Friday, July 16, 2010

January 31st, 2007

Omsk Russia A 20 meter tall tower crane fell. The female operator survived the crash with a broken leg and was taken to the hospital.

The collapse again happened from the base area of the crane. The mast is clearly laying down on the ground. The article notes that the cause is presumed to be overloading. So let's suggest that these cranes in Russia are dropping due to limit failures. Why are they not addressing that? The beauty of running a tower crane was always, either the crane can make the pick, or it can't. There is no turning the key to make things happen. If everything is working properly, you cannot over load a tower crane.

One of my favorite over load stories comes from my area. The story as it's been told to me is that a self erector was unable to hoist a pallet off the ground. So the solution was to load the crane with a fork lift, then pull the fork lift out from under the load. This is ill-advised. You have hoist and moment limits for a reason. In this case, the load was far enough out that it existed for stability reasons. Shortly after getting the forklift clear, the crane tipped and came crashing down. Now I know that this story has a lot of validity. But I can't even find it locally in the news or otherwise. How many of these are we missing? Have there been 400... 500 tower crane accidents in the last decade? Sadly we'll never have the accurate number so that we can address it methodically.

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