Safety Tips For First-Time Crane Operators

Even those who work in construction on a daily basis aren't always accustomed to working with every piece of equipment. If the work you normally do doesn't require the use of a crane, finding yourself in need of a crane rental can leave you feeling a bit uncertain. Luckily, with the right information and procedures, you can ensure that everyone on your job site is safe even if you aren't all familiar with having a crane operating on the site.

Put a Routine in Place

You probably already have some statement of operations in place for most of the work you're doing on site. The crane operation should be no different. Make sure the statement of operations for the crane tasks includes detailed information about the basic operation of the crane as well as any expectations for responding to emergencies. Clearly define the flagging, signaling and signing requirements for the crane operation as well. These communications are vital to the entire crew, so putting all of the details in print will help eliminate confusion between the crane operator and the spotter.

Emphasize Task Planning

The last thing you want your crew to do is see the crane delivered and hop right in to get things started. Make sure that they understand the significance of adding a piece of equipment like this to the job site. Often, using a crane means that your project has taken on a more extensive and elaborate angle, so you'll want to ensure that everything is planned out clearly before the work starts.

Walk through the entire route that the crane will travel with your crane operator and the spotter. Identify any potential hazards and make sure you all agree about how to deal with those hazards. As you go through the route, mark it clearly with colored or spray painted stakes to keep the area clear.

Require Safety Inspections

Just as with any other construction equipment you might be using, cranes need to be thoroughly inspected before they're put into service, and again before every shift. Consider retaining the services of a licensed crane operator to deal with the inspections and the basic operation. This may help to keep the rest of your crew safe, particularly if you're not experienced with having a moving crane on your job site. Require a thorough report of each inspection so that you have a record that each one was done as it should have been.

Key parts of the safety inspection include the shackles, cables and boom. The lights should be tested, and the hand tools need to be assessed. While you're at it, make sure the brakes respond properly, too. The more attentive you are before the start of the shift, the greater the chances that your staff will be safe. Talk to a company like A C Jones Trucking Inc for more information about your crane rental options.