Hurricane Season and the Crane Industry

Hurricane Season and the Crane Industry
7/17/2019 10:47:34 AM

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With hurricane season in full swing, there’s a lot at stake for the crane industry. Thankfully, hurricanes leave a good amount of time for preparation. By checking out the following pointers, you can prepare your worksite for the impact and aftermath of these deadly disturbances.

Contrary to popular belief, wind is not the most dangerous factor of a hurricane--the rain is. The majority of hurricane deaths are actually due to flooding. Oddly enough, a good portion of hurricane-related deaths occur after the storm, during recovery and cleanup. This can be due to things like car accidents, slips and falls, incorrect generator usage, falling tree limbs, and more.

Preparing Your Worksite

While Georgia may not currently be expecting a hurricane, the best time to plan is before one is on the way. It is beneficial to have multiple plans for different time frames, like gathering emergency supplies on-site once the season begins, as well as having 3-day, 2-day, 24-hour, and 12-hour checklists in place for when the storm is on its way.

While we’re pretty far from the coast here in Atlanta, the wind and rain impacts of a hurricane can still be felt hundreds of miles away from its center. Once it sounds like a storm will be close enough to affect your worksite, here’s what you need to do in order to prepare:

  1. Use tarps to cover any loose dirt

  2. Check to see that all generators and pumps are in good shape for potential water removal

  3. Place nets on dumpsters or empty them if necessary

  4. If possible, load and lay down the boom of your crane(s)

  5. Shut off all sources of power, gas, and water

  6. Store scaffolding planks

  7. If possible, move heavy equipment to an elevated safe space

  8. Secure hazardous chemicals

  9. Band any lumber or other materials

  10. Move small equipment like gang boxes and tools from low areas to a safer place

  11. Anchor any trailers, port-o-potties, or storage sheds

  12. Document the site/project condition pre-storm (with photos)

  13. Clear away any scrap materials and debris that could potentially become a projectile

  14. Make sure that any exposed storm drain systems and piping are shielded from dirt and sand

  15. Back up any important project documents on your computer, or move any physical copies to an area where they are guaranteed to stay dry

  16. Protect your work in progress by sand-bagging, boarding windows, and capping pipes

Post-Storm Precautions

Once the storm is over and local officials announce that it’s safe to go back to your site, you must return with caution. You need to be on the lookout for several things, such as debris and standing water (wear protective clothing just in case), downed power lines that might still possess an electric current, and damaged buildings that may now have compromised structural elements. After you’ve inspected the site, make a note of any damage and plan the repairs.

At LC Crane Parts & Service, we take the safety of our cranes and workers very seriously. While we’re hoping to avoid any serious weather this hurricane season, it never hurts to be prepared. Contact us today with any further questions or advice on keeping your equipment and worksite safe!

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