Efficient maintenance made to measure in the railway workshop
SWEG relies on roof working platform from Munk Günzburger Steigtechnik for rail vehicle maintenance
Top efficiency and top work safety in the maintenance of multiple units in regional transport: this is exactly what SWEG Südwestdeutsche Landesverkehrs-GmbH achieves in the Pforzheim railway depot thanks to a 600 m2 roof-mounted work system that comes from quality manufacturer Munk Günzburger Steigtechnik. To enable the SWEG team to work on their Talent 2 regional trains on two tracks at the same time at roof level, the specialists from Günzburg installed an 84-metre-long walkway system consisting of three roof work stands with extendable platform extensions. These can be widened in a few simple steps and thus docked to the outer skin of the train with a gap dimension of zero and adapted to different train types. This allows the workshop team to take care of the maintenance and servicing of air-conditioning systems or pantographs with particular safety. SWEG employees are protected all around by a sophisticated safety concept with pluggable and laterally movable fall protection devices.
"Efficiency is the be-all and end-all in the railway maintenance workshop. Short downtimes are a must, but of course work safety must be guaranteed at all times. Munk Günzburger Steigtechnik designed and installed the perfect solution for our new workshop hall. We can react absolutely flexibly to different lengths and widths of the rail vehicles, and are always optimally protected during the work. Our ideas were implemented excellently in the development of the maintenance facility," says Thomas Schrod, workshop manager at Südwestdeutsche Landesverkehrs-GmbH in Pforzheim.
In the new maintenance hall in Pforzheim, the SWEG team has plenty of space for all activities on the roof level. The roof work stands were specially designed to create a total working area of over 600 m2. "This allows our employees to work particularly efficiently, because tools and also spare or wear parts can be stored directly on the platforms," says Schrod, who is also pleased with the integrated media supply: "The fact that we have all the connections for compressed air and electricity available on all the roof work stands saves on travel and, of course, time."
Freely movable guardrails
Six ingenious front guardrails, which are fixed to the sides of the platforms via cross-rails and can be moved freely over the total length of 84 metres, ensure maximum efficiency and work safety. Each is unlocked and locked with a hydraulic brake lever according to the dead man's principle. In this way, the cross railings can be forcibly moved in the longitudinal direction. By means of a manual cable winch, the guardrails can be lowered by approx. 500 mm if necessary. Their contour was precisely adapted to the shape of the Talent 2. "This way, nothing can happen to our team, even when working directly on the roof. In addition, we can position the fuses individually and thus quickly convert from the three- to the five-section Talent and back again. It really is a breeze," says Schrod happily. On the sides, the working area is equipped with plug-in guardrails with a height of 1100 mm, both inside and outside, so that the entire working area is always perfectly secured.
595 mm wide extensions
In order to be able to work on all platforms with zero clearance on the multiple units, the working platforms can be extended by up to 595 mm on each side of the train - quite simply with a crank on the steel column. Two six-metre-long platform elements are widened together via an integrated angular gear. Particularly smooth-running and ergonomic. Not only the workers have more space on the enlarged working surface. The seamless connection to the train also protects the tools from falling into the track pit.
Installation in the construction phase
Project know-how and flexibility were required for the installation of the roof work system. "Because the delivery and installation of the system still took place during the construction phase of the workshop, we partly had to wait for other trades and change the procedures. But that is exactly what distinguishes our team. We reacted flexibly both in production and during installation on site and proved once again that we are real experts in project management," explains Ferdinand Munk, owner and managing director of the Munk Group.
In order to achieve maximum stability of the system, the specialists from Munk Günzburger Steigtechnik attached the working platforms to the hall wall with brackets on the one hand and installed the columns of the steel structure in the hall floor on the other.
Many years of know-how
"I am very pleased that we were able to implement this complex project excellently. This is where our many years of know-how in the development of maintenance systems, especially in the railway sector, came in handy. We were able to adapt our sophisticated catwalk system precisely to SWEG's needs and ensure that the trains can return to the track as quickly as possible. Because it is precisely this process optimisation that is important in the workshop," says Munk.
Munk Günzburger Steigtechnik and SWEG made no compromises when it came to the safety of the roof work system. On the contrary. All details for a plus in work safety were taken into account: The entire running surface is equipped with non-slip aluminium and a slip resistance class R 11, so that it is possible for the SWEG team to work without slipping. The step-over plates of the roof work stands are strikingly painted in signal yellow. Each platform element can bear up to 800 kg.
Safe ascent and descent is also ensured: this is done via four staircases with 900 mm wide steel grid steps in anti-slip R13 design as well as continuous handrails on both sides. The top and bottom steps each have a yellow tread. Two emergency ladders, secured with a safety door, are installed on the third roof workstation. In addition, the entire system is electrically earthed.
Top occupational safety pays off
Ferdinand Munk is certain that SWEG will profit in the long run from its decision to use the catwalk system from Munk Günzburger Steigtechnik: "SWEG did everything right. Studies prove: Investments in occupational safety and prevention flow back more than twice," says the owner and managing director of the Munk Group. The study "Calculating the international 'Return on Prevention' for companies: Costs and Benefits of Investments in Occupational Safety and Health" found a cost-benefit ratio of 2.2 for occupational safety and health measures, so investments in occupational safety and health pay off more than twice. "The study has scientifically proven what we have been living in practice every day for many years. With our innovative solutions, users like SWEG not only increase operational safety and prevent accidents at work, but also increase efficiency and save money," says Munk.
About the MUNK Group
With its business units Munk Günzburger Steigtechnik, Munk Rettungstechnik, Munk Service and Munk Profiltechnik, the Munk Group is one of the most important suppliers of access and rescue equipment as well as suitable service solutions. As a technology and innovation leader in access equipment, the name Munk stands for safety made in Germany. The company is now run by the fourth and fifth generations of the Munk family - true to the motto "One family. One name. One mission".
In the MUNK Günzburger Steigtechnik business unit for access solutions, the MUNK Group carries over 2,500 products in its standard range, from ladders for commercial, public and private use to mobile scaffolding, platforms, stairs and bridging steps to custom-made special constructions. These include, for example, work and maintenance platforms, docking systems, walkways and assembly platforms, which, in the era of digitalisation, can also be automatically adapted to the respective environment using the latest control technology.
In the MUNK Rettungstechnik business unit for rescue equipment, the company offers access solutions and transport logistics for fire, rescue and disaster relief operations. These include, for example, multi-functional ladders, scaling and push-up extension ladders, rescue platforms, toolboxes, station equipment and a wide range of mobile containers. In the MUNK Service business unit, the MUNK Group bundles the areas of installation, testing, repair and maintenance of access solutions and rescue equipment, as well as seminars. The youngest business division, MUNK Profiltechnik, offers high-quality technology for individual and professional configurations with a functional and sophisticated profile system.
The MUNK Group is always drawing attention to itself with new ideas that offer customers real added value in practice. It has already received several awards for its innovations, its economic development, its responsible and sustainable actions and as a family-friendly employer. In 2022, the company was awarded the "Work and Family" audit by berufundfamilie Service GmbH.
The MUNK Group manufactures exclusively in its home region of Günzburg. It was also the first provider ever to be audited by TÜV Nord in 2010 with the certified proof of origin “Made in Germany” and grants a guarantee of 15 years on all standard made in Germany products. The Munk Group employs over 400 people at its headquarters in Günzburg and at the site of the Munk Rettungstechnik business division in Leipheim. The company recently invested 20 million euros in the development and expansion of its sites.