G&M Safe Deck undergoes new load testing
Following feedback received at the Safety & Health Expo 2019 we have engaged in new load testing. Some visitors to the Safety & Health Expo who visited our stand asked us if the system could potentially take more loading than we currently have tested for. We always knew that we could with an additional support increase the loading capacity for the system. We have now undergone additional load testing. This has backed up what we already knew with test data from a UKAS accredited test centre.
What is Load testing?
Load testing involves applying loads to a component to ascertain what load it can take before and when it fails. All company’s that offer products that provide a working platform, a place of work or access or egress to or from a place of work must be able to demonstrate the equipment in use can safely take all the foreseeable loads it has been designed for.
New load testing – what we tested
We tested an 9 year old Safe Deck panel from the original production run of 1500 panels. We are not surprised to see that it performed as well as a brand new panel and withstood all the tests it was subjected to. The panel received a load of 7.5kN prior to failure. Also tested was an half panel of an similar age. This panel was tested along the cut edge which is the weakest edge. The half panel was able to take a load of 3kN at the weakest point without any support under the cut edge. It is standard practice for an installer to install an additional support under any cut edge. This is what we tested next…..
We tested a brand new Safe Deck panel. Consequently we applied a load with a centrally positioned support resulted in a massive increase to the load capacity of the 1m x 1m Safe Deck panel. Unbelievably it was able to reach a load of 16kN over a 50mm2 plate with out giving way! Adding an additional support centrally massively increases the working load far beyond what we thought it would.
So, what can it take?
G&M Safe Deck as a reputable company has to consider the way the system will be used by operatives. We aim to do this by applying a reasonable safety factor to any stated load capacity. This is likely to be 50% of the maximum applied load.