Weekly Safety Topic – Avoid Suspended Loads

Lightning can cause catastrophic injury without striking twice; once is usually all it takes. Similarly, overhead loads can cause catastrophic injuries without striking twice. A fall from one of these loads generally leaves a lasting impression. Make sure that you keep your distance from cranes, booms, and buckets. Your first accident can be your last accident.

THINK AHEAD. Make sure nothing falls on you. You should not stand, walk, or work under crane booms, buckets, or suspended loads. A hard hat should always be worn.

MAKE A PLAN. When planning lifting operations, make sure the boom or bucket won’t swing over workers. It is always good to remain clear of open traffic lanes when swinging your loads. Check carefully for any overhead obstructions, such as power lines or overhangs. You risk more than just personal injury; think of what can happen if power lines fall across freeways. Looking before lifting could save your life.

CONSIDER CONCRETE SAFETY. Have you ever been hit on the head with a piece of semi-hardened concrete dropped from a crane bucket? When the operator is loading and hoisting the bucket, we must be careful to keep clear of the crane.

CONSIDER MOBILE EQUIPMENT SAFETY. Pipe crews get so comfortable setting pipe with a backhoe that they may get under the load in a ditch. When a cable or hydraulic line breaks, what would happen? Operators should keep workers clear when backfilling.
Always wear a hard hat and stay out of the swing radius of cranes and other equipment.

PLANNING YOUR WORK IS ESSENTIAL. COMPARE THE COST OF TAKING A FEW MINUTES OF PLANNING AND PREPARATION TO THE COST OF STANDING NEXT TO A CHILD THAT WOULD GIVE ANYTHING FOR ONE MORE MINUTE WITH MOM OR DAD.