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I have just read the editorial artical (sic) in the latest edition iof (sic) 'Lifting Matters'. In the second
paragraph there is a statement, see below, that is incorrect and misleading;
"Under the standard, cranes are required to be checked periodically every three months, with major
certification and refurbishment compulsory at 10 years for mechanical and 25 years for structural
inspection to assess their suitability for continued safe operation."
I have reproduced the actual wording from Section 7 of AS 2550.1
7.3.5 Major inspection
The following cranes shall be subjected to a major inspection to assess their suitability for continued
safe operation: Published in the interest of promoting safety in the crane industry
(a) Cranes that have reached the end of their design life or, where this is unknown, after 25
years for the structure and 10 years for the mechanical components.
1. A crane’s design life may not be the same as its actual life and depends on such factors as its
classification, usage and its operating environment. Sharing an d Learnin g
As can be seen the limiting factor is the 'Design Life' of the crane not a calendar period. A particular
crane may not reach its 'Design Life' for a period exceeding 50 years depending on its usage or
conversely a crane that is used in a high intensity application may reach its 'Design Life' before it is
10 years old.
It is therefore important, in my view, that crane owners and regulators have a clear understanding of
what AS 2550 actually states, not the simplistic statement given in the publication provided, because
it could lead to serious accident/s if a crane exceeds its design life and remains in service because
of a misunderstanding. This may lead also to an expensive lesson if such a matter proceeded to a
prosecution after an accident.
Past Chairman of the ME/5 sub-comittee (sic) responsible for development of AS 2550
(Letter shortened due to space consideration—RDP)
To err is human; to blame it on somebody else is even more human.” - John Nadeau
All the organs of the body were having a meeting, trying to decide who was the one in charge.
"I should be in charge," said the brain , "Because I run all the body's systems, so without me nothing
"I should be in charge," said the blood , "Because I circulate oxygen all over so without me you'd all
"I should be in charge," said the stomach," Because I process food and give all of you energy."
"I should be in charge," said the legs, "because I carry the body wherever it needs to go."
"I should be in charge," said the eyes, "Because I allow the body to see where it goes."
"I should be in charge," said the rectum, "Because I'm responsible for waste removal."
All the other body parts laughed at the rectum and insulted him, so in a huff, he shut down tight.
Within a few days, the brain had a terrible headache, the stomach was bloated, the legs got wobbly,
the eyes got watery, and the blood was toxic. They all decided that the rectum should be the boss.
The Moral of the story? Even though the others do all the work.... MARCH 2010
The ass hole is usually in charge !
12 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 1
EDITORIAL in the lifting operation and when the pendant was on
top of the load, a button on the pendant was unin-
The world appears to be recovering from the economic crises it has gone through over the past year
tentionally depressed by a projection on the load,
in particular amongst the banking sector. That recovery has still to be felt however, in the crane
which caused the unplanned movement of the crane.
rental market where some companies have been forced to implement severe cutback measures and
the laying off of valuable staff to be able to survive until more prosperous times return once again. RECOMMENDATIONS
All recessions eventually end, and when this one does, industry must once again struggle with the The UK H&S regulatory body is requesting (via LEEA),
issue of how to attract people into the construction industry and keep them there in rewarding ca- that designers and suppliers of cranes take action as
reers. When business does rebound hopefully by the end of 2010, the companies that have made below:
great sacrifices to hold onto their skilled people during the recession will be in the best position to Operations & Engineering Ensure that instruction manuals make explicit
take advantage of it. that pendant controls should only ever be hung
Safety Communication Note
Young people are especially vulnerable in the workplace. Across Australia, 18-24 year olds are at and not placed onto objects,
least 50% more likely to be hurt at work than older people, and young people are also more likely to SCN No: O&E/H&S/SCN/048
Date of Issue: January 2010 Suppliers should explain what actions an operator
suffer from an occupational illness says the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work. should take in the event of a temporary pause in
According to Canadian research, young, inexperienced workers are over five times more likely to be Location: Non-IPR Location
Notice Title: Overhead Pendant Operated a lifting operation if they need to let go of the
injured during their first four weeks of employment than other workers. And it's not just accidents that pendant, for example to check the slings or take a
young workers are vulnerable to: they are also at risk from more slowly-developing occupational Crane Fatality
health problems. SUMMARY OF INCIDENT
So despite the worldwide recession there will be many young people starting work across all indus- We have been informed indirectly by the Lifting Suppliers should take reasonably practicable
tries and services and they must be trained to be able to avoid accidents and ill health. Equipment Engineers Association (LEEA) of the out- steps to supply existing customers with the above
come of an investigation into a fatality involving an information,
There are many reasons why young workers are at risk. But they are all things that we can do some-
thing about. Employers, educators, health and safety professionals, policy makers, and young work- overhead pendant operated crane. The investigation Designers should review and revise, as appropri-
ers themselves - all have a responsibility to help keep young people safe and healthy. was carried out by the UK H&S regulatory body. ate, pendant control design, such as shrouding
Details of the location have been withheld. individual controls, or requiring 2 hand control for
There’s a real good cross section of articles this month. Space does not allow me to introduce them.
So much to learn from the errors of others. The event is described as a person being crushed operation.
between the load and a fixed object. This resulted Whilst the above is aimed at crane suppliers, Interna-
Your opinion and any queries and wishes you may have are extremely important to us! Let us know
from an unplanned movement of the crane, which tional Power has such equipment in use at power
what's on your mind. Please send your contributions to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us
was operated via a hanging pendant controller. stations and it is recommended that the above infor-
by phone on +61 7 3907 5800. (RDP)
The investigation concluded that the most likely mation is disseminated to those persons who oper-
cause was that the operator placed the pendant ate such equipment.
control on top of the load during a temporary pause Article supplied by Jason Taylor [email@example.com]
IN THIS ISSUE ON THE COVER
Editorial 02 Two Mobile “Obviously a major malfunction."
City centre death wish 03 Universal Steve Nesbitt, NASA public affairs officer, Jan. 28, 1986, shortly after the
C r a n e s space shuttle Challenger exploded.
Wind turbine accident in Germany 03 were used
Marine Safety forum: Lifting incident 04 to lift and MOBILE CRANE TIP IN DAMPIER
Crane rolls 04 replace the
axles on a A reader sent in some photos of a hydraulic crane that tipped over on a wharf in Dampier
Safety Alert: unsafe lifting 05
68T Tam- near Karratha, WA. It would appear as if the slew ring lock pin was disengaged and
Dropped Crane Stinger 06 with the outriggers in, it was only going to go one way—and that was over!
per Ma- RDP
Irish Safety Advice 07 chine for
Who trained him then 07 Queensland
New York crane owner to be charged 08 Rail, in the
Loading accident 09 Banyo Rail yard.
Safety Alert: EWP controls malfunction 09 One was a DEMAG AC-100 (100t All Terrrain)
which used 24T of counterweight and 17m of
Tower crane collapse in Israel 10
Double death wish 10
The other was a DEMAG AC-120 (120t All
Overhead pendant operated crane fatality 11 Terrain) which also used 24T of counterweight
Mobile crane tip in Dampier 11 and approx 17m of main boom.
Readers Letters 12
2 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 11
Tower crane collapse in Israel City centre Death Wish
February 5, 2010 January 26, 2010
We received the following photos from a
A tower crane has collapsed at a construction site in
reader who had received them from a cus-
Hod Hasharon, central Israel seriously injuring the 55
tomer. It looks like a typical UK town centre
year old operator.
and was apparently taken recently.
A 20 year old tractor driver also died at the scene, but
It looks as though the man balancing on the
it is unclear if he was in his vehicle at the time and
forks in the busy pedestrian precinct is plan-
how it relates to the crane accident. Local reports say
ning to work on the street lights. If so, one
that the crane collapsed from its base and that the
assumes that this is the ultimate responsibil-
weather was very stormy at the time with strong
The fallen crane ity of the local government?
While using a forklift as an access platform
The jib of the crane came down on two rows of shops but there were fortunately no injuries reported
is still way too common in most cases we
on the ground. At this stage there are no other details of what actually happened.
see the protagonists at least use a pallet or
http://www.vertikal.net/en/news/story/9533/ something to stand on and tend to do it
Standing on a forklift in the city centre
This case is amazing in that on a damp
looking winter’s day when the forks are likely to be slippery our man has made no attempt to create
a makeshift platform. On top of that he is working in public with no attempt to cordon off, if he slips
he not only puts his life at risk, but could land on someone below.
Even if he did not land on someone a fall from that height would cause incredible distress to passers
who might witness the resulting mess. Without doubt a Death Wish.
Wind turbine accident in Germany
8 March, 2010
The Jib came down across two set of buildings The badly damaged crane cab A serious crane accident in Northern Germany in-
volving the dropping of a large turbine rotor has
Rudeness is a weak man's imitation of strength. - Eric Hoffer (1902-1983)
The accident involved a 1,200 tonne Liebherr
Just because something is common sense doesn't mean it's common practice. - unknown LTM11200-9.1 erecting a large wind turbine in Hen-
nickendorf in Brandenburg at the end of last week.
Red sky at night, shepherd's delight; red sky in the morning, shepherd take warning. - unknown Reports are sketchy and the photos we have re-
ceived do not show a great deal of detail. However
local news stations say that a violent and unex-
Double Death Wish pected gust of wind caused the rotor to take- off
pulling the crane's boom and Jib with it, causing it to The crane remained stable
February 8, 2010 collapse. The boom, jib and rotor with its blades
came crashing to the ground.
Spotted in Austria recently, a man working on an outside lamp
committing at least two if not three sins that could so easily end in The crane remained stable but the turbine compo-
tears. nents are totally destroyed along with the crane's
boom and jib.
The lamp is almost nine metres/30ft from the ground and the job
is short.. so what does he use to reach it? A 10 metre trailer lift? It was purchased specifically for wind turbine erec-
A 12 metre boom lift? A 10 metre scissor lift? tion and was only delivered towards the end of last
Not at all, he makes do with a Genie GS1930 – an indoor eleva-
tor scissor lift with maximum working height of 25ft/7.5 metres. The men working on the ground were able to scram-
First of all he leaves it on the delivery trailer ….sin one, or per- ble to safety and were unhurt, however there are
haps using an indoor machine outside is sin one? then to get the reports that the crane operator may have been in-
extra bit of height he stands on the guardrail. jured while jumping from his cab, and photographs
suggest that part of the crane's boom fell onto the
One assumes that he did in fact survive the job in spite of setting cab almost destroying it.
Using an indoor unit outside, using it
the odds against himself. on a trailer and then standing on the Part of the crane's boom appears to have struck the cab
http://www.vertikal.net/en/news/story/9540/ guardrails - what an idiot! http://www.vertikal.net/en/news/story/9696/
10 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 3
Marine Safety Forum – Safety Flash 02/10 Loading accident
Issued: 2nd February 2010 February 2, 2010
Subject: Lifting Incident Two cars crashed into a boom lift as it was
During the offload of a supply vessel the squad members were about to lift a riser joint from the being unloaded in a busy street in Delray
deck of the vessel, they attached the riser which was 45ft in length and weighing approx 17-18 ton. Beach, Florida.
The slings were placed directly onto the crane safety hook, the riser which was heavy at one end The large telescopic boom lift was being
due to a double flange came up at a angle, one end was still on the deck whilst the other was unloaded in the dark at around 05:30 in the
approx 5ft off the deck. As the sling stretched (due to the angle) it became detached from the hook morning and was reportedly crossing the
resulting in the riser falling back onto the deck. highway when the cars crashed into the lift.
Amazingly those involved only suffered minor
Loading or unloading equipment on a busy
Most of the damage to the boom was on the platform
highway, particularly in the dark is highly
dangerous and should only be attempted
after cordoning off the area behind the truck with well lights as well as cones or barriers. There have
been a number of fatalities in recent years while unloading aerial lifts, cranes and telehandlers.
Re-enactment of sling position Risers pre-slung SAFETY ALERT
HAZARDS IDENTIFIED Issued by: Health Safety and Environment
Number 31: 28 January 2010
Potential injury due to incorrect slinging of lift (sling position and weight distribution
Elevated work platform (EWP)
Potential injury due to failure to recognise potential hazard
RF causes controls to malfunction
Potential injury due to inadequate supervision of lifting operation
An incident occurred where a hired elevated work platform’s electric
• Reaffirm the safe standards for lifting/slinging operations; all relevant personnel must be aware controls malfunctioned due to EMI (electromagnetic interference)
of their responsibility to fully assess lifts prior to offloading. from a nearby mobile base station antennas. EMI can also occur
• Squad Members must exercise their right to “STOP THE JOB” if they think it’s unsafe. near other strong electromagnetic fields (EMFs), for example broad-
• Live Safe Conversation (Toolbox Talk) to be re-visited if concerns are raised. casting towers, high voltage towers.
• Managers / Supervisors: Please discuss within your respective areas of responsibility. The malfunction occurred at RF field levels well below the occupa-
Article submitted by Mike.M.ODonnell@stos.co.nz tional exposure limit so Radman personal RF monitors will not pro-
vide a pre warning of a potential malfunction.
Crane rolls Current Telstra Fleet leased items are not impacted by EMI as they
utilise hydraulic controls.
January 28, 2010
An operator escaped injury yesterday after his
crane rolled down an embankment near Craven Managers of employees required to use EWPs near mobiles base
Arms in Shropshire, UK. stations or broadcast facilities.
The 40 tonne All Terrain crane was travelling on 1. Check with the Hire Company whether the equipment has EMI shielding on electric controls and has
an unclassified road behind Stokesay Castle when emergency hydraulic controls. Units with mechanical (hydraulic) controls are not impacted.
it got stuck and then rolled, coming to rest upside
down. 2. Where the equipment may be impacted by EMI (where in doubt, assume equipment is impacted), ensure:
The 54 year-old operator was in the carrier cab a. For radio sites, as much as possible that work is not undertaken inside strong EMFs by either
when it rolled but escaped uninjured. • shutting-down or powering-down the RF transmitter for the relevant antenna sector; or
The crane, which is owned by Direct Crane Hire of • positioning away from the RF field (for example, work in areas under the public exposure limit for
Sandbach, Cheshire, was heading for a sewage radio-frequency radiation, i.e., outside the yellow zone on radiation hazard drawings.
treatment plant to carry out a lift for contractors
b. All team members can operate emergency controls to facilitate rescue in the event of failure of the
Black and Veatch, at a site owned by Severn
The crane came to rest upside down
http://www.vertikal.net/en/news/story/9480/ Director Health Safety and Environment Article supplied by Andy Maloney [Andy.Maloney@bbsaa.com.au]
4 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 9
New York Crane owner expected to be charged with manslaughter
in 2008 Upper East Side crane Collapse
The owner of the city's largest construction
crane company is expected to be indicted
for manslaughter in the death of two work-
ers killed in an upper East Side disaster
nearly two years ago, James Lomma, owner
of New York Crane and Equipment Co., and
a top aide identified only as Tubor, could be
charged by Manhattan District Attorney
Cyrus Vance as early as Monday, sources
familiar with the investigation told The
Lomma, whose companies have contracts
at Ground Zero and dozens of other sites
around the city, owned two massive tower
cranes that collapsed in 2008 -- one on E.
51st St. on March 15, the other on E. 91st Investigators sift through the devastation for clues in the May
St. On May 30 --killing a total of nine people. 30, 2008 crane collapse on E. 91st St.
Lomma is being charged only in connection with
the deaths of the two workers killed at 333 E. 91st St. disaster, the sources said.
The District Attorney's office declined to discuss the case. Lomma is the only person to be prose-
cuted so far in connection with the crane disaster deaths. A building inspector, Edward Marquette,
was indicted for faking inspection of Lomma's crane on E. 51st St.
The dual collapses forced the resignation of Buildings Commissioner Patricia Lancaster and ex-
posed bribery, corruption and incompetence in the troubled agency's cranes unit. In the E. 91st St.
tragedy, the 30-ton monster crane snapped and crashed in a roar on the street, leaving crane opera-
tor Donald Leo, 30, and worker Ramaden Kurtaj, 27, dead in a tangle of steel and broken concrete.
Shortly after that collapse, the Manhattan district attorney's office seized records and computers
from Lomma's offices and launched a probe into whether the collapse was caused by a shoddy weld
that failed, causing the crane cab to shear off from the tower mast. As the district attorney's investi-
gation moved forward, the Daily News reported that the Chinese company New York Crane hired to
do the welding tried to beg off the project because it was not qualified but ultimately relented when
Lomma coughed up more money. The Chinese company agreed to do the job faster and cheaper
than responsible competitors.
Problems with the doomed crane surfaced a year before the collapse, when workers at a different
job site found a crack in its turntable. The city ordered work stopped and the crane dismantled. Beth-
any Klein, then head of the Building Department's cranes & derricks unit, revoked the crane's oper-
ating papers. But, despite Klein's reservations, the Buildings Department cleared the crane and
approved its set up at 91st St. Within weeks of the collapse, Michael Carbone, the inspector who
approved the set up, was suspended for neglect of duty. Leo, the crane operator, was set to marry
three weeks before he died. His father, Donald Sr., also a crane operator, called Lomma's prosecu-
tion "a house of cards that is about to fold." "In answer to the question about how I feel about Jimmy
Lomma being taken away in handcuffs, I say it's a start and about time. It will never bring my son
back...but it might finally be the beginning of paying real attention to the safety of workers who risk
their lives to feed their families." Lomma, who lives in a million-dollar home in Staten Island, was a
major force in New York construction and an influential advisor to the city Buildings Department. As
a member of the agency's cranes advisory board, he helped draft rules and regulations that gov-
erned his own operations and those of his competitors. He has owned contracting businesses in
New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and North Carolina, records show.
At the time of the disasters, he owned 11 of the 25 tower cranes in operation in the city.
8 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 5
Dropped Crane Stinger Key Learning’s:
Incident Date: 20 April 2004 Incident Time: 09.10 Enquiries determined this type of event has occurred
numerous times in the industry yet we are still learn- Safety latch
CSG: Petroleum Site: WA-255-P Country: Australia
ing by incident.
Incident classification: Near Miss
Actual consequence severity rating: L1
The manufacturer of the Type BK 22-8 Gunne XN2
hook can provide them with safety latch protectors
Potential Consequence Severity Rating: L4 Fatality
(lugs) to reduce the likelihood of this event occurring
Causes: (Why did the incident occur?) (Note: must specifically request this when ordering)
Whip line under
The hook opened when the (see photo 3).
safety latch of the Type BK
22-8 Gunne XN2 hook fitted Always look at work systems to identify better solu-
to the whip line swung back Gather Ring tions (ie. in this case, the hook below the whip line is Photo 3
against its own frame able to be removed entirely from the assembly con-
figuration with minimal operational impact).
Contributing Factors: Actions: (immediately / ongoing)
Additional causal factors) Top of Stinger
Immediate Actions Taken
Design of Type BK 22-8 Safety Latch Mechanism Crane stopped and whip line lowered to deck for examination - hook found in latched position.
Gunne XN2 hook in service Photo 1 / Drawing 1 Photo 2 / Drawing 2 - Post event Port crane hook was checked and found in good condition also.
did not protect the latch lock- Type BK 22-8 Gunne XN2 hook shown solution
ing mechanism from impact back on it’s own frame with weight on 1) The Type BK 22-8 Gunne XN2 hook
The Gather (or Master) ring was connected directly to the whip line fitting under the headache
safety latch enabling disengagement of was removed from the whip line. 2) The ball (see photo 2).
lock mechanism. Gather (or Master) ring was connected
directly to the whip line fitting under the
Safety meeting held to inform all personnel.
headache ball. Ongoing Corrective Actions
The starboard crane had a stinger at-
tached to the whip line hook (Type BK 22 Consult with crane manufacturer to determine merit of extending the length of the pennant wire
-8 Gunne XN2). under the headache ball to negate the need to attach stingers.
After landing a load, the crane with Permanent Corrective Actions
stinger attached (no load) was being Standardise stinger assembly configuration across all contracted rigs.
slewed round to the boom cradle when
Article supplied by Mike.M.ODonnell@stos.co.nz
the hook unexpectedly opened.
The stinger fell ~15 metres and landed Irish Safety Advice
on top of the riser sections racked on the
pipe deck. To be safe and stay
No persons were in the vicinity nor was injury free,
there any property damage. There’s a way that your
Note 1: The stinger assembly weighs worksite must be.
~40kg and consists of the gather (or Well set up, and inspected,
master) ring, a 5-metre wire sling and a With no hazard neglected.
BK hook/shackle fitting on the bottom. That your Best Guarantee.
Causes: (Why did the incident occur?)
The hook opened when the safety latch Don Merrell
of the Type BK 22-8 Gunne XN2 hook
fitted to the whip line swung back against firstname.lastname@example.org
its own frame (see photo-1).
Contributing Factors: (Additional causal
Who trained him then?
Design of Type BK 22-8 Gunne XN2
hook in service did not protect the latch Thanks to a reader visiting a small harbour in Cornwall in Decem-
locking mechanism from impact events. ber where he watched a few men use a forklift to replace a har-
bour wall timber and then an unusual suspended work platform to
Uncontrolled swinging of whip line
An unusual makeshift platform finishes
Pre and Post Incident Whip Line / Stinger Configuration http://www.vertikal.net/fileadmin/journals/ca/2009/ the job.
6 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 LIFTING MATTERS March 2010 7