Seattle Crane Accident Highlights the Importance of Crane Safety
May 13, 2019
Four people were killed in a tragic crane accident in Seattle on April 27, 2019 after a piece of the equipment fell, smashing into the building and crushing vehicles on the crowded city street below. Officials from the Washington Department of Labor and Industries are conducting a thorough investigation to determine what went wrong. The investigation, which will likely take months to complete, will also determine whether the construction crew followed the manufacturer’s instruction on how to properly disassemble the crane. Construction workers who are injured in crane accidents are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.
The crane that fell is a tower crane, which the largest type of its kind. They arrive at construction sites in pieces, and workers must assemble them after they are inspected by state-accredited, third-party inspectors. Upon completion of the work, the construction crew disassembles the crane, following the manufacturer’s instructions. According to investigators, the accident occurred while the crane was being disassembled.
Crane Safety Tips
Cranes are an essential piece of equipment at construction sites, as they do most of the heavy lifting. However, they can be extremely dangerous if they are used carelessly, or if workers in the vicinity do not follow the appropriate safety protocols. The following are some of the top safety tips that workers should follow in order to avoid devastating accidents:
- Cranes should only be operated by qualified technicians. Crane operators must have the proper certifications and complete the required number of hours of training in order to safely operate a crane. In addition to knowing how to operate the equipment, workers must also have a thorough understanding of proper safety procedures, including hand signals used to alert other workers.
- Equipment and load must be inspected. Before the crane is operated, the equipment should be thoroughly inspected by the crane operator. He or she should check for cracks or other signs of wear on the cables and booms. They should also check the loads to ensure that they are secured properly, and that it does not exceed the limits that the equipment is able to hold.
- Workers in the vicinity should maintain a safe distance from the crane. Construction workers on the ground must always keep a safe distance from the crane. Daily reminders of this important safety precaution can help prevent serious injuries.
- Do not rush a crane-related job. Rushing can cause carelessness, which is one of the common causes of accidents. Cutting corners to meet an unrealistic deadline is dangerous. Make sure that crane operators have plenty of time to complete a job.
- Review safety checklists. Cranes are complicated pieces of equipment, so it is important to ensure that workers understand the safety protocols, and that they are reviewed on a regular basis.
Reading Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Represent Those Injured in Crane Accidents
If you have been seriously injured in a crane accident, you are urged to contact the Reading workers’ compensation lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. We will ensure that you receive the full benefits that you are entitled to, including medical expenses, physical therapy, and lost wages. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 888-PITT-LAW or contact us online. Our dedicated legal team represents all types of workers in Philadelphia and throughout the state.
We have several offices to serve clients in Berks County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, Philadelphia County and throughout Pennsylvania, including those in the communities of Abington, Ambler, Ardmore, Bala Cynwyd, Bensalem, Clifton Heights, Crum Lynne, Darby, Downingtown, Doylestown, Drexel Hill, Essington, Folcroft, Glenolden, Haverford, Havertown, Holmes, Kutztown, Lansdowne, Media, Merion Station, Morton, Narberth, Norristown, Norwood, Philadelphia, Prospect Park, Quakertown, Reading, Roxborough, Sharon Hill, Upper Darby, West Chester and Wynnewood.