Craning Considerations

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Many crane accidents occur because the crane is used to lift more than its rated capacity.

The following points are intended to highlight the value of safety devices and help you avoid accidents:

Every crane is required to have load charts and the operator is expected to know how to use them. When was the last time you, the operator, studied the charts before setting up to make a lift?

Knowing the weight of the load is the single most important part of making a safe lift. If the weight of the load is unknown, how can you set the crane up in the proper configuration? The easiest answer to this situation is install a load indicating device on the crane.

Boom angle indicators are an absolute must. How can you use the load charts if you cannot measure the boom angle? If you do not use the load charts, you are guessing!

Setting the crane up level and on solid ground is an absolute must! You can throw the load charts out the window if the crane is not set up level, because you have changed the tipping moment. Setting cranes up on loose or unstable soil is just as bad. If the crane settles on one side, you have changed the tipping moment again.

Increasing counterweight or securing the crane with cables to avoid tipping situations is never an acceptable practice. When you increase counterweights to avoid a tipping situation, you risk the possibility of structural failure. If these operations continue for long enough, the repeated stress placed on the boom is certain to result in a boom failure.

Inspect your rigging daily or more frequently under demanding conditions. Ensure all hooks have safety latches. Lifting equipment must have their rated capacities, safe working loads marked on them.

A point to remember:

Crane accidents are generally serious and always expensive!


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