Crane Safety Revisited

Just when you think you have all the bases covered, the “impossible” happens. During a lift on one of our recent outages, the idler pulley and mounting bracket for the drive on the overhead crane fell approximately 25 feet. Fortunately no one was injured. We have discussed the need for pre-outage crane inspections in previous Safety Tips, identifying the need for an OSHA-compliant inspection before the outage. The customer had conscientiously performed the inspection, and we had examined the report. In a post-incident report, the company’s preferred crane inspection vendor discovered the root cause was an alignment issue with the driven sprocket for the trolley. The company implemented two corrective actions: the crane vendor installed a safety cable to prevent the bracket from falling in the event of a failure, and an alignment protocol was added to the inspection checklist. Discussions are continuing on additional preventive measures.

For TGM’s part, we recognize that we have a responsibility to not only request the inspection report, but to read and analyze it. We have discovered that this crane vendor includes an Inspection Report Key along with the report which gives a Priority Code and a Condition code for each finding. These codes help identify the importance of the finding and the need for corrective action. These codes are specific to this particular vendor. Others may use a different key or not have one.  We will now be asking for an Inspection Report Key in addition to the report so we can double check that all deficiencies have been corrected. We will also be asking for the report with enough lead time such that any corrections can be made before the outage.