Because of their maneuverability, and their ability to lift bulky components, straddle cranes are an essential piece of equipment for most precast concrete operations. They are used to transport products between the casting area, the storage yard and to load trucks. In order to select a straddle crane that is safe, efficient, dependable, and easy to service, consider the following questions: 1. How easily can the machine be serviced/inspected? 2. How versatile is the machine? 3. How well can the crane manuver about your present storage yard? 4. How sturdy/weatherproof is the machine? 5. Does the crane incorporate the latest technology? 6. Are maintenance manuals and other supplied materials complete and easily understood? 7. Are replacement parts readily available? 8. Does the manufacturer provide technical and maintenance support? Know the answers to these questions before you sign a purchase agreement. When selecting a straddle crane, make sure that it complies with all OSHA requirements.