10/04/2006

Preventing Worker Injuries and Deaths from Mobile Crane Tip-Over, Boom Collapse, and Uncontrolled Hoisted Loads

Mobile cranes are used to hoist loads to meet various construction and
industrial needs. All cranes use cables and pulleys or hydraulics to raise and
lower the desired load.

The Us-American National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
has published an alert that provides recommendations for reducing risk of
work-related injury and death when working on or around mobile cranes. The
Alert describes six incidents r

esulting in the deaths of eight workers and
injuries to two workers.

CRANE OPERATORS should take the following steps to protect themselves and other
workers when operating mobile cranes:

  • Always use the crane manufacturer's load chart provided for each crane.
  • Be sure you know or can calculate the weight of each load.
  • Never use visual signs of tipping as an indicator of lift capacity.
  • Before beginning a lift,
            
    • follow the manufacturer's procedures for proper outrigger deployment
      to ensure that cranes are properly set up and level, and
              
    • make sure outrigger pads are supported on firm, stable surfaces
      before beginning a lift.

  • When multiple lifts are made from one location, such as during duty cycle
    operations, check the condition of the ground and blocking
    materials regularly and as often as possible to ensure the crane remains on
    firm, stable ground.
  • Always check for overhead power lines and other obstructions.
  • Avoid hoisting or moving suspended loads over workers and others within the
    crane's swing radius.
  • Barricade the swing radius to keep unauthorized persons from entering areas
    of pinch points.
  • Follow a written engineered lift plan for all critical lifts.
  • If you are under age 18, do not operate a crane or assist in tasks being
    performed on cranes such as repairing, servicing, assembling, and disassembling
    the machine.

Riggers and Ground Workers should take the following steps to protect
themselves when working on or around mobile cranes:

  • Never work directly under a suspended load.
  • Watch for signs of problems during each lift.
  • Always check for overhead power lines and other obstructions.
  • Barricade the swing radius to keep unauthorized persons from entering areas
    of pinch points.
  • Follow a written engineered lift plan for all critical lifts.
  • Follow the correct procedures when setting up or dismantling a crane. Make
    sure boom sections are blocked or supported before removing pins. Stay out from
    under the boom at all times if possible.
  • If you are under age 16, do not perform any type of construction or
    manufacturing work. If you are under age 18, do not operate a crane or assist
    in tasks being performed on cranes such as repairing, servicing, assembling and
    disassembling the machine.

EMPLOYERS should take the following steps to protect workers who work on or
around mobile cranes:

  • Make sure your work sites comply with safety requirements.
  • Conduct training to ensure crane operators understand safe crane operation as
    well as the principles of set-up, rigging, hoisting, extending the boom,
    swinging a load, pinching and crushing points, swing radius warning barriers,
    power line safety, etc.
  • Conduct training to ensure riggers and ground workers understand the hazards
    of working around mobile cranes and that they watch for signs of problems at
    all times, especially if power lines are nearby.
  • Develop and implement standard operating procedures (SOPs) for safely lifting
    loads.
  • Develop and follow a written engineered lift plan for all critical lifts.
  • When multiple lifts are made from one location (such as during duty cycle
    operations) check the condition of the ground and blocking materials regularly
    and as often as possible to ensure the crane remains on firm, stable ground.
  • Ensure that mobile cranes located on floating barges are positively secured
    and barge list (leaning or tilt) is accounted for.
  • Follow the manufacturer's recommended assembly, disassembly, and maintenance
    procedures when working on cranes.
  • Comply with child labor laws that prohibit construction and manufacturing
    work by persons under age 16 and that prohibits workers under age 18 from
    operating or assisting in the operation, repair, servicing, assembly,
    disassembly, and similar activities associated with mobile cranes.

Further Information


AplusA-online.de - Source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)