Construction jobs are often regarded as highly dangerous. This isn’t without good reason either; most of the environmental conditions can be incredibly volatile. Every single person on the job needs to know about their site’s safety protocols. From those working on a structure, to those operating a crane, information has never been more critical.
In regards to the latter situation, operating a crane may initially seem challenging. However, with the right crane lifting safety instructions in mind, working the equipment can be relatively harmless. This is especially true when lifting the actual crane itself.
If you will be operating a crane anytime soon, make sure to keep in mind the following crane lifting safety tips:
Tip #1: Crane Lifting Qualifications
Before any sort of operation can begin, the right person has to be picked for the job. Heavy machinery, especially on construction sites, should only be handled by qualified professionals. This means that the right worker should have expertise on how to handle the vehicle.
You’ll never want to get behind the wheel of a crane without the proper experience. Not only is this a hazard to yourself, but it can be detrimental to your colleagues and the site itself. All crane operators have to know the control panels inside and out, along with knowing hand signals requisite to the job. That way, safety will always take precedence.
Tip #2: Crane Lifting Inspection
Once the right professional has been chosen, crane inspection is one of the most important crane lifting safety tips. This involves taking a meticulous look at all equipment pertinent to the vehicle. For example, cables should be examined, to see if any damage has occurred. Taking a look at the crane’s booms is just as important. You should also ensure all crane attachments are properly implemented.
The booms should be inspected for any potential cracks. Should you come across any sort of damage, however minor it may be, do not operate the crane. The equipment must be taken off, and moved to another area for servicing. Finally, ensure that all loads have properly been secured. The last thing you want is a load that exceeds its own limitations!
Tip #3: Ground Worker Vicinity
When you are able to get behind the crane, you’ll have to do so in a very careful manner. As it pertain to lifting, make sure that all ground workers steer clear of your crane’s relative zone. This entails keeping a safe perimeter from your colleagues at all times.
Workers who happen to be nearby your crane, especially during lifting, need to be communicated with. Proper hand signaling, if radios are not readily available, will be key here. The more informed everyone is about their respective jobs, the tighter their security will be.
Tip #4: Timing
Crane lifting is a delicate process that should be given respect. So, whenever a job is being planned out, always make sure that you are given enough time to conduct the lifting. Moving too quickly to complete a job lessens your ability to focus. On the other hand, lifting too slowly may impede on the ability of your colleagues to get the job done as well.
When operating a crane, you never want to cut corners just to finish a job. This puts you at a heightened risk, especially when working in an already dangerous environment. As the old adage goes, when you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Work together with your supervisors, so that you are given adequate time to operate lifting jobs.
Tip #5: Crane Distance
The crane’s load and lift limit is extremely important, in regards to the amount of elements it contains. Not exceeding the limit is important for overall safety. At the same time, maintaining a proper distance during operation is just as imperative. For the most part, keep the crane as close to the load being lifted as much as possible.
Tip #6: Load Heights
The same sentiment can be applied to the loads, when performing a crane lift. Keep the loads as low to the ground as possible; this maximizes safety when operating the vehicle. The more you raise the load off the ground, the more risk is attached to the respective movement. When in doubt, just keep it low!
Tip #7: Securing The Load
After the load has been safely lifted off the ground, your work isn’t done yet. You’ll have to properly stow all moving parts of the vehicle. This involves correctly stowing its mechanisms, such as the stabilizers and winches.
Tip #8: Review Safety Checklist
Above all else, continual review of a crane’s controls will increase your knowledge of the vehicle. After a lifting operation has been completed, always make time to review procedures and crane handling protocols.
When you are operating a crane, you have to keep safety at the forefront of your mind. This helps to not only complete a job securely, but helps everyone finish their day in one piece. Remember, you are always better safe than sorry!