A Crane Collapse Is One Of The Worse Industrial Accidents

by Terry Bryant

One of the worst industrial accidents that can occur on a worksite is a crane collapse. When one of these massive pieces of machinery fails, the results are often sudden and deadly. Towering lifters are responsible for handling tons of material in a single go, and though they can exert a tremendous amount of power, they are rather risky if they are not operated just right. In Texas, this is a scary proposition because the state does not require operators to be certified. In the wake of some of the worst accidents in state history, one of the primary causes was having poorly trained workers at the controls.

In most cases, when a crane collapse occurs, it’s because the lifter was used beyond its operational limits. For example, the July 2008 incident in south Houston that killed four workers was due to maneuvering the lifting boom at an angle that the boom could not maintain. This was, in part because the operator was not trained to manage different risky situations. In some cases, lifters are weighed down with additional counterweights and forced to pick up loads beyond their normal capacity. While the counterweights will keep the lift from tipping, it won’t keep the boom upright, which is usually what fails in these situations.

These accidents can be prevented if worksite safety managers observe proper measures during the setup and operation of the machine. Unfortunately, too many worksites willingly put their workers at risk.