Always be aware of your surroundings, below, above and around you. “Assess the work area for potential hazards,” says Davison. “Things of concern could be obstructions such as overhead electrical lines, machinery in close proximity, basically anything that can interfere with the safe and free movement of the crane.”
Clear the work area of any trip, fall or electrocution hazards. “Isolating the work area with safety cones or barricades is also recommended,” says Davison.
And don’t take shortcuts. “The most common safety violations we’ve experienced are not deploying outriggers, disabling the anti-two-block device, tampering with the overload control mechanism and not replacing a damaged crane wire rope [cable],” says Eggers.
“Operators sometimes believe that disabling a safety device will make them more productive and allow them to get their work done faster,” Davison comments. “This is wrong thinking on their part. Safety devices by manufacturers are there for the operators’ safety.”
Stellar has taken steps to deter tampering. The company’s Crane Dynamics Technology (CDT) operating system features a ‘safe mode’. “The CDT system continuously monitors safety devices to ensure they are operating correctly,” says Davison. “If these devices are disabled or for some reason stop working properly, then our CDT cranes will enter ‘safe mode’ and display error codes. Safe mode will disable or limit some crane functions to ensure damage or injury is limited. Once the safety devices are repaired or replaced and begin functioning correctly, our CDT cranes will go back to ‘standard mode’.”