Slide Rail Systems Offer Cost-Effective Trench Safety Option

By Jeff Griffin, Senior Editor | April 2010 Vol. 65 No. 4

“We consider our ClearSpan slide rail system superior in several ways. First, it leaves the entire excavation completely unencumbered by any cross braces throughout the entire installation or removal process. The system has shored excavation more than 50-by-50-feet wide and more than 30-feet deep without cross braces.

“Next, our slide rail system has an open-face inside rail. When the inside, deeper panels are installed in the posts, the open face rails on the post allows some ‘slack’ in the panels which helps prevent the system from binding when installed; and makes it easier to remove the deep-set panels which always sustain the greatest force or pressure behind the panel.

“Finally, our team of slide rail experts has installed more than 200 slide rail systems in every conceivable configuration, and in the trickiest site conditions.

“On a recent project in Indiana, Efficiency’s engineers custom designed a slide rail system for an excavation to install a drop-assembly structure for a 72-inch pipe storm sewer outfall into a river. The pit was in a highly-congested area with one side approximately three-to-four feet from a structure. A two-bay, four-sided configuration was used with ClearSpan waler I beams to provide an unobstructed opening of more than 28 feet.”

Pro-Tec Equipment, Tommy Marciniak, marketing
: “We have seen a continued increase in the use of the systems and the number of contractors willing to try it. Of course, each manufacturer wants to be able to separate itself from the others, and there are differences in some components, but for the most part, all the manufacturers slide rail systems will achieve the same goals; it is just a manner of how they are achieved that sets different systems apart.

“The Pro-Tec Equipment slide rail system is ideal for large clear-span operations such as installing large, cast-in place structures, single and multiple fuel tanks, for job sites sensitive to vibrations and jobs that have tight quarters. It is extremely versatile and can be made into a 2-, 3- or 4-sided system that can go to depths of 32 feet.

“The Pro-Tec P.I.T. Boss panel installation tool dramatically increases panel installation speeds, as well as reducing damage to the excavator bucket and slide rail panels.

“New for 2010, Pro-Tec has developed a four-way post that allows the system to do 90-degree turns.