The Importance of Crane Safety and the Steps You Should Take

Cranes have come a long way from what they once were. No longer are they the clunky, rickety machines of the past. Technology has most of all improved their speed, strength, and capacity, over the years, at the same time making them lighter and easier to operate. Cranes have become an absolute necessity in several industries. They can make your job easier; however, cranes are more commonly the cause of on-the-job accidents than any other heavy equipment. They account for more than 20% of all deaths associated with construction jobs.

The truth is, many of these fatalities are preventable. With a little more awareness, proper equipment maintenance, and less carelessness on the job, we might just see a drop in the crane-related deaths.

Crane safety is a key issue in jobs requiring such equipment. Job supervisors and crane operators must be knowledgeable about everything that concerns the mechanics and functions of their assigned crane. It is highly advisable that everyone involved in the hands-on use of the crane read the manual and receive thorough instructions prior to using the machine on their own. They also need to be well aware of crane safety and its maintenance. The crane itself must be adequate for the task at hand. If your load exceeds the crane’s weight limit, then you are using the crane in a dangerous manner. This equipment needs to be operated as directed by the manufacturer. Improvisation is not advised.

To ensure crane safety, all overhead obstacles must be removed for adequate clearance. The crane must be set up on a solid and level surface, capable of supporting the equipment and added payload. Crane use and operation requires advanced and careful planning. All tools and equipment at the workplace should be placed in an area that is not prone to causing injuries. These tips should not be neglected nor should it be approached haphazardly.

Crane operation must be closely watched, to ensure that plans and procedures are not being modified nor ignored. An unqualified person should never be allowed to operate the crane. The operator needs to have adequate training and experience to guarantee crane safety. They should be well oriented with the equipment, especially on how to read and use the instruments and charts, and should also have the math skills for calculating the loads. The crane operator needs to have good judgment and an ability to pay attention to detail, since he is the one in charge in deciding when and how to change crane speed and loads based on conditions at the site.

If all these conditions are met, the crane will always remain an important part of the job and will once again prove to be a safe and efficient piece of equipment.