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In Germany at least a law mandates that every industrial truck must be checked prior to use. OSHA regulations in the United States also demand such inspections. To assist in doing this, Linde Material Handling, Aschaffenburg, Germany, is offering the Pre-Op Check App, which assists in performing mandatory inspections of a forklift using mobile devices including a smartphone or tablet computer.
Instead of answering question on a paper form, the app permits a forklift operator or logistics staff to answer the questions via the app. Only after the inspection is completed can the forklift be put into service.
The app permits the forklift operator to immediately document any damage or leaks by taking a photo using the smartphone or tablet that is running the app.
The answers to the questions as well as the documenting photos are wirelessly transmitted to a computer terminal for further processing by the app. Software is also available.
According to Linde, every fourth new forklift it supplies includes the connect Fleet Management Solution. Moreover, the software can be retrofitted on to forklifts previously supplied by Linde.
The Connect App can be used on Android-based mobile devices. Using the app, the vehicle is activated only if an employee has not detected any defects during an inspection and has answered all the relevant questions.
Questions that the forklift operator has to answer includes such things as status of tire pressure and tread, whether or not there is a proper amount of operating fluids, condition of the battery and external damage of the lift.
Knowing that each warehouse uses its fleet of forklifts differently, the app permits the fleet manager to come up with the questions and change them when necessary.
The app includes a reporting function. When the forklift operator has completed his inspection, the app will automatically send a report to the fleet manager as well as to a Linde Service Technician if the warehouse’s fleet manager requests it.
If the forklift operator finds visible external damage to the lift, he can take one or series of photographs of the damage using the smartphone or tablet. The photo or photos will then become a part of the report that is sent to the fleet manager.
If there is serious damage of the forklift, it can be restarted only after there is confirmation that repairs have been made and the fleet manager authorizes release of the lift for service.
The app allows for the use of various languages.
The app uses Bluetooth or WLAN to transmit the data between the vehicle and the Connect database. Linde includes a safeguard for protection of the data when it is transmitted using encryption algorithms. There is also data backup that any authorized user can activate.
The Connect Fleet Management solution has a modular structure meaning that individual function packages and modules can be purchased at any time.
The Connect product family includes four major function groups that are subdivided into modules. Access Control is available via RFID chip or PIN.
The Connect will gather data concerning operating hours of a forklift and detection of shocks and error code transmissions. So if you wish to have a detailed usage analysis of your fleet you simply activate the Connect analysis function group. Individual, automated reporting enables the fleet manager to evaluate and optimize the operating, non-operating and maintenance times for each individual vehicle.
Linde Material Handling is a member of the KION Group and is among the world leaders in the manufacturing of forklifts and warehouse trucks. It is also a provider of intralogistics services and solutions.