In any work environment where a crane is used, safety measures must be a top priority. Even minor problems with a crane can create significant safety hazards that could lead to massive amounts of damage as well as injuries or even fatalities to those in the area. There are many different things that can be done to help ensure safe crane operation. One type of safety improvement will come in the form of engineering controls.
What are Engineering Controls?
Engineering controls are strategies or processes that are designed to help protect people or environments from a specific hazard. This is done by putting some type of physical barrier between the hazard and the thing being protected. It can also be done by eliminating the risk by removing the hazard from the area.
Examples of Engineering Controls for Crane Safety
There are many different types of engineering controls that can be put in place to help ensure safe crane operation. The following are some key examples that should be followed at virtually every worksite. There are, of course, many other types of controls that can be put in place based on the specific environment where the work is being performed.
- Fall Restraints – The operator of a crane should always use their safety restraints to keep them from falling out of the operators chair. Remaining securely in place will help ensure the crane is always able to be controlled.
- Level Foundation for the Crane – Taking the time to ensure a crane is on a level and strong foundation will help to prevent tip overs, and other hazards.
- Properly Extended Outriggers – Whenever using a crane that is equipped with outriggers, they should be properly extended and secured in place before attempting to lift any type of load.
- Use of Counterweights – When lifting heavy objects, cranes will often need to use counterweights. Taking the time to attach the proper weights will help to provide the stability needed for a job.
Crane operators, safety managers, and other members of the team need to work together to come up with the best engineering controls whenever a crane is being used. In most cases, similar controls can be used across multiple locations to help provide for the safest possible work environment.
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