Crane Industry Services, LLC (CIS) joined CM Labs Simulations at the International Construction & Utility Equipment Expo (ICUEE), in Louisville, Ky., in October.Crane Industry Services deploys Vortex simulators at its Centered on Safety training center for crane operator training and qualification. The company has found that it is a more affordable option for operators. Operators are able to transfer skills learned from a simulator to machine operation.
During the show, Debbie Dickinson, CEO of CIS, spoke to attendees participating in ICUEE Field Classrooms. Dickinson explained the importance of simulator training for heavy equipment operation used in utility work. “Traditional training requires seat time that incurs costs associated with equipment, fuel, supervisors, and riggers. Simulation training helps operators reach a reliable skill level without those costs, as well as an opportunity to learn in a risk-free environment,” she said. The next step CIS takes is to transition the operators from simulation to actual machines, where operators learn to control loads, place loads on targets, and react wisely to certain conditions. Then, Dickinson explains, “We often return from the crane to the simulator to practice skills that proved to be challenging in the actual crane.”
The ICUEE walking tour “Safety Tech Trek” highlighted the latest in construction technology. Instructor Abby Ferri, a safety professional and President of The Ferri Group, showcased exhibitors, which apply safety technology in the utility industry.
ICUEE’s Field Classrooms brought education and learning to the show floor, with content geared to those new to the industry. “The Safety Tech Trek was one of many subjects of importance to attendees, including toolbox and tailgate talks, disaster simulation and smart utility infrastructure. The Field Classrooms were curated by experts in the field,” said Brooke Konopacki, Director of Educational Programs for the Association of Equipment Manufacturers.
Participants on the Tech Trek Tour asked Dickinson how the simulator training time compared to training on a crane. “On average, four hours of crane seat time equates to one hour of practice on Vortex simulators from CM Labs,” she said. Once a strong foundation is established and skills are documented, CIS trainers are able to train on cranes or earthmoving machines. “There is no faster, safer, more expedient way to train heavy equipment operators,” said Dickinson.