Tuesday, June 4, 2013

West St. Paul features manhole cover lifter

Everyone knows lifting manhole covers can be a risky job. Many cities have purchased a Big’s Easy Lift with a magnet or a long-handled extractor to get away from the old “pick and maul” method.

But one City did something very unique. With a little engineering know-how and a lot of ingenuity, the City of West St. Paul built their own truck-mounted manhole cover lifter!

This innovative system uses their existing snowplow rig on a pickup truck with a fabricated arm that quickly attaches to the rig.

With a combination of mirrors and a spotter, manhole covers are lifted with almost zero manual effort (only what it takes to crank the magnet locked).
 Thanks to Mike Salmanowicz, Street & Utility Superintendent at West St. Paul, for sharing this information. Mike can be contacted at

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