The use of mobile cranes in the residential construction industry has become commonplace. Before commencing using a crane on a construction site it is important to develop a work plan or safe work method statement for all crane operations. A work plan or safe work method statement should be developed which includes information on, but is not limited to the following;
- The location and type of work to be carried out including any special equipment requirements.
- Hazard identification. All due care must be taken to ensure the elimination of, or the control of, any potential hazards associated with the use of mobile cranes on building and construction sites. When operating any heavy machinery a great deal of attention to hazard identification, risk assessment and control measures are required to ensure a safe and efficient workplace.
The following examples are some of the more common hazards that may be encountered on the average residential building site:
- Overhead power lines
- Underground tanks and soak wells
- Underground services such as electricity, gas, water, sewerage and telephone
- Trenches or recently filled excavations
The person dogging or slinging the load should be wearing safety footwear, an approved safety helmet and high visibility clothing and gloves.
Any person working within the working radius of the crane should be wearing safety footwear and an approved safety helmet. Consideration must also be given to any protective equipment that may be required by other people working in the immediate area.
Where a crane is to be set up in an area that is open to the public then an effective system of controlling access to the area must be implemented which may include fences, barricades or hoardings etc., depending on the time that the crane is to remain set up.
If you require further information on this issue or any other safety issue please contact the Safety Manager at Master Builders on (08) 9476 9800.