A company in Hawaii has discovered a new way to give crane operators a set of “eyes” when working in the blind. The HookCam is a patent-pending device that snaps onto a crane’s hook and wirelessly transmits the scene on a full-color, flat-screen monitor in the cab. Photos: Pacific System Solutions The device is geared toward safety, but it also increases production, according to Chris Catanzaro, operations director for Kailua-based Pacific Systems Solutions. “It actually decreases the time you need the crane because it increases productivity by 40% in the blind and 26% in open spaces,” he says. Operators who
Federal regulators have run out of time to issue safety violations for the May 30 collapse of a Kodiak tower crane in New York City, which killed two workers. Investigators there did not find evidence that employers failed to comply with national safety codes, a source at the Labor Dept. says. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued no citations for alleged violations “to any company involved in the matter,” says the source, who asked to remain anonymous. Other agencies still have open investigations. Local prosecutors continue to probe possible criminal activity in parallel with a March 15 collapse that
Regulators asked for input, and that's exactly what they got. A significant number of public responses to a proposed federal regulation on cranes and derricks, estimated at 150 so far, have convinced the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration to push back the comment period, which was to expire on Dec. 8. The public now has until Jan. 22, 2009. The move is a reaction to the "significant" number of responses, many of which asked for more time to digest the lengthy rule, says the agency. A copy of the roughly 240-page proposed rule, which ran in the Oct. 9
Crane accidents this year have caught the attention of construction executives, leading them to tighten up their internal hoisting policies. Key strat�egies include mandatory, independent inspections, worker certification and new communication technology. Private contractors are phasing in new certification requirements for operators as well as workers on the ground. Starting in January 2009, New York City-based Turner Construction Co. plans to require all tower-crane operators on its projects to hold a nationally accredited certification. �We felt that as far as tower cranes go, we had a lot more work to do out there,� says Cindy DePrater, the company�s Dallas-based corporate
The air conditioner was buzzing and blowing to keep up with the desert sun, but the small window unit had already lost its cool. My hands—shaky and slippery with sweat—were having trouble keeping a grip on the controls. Nestled high in the cab of a 100-ft-tall crane, I was about to take my final exam on a blazing Friday afternoon in early October. I had just spent a week at the Tower Crane School of Phoenix, a one-acre facility in Apache Junction, Ariz., learning the ropes from Ronald M. Gray, the school’s owner. If I passed the test, I would
A much-anticipated revision to the decades-old federal regulations on cranes and derricks is getting closer to firming up, but now one public-safety official in New York City is questioning the usefulness of the proposed standard. The city’s buildings commissioner, Robert LiMandri, says he is worried that New York’s own crane rules, imposed after what he calls an “abysmal” year of industry safety lapses, would be wiped out once the less stringent, national standards are put in place. The city has spent $4 million studying crane safety and is in the process of enacting more rules based on the report’s 41
As the death toll from the record-setting hurricane mounts in the Bahamas and damage estimates there and in the U.S. head into the billions, industry experts see increasing pressure to address infrastructure resilience.