Stage Equipment Load Testing In Manchester, Liverpool & North West

Load testing is a critical part of ensuring the safety and reliability of stage equipment. The load testing procedure involves applying a load to the equipment that is equal to or greater than the maximum expected load, in order to identify any potential weaknesses or failures – for example, a cable snapping, a winch failing or a pulley stopping – when someone is using the equipment. In standard use, it’s highly unlikely that a full load will be applied to any stage equipment and will more than likely be a much lower level.

Load testing should always be carried out by a qualified professional, and that is exactly where Taylor Stage Services are able to help. Ensuring that your stage equipment works safely and correctly is vital to ensuring the safety of your performers, students or audience.

When performing load testing, Taylor Stage Services will always start by checking the previous load testing report to see what was performed in the previous test and any reported outcomes.

Before performing the load test, we first need to inspect and service the equipment to ensure that it is all in full working order, paying special attention to identifying any potential problem areas such as bends or warps in tracks or loose fittings that could come free. After the stage equipment has been inspected and serviced, the load testing is then carried out on all equipment before a second inspection is performed to ensure that nothing has changed with the equipment and that it is all still in full working order.

Once the inspection and load testing have been completed, we will then provide a new report for company records that will be checked again when the equipment is due for it’s next test.

All load testing services are adapted to your own facilities, whether it’s a school drama studio or a theatre setup, ensuring that all LOLER (Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations) are met.

Load testing
Load testing

There are a number of different methods for load testing stage equpment, which depend on the type of equipment to be tested and the load capacity of the individual piece of equipment. We tend to perform three different methods of load testing, which are;

Static Load Testing – Static load testing is the procedure of applying a static load to the equipment for a pre-determined period of time. This load doesn’t change or move during the test and is simply designed to ensure that static fixtures, such as lighting rigs, can handle the load applied to them.

Dynamic Load Testing – Dynamic load testing is different, as instead of using a static load being held for a period of time, it’s more targetted towards things such as sudden impacts. Generally, dynamic load testing is performed on stage equipment that is expected to move such as scenery.

Repeated Load Testing – Repeated load testing is generally associated with equipment that is used frequently, such as rigging systems, and involves the repeated application of a load to the equipment to simulate the effects of repeated use.

By regularly scheduling load testing for your equipment, you can ensure that you are not only helping to prevent accidents and injuries related to the failure of your stage equipment but that you are also meeting the requirements and regulations in place. It’s also possible that your insurance company may require load testing to be completed as well, with the goal of putting safety first.

Load testing
Load testing

LOLER regulations state that any stage equipment that lifst people or accessories is inspected every 6 months, and any other lifting equipment is inspected annually. However, it’s possible that you look to undergo load testing more often than this and the exact frequency with which your stage equipment should undergo load testing depends on a number of factors.

Firstly, the type of equipment being tested will play a part in how often it needs to be tested. The age of the equipment also needs to be taken into account as newer equipment is less likely to experience weaknesses or failures in comparison to old or aged equipment. The frequency of use also plays a part in the required frequency of load testing as equipment that is used more frequently is more likely to experience normal wear and tear.

Proof load tests are also required when;

  • Any new lifting equipment is installed, before it is brought into service
  • Any equipment is repaired or altered in any way
  • After an overhaul or refurbishment to equipment
  • If the equipment has been out of use for a prolonged period of time
  • Following any incident occurring

Taylor Stage Services will ensure that all of your stage equipment meets all of the requirements and regulations for safe operation and use.

Load testing is incredibly important to ensure the safety and reliability of your stage equipment, and helps to prevent the risk of accident and injuries. Get in touch with us to schedule your load test.