Because of the number of recent tower crane failures and accidents across the country, Oregon's Occupational Safety and Health Division (Oregon OSHA) will begin to emphasize tower crane safety. Starting this month, the agency will increase its focus to inspect more tower cranes at construction sites across the state.
The program will be limited to tower cranes and will not cover mobile cranes. Inspectors will assess crane operator qualifications, crane maintenance and inspection records, and training records.
“We haven't had a deadly tower crane accident in Oregon in more than two decades, which is fortunate,” said Michael Wood, Oregon OSHA administrator. “However, we want to ensure that employers are fulfilling their responsibility to inspect cranes and ensure operators are properly trained.”
Oregon OSHA, a division of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, will evaluate the program's effectiveness and findings in July 2009. The scope of an inspection may be expanded to address unrelated hazards if they pose a serious danger.
Oregon OSHA enforces the state's workplace safety and health rules and works to improve workplace safety and health for all Oregon workers.