Crane Tipping Accidents Caused by Small Loads?

When we hear about a crane tipping over we often automatically assume that it was caused by lifting an object heavier than what the crane can endure. However, crane tipping accidents frequently occur with loads below the threshold of the crane.

For example, Crane Tech posted an article about a mobile crane tipping over from only a couple hundred-pound electric motor.  What caused the crane accident? The crane operator failed to fully extend the crane outriggers properly during crane setup. According to Crane Tech, “the length of the boom or the boom angle being too low” may also contribute to the occurrence of the accident. Either way, avoid this crane accident from happening on your job site by following the proper setup procedures and creating a thorough crane lift plan when necessary.

Here are some quick tips for setting up the crane prior to making any crane lift:

  • Check the access to the work area with special attention to ground conditions and overhead obstructions.
  • Use adequate matting and confirm outriggers are properly extended.
  • Double check the configuration of the crane noting the boom length, counterweights and boom configuration.
  • Confirm the radius and net load weight and compare to the load chart provided in the crane.

Whether the job consists of lifting a couple tons or lifting a couple hundred pounds the mind set should always be the same. Always ask questions before a crane lift.  

  • Is the crane operator certified and qualified?  
  • What is the expected outcome from this lift?  
  • What might go wrong and how can we avoid these problems?  

These are only a few of the keys questions for a successful crane lift.

Be sure to check out our YouTube channel for a wide variety of construction safety videos and follow us on your favorite social media sites.

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