LOUISVILLE, Ky., – Winch producer Ancra Intenational introduced a ratchet cap winch that should make securing loads to flatbed trailers safer and faster.
They unveiled the “SilverCap,” calling it “a major advance in truck load securing systems,” at the Mid-America Trucking Show.
“SilverCap offers tremendous advantages to truck owners, operators, drivers and loaders by making the process of securing loads to flatbed trailers safer, easier and more efficient,” said Ralph Abato, national sales manager for the Cargo Systems Division of Ancra International LLC. Abato spoke during the 2005 Mid-America Trucking Show at Louisville.
SilverCap, said Abato, is the first significant advance in load strap winch systems since their introduction four decades ago. SilverCap eliminates the repetitive steps of inserting and removing a winch bar or other handle to winch down and tighten straps that secure a load to a trailer, he added.
With the patented SilverCap ratchet-cap winch, the winch bar remains engaged in the ratchet cap of the winch and the ratchet mechanism helps maintain the tension on the strap assembly. To secure the load, the cap is simply rotated freely in the opposite direction to position it for the next action to crank down and tighten the load. “SilverCap is a self-contained ratchet system that will stand up to the rigors of long-distance truck hauling,” said Abato.
The winch cap is permanently lubricated and the internal mechanism is protected from dirt and grime. A powder-coated silver-colored surface adds to the durability of the ratchet-cap winch.
The ratchet cap has a silver coating to alert drivers and loaders that the vehicle is fitted with the new technology. SilverCap exceeds the recommended industry standard and carries a 6,000 lb. Working Load Limit rating, according to company officials.
All Ancra truck trailer winches currently available can be fitted with the SilverCap ratchet head at the time of manufacture, Abato said. (They are not available separately.) The ratchet-cap winch can be used on trailers with slider, weld-on or portable systems.
“Safety is a major reason to move to this system,” Abato said.
The risk of injury – with its implications of lost work days and interrupted transportation schedules – is reduced because people loading trucks will no longer need the repetitive action of inserting and removing a cumbersome winch bar, nor be subject to winch bars suddenly snapping back at the user if the winch gear is not secure.
Also, by making the loading process easier, greater attention and confidence can be applied to securing loads, Abato said. Trucking companies can also reduce training time by using the SilverCap ratchet-cap winch, he said.
During just the past several weeks, shifting or loss of loads from flatbed truck trailers has caused highway accidents in Little Rock, Ark.; Camp Pendleton, Calif.; Dubuque, Iowa; Rockingham, Vermont; and West Vancouver, British Columbia in Canada. Roanoke, Va., has been the scene of a pair of accidents, Abato pointed out.
And in 2002, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), truckers accounted for nearly eight percent of the nation’s cases of non-fatal occupational injuries and illnesses involving days away from work. BLS’ latest report uses 2002 data.
SilverCap is one way that companies can help reduce truck-related occupational injuries, Abato said. “In addition to safety, SilverCap can help truckers secure loads faster and comply with the potentially tighter driver hour-of-service rules pending at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA),” he explained. “Running at capacity and facing further restrictions on time allowed for loading, SilverCap can help trucks and their drivers remain efficient and maximize return for hours of service,” Abato said.
SilverCap has been cycled over 112,000 times in a rigorous laboratory test that mimicked a lifetime of product usage, said company officials. SilverCap also underwent a test approximating ten years in a salt spray environment and passed easily. SilverCap is currently undergoing field-testing as well, they said.
For more information on SilverCap and the full line of Ancra cargo restraint products, contact the company at: Ancra Cincinnati, 2685 Circleport Drive, Erlanger, Kentucky 41018 or phone 800-233-5138. Or you can visit www.ancra.com for a downloadable full-color brochure on the complete line of Ancra cargo restraint products.
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