Page 14 - Wire Rope News & Sling Technology - August 2019
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continued from page 12             sion). This kind of training ex-
         operators for jobskills acquired on the   perience prepares operators for
         simulator which transfer directly to the   the real thing and it helps that
         real-world work site.              they have already experienced
           VRS allows trainers to change the   the situation so they are not
         weather in a moment’s notice, thereby   blindsided by it in  real  time.
         taking the trainee by surprise. This in-  Debbie  also  mentioned  that
         cludes simulations of wind, rain, fog,   more and more women are en-
         snow, and time-of-day. Also, the effects   tering the field of crane opera-
         of VRS can be so realistic that trainees   tors. Currently she estimated
         can experience nausea, especially with   that 95% of crane operators
         goggle-based VRS systems. Goggles are   are male, but this is beginning
         more appropriate for  crane  operators   to change.
         who  are stationary. With VRS based   Another training scenario
         on high-resolution flat screens, motion   she  cited was  learning  how
         sickness is not an issue.          to handle what the industry
           According to Debbie Dickinson, CEO   calls “Kill the Drift.” There
         of Crane Industry Services, a firm that   are times when a crane opera-
         offers training and consulting, “One   tor needs to change direction
         hour  in  VRS  training  equals  3  to  4   with  a suspended load. This
         hours of learning while sitting in an ac-  can cause  the load to start
         tual crane. Plus, safety is significantly   swinging like a pendulum. In
         enhanced and risk factors are greatly   VRS they learn  how  to stop
         reduced. Operators learn skills through   the pendulum effect and cen-
         VRS that make them proficient by ex-  ter the load. At Crane Indus-  A crane operator tests his skills at a CIS training facility.
         periencing problems, dangers and unex-  try Services most training ses-  Photo courtesy of Crane Industry Services, LLC
         pected events before they happen in real   sions run 30 to 40 hours. The
         time.” She mentioned several examples   training is so effective that they have   controls and operating procedures.
         from a VRS training session in her fa-  trained new operators who have never   David Clark, Product Marketing
         cility. In one case a female operator in   been in a real crane before and after   Manager at CM Labs, evaluated it this
         training found herself in a sudden, se-  completing the VRS training, they per-  way:  “Today,  the  professional-grade
         vere unannounced lightning and rain   formed expertly in a crane for their first   simulation  technology that  is  common
         storm scenario. The simulation gets to   time. Debbie made the point by adding,   in the aviation and defense sectors has
         the brain quickly as a real experience.   “Some of these operators can change a   ‘come down to earth.’ This is due to in-
         In this case she made a snap decision on   diaper with a hook.”       novations in simulation technology that
         her own; shut down the crane until the                                make high training value more afford-
         weather  passes  (the  appropriate  deci-  TRAINING IN VARIOUS WORK   able, as well as a more pervasive con-
                                            ENVIRONMENTS                       struction safety culture. Now, there are
                                              VRS crane training is excellently   construction  crane  and  heavy  equip-
            AS REAL AS VIRTUAL CAN GET
            Virtual  Realty  Simulators (VRS),   suited to operators who will run cranes   ment simulators that provide the most
           or Augmented Reality systems are   in complex and/or difficult spaces, and   realistic simulation of machines, wheth-
           helping crane operators experience   in  places where  a lot of other equip-  er they are excavating dirt or lifting a
           the reality of operating a crane with-  ment is operating and workers are all   load. As far as future developments go,
           out actually being in the cab seat.   about. These  working  spaces present   CM  Labs  is  working  in  lock  step  with
           These high technology simulators   many dangers to all concerned, so it’s   industry to incorporate innovations that
           make trainees actually feel as though   not only the training that’s required,   have come to the sector (in terms of on-
           they are operating a crane on a work   crane operators need a natural skill of   site execution as well as digital collabo-
           site while in a controlled, safe envi-  “sense knowledge” much  like  an ath-  ration), into our training solutions.”
           ronment. In a moment’s notice the   lete’s muscle  memory can make the   At this point in VRS training there’s
           simulation trainer can alter weather,   difference between success and failure.   no longer any doubt that its effective-
           rain, fog, wind, time of day, and mo-  Generally  speaking,  training  through   ness in training vastly reduces the risk
           tion, putting the trainee through the   VRS is better, faster and more effective   of injuries and fatalities, as well as dam-
           rigors of handling each scenario. Ex-  than most traditional methods espe-  age to equipment or property. David
           periencing how to respond to prob-  cially in this fast paced world.   also clarified that any time a novice op-
           lems, potential hazards and surprises   THE TREND TO REALISM        erator gets into the seat of a real crane,
           keeps the crane operator at his best if                             there is a risk that the unexpected may
           and when such conditions take place   In the military and aviation sectors,   occur, whether it’s a machine fault or a
           in the real world. We’ve come a long   simulators have been in use for train-  climate event. Simulators allow train-
           way from the Greeks who used ani-  ing for decades. Crane VRS training   ees to learn how to respond to the un-
           mals, manpower, pulleys and winch-  has been in  use  since  the mid-1990s.   expected in a controlled environment.
           es to lift and position loads. Pharaoh   Those early simulators were helpful, to   One of the other benefits that CM Labs
           Cheops would have given a right arm,   a degree, but did not offer very realistic   has experienced comes from clients
           or more likely someone else’s, to have   graphics. At that time the capability to   that mention how some new operators
           a modern crane and operator at work   simulate crane load dynamics was not   struggle to pass the certification exam.
           on his pyramid.                  very good. Also, training content only   And then, after spending just one day
                                            provided  familiarization with basic                continued on page 16
         14     Wire Rope News & Sling Technology   August 2019
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