Cranes are getting taller and lifting more – so industry reps are getting together in Richmond this week to discuss how to keep construction sites safe.
The theme of the Tower Crane Conference, hosted by WorkSafeBC and the BC Association for Crane Safety, is “taller, safer, stronger,” and 160 industry representatives from across North America and beyond are expected to take part.
This is the second annual conference and is meant for suppliers, owners, engineers, erectors and technicians to learn about the latest safety practices.
“There have been some tragic, high-profile incidents in recent years involving tower cranes, and this conference is an opportunity to share best practices and lessons learned so that we can address tower crane safety issues and ensure the health and safety of workers and the public,” says Al Johnson, vice-president of Prevention Services with WorkSafeBC.
There are about 300 tower cranes in B.C., with about 250 of them located in the Lower Mainland.
“While tower cranes are dotting the skyline across the province, particularly in the Lower Mainland, they continue to increase in height and lifting capacity,” says Fraser Cocks, Executive Director, BC Crane Safety. “Increasing construction activities and the development of high-rise commercial and residential structures is driving tower crane use.”
Between July 1 and Nov. 1 of this year, there have been 22 crane incidents in B.C. Of those incidents, 58 per cent were due to operator error, 37 per cent to mechanical failure and five per cent to control failure.
The conference takes place on Wednesday at the Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel on Westminster Highway.