Liftinghero Thomas: Doesn't let destiny get him down
Crane all-rounder celebrates 40 years
Thomas Andersson from Karlstad in the south of Sweden has been in the crane business for almost 40 years and is a true crane all-rounder. He worked with tower cranes as well as mobile and crawler-track cranes until an event threatened to destroy his dream job as a crane operator.
But more of that later; we want to tell you his extraordinary story from the beginning.
Thomas discovered his passion for cranes during his time spent working with indoor cranes. He set his sights high pretty early on and worked his way up to tower crane operator. For many years, he worked at dizzying heights with various top-slewing cranes of all sizes. In his eyes, the 550 EC-H continues to be the most impressive tower crane of them all.
Alongside his passion for tower cranes, Thomas has also always been interested in mobile cranes. In this area, it’s the LTM 1500 in particular that makes his heart leap with joy. His enthusiasm for mobile cranes led to his next adventure in the crane industry: he travelled all over Sweden and Norway as a mobile crane operator.
But then a life-changing event threatened to shatter his crane-driving dream. In 2017, Thomas was diagnosed with epilepsy, meaning that he was no longer allowed to drive cranes on roads. But luck was on his side and through state-of-the-art technology and his employer Jinert AB, in particular, a perfect solution was found. Without further ado, Thomas learned to drive crawler-track cranes. By being very aware of his body and taking the necessary medication, there are virtually no restrictions to his working day.
Plus, he has assistance systems at his disposal, which he can use in his work. An example of this is the innovative “Vertical Line Finder” assistance system. It ensures that the jib head is in a precise vertical position above the load to be lifted. This prevents the load from swaying and possible contact with obstacles and people.
All Liebherr cranes now offer diverse features to ensure that work is as safe and comfortable as possible for employees with physical restrictions. The new LiCAB offers several functions that enable operators to adapt their work environment to their individual needs. The ergonomically shaped control levers are also equipped with a dead man’s switch function. This means that they are highly sensitive to human touch and that the crane automatically stops as soon as the two control levers no longer register contact.
Seize the day, you only live once: Thomas’ motto aptly describes his life story. Indoor crane – tower crane – mobile crane – crawler-track crane: a fantastic crane combination. Thomas has never let his diagnosis discourage him and has really impressed us. We’re delighted that our crawler-track crane colleagues have such an ambitious and passionate crane operator among them.