Case Study: Roll Out the Barrels — with Care

New Belgium Brewing Co., the third-largest craft beer brewer in the U.S., faced challenges with its loading docks due to a significant increase in production. The company's growth resulted in equipment failures, safety concerns, and complaints from employees about health issues related to the rough transition from the dock to trucks. Whole-body vibration from crossing the dock transition areas contributed to skeletal damage for lift-truck operators.

To address these issues, New Belgium enlisted the help of Arbon Equipment, a Rite-Hite company specializing in loading dock planning and design. Rite-Hite recommended replacing existing equipment with hydraulic dock levelers, Dok-Lok vehicle restraints, and a communication and control system. The new levelers featured "Smooth Transition" technology, minimizing the gap between the dock and lip, resulting in a smoother transition and reduced "dock shock."

The installation also included safety lips on the levelers to prevent lift trucks from driving off the dock, enhancing safety and preventing damage to products and vehicles. The vehicle restraints chosen, the Dok-Lok, addressed various types of dock accidents, providing added security.

The improvements led to a noticeable reduction in equipment damage, decreased complaints about physical problems from employees, and increased productivity. The smoother entry into trailers reduced the likelihood of product damage and loss, resulting in less downtime for cleanup and restocking.

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