Part 2 of a 2 part series on wind hazards in the construction industry and built environment
OSHA’s take on wind as it pertains to crane operations is essentially threefold:
- Load charts do not generally take wind speeds into consideration;
- The crane manufacturer should be consulted if the operating manual doesn’t have wind speed information, and;
- Operating procedures, maximum allowable wind speeds, special hazards, warnings, and instructions need to be posted conspicuously in the crane’s cab.
Wind: it might be invisible, but it’s still one of the most audacious hazards a crane operator can encounter. According to ANSI, “Between 2000 and 2010, there were 1,125 tower crane accidents reported worldwide, resulting in over 780 deaths.” One of the main causation factors in those accidents was exposure to wind, which caused 23 percent of all accidents.
Wind is a big deal, and it’s a big deal that must be dealt with in every crane operation. In fact, crane manufacturer Liebherr has issued a 56-page training document titled Influence of Wind of Crane Operations that reminds us: “Before starting work, the crane operator must determine the expected maximum wind speed at [the] site by contacting the appropriate weather office. If impermissible wind speeds are expected, the load must not be lifted and the crane may not be erected.”
OSHA writes on their website about load charts and wind speeds: “Load charts do not generally take wind speeds into consideration. If the load chart or the operating manual does not have information on wind speeds and de-rating information, the crane manufacturer should be consulted. The procedures applicable to the operation of the equipment, including rated capacities (load charts), recommended operating speeds, special hazard warnings, instructions, and operator’s manual, must be readily available in the cab at all times for use by the operator. (See 29 CFR1926.1417(c)) The maximum allowable wind speed and de-rating information need to be posted conspicuously in the cab or on the load chart.”
OSHA’s take on wind as it pertains to crane operations is essentially threefold: load charts do not generally take wind speeds into consideration; the crane manufacturer should be consulted if the operating manual doesn’t have wind speed information; and operating procedures, maximum allowable wind speeds, special hazards, warnings, and instructions need to be posted conspicuously in the crane’s cab.
(Source: Smith, Billy. “Invisible Threat.” NationsBuilders Insurance Services, Inc. (NBIS), NationsBuilders Insurance Services, Inc. (NBIS), 12 Sept. 2018, www.nbis.com/blog/invisible-threat.)
In his role as Executive Vice President, Billy manages the relationship NBIS has with a number of industry associations and oversees various sales and marketing, claims, risk management, loss prevention, safety awareness, and accident investigation tasks. Billy was one of the primary innovators of the NBIS Risk Management Support System (RMSS), and he and his recognized team of experts have helped establish NBIS’s reputation as an industry leader.
Billy is a well-known figurehead and thought leader who has been published many times over in magazines such as American Cranes and Transport, International Cranes and Specialized Transport, Crane Works, and Lifting and Transportation. He has also been acknowledged in the book, “Crane and Derricks,” and is a widely sought-after public speaker.
NationsBuilders Insurance Services, Inc., “NBIS,” a Delaware corporation headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, is a leading provider of risk management products and services to commercial heavy equipment operators across 50 states.
As a full-service provider program, we deliver custom program insurance options to agents/brokers, reinsurance support to our partners, claims adjusting/claims investigation and risk management tools to all parties involved to achieve lowest cost outcomes for our customers.
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