There are multiple hazards that can arise regarding cranes and powerlines Most

There are multiple hazards that can arise regarding

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There are multiple hazards that can arise regarding cranes and powerlines. Most overhead crane accidents often occur when the crane is moving materials and the boom or hoist comes in contact with the powerline. This contact can energize the crane and the work area around the crane at the same potential as the powerline. The result is usually someone is electrocuted within the vicinity of the work zone of the crane. Just think, that one single contact with a powerline can result in the injury or death of several co- workers. The common causes of cranes contacting powerlines is poor safety planning, operator error, and preventative measures were not taken to avoid the potential of a contact. Risk assessment, job analysis, and training are the biggest deterrents in preventing any crane accident. The safety plan and pre-job briefing have to be followed word for word. Operators and employees should receive the appropriate training in safe work practices with overhead cranes to ensure that policies and procedures are understood and followed. In standard 1926.1408, OSHA outlines the safe work practices and defines the safe working distance of a crane when working near energized powerlines. OSHA goes on to provide a chart of minimum clearance distances for cranes and powerlines
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in standard 1926.1408(h). The standard rule is to maintain a 20-foot clearance of the cranes maximum working radius. The areas that are considered hazardous when working around an overhead crane is called the danger zone. This zone should be marked either by barriers, tape, or a temporary fence. This will clearly define a barrier for all employees that are working with and around the crane to be positioned so that the crane, hoist line, and employees do not encroach on the danger zone. Furthermore, some system of alarming the crane operator should be established, there should be several spotters placed in the operator’s blind spots, and warning devices should be in practice. In a perfect world, you would call the power company and request that the powerline be de-energized, but that is in a perfect world. Normally the power company could cover up the powerline with line hoses, if requested, which would help in reducing the potential risk of a contact with crane. In my opinion, training employees assigned to operate and work around cranes is the of the utmost importance. Ensuring that employees are specifically trained not only in the safe operating procedures of cranes, but making sure that the employees and operator understand the limitations of the work and equipment, are able to recognize the potential hazards, and the proper techniques to rescue employees or recover equipment is paramount for crane safety. Occupational Safety and Health Administration [OSHA]. (n.d.). Cranes and Derricks in Construction.
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  • Summer '14
  • Occupational safety and health

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