Cranes are very commonly used for large scale construction activities. While absolutely necessary to complete construction projects, cranes are very dangerous and account for roughly 70 fatalities per year. Source: www.Osha.gov.
There are many different types of cranes. They may be mounted on a truck or fixed to the ground. Some of the more common cranes include:
- tower cranes,
- overhead cranes, and
- boom cranes.
Crane operations are very dangerous, not only to the immediate crane operators, but also to surrounding workers as well as bystanders. Whether it’s a crane collapse or tip over situation, crane accidents often result in fatalities as well as serious injuries. Below are three common types of crane accidents.
1. Collapse during assembly/disassembly
Cranes collapse accidents are one of the more common types of crane accident, and also one of the most dangerous. Considering the weight of cranes as well as the weight of the loads they carry, collapse situations often result in fatalities and injuries of multiple people. Workers below as well as other innocent bystanders may be injured in a crane collapse situation.
Cranes often collapse during assembly and disassembly, due to issues such as failure of a defective part or negligence in the assemby/disassembly procedure.
2. Tip over
Cranes can and do tip over, especially when the load exceeds the crane’s rated capacity, or the maximum working load permitted per the manufacturer’s recommendations under specific conditions. In addition, overloading a crane can lead to collapse.
Workers may come into contact with the load or the crane itself, i.e., getting hit or struck. These situations tend to occur because of an employer’s failure to properly train workers on safe crane operating procedures. Strike accidents often occur when workers are hooking/unhooking, guiding or receiving the load. In addition, the hoisting route/travel path of the load must be executed properly to avoid strike accidents. Again, due to the size and sheer weight of crane loads, strike accidents are often fatal or otherwise result in catastrophic injuries.
Determining the cause of a crane accident will often require the aid of a knowledgeable crane accident lawyer. Crane accident construction litigation is often very complex. Prompt and proper investigation, early on, can help strengthen an injured worker’s case.
Related crane accident posts:
- Can a worker injured in a crane accident sue the crane operator?
- Crane Accidents & Workplace Safety
- Construction Site Accidents Involving Heavy Equipment
Pennsylvania and New Jersey Construction Accident Lawyers
Jeff Laffey is passionate about workers’ rights and accident safety. Learn about his 2012 workplace safety presentation to union members in Philadelphia.
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