When working with cranes, there will always be hazards. However, you can minimize the risks by ensuring you take appropriate precautions to undertake all operations safely.

To carry out your crane operations safely, you should:

Appropriately train all employees. As an employer, you have a legal responsibility to provide appropriate health and safety training to all your employees so they’re competent at their jobs. By training your employees you’ll increase workplace safety, satisfaction and profits as you reduce injuries, fatalities, accidents and sickness absence.

Ensure employees know they must not stand under loads and ensure operators never lift a load over an employee. You must never stand under a crane or have a load lifted over you. It’s crucial your employees are aware of this and avoid walking through any zones where cranes are overhead.

Know, understand and comply with the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER). To find out more about your legal responsibilities under LOLER, have a look at our LOLER FAQ Guide.

Carry out routine maintenance and repairs of all on-site equipment at appropriate intervals. Part of your legal responsibility under LOLER involves carrying out routine, periodic maintenance and repairs to ensure your machinery is in safe working condition.

Ensure a supervisor is present on site at all times when cranes are in operation.

Make employees aware of, and strictly enforce, your load and lifting limits.

Ensure clear warning signals are displayed on-site when needed. You must display the relevant hazard signs in all danger zones on-site to warn your employees of the potential hazards. You must also ensure all your employees know and understand all the warning signs so they are aware of when they are entering a danger zone.

Select appropriate PPE for all employees. You must ensure your employees wear appropriate foot, head and eye protection, along with any other PPE you have identified in your risk assessment.

Properly safety-plan all jobs before starting work. You must also decide who’s in charge of pre-job safety planning prior to any cranes arriving on-site.

Working with cranes poses many hazards, and unsafe working practices can result in injuries, fatalities and costly damage to buildings and materials. Therefore, it’s important you’re aware of the main hazards and how you can avoid them.

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