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The Hazards of Operating a Crane Around Electricity Lines

Reports show that electrocution is one of the leading causes of crane accidents in the US. Hence, crane operators, signalers, and riggers need to stay highly vigilant and careful when operating a crane around electricity lines.

Crane safety is essential to ensure smooth project completion and workplace safety. Codes and regulations are built to keep employees safe from unsafe crane operation sites. However, hazards such as exposed electricity lines can lead to unfortunate mishaps.

Crane Warning Systems Atlanta is the most prominent and highly credible crane safety products distributor in the US. We strive to help crane owners and operators learn about crane safety products such as RCI, LMI, and crane wind speed indicators. In this blog, we have highlighted the key electricity hazards for crane operators.


Energized Cranes

Energized cranes are a leading cause of worker injuries. Cranes are generally made of metal components and are, therefore, highly electric conductors. An exposed electrical line might collide with a crane part such as the hoist or jib, causing the current to pass through.

This contact often occurs when a crane operates too close to a major electricity grid. Riggers and crane operators are the two most vulnerable victims since they guide and navigate the equipment. Energized cranes and the risks around them can be easily mitigated by nullifying the power lines during crane operations.




Inadequate Distance Causing Impact

OSHA recommends that crane operators maintain at least 10 feet between the equipment and power lines. Even the smallest types of cranes, such as mobile cranes, must be installed away from PMTs and wires.

You should minimize electrocution risks by removing or temporarily turning off the electricity supply in the area. Instead, install LED and battery-powered lights to ensure sufficient visibility at the worksite. We recommend project managers talk to workers and unions before starting a rigging operation.

OSHA’s main codes for crane safety around power lines include:


Line Clearance Distance:

Stipulated in the 29 CFR 1910.269, this code states that all kinds of crane equipment must operate at 10 or more feet distance from power lines. Preventing energized equipment requires 10.4 feet distance per 10 kilovolts.


Safe Working Clearance Distance:

Crane equipment’s safe working distance ensures that lifted material doesn’t collide with power lines during loading and unloading. Determine the safe clearance distance by first calculating your crane’s maximum radius and reach capacity.

In addition to the above-mentioned codes, OSHA advises crane owners and project managers to properly train and test the employees before assigning critical crane duties.


How Can Crane Warning Systems Atlanta Help You?

At Crane Warning Systems Atlanta, we are all about maximizing crane safety and crane operators’ wellbeing. Our team is dedicated to offering the most well-rounded, high-quality set of products that includes RCI, LMI, and crane wind speed indicators.

You can explore our website to access troubleshooting guides and wiring diagrams. Contact us now to learn more, or place an order for RaycoWylie crane safety products right away!

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