10 Ways You Can Use a Tarp & Why Everyone Needs One

10 Ways You Can Use a Tarp & Why Everyone Needs One

Tarps, short for tarpaulins, are large sheets of strong, flexible, water-resistant or waterproof material, often cloth such as canvas or polyester coated with polyurethane, or made of plastics such as polyethylene. Inexpensive modern tarps are made from woven polyethylene; this material is so associated with tarpaulins that it has become colloquially known in some quarters as polytarp.

Fun fact: The word tarpaulin originated as a compound of the words tar and palling, referring to a tarred canvas pall used to cover objects on ships.

Tarps come in many different shapes and sizes and are classified based many different factors, such as material type (polyethylene, canvas, vinyl, etc.), thickness, which is generally measured in mils or generalized into categories (such as “regular duty”, “heavy duty”, “super heavy duty”, etc.), and grommet strength (simple vs. reinforced).

Since the mid-19th century, tarps have been put to MANY different uses, MUCH more then the 10 we’re going to touch base on today in this blog. However, here are 10 ways you can use a tarp, and why everyone should have one. After reading this list, you’ll be sure to have one stashed away, just in case!

1. Transportation

Of course, one of the most common and typical uses for a tarp is within the transportation industry. Here at Hercules SLR, we serve this essential industry in many ways including the sale of tarps (contact us if you’d like to learn more!). One of the most common uses of tarps within the transportation industry is flatbed trailer tarps. Flatbed trailer tarps protect cargo from weather damage and general wear-and-tear that highway travel can cause.

Types of Flatbed Tarps
  1. Lumber Tarps – Lumber tarps are used on loads that are tall and box-shaped. They have flaps at each end to cover the ends of lumber. Usually, two lumber tarps are used to cover a flatbed load.
  2. Steel Tarps – Steel tarps on the most commonly used flatbed trailer tarp. They are used to protect shorter and lower-profile loads, and also used in combination with lumber tarps.
  3. Smoke Tarps – Smoke tarps only cover the upper front portion of a flatbed load. This protects loads from getting covered in exhaust fumes and dirt.
  4. Machinery Tarps – Machinery tarps are designed to protect manufacturing or machine equipment from weather and road vibration.
  5. Coil Tarps – Coil tarps are commonly used to protect steel or aluminum coils and cable spools during transport. Their rounded top-half allows for a fitted cover over cylinder-shaped loads. The side flaps are more rectangular shaped and split in each corner to allow the transport chain to pass through.

2. Shelters/Tents

Many people consider tarps to be one of the handiest things to carry in their camping or survival bag. A basic tarp shelter can keep your head dry, it will help you conserve heat and it provides a sense of comfort and safety. Making a tarp shelter is easy and there are dozens of different ways and patterns to construct a suitable shelter with only a single tarp.

You can find many different ways to construct a tarp shelter but the A-Frame shelter is probably the most common. It’s made by stringing a paracord between two trees and draping the tarp over it. This shelter provides good rain and snow runoff and a good wind deflection. The downside of the A-frame shelter is that there is no floor, but you can solve that issue by, you guessed it, another tarp!

3. Water Catcher 

Another way a tarp can be a valuable part of your emergency preparedness kit is that it can be used to collect rainwater. People living off the grid sometimes use tarps to set up very elaborate rainwater collection systems – but even the novice wilderness adventure lover can experience truly living off the resources of the land while camping by collecting rainwater using a tarp. You can do this by securing a tarp to trees, allowing the tarp to dip down in the middle. Rainwater will collect here and can be consumed directly without needing to boil or purify the water. Most rain is perfectly safe to drink and maybe even be cleaner than the public water supply! However,  rainwater is only as clean as its container. So if your tarp is not clean or unable to stay clean during the collection process, you will need to boil and filter to ensure it’s safe to drink.

4. No More Weeds in the Garden

You can also put tarps to use in your yard! If pulling weeds makes you want to pull your hair out, there’s a simple solution – a tarp! Canadian farmer Jean-Martin Fortier recommends in his 2014 book, “The Market Gardener”, preventing weeds by laying black tarps on the piece of ground you’d like to make into your garden bend, before planting. It’s important to use a dark tarp as its dark color absorbs heat and warms the soil. The tarp will smother weeds before planting and also deter future one growing in the bed. Not only will this let you start your garden off with zero weeds, and limit the amount in the future but it will also improve the quality of the soil as well as attract earthworms tunneling up to the surface, and in effect, till it for you!

5. Dragging Heavy Items

As we mentioned above, tarps are used in many different facets of landscaping and gardening, including being used as a way to transport things around your yard! This one may be new to you, but tarps make it super easy to drag otherwise heavy and hard-to-move loads from one part of your yard to the other. Need to move a pile of dirt or leaves? Load it on top of a tarp and simply drag it to your next location. Find out how in the video below!

Pro tip: We would suggest having a specific tarp for these types of jobs or even retiring an old tarp for this use as you do run the risk of snagging the material on rocks or other debris on your yard, making it lose the ability to be used in other ways!

6. Covering Damaged Areas

Another way you may have seen tarps being used before is to temporarily cover areas of damage. One of the most common fixes people turn to a tarp to solve is a broken window. During the course of homeownership, you are bound to face a broken window at some point. Permanently repairing a broken window is not always an immediate option, but a quick fix will help keep weather and insects out until you can manage a more permanent repair or replacement.

7. Keeping things Clean

Tarps don’t just keep water out, they can keep just about anything out – including dirt, pet hair, small debris, and so much more! This makes tarps incredibly useful at keeping things clean. One of the most common ways this is put to use is within the car! Drape a tarp over your back seat and suddenly you have a totally spill-proof, dirt-proof, area to transport some messy things! Load the dog into the back after a day at the beach, or a pile of firewood on the way to the cottage and then simply remove the tarp and you have no mess to clean!

8. Blocking Wind & Creating Privacy 

While a tarp may not always make the most attractive wall, it can make a pretty effective one in the short term or in a pinch. Tie a tarp up to one side of a deck, to some trees around a campsite, or anywhere else where you’d like to block out the wind and create a temporary privacy barrier.

Check out the article which walks you through how to put of a temporary tarp wall anywhere, using a DIY support frame: How to Use a Tarp for a Privacy Screen


Tarps aren’t just useful, they can be fun! Check out this video where the “I Like to Make Stuff” YouTube channel made a video where he made a 100ft Slip N Slide using a tarps. While you don’t need to take on a project this large, a little water on a tarp in the backyard can lead to hours of fun.

Pro Tip: Have fun, but be safe! Never run on or around a wet tarp and always survey the area for rocks or other debris before sliding around.

10. Keeping it all DRY

And, of course, you can use a tarp to keep just about anything dry. Lots of people find out the hard way how much damage water can do, and having a tarp around can stop that damage in a moment’s notice. You never know when you’ll need to protect something from water and/or rain – so keep a backup tarp around just in case! Use it as a car or ATV cover, cover a load on the back of your pickup, cover a temporary leak on the roof of the shed, protect your plants from a storm and SO MUCH MORE!


5 Top Tips | Using Ratchet Straps Correctly & Safely

5 Top Tips | Using Ratchet Straps Correctly & Safely

One of the most popular methods for securing cargo, especially when it comes to shipping, is using ratchet straps – also known as lasing straps or tie-downs. Ratchet straps are the hammer of the transporters toolbox – with applications ranging wide from professional use to everyday common use. You may not realize it, but these simple straps are a large and important component in material handling.

As with any material handling equipment, it is important that you use it correctly, and take proper care of it. Your equipment is what keeps your load, yourself and your employees safe – so it’s your job to make sure it is set up for success! In this blog, we’re going to be sharing our 5 top safety tips to ensure your ratchet straps are being used to their full, and proper, compacity!

1. Using them Properly

When not used properly, ratchet straps can become damaged very quickly, and potentially cause road hazards. The proper way to use a ratchet strap is:

How to Use a Ratchet Strap

  • Step 1: Insert loose end of strap into mandrel of the ratchet
  • Step 2: Pull strap through slot in mandrel
  • Step 3: Pull slack out of strap to make strap tight
  • step 4: Crank the ratchet to desired tightening
  • Step 5: Make sure strap stays in line with other to avoid tangling/locking
  • Step 6: Lock handle down after tightening

How to Release a Ratchet Strap

  • Step 1: Pull trigger toward back handle
  • Step 2: Open ratchet all the way
  • Step 3: Webbing should release
  • Step 4: Pull webbing out of mandrel
  • Step 5: Pull trigger to unlock
  • Step 6: Close ratchet back down

2. Storage Methods

The working life of your equipment is affected by more than just how you use it – storing it incorrectly is one of the leading causes of damage. There are three main things you want to avoid when storing ratchet straps:

  1. Moisture – Storing ratchet straps is a place where they are exposed to moisture can cause it to mold and mildew. Mold can extremely weaken the strength of the webbing and the polyester can actually be destroyed, even in heavy-duty straps. This is a problem many people run into when choosing to store their ratchet straps in the back of their truck. This is also something to be aware of when using the straps in the rain – always ensure they are able to dry before putting them away.
  2. Direct Sunlight – Ratchet straps should always be stored in a dark, dry place away from direct sunlight. When exposed to harmful UV rays, they can get sun damaged – you’ll notice this by seeing the color of the strap fade.
  3. Friction & Heat – Exposer to heat, such as the sun, fire, or other heat sources can cause weakening issues. This can also occur if the straps rub against a sharp edge or other objects while in use. If you notice any burn marks in your straps, they must immediately be placed out of service.

3. Choosing the Right Ratchet Strap

You’ll need to consider the following when choosing tie-down straps:

  • Weight capacity (WLL – working load limit)
  • Length of straps
  • Type of hook: S-hooks, double J-hooks, flat hooks, and E-track systems
  • Whether you need extra security offered by tie-down straps that latch or lock
  • Whether you want extra protection for your cargo, vehicle, and straps

Weight Capacity of Ratchet Straps

One of the most important things to consider when choosing ratchet straps is their weight capacity. To get the right ratchet straps, you need to know the weight of your cargo and the total number of straps you will use to tie it down.

The weight capacity of a ratchet strap is designated by its safe working load limit (WLL), which is a measure of the maximum weight the strap can safely handle. To safely secure a load, the combined WLL of the ratchet straps used must be greater than the weight of the secured cargo. For example, if your cargo weighs 1,000 lbs and you are using 2 ratchet straps to tie it down, each strap must have a WLL of 500 lbs or greater. It is recommended that you always use ratchet straps in pairs.

Ratchet straps are also rated by their maximum load (or break strength), which is the amount of weight that will cause the ratchet strap to fail. The break strength is usually 3 times the WLL. You should always use the WLL to determine what ratchet straps are best for your application.

Length of Ratchet Strap

Ratchet straps need to be long enough to reach from tie-down point to tie-down point or from your cargo to a tie-down point on your trailer or truck. If the ratchet straps are too short, they won’t work at all. If they are a lot longer than you need, you will have long, loose ends that could get in your way. Even if you are using ratchet straps of the ideal length, there will still be a portion of the strap that must be secured so that it doesn’t flap in the wind. And because the same ratchet straps are often used for multiple applications, it’s almost impossible not to have long ends of the strap to deal with at some time.

4. Using the Right Amount

As we mentioned above, the industry standard is to use ratchet straps in pairs. Depending on the type of cargo you are transporting, there may be specific regulations as to how many ratchet straps need to be used. For example, if you’re transporting goods in pallets, boxes or stillages, you will need at least one strap per row. Or, if you’re transporting logs in a truck fitted with a headboard, you need to use at least one strap per bay for logs up to a maximum length of 3.3 meters with the bark still present. It’s important you look into regulations specifically for your region, industry, and type of cargo!

5. Daily Inspections Checking for Damage

Ratchet straps must be regularly inspected to ensure they are not damaged. Even “minor” damage can drastically reduce the strap’s capacity and increase the chance of failure during use.

The entire ratchet strap assembly must be inspected before each use and removed from service if any of the following are detected:

  • If the identification tag is missing or illegible
  • Holes, tears, cuts, snags or embedded materials
  • Broken or worn stitches in the load-bearing splices
  • Knots in any part of the webbing
  • Acid or alkali burns
  • Melting, charring or weld splatters on any part of the webbing
  • Excessive abrasive wear or crushed webbing
  • Signs of ultraviolet (UV) light degradation
  • Distortion, excessive pitting, corrosion or other damage to buckles or end fittings
  • Any conditions which cause doubt as to the strength of the ratchet strap

Hercules SLR can design and manufacture heavy or light duty ratchet assemblies that are weather and wear-resistant and will secure your load properly and safely.

All our tie-down straps and ratchet assemblies are manufactured from the highest quality proof tested webbing hardware. They can be supplied with any one of several standard or custom made end fittings to ensure that your load is adequately and safely secured. Larger ratchet assemblies are available in standard or long-handled versions.

Hercules SLR is here for you and all your transportation requirements! Load Binders, ratchet straps, tie downs, tarps, chains, ropes, slings, hardware and more. We remain open, while respecting the emergency measures put in place by our provincial governments and health advice.

We have set up specific drop-off and pick-up points in-store and you can call us ahead of time to make sure everything is ready before your arrival. Your safety is our priority and when you need us, we are here for you. Call us: 1 800 461-4876 or visit us online here to find the nearest branch: https://buff.ly/2FFkXMu


Product Spotlight | Hammerlock Coupling Links

Product Spotlight: Hammerlock Coupling Links

What is a Hammerlock Coupling Link?

Hammerlock coupling links are used for attaching chain to master links, eye type hooks, installing a new branch to a sling or just connecting components during chain sling fabrication.

Hammerlock coupling links should NEVER be used to repair hoist chain—No coupling hardware should ever be used to repair a damaged link of chain. This can present a number of safety hazards to the operator and possibly the overall hoist. In the case of hoist chain damage or ware, the chain needs to be replaced as one piece.

Hammerlocks are also not appropriate for lengthening chain. Once again, if you desire a longer chain, you need to seek out a chain that is fabricated to the correct length, using the correct links.

Assembly and Disassembly of Hammerlock Coupling Links

Hammerlock coupling links are a favorite of riggers because they can so easily be assembled and disassembles in the field using only a hammer and punch.

How to assemble a hammerlock link:

  1. Bring the two halves of the body together so the center connectors are aligned
  2. Position the bushing in the center of the hammerlock, aligned with the connectors
  3. Insert the load pin through the hammerlock as far as you can by hand
  4. Hammer the load pin the rest of the way in, until all material is flush on both ends


Did you know the bushing in the center is one of the most important parts of a hammer coupling link? Without the bushing, the load pin on its own will not hold the hammerlock coupling together at all – It actually moves quite freely within the body on its own. The load pin is tapered on the ends which allows the bushing to sit in place and hold the hardware securely together. The bushing contains a spring-like system that allows the pin to push through when hammered, but returns to an un-movable state once in place – Unless directly hammered again using a punch!

How to disassemble a hammerlock link:

  1. Place the hammerlock link on a raised surface, creating room for the load pin to exit the bottom
  2. Align a punch with the center-top of the load pin
  3. Hammer the punch forcing the load pin out from the center of the hammerlock
  4. Pull now loosened parts apart by hand – It’s that easy!

In need of an affordable and reliable hammerlock coupling link?

That’s where YOKE comes in—With YOKE you never have to sacrifice quality for price. Find YOKE Hammerlock Connecting Links for Grade-100 Chain at your local Hercules SLR. YOKE Hammerlock connecting links are made of alloy steel and are quenched and tempered for maximum strength, reliability, and durability with a working load limit of 8800 pounds.

Since 1985, YOKE manufactures durable, reliable & high-quality rigging hardware that keeps your load secure, and your team safe. They run a strict production facility, with a huge emphasis on quality control & safety at every stage of the manufacturing process—From raw materials to the finished product for the end-user, with facilities across the globe, in Canada, Los Angeles and China. To learn more about YOKE at Hercules SLR, click here.


A Look at the Towing Industry | Different Categories of Tow Trucks

A Look into the Towing Industry: Different Categories of Tow Trucks

Nothing puts a damper on your day quite like having your car break down as you’re trying to make your way through your day. When that does happen, you depend on towing companies to get your vehicle somewhere where it can be repaired safely. This is likely the extent of many people’s knowledge when it comes to tow trucks. They’re an industry that the everyday person wouldn’t think much of, until they are forced to Google the phone number of the nearest one, to save them from their rotten day.

Did you know there isn’t a one-size-fits-all tow truck? Towing companies often have a variety of vehicles on hand, each made for a different type of job. Tow jobs aren’t just limited to picking up small broken down cars on the side of the road, they also have to serve larger vehicles like RVs, box trucks and even the heaviest 18 wheelers. Even beyond the load size, tow companies have to be prepared to get vehicles out of hard-to-maneuver situations in the unfortunate case of an accident.

Tow trucks can be sorted into three basic types, light-duty, medium-duty and heavy-duty.

Light-Duty Tow Trucks

Light-duty tow trucks are used for the majority of incidents and are sent out to tow cars, motorcycles and smaller trucks. They are capable of performing a variety of tasks such as removing abandoned vehicles, private property towing and accident recovery. They have the ability to maneuver through small lots or parking garages, but usually stick to jobs that are located on paved and flat terrain.


Light-duty tow trucks are Class A vehicles that are often either conventional or rollback wreckers. They are capable of towing between 7,000 and 11,000 pounds and often rely on winch & cable systems and wheel lifts to do their work.

Medium-Duty Tow Trucks

Medium-duty tow trucks are used for heavier duty jobs involving vehicles like box trucks, RV’s and farm equipment. They are also the choice for certain recovery operations for smaller vehicles because they have a larger range of configurations such as: lowering platforms or landolls, automatic trailers, low-profile trailers, and boom lifts. However, since they are a bigger vehicle, they are not ideal for tighter environments like parking lots.







Medium-duty tow trucks are Class B vehicles that often feature some varying styles of flatbed. They are capable of towing between 7,000 and 17,000 pounds and feature at least a 12-ton capacity boom lift, 5-ton winch, and 5-ton wheel lift.

Heavy-Duty Tow Trucks

Heavy-duty tow trucks are the big guys. They are used for vehicles like garbage trucks, dump trucks and semi-trailers. These tow trucks handle the biggest loads and the most complicated recoveries. These are the tow trucks that vehicles like 18 wheelers depend on because not only are they capable of getting large vehicles themselves out of sticky situations, but also whatever that vehicle was hauling. They are also the tow truck used for vehicles that have gone off the road or down an embankment.

These are Class A vehicles that are required to feature at least a 25-ton boom lift, 25-ton winch and 6-ton wheel lift. They are capable of towing any load greater than 17,000 pounds!

The jobs that these tow trucks perform rely on more than just the truck itself. As we’ve mentioned above, each truck uses a different type of lifting and towing equipment. Especially when dealing with heavy-duty tow jobs, it’s extremely important that the tow truck is outfitted with high-quality lifting gear that won’t break under the pressure.

That’s where YOKE comes in! Since 1985, YOKE has been manufacturing durable, reliable & high-quality hardware that keeps your load secure, and your team safe. No need to choose between quality and affordability, YOKE provides top safety certified lifting equipment without the big price tag. Products like the Grade 100 Clevis Grab Hook, when used attached to wire rope or welded chain, is sturdy enough for the toughest tow jobs. When purchasing your towing gear, don’t sacrifice quality for price – Choose YOKE instead. Learn more about YOKE at Hercules SLR by clicking here.


ISO and Road Vehicles

roads and transportation at night

ISO AND ROAD VEHICLES iso and road vehicles statistics

DID YOU KNOW? Anyone who has driven a road vehicle of almost any make, almost anywhere in the world, will have directly benefitted from ISO 2575, which specifies the familiar symbols for controls and indicators we are accustomed to seeing on the dashboard. 

Who benefits from ISO standards for road vehicles? 

We’ve discussed ISO and energy, construction, the supply chain and we’ve debunked some myths – But what about ISO and road vehicles? Read on to learn why ISO and your vehicle are so important. 


ISO standards make driving a vehicle simpler and safer, while protecting passengers (especially children) and pedestrians, and lower the cost of buying vehicles.


ISO standards gives technical basis for regularly reviewed & improved legislation on things like safety and pollution. 


ISO Standards give specifications for safety, quality, performance and environmental impact. They set out harmonized requirements that enable outsourcing, fair competition, the participation of suppliers from developing countries and drive down costs as they facilitate competitive tendering. 

What do ISO Standards for road vehicles cover? 

iso and road vehicles






Much of the work in these areas is the focus of the ISO technical committee, called ISO/TC 22, Road Vehicles, which has developed more than 820 standards & updates worldwide. The committee’s made of 75 different participating and observing national standards bodies, as well as automotive-sector associations and international bodies such as the World Health Organization.

These standards aim to: 

  • Improve compatibility, interchangeability and safety
  • Specify the requirements for harmonized test procedures to evaluate performance.  

iso and road vehicles

Why do we need ISO standards for road vehicles?

why we need ISO standards for road vehicles

Electric Vehicles 

ISO/TC 22 Road vehicles has also developed a range of standards specifically for electric, hybrid and fuel-cell road vehicles. A number of these provide requirements for functional safety, test methods, on-board energy storage systems and measuring fuel consumption.

ISO 17409 Electrically Propelled road vehicles connection to an external electric power supply—Safety requirements 

ISO 234741, Hybrid-electric road vehicles exhaust emissions and fuel consumption measurements—Part 1: Non-externally charged vehicles. 

Intelligent Transport Systems 

Increasingly, road vehicles are being equipped with systems and networks based on information and communication technologies intended to improve safety, traffic control, navigation, fee collection and identification. Today’s communication capabilities give vehicles the potential to anticipate and avoid collisions, transmit their position to emergency services in case of an accident, navigate the quickest route to their destination, take advantage of up-to-the-minute traffic reports, identify the nearest available parking space, minimize their carbon emissions and provide multimedia communications.

ISO/TC 204,Intelligent transport systems focuses mainly on this area and has developed more than 220 standards*. 

*These include the ISO 15638 series on telematics applications for regulated commercial freight vehicles (TARV) and ISO 11067, which gives performance requirements and test procedures for curve speed warning systems (CSWS).

Tyres and Other Components 

ISO/TX 3, Tyres, rims and valves has developed 78 standards, including the ISO 4000 series on passenger car tyres and rims and the ISO 4249 series on motorcycle tyres and rims. 

Road Safety

ISO 39001, Road traffic safety (RTS) management systems—Requirements with guidance for use, developed by ISO/TC 241, road traffic safety managementis widely regarded as a major contribution to the United Nations’ Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020. 

Future ISO 39002, Good practices for implementing commuting safety management, aims to reduce the amount of fatalities and severity of injuries caused by road accidents, by providing solutions and recommending measures that organizations can use to protect their staff.

 Road-safety-related standards are also developed by other ISO technical committees, for example to make crossing the street safer for disabled persons. 

Vehicle Safety

With the latest technological progress bringing us everything from advanced navigation systems to driverless cars, putting measures in place to spot potential risks across the whole vehicle lifespan is more important than ever.

ISO 26262 (series), Road vehicles—Functional safety, outlines an automotive-specific risk-based approach to help avoid any potential system failures. 

Looking Forward

Cyber Security 

A quick look at your dashboard will give you an idea of how connected vehicles are – and it is only increasing. From your GPS to other gauges and sensors telling you when your tyre pressure is low, there is constant interaction between in-vehicle embedded systems that communicate wirelessly. As this interconnectivity grows, so does the risk of cyber-attacks, threatening not only our safety but our personal information. Work has recently started on standards to address these issues by providing recommendations and solutions for building cyber security into vehicles

Hydrogen Vehicle Stations

If fuel-cell, electric and alternative-fuel vehicles are the future, there need to be adequate stations for refuelling them.

A new technical specification, ISO/TX 19880-1, Gaseous hydrogen—Fuelling stations—Part:1 General requirements, will contribute to the proliferation of hydrogen fuelling stations by providing important guidelines on their safety and performance. It covers everything from hydrogen production and delivery, to compression, storage and fuelling of a hydrogen vehicle, and provides a useful stepping stone to an International Standard in this area, due to be published in 2017.  

This article originally appears on iso.org





INFO@HERCULESSLR.COM 1 (877) 461-4876  

Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com

Heavy Lifting with Hercules SLR | How we Lift More than a Million

820-ton splitter vessel alberta

You might have heard about the Splitter vessel that recently travelled from Fort Saskatchewan from Edmonton and was the biggest load to ever travel on Alberta’s streets and provincial highways. 

The vessel, called a Splitter, will be installed at the Heartland Petrochemical Complex—It’s used to produce polypropylene plastic. The Splitter is seriously huge, weighing 820-tons, or 1,807,790lbs and is 96-metres long. This is as long as a CFL football field and as heavy as the Statue of Liberty. After assembly on-site, it weighed 1,200-tons, or 24,000,000lbs. Yep, 24-million pounds. 

The journey itself took 4-days—a trip that normally takes just 45-minutes by vehicle. The vessel travelled through what’s known as “Alberta’s High-Load Corridor” and used guide vehicles, safety personnel and trailers & tires that evenly distributed the load’s weight. The city of Edmonton worked with the province for over a year to plan the big move.


The end of the vessel’s journey is where Hercules SLR steps in.

Hercules SLR installed the drill lines for the Splitter vessel. Drill lines are wire rope that’s multi-threaded or reeved through typically in 6-12 parts. They travel between the block and crown so drill strings can lower and lift in-and-out of a wellbore. 

Before the lift, Hercules SLR re-certified all their wire rope slings. Since this lift was so enormous, the risk was amplified. It is considered a critical lift—This means taking proper risk assessment measures is ultra-important to plan and ensure risk is minimized. ASME standards suggest you inspect your lifting equipment and hardware at least once a year.

Hercules SLR performed a rigorous inspection and calculated the lift to all risk factors. Since the rigging holds and secures the load to the crane, this is an extremely important step that Hercules SLR’s rigger’s take to ensure the load will be moved without damaging the equipment, running into obstacles or injure surrounding people. 

Check out photos of this enormous vessel and rigging below.

820lb splitter vessel drill line installation


















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Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies. We have a unique portfolio of businesses nationally, with locations coast-to-coast. Hercules Group of Companies provides extensive coverage of products and services that support a variety of sectors across Canada which includes the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, mining and marine industries. 

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com. Don’t forget to follow us on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn for more news and upcoming events.