Lifting and Moving Equipment 141

This class provides an overview of the equipment used to pick up and move loads in the manufacturing workplace. Lifting and moving equipment includes pallet jacks, forklifts, air skids, conveyors, portable lifts, gantry cranes, and overhead cranes. The specific equipment used for an application depends on the weight of the load, as well as the location the load is being lifted from and moved to. Operating any Powered Industrial Trucks (PITs) requires special certification, and operating cranes requires the use of hand signals to communicate between an operator and a signal person.

Lifting and moving equipment is used in many facilities where loads are too heavy or cumbersome to be lifted by employees unassisted. Knowledge of this equipment and its various applications is important for a safe and efficient workplace. After taking this class, users will be able to identify various pieces of lifting and moving equipment, as well as identify when each piece is appropriate.

  • Difficulty Beginner

  • Format Online

  • Number of Lessons 11

  • Language English


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Course Outline
  • Lifting and Moving
  • Pallet Jacks
  • Forklifts
  • Air Skids
  • Conveyors
  • Moving Device Reinforcement
  • Portable Lifting Stands
  • Gantry Cranes
  • Overhead Cranes and Jib Cranes
  • Crane Hand Signals
  • Lifting Device Reinforcement
  • Describe the role of lifting and moving devices in rigging.
  • Describe pallet jacks.
  • Describe different types of forklifts.
  • Define air skids and their use.
  • Describe different types of conveyors.
  • Define and describe portable lifting stands.
  • Describe gantry cranes.
  • Describe overhead and jib cranes.
  • Demonstrate crane hand signals.
Vocabulary Term

air skid

A lifting and moving device that uses a cushion of compressed air to create a near-frictionless surface on which the load travels. Air skids can be used together to increase lifting capacity.

aisle sideloader

A vehicle with a forked platform on the side designed to transport loads through narrow spaces, such as warehouses. Aisle sideloaders are a type of Powered Industrial Truck (PIT).

belt conveyors

A conveyor that uses a moving strip of material to carry parts or other components from one area of a manufacturing facility to another. Belt conveyors are commonly used with irregularly shaped loads that should be prevented from sliding.


The railed, beam-like part of a crane that carries the trolley. The bridge may be built permanently attached to the ceiling or walls of a workplace, or it may be supported by legs.


A moving device that carries parts or other components from one area of a manufacturing facility to another using a belt, a screw, or a moving basket. Conveyors are commonly used to transport parts from production to packaging.


A machine for lifting and moving extremely heavy loads. Cranes can be driven manually or powered automatically.


A small Powered Industrial Truck (PIT) used for carrying, lifting, and stacking materials. Forklifts can transport heavy loads.

gantry crane

A lifting device with a bridge supported on two or more legs. On gantry cranes, the legs move across a workplace floor on fixed rails.


A lifting device that exerts vertical forces for lifting and lowering. A hoist may be part of a crane.


A horizontal arm that extends from crane. A jib may raise up and down, and may turn to provide horizontal movement.

jib crane

A crane consisting of a vertical post and a horizontal arm called a jib. Jib cranes allow more degrees of movement than other cranes.

lifting and moving devices

Devices that carry objects from one location to another. Lifting and moving devices include cranes, hoists, and forklifts.


An open space on the front of a pallet. Notches allow the forked platform of pallet jacks and forklifts to lift pallets.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

OSHA. A federal agency under the U.S. Department of Labor that ensures safe working conditions and helps employers reduce injuries, illnesses, and deaths in the workplace. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has developed rules regarding the operation of Powered Industrial Trucks.

OSHA 1910.178

A segment of the Occupational Safety and Health Standards pertaining to fire protection, design, maintenance, and use of Powered Industrial Trucks in the United States. OSHA 1910.78 requires certification of PIT operators, though the method of certification is left up to each state.

overhead conveyors

A series of suspended hooks or baskets that carry parts or materials from one area of a manufacturing facility to another. Overhead conveyors are often used to transport packaging but can also be used to suspend parts to be painted.

overhead crane

A crane with a movable trolley carrying a movable or fixed hoisting mechanism that travels on a fixed overhead runway structure known as a bridge. Overhead cranes are used to lift and move heavy loads.


A low, portable platform on which goods and materials are stacked for storage or transportation. Pallets are also known as skids.

pallet jack

A small, hand-propelled vehicle that uses a two-pronged steel fork to lift and transport pallets of items. Pallet jacks may be completely manual, or they may have an electric motor.

Portable lifting stands

A compact structure that is mobile and uses a sling to lift loads. Portable lifting stands are used when obstructions prevent the use of other overhead devices.

Powered Industrial Trucks

PIT. Any mobile, power-propelled truck, other than a construction or passenger vehicle, that is capable of carrying, pushing, pulling, lifting, or stacking materials. Common powered industrial trucks include forklifts, pallet lifts, and aisle sideloaders.

roller conveyors

A surface made up of small, close-set rollers that carry parts or other components from one area of a manufacturing facility to another. Roller conveyors are often used to transport regularly shaped loads at irregular intervals.

screw conveyors

A moving device consisting of a screw-shaped spindle that carries materials from one area of a manufacturing facility to another. Screw conveyors are used to transfer powdered or liquid materials to a workstation and to take scrap metal and plastic away from workstations.

signal person

In crane operation, the person who is responsible for communicating with the operator using hand signals. Signal people help guide the crane's attachment device to the load.

stock picker

A type of forklift with a platform that lifts the operator to manually manipulate loads. Stock pickers are often used in warehouses.


A three-legged support structure. Tripods support portable lifting stands and can be folded together for easier transport.


The part of an overhead crane or gantry crane that travels across the bridge on wheels and has an attached hoist . The trolley provides horizontal movement.