Safely working with heavy equipment depends on a number of factors. In addition to trained operators and crews, the ground must also be prepared with mats to handle the weight and dimensions of heavy construction equipment and protect people on the site.

This is particularly important for cranes because they move large and heavy materials and must safely maneuver around the site. Using crane matting to create a level and stable work surface that cranes can rely on without the risk of buckling or sliding is a smart approach to creating a safe work site.

How Crane Matting Works

Crane matting creates a flat, stable work platform for cranes and other types of heavy construction equipment to maneuver on. Typically made from large timbers, crane mats can be combined (and sometimes even layered) to make a platform as large as you need to perform the work. They can also be moved around the site as the project progresses, which helps keep costs lower.

5 Reasons to Use Crane Matting for Heavy Construction Equipment

Even if your work site has a relatively firm surface, there are several reasons to use crane matting.

1. Lift Safely

Crane operation comes with inherent risks, and the more you can do to mitigate them, the safer your site will be. Using crane matting helps reduce the risk of cranes tipping over or load imbalances caused by an uneven work surface. You never know where there might be a soft spot, but with crane mats, the heavy equipment load gets evenly distributed to keep your work surface consistently level.

2. Protect People

Lifting safely helps keep everybody on site safer. When you use crane matting, loads are able to be moved properly without the risk of the crane sliding on mud, hitting nearby equipment, or getting mired in a swampy area.

3. Protect Equipment

When a crane tips it’s not just dangerous—it’s expensive. Damage to the crane, surrounding equipment, and nearby materials can have a major impact on the project budget. When used properly while employing crane safety practices, crane matting can help you prevent these unexpected expenses and project delays. A level work surface also helps keep equipment clean, which is important for maximizing its lifespan.

4. Protect the Ground

Cranes are extremely heavy, especially when burdened with heavy loads. This downward pressure causes soil compaction, disrupts ecosystems, and damages the plants below. Using crane matting distributes the weight to reduce this pressure and protect the ground. This is important for ensuring sustainable construction practices, Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) compliance, and reducing the cost and effort required for restoration.

5. Protect Your Brand

Large-scale construction projects are subject to public scrutiny. Creating a safe work site with crane matting reduces the risk of safety incidents and lowers your impact on the land. This helps keep your brand’s reputation intact.

Lifting Safely with the Right Site Access Partner 

When it comes to site safety, guesswork is never the right path. When you work with an experienced site access provider, we’ll help you determine the right types of mats to use for the job based on the type of equipment you’ll be using, the ground conditions, travel frequency, and more. Whether you’re buying mats or engaging us for access construction management, You can rely on our specialized expertise and our commitment to safety to ensure you get the right mats, in the right place, and at the right time.

Download our Access Mat Guide to learn more about the many types of mats you can use to safeguard and protect your valuable assets.

A Complete Guide to Selecting the Right Ground Protection Mats for Your Next Project