Concrete Pump Manufacturers Association: Cooperation Produces Successful Test Audits 2006
- by Tom Anderson, CPMA President 2000-2005
The mission of the Concrete Pump Manufacturers Association (CPMA) is: “To formalize the guidelines for the design, manufacture, testing, safe use, inspection and maintenance of concrete pumps for the North American market.”
It’s been six years since our inception, and due to unprecedented cooperation between competing concrete pump manufacturers, we are nearly ready to say it – Mission Accomplished.
At the CPMA, we recognize the necessity to establish safety standards and promote them to the extent they become mandated by the industry. Our subcommittee has taken a hands-on approach to execute the most daunting and complex of tasks involved in achieving this goal: establishing a compliance auditing process for concrete pump and systems manufacturers.
This subcommittee, consisting of industry professionals Dave Smith of Con Forms, Jim Bury of Putzmeister America, Duane Remus of Reed and Rob Edwards of Schwing America, has spent over a year composing the criteria for the auditing process. This required several ‘test audits,’ executed by Smithers Scientific, Inc., Akron, OH, an independent third-party auditor, on products supplied by three of the industry’s top manufacturers.
Con Forms, a manufacturer of concrete pumping system based in Port Washington, WI was the first to volunteer, offering up their entire product line for test auditing. After close interpretation of the criteria and examination of the products, the manufacturer achieved CPMA compliance.
Schwing America was the second manufacturer to submit products for test auditing, presenting the subcommittee with their BPA 500 and WP 1000 X trailer pumps. Graduating from relatively simple system components to sophisticated machinery, the subcommittee took their time to ensure an accurate inspection was conducted and that the criteria would encompass all major trailer pump manufacturer designs. The BPA 500 and WP 1000 X earned the CPMA compliance certificate.
Most recently, the team conducted a test audit on the 28Z, manufactured by Putzmeister America. This pump was the first of two truck-mounted boom pump models to undergo test auditing by the association before the official compliance auditing process is enacted. In this case, the subcommittee was faced with composing more comprehensive criteria than was required on other products. Several months were required to produce a guideline that not only verified the safety characteristics of the 28Z, but that also encompassed all manufacturer designs. The Putzmeister model recently achieved certification, and as with Con Forms’ and Schwing America’s certified products, the product family will undergo subsequent audits every 24 months to maintain compliance.
Because of their complexity, the CPMA has elected to conduct one more test audit on a truck-mounted boom pump later on this year. Volunteered by Reed, the boom pump will undergo the same rigorous examination and consideration. Once this audit is completed, the CPMA will publish and promote a formalized guideline that will ensure the safe manufacturing and use of concrete pumps and systems. At that point, we hope the program quickly gains momentum.
I am grateful for the inception of this association and proud to be part of its history. Even as I resign from my position with the CPMA, I maintain the same optimistic hope for the future of this industry. My hope is that in a few years, customers of our industry’s products and services will demand the peace of mind that accompanies the CPMA certified safety seal.