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MAJOR CONTRACTOR ALERT FOLLOWS CRANE INCIDENT

Mobile crane overturn investigation progress and findings made public

It has been reported by Demolition News that McGee Group Ltd has publicly shared post accident investigation findings by issuing a safety alert to ensure that its workers and those of its fellow demolition contractors are aware of a potential shortcoming in a key crane safety system.

The alert follows a incident on Friday 1st December on a major London project when a 130 tonne Tadano Faun ATF110G-5 Mobile Crane supplied by Baldwins Crane Hire collapsed. There were no injuries and no major damage was sustained to either the crane or any element of the structure.

McGee state that a number of issues have been raised “which relate to the inspection regime in respect of the crane rigging and the inspections carried out before the crane went to work”.

Lack of fail safe device is cause of company ‘alarm’

The investigation is ongoing however the company report that “early indications have revealed that human error was a main contributory factor”. The company told DN that:

The purpose of this alert is to raise the awareness on a matter relating to Load Moment Device (LMD)

Our initial investigations have revealed that there is no fail safe device fitted, beyond the LMD to capture wrongly entered data, as a consequence if the wrong counter weight detail is entered and exceeds that which has been actually installed, the audible and visual warning devices will not activate.

Both the crane supplier and ourselves have been in contact with several crane manufacturers and are alarmed to discover that this would appear common place.

To ensure that the crane operator enters the correct codes into the LMD to identify the actual counter weight fitted, it may be necessary to amend your procedures i.e. pre-use check sheets to include a provision for secondary sign off.

McGee personnel can refer to our safe operating procedures (lifting operations) which is available on our Livelink management system, for guidance on the new requirement.

One manufacturer has advised that there are various options available at “point of sale” that can be installed such as outrigger length measuring devices and ballast sensors, but current EU regulations do not require this.

We intend to discuss with the HSE changes required in the regulations to enforce the requirement for ballast sensors on all mobile cranes going forward. As previously stated, this investigation is still on-going and if any other pertinent information comes to light, we will advise accordingly.

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