Contractor finds practical solution for improving productivity on school retrofit.

When electricians at Ron Jones Electric, Inc., Chicago, took on an extensive lighting retrofit at St. Charles High School's complexes in St. Charles, Ill., they needed to replace more than 2800 lighting fixtures and string more than 100,000 ft of electrical wire and conduit on a demanding deadline. To complete this rush job, the contractor used a fleet of 10 WaveWork Assist Vehicles from the Crown Commercial Products Group.

One of the primary reasons Ron Jones Electric chose the Waves was because the work assist vehicles provided a safer alternative for electricians than ladders or scaffolding. According to Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics, a high percentage of falls and collapsing structures cause accidents at construction sites, resulting in injuries for the worker.

"At all times, we must be very aware of worker safety," says President Terry Jones. "These Wave units provide a safer alternative than ladders or scaffolding."

The work assist vehicles also enhance productivity and reduce fatigue. "With a ladder, you would be going up and down constantly," he adds. "The Wave saves our workers a considerable number of steps and time."

Vice President Chris Hunter agrees, adding the units definitely cuts down on a worker's physical exertion, especially in the summer heat. "After two hours of going up and down ladders, you're probably working at 60% to 70% of your capabilities," he says. "With the Wave, you don't have that. You feel better and more productive."

On the St. Charles project, the Waves moved workers and their tools to specific areas throughout the large complex, eliminating unnecessary steps created by a ladder.

"The Wave allows workers to get in and out without a lot of hassle. That's one of its big pluses. You don't have to lift up gates or climb through railings to get into the unit," says Hunter.

According to Jones, this mobility saved the company the most money. At 30 in. wide, the units provided the necessary maneuverability within the school -- allowing workers to fit through doorways and hallways without a problem.