The Association of Loading and Elevating Equipment Manufacturers (ALEM) represents the interests of UK manufacturers and suppliers of loading bay equipment including dock levellers, scissor lifts, tail lifts and dock shelters. In this role, the Association is a member of the British Materials Handling Association which itself is the UK national member of FEM – the European Federation of Materials Handling and Storage Equipment.
ALEM continues to represent companies involved in providing equipment and services for the safe handling of loads. In fact, the issue of safety has been highlighted during 2016 with the introduction of a significant European standard and an important guidance document.
The first of these relates to EN1570: Safety requirements for lifting tables Part 2: covering lifting tables, serving more than two fixed landings of a building, for lifting goods with a vertical travel speed not exceeding 0.15 m/s.
Tim Rose of Loading Bay Lifts Limited, ALEM’s representative on the BSI committee, stated that, “If it hadn’t been for ALEM’s representation in Europe via FEM, no one would have known this standard was being progressed with the safety, design and application implications it had at the time. ALEM’s voice called together all interested parties to develop this standard in a much better and workable way, and in the nick of time!”
The second safety initiative highlighted by ALEM is the latest European guidance regarding the assessment of the safety and performance of vehicle restraining devices. Recently published by FEM, document EN 11.005 outlines guidance for the use of vehicle restraint systems to prevent ‘vehicle creep’ and unintended ‘driveaways’ during the loading and unloading of lorries, trucks and trailers.
The guidance document looks at the importance of a number of operational factors, facilities and products used within a modern loading bay. These include loading docks, dock levellers, platforms, traffic lights, transport vehicles and materials handling equipment plus the safety of loading bay operators and transport vehicle drivers.
“This latest guidance document from FEM is both comprehensive and highly useful to our members and, ultimately, their customers,” says Andy Georgiou of Stertil Dock & Door Products and President of ALEM. “Safety has always been paramount in the hectic environment of a modern loading bay and the unintended movement of a vehicle can be catastrophic. The views of ALEM members contributed to the drafting of this European initiative and it’s just the latest step in our Association’s ongoing campaign to drive up standards throughout the UK’s logistics industry.”
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