Wednesday, June 18, 2008

June 19th, 2008

Montreal, Canada 1 dead. Left behind a wife and 3 year old. 44 year old Patrick St-Amand was killed while dismantling a tower crane jib. The reports suggest that he was working on his knees removing a jib pin when the jib shifted lifting St-Amand and causing massive head trauma.

It's critical that when you are removing pins that you follow the pins with a B&O, pictured above. You place the narrow point on the pin and drive the B&O with a sledge hammer on the flat end. When the pin becomes free the B&O tip is in the hole and you can adjust your tensions/balance with the crane until the piece is free and everyone will be safe. I've only seen a B&O fail once and it's when the tolerances were too tight to read the load and the written weight of the counterjib was severly (7,000 pounds) incorrect. Had there have been a B&O tool used, from the information reported, this posting would not have existed.
As I've reported before, always know your escape routes as well. I saw an apprentice iron worker removing a pin from the lower chord of a jib on uneven ground. He has his feet under the lower lacings so I walk by and say 'Frank, you don't want your feet there. That jib could come down when you get that pin free." He moved his feet. Five seconds later he gets warned by another person that he's doing it again. Five seconds after that we hear a groan and he is giving the hoist up high ball signal to the crane operator. I never did hear if he broke his foot because it was the second incident of him getting injured after being warned. He got his treatment and was sent down the road kicking rocks to the next job because cranes were too dangerous for him. Always, always know your escape route.

No comments: