Is a Construction Crane Dangerous?
A construction crane is a massive, complicated, and yet crucial piece of heavy equipment for any construction site. Becoming a construction crane operator can lead a person down the road to a very long and comfortable career, but plenty of people who may be a great fit for the role have concerns about the risk of working on-site.
As a company that helps many people get their start in the industry, we’ve heard plenty of fears from prospective operators. The fact of the matter is that, like any kind of heavy equipment, a construction crane can be dangerous. However, with the right skill set and awareness, a trained construction crane operator can significantly reduce the risks they present. Here are a few of the dangers of working with a construction crane, along with how we make the workplace as safe as possible.
Risks of Operating a Crane
There are a wide variety of hazards that come along with operating a crane. Frequently, these dangers arise from improper usage or maintenance. For example, a large number of crane accidents are caused by overloading the crane beyond its safe capacity. When overloaded, a crane may suffer damage that results in a mechanical failure during operation. Additionally, the load may swing or suddenly drop when moved, potentially causing the whole crane to collapse or tip over. This creates an obvious danger to not only the crane operator, but to anyone else on-site.
Even if the crane is not overloaded, there is always the risk of falling materials striking another person underneath. Whether it’s due to inclement weather, an improperly secured load, or any other reason, falling materials are an ever-present danger with crane operators.
Finally, there is always the risk of accidental contact with an electrical hazard. Power lines must be carefully noted and planned around in order to prevent an errant arm from connecting with them.
Long story short, a construction crane can be a destructive and dangerous piece of equipment if used carelessly. That’s why it falls to the operator to do their job responsibly.
Mitigating the On-Site Danger
As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. In the case of construction crane operators, this boils down to two things: mindfulness and training. A crane operator must be aware of the state of their equipment, regularly inspecting the crane and administering any preventative maintenance before a risk can develop.
They must also be mindful of the area around their crane, making note of hazards both above and below. Simply being aware is not enough, though. It must be paired with a thorough and current education. With the proper training, a crane operator will learn not only the ins and outs of their equipment, but also the best safety practices that go along with it.
At West Coast Training, we strive to provide the highest quality education and hands-on training that you can find in the industry. As heavy equipment professionals ourselves, we know the difference that a well-educated crane operator can make on any site. We’ll ensure you’re an asset not just for your skills, but for the safe practices you bring to any job.