From huge mobile equipment such as craAll Postsnes to objects falling from heights, construction workers face on-the-job hazards every day.
Construction sites are often fraught with dangers of various kinds. From huge mobile equipment such as cranes to objects falling from heights, construction workers face on-the-job hazards every day. A serious risk that construction workers face is working with cranes.
Working with Cranes
Cranes provide a variety of essential services in many industries, including construction, manufacturing, transportation, and maritime. Cranes increase efficiency significantly, but at the same time, they pose a significant threat to the operators and others working around them. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), close to 70 percent of workplace fatalities each year are caused by cranes and other hoisting machines.
Work-Related Fatalities and Cranes
These deaths are caused by a variety of incidents ranging from tipped over machinery, fires caused by malfunctions,and falling loads. Because of the high percentage of accidents in relation to the number of workers that are exposed to cranes, OSHA has developed and implemented a variety of safety measures for crane operators. Safety features that can reduce crane accidents include:
- Automatic shutdown of crane in case of fire.
- Brake redundancy or having an extra brake in place that can be used in case of failure of the primary brake.
- Boom tip camera to minimize blind spots and increase visibility.
- Hands-off communication systems for the crane operator.
- Fail-safe brakes that engage automatically in case of control system failure.
- Two-way communication systems.
- Emergency stop command that overrides other commands.
- Hydraulic system to enable maintenance of hydraulic refilling.
Maintaining a Safe Work Environment
Proper worker training and communication are crucial in maintaining a safe work environment around a crane. It is important for workers to effectively communicate any problems and hazards that may arise and plans to executing work. Proper signage also plays a very important role in warning workers of any danger zones in the areas in which cranes are operated. Low visibility and blind spots can also increase the risk of an accident. Crane operators and other employees that work around cranes need to be aware of the risks associated with cranes so that they can avoid potential injuries.
St. Louis Work Comp Attorney
If you have been injured in a crane accident at the workplace, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. If the accident was caused by a defective, ill-designed or malfunctioning crane, then you may have a third-party claim. Ask for advice from a St. Louis work comp attorney. Call The Law Office of James M. Hoffmann at (314) 361-4300.