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    US CRANE COLLAPSE UPDATE

    New York Crane rigging company face £123k fine  

    Federal regulators (OSHA) claim that the company raising a New York tower crane when it collapsed killing seven people, neglected to inspect the nylon slings used to hoist a crane section. One of the slings was damaged. A fine of £123k ($220) is proposed for the company, Rapetti Rigging Services Inc. Failure to inspect the nylon slings and notice pre-existing cuts and snags was one of three factors that led to the collapse.

    The citations issued by OSHA also accuse Rapetti of failing to follow the crane manufacturer specifications when raising the crane and failing to protect the slings from the sharp edges of the crane section. OSHA said “This case illustrates in stark terms that failure to follow required procedures can have wide-ranging and catastrophic consequences.”

    The other two companies cited by OSHA face possible penalties for a range of issues unrelated to the March 15 crane collapse that were uncovered in an inspection after the accident.

    Comment: The companies can defend these ‘citations’. If they are unsuccessful the fines will stand. Looked at from a UK perspective such fines appear very low for an event where failings caused 7 deaths including 6 members of the public. It is probably much less than the 5% of turnover starting point suggested for Corporate Manslaughter offences in the UK.

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