Length: 21 Min.
Safe Manual Winch
Practices and Procedures
Sample excerpts from the script:
Manual winches are frequently found on the barges and towboats of the Inland and Coastal Waterways to aid in making wire and synthetic rope couplings. These couplings can hold a single barge to a boat, or couple a tow of up to 30 barges together. Hand winches used for barge wire rope couplings typically have ratings of 20 to 60 tons. This rating is the holding capacity of the winch. The actual line pull that a crewman can place on a wire or cable may reach nearly half the rated capacity of the manual winch. The ability and training of the crewman to operate the winch as designed, will affect the amount of tension he or she can manually apply with a winch.
The following safe work practices are critical to avoid injuries during winch operations. For a winch to safely apply the needed tension to wire or synthetic rope, it must be used correctly. Wire rope and lines must be monitored so that the correct amount of tension is being applied. Individual crewmembers cannot typically apply enough force with a winch to go beyond the winch or wire rope ratings.The correct laying of the winch wire or synthetic rope is very important for safe hand winch operation.The winch cables must have proper leads that do not cut or chafe. Wire and synthetic rope must run out nearly perpendicular from the winch drum to deck or dock fittings.
The winches being reviewed in this program are all manual, and hand operated. The wire or synthetic rope on these models is tightened in the same manner. The key differences in the operation of these winches, involves the tension release mechanism. Following the specific correct operating procedures for each particular make and model of winch is critical for personnel safety.
We are demonstrating three sample models found throughout the Inland and Coastal Waterways to provide common examples of safe tightening and release practices.
This particular hand winch with a “foot brake” is an example of many winches currently found on inland and coastal barges and boats.
This model winch is equipped with a hand brake instead of a foot brake. The hand brake, located on the side of the winch, holds the winch tension when the load holding dog is removed from the gear teeth.
This type of manual winch is installed on Inland and Coastal barges and boats.This model winch is equipped with a load holding dog and a modified release lever. The hand lever will lift the dog out of the winch gear teeth using a cam-like action.This winch is outfitted with a manual, hand operated brake. The brake handle or wheel is found on the top of the winch and may be easier to use than the foot brake.