: Lift Capacity 216,000 lb. (97 976 kg)
Standard safety features that the Cat PL series pipelayers all have in common include:
- Convenient steps, handles and guardrails that provide safe access/egress.
- Electronic fluid level verification at startup for coolant, power train, engine oil and DEF means you can make fewer trips up and down from the operator station.
- An operator presence detection system allows the machine to idle when the operator is not seated but locks out the power train to avoid unintentional movement.
- A Roll Over Protective Structure (ROPS) provides added operator protection for open or enclosed operator stations.
- Glass area of cab arrangement is maximized for visibility with improved sight lines around the machine and to the trench. A large skylight window with sliding shade provides a clear view from the seat to the boom and blocks.
- Improved machine center of gravity and lengthened track-roller frame with repositioned rear idler enhances slope capability by placing more track on the ground,
- Quick drop control will allow the load on the hook line to fall freely to the ground. This control activation is immediate and non-recoverable, used only in emergency situations for load release.
Rearview cameras have a dedicated display and add visibility around the machine. As of April 2018, this feature is now standard on all PL series pipelayers. There is the ability to add a second camera as an option. This camera will be magnetic based so that you can point it wherever you need extra vision, such as off the front of the machine, counterweight side, ditch side, etc.
An added safety benefit for the PL72, PL83 and PL87 pipelayers is that they are all built on the same operator platform. All controls, to include a single operator joystick control, are in the same position. This commonality means that you do not have to learn how to operate each individual model. The newest pipelayer equipment also offers operators added comforts that contribute to safety like a quieter cab, adjustable armrests and heated/ventilated seat options. A seat belt indicator light helps remind you to work safely. A durable access ladder aids with access/egress to the operator station and can be removed to minimize the machine shipping envelope. The new ladder system also features a grated top step, to provide added visibility to the trench. An ergonomically designed seat is positioned for enhanced visibility to the working area and for convenient access to the machine control lever, switches and pedals.
The newest PL61 and PL72 models were released in April 2018 with updates for added safety and performance. Features such as a rearview camera with dedicated display, ROPS in both open and closed cabs, rear window exit, and quick drop release function provide increase safety and more intuitive operation. In addition, the PL61 has a lower profile for the winch package, improving operator visibility.
Moreover, PLM offers pipeline industry specific technology that help pipeline contractors perceive, mitigate and manage job site risks to personnel.
- LMI V4 Pipelayer System is now standard on all Cat PL series pipelayers out of the factory from April 2018 and onward. This safety solutions wirelessly feeds load information to the operator, allowing him to know the weight distribution during the lowering-in process, reduce the possibility of stress on the pipe, know their footing and positioning of the pipelayer during heavy lifts, and reduce the possibility of tip-overs.
- The Winchsmart System is designed for that challenging, steep pipeline work with tow line cables between machines. To protect your crew and the equipment, Winchsmart System uses a 140k Load Cell to feed load information to a simple interface panel to make the operator aware of real-time conditions at every moment.
- Cat Connect® is an intelligent suite of hardware, software and dealer services that not only help you run a more profitable operation but improve the safety of those operating the machine.
- Cat® Detect for Personnel is a safety option available that determines the temporary, dynamic dangerous work zone.
- The Pipeline Safety Leadership Training program is the first of its kind, designed specifically for pipeliners with scenarios straight out of pipeline jobsites. With an emphasis on inspiring personal accountability and incident prevention, the training provides leaders at all levels insight in their opportunity to influence the attitudes, beliefs and behaviors that drive safe performance.
PLM supports the global needs of mainline pipeline construction worldwide with one-stop access to the most extensive purpose-built pipelayer equipment, expertise, innovative technology and training in safety and equipment operation. To read more about their pipeline construction safety solutions go to: www.plmcat.com/pipeline-solutions/pipeline-safety.