It's no secret that construction is a dangerous industry. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in 2011, there were 721 construction fatalities that were the result of everything from falls to backover accidents. One of the ways to reduce deaths and severe injuries is to make sure that all equipment is in good working order, including cranes. Perhaps the simplest way to do this is to execute safety inspections.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommends that employers conduct a crane inspection once a year. To do that, this federal agency advises:
1) Starting with a pre-inspection
Before beginning the actual check, OSHA says it's a good idea to collect some information about the crane operator. Watch him as he uses the machine and make sure that he is following all safety standards. Then, when both of you are free, ask a few questions about the machine's capacity and restrictions in place. You should also review maintenance and past investigation records.
2) Looking over the exterior
During this part of the check, there are several things that you should pay attention to. Examine the crane's stability, outriggers and structure, including the frame, track, boom and attachments.
3) Checking for electrical hazards
Keep in mind that cranes should never be kept under power lines. If they are, remember to move these pieces of equipment to a safer place right away, even if you think the lines are de-energized.
You may also want to consider downloading IndustrySafe's mobile app. This mobile inspections app allows you conduct inspections in the field, use a pre-built checklist, upload photos taken during the check and is compatible with iPhone and Android phones. Sign up for a free trial of the offline inspection app.