Experts call for review of crane safety

Crane experts have called for authorities to carry out an urgent review of operator safety following a spate of accidents in the UAE.

Crane experts have called for authorities to carry out an urgent review of operator safety following a spate of accidents in the UAE. Waiel Manafalouiti, general manager, House of Equipment, said that due to the construction industry being market-driven, safety laws in operating cranes  were being flouted.

"If you're thinking short-term, and unfortunately many companies in the market are, then they're trying to get as many jobs as they can in the shortest period of time to make profits as high as possible and are evading regulations," he said. "The majority of laws are there, but unfortunately some contractors are ignoring them because they know they can get away with it."

Manafalouiti added that the authorities, developers, contractors and safety experts should form a committee to draw up new regulations that are properly enforced. "If this doesn't happen there will be many effects. Innocent people, who have nothing to do with equipment supply or construction, may be killed," he said.

Rob McKenzie, manager of training company Safety Plus, agreed that a think-tank should be formed but there were other issues. He said many companies were unwilling to take a worker off the site for two days to be trained, plus there were language problems. "Even if you do give workers training, they just may not be able to get their heads around some basic technical things like load motions and centre of gravity. So it's really a Catch-22 situation."

 

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