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Office Location: 11 Park Place, Suite 1801, New York, New York, 10007-2811

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Home / Construction Site Accidents / Crane Falls and Collapses
Crane Falls and Collapses

Crane Accident Attorneys in New York

When falls and collapses cause injuries and claim lives

Moving large, heavy loads and demolishing structures are critical to manufacturing and construction industries. Just as critical is the safety of the tall cranes that make these jobs possible. One error can cause a tip-over, collapse or dropped load that results in serious injury or death of workers and passersby.

The lawyers at Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson, PC in Manhattan have considerable experience championing the rights of those injured by crane accidents. Like most serious construction accidents involving scaffolding and heavy machinery, crane accidents require specific knowledge of worksites and equipment and the rules that govern them. Our law firm has accumulated decades of relevant knowledge that puts our clients in a strong position for obtaining compensation for their injuries.

Causes of crane accidents

The enormous size of cranes makes them difficult to control. Their greater bulk means greater problems. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, cranes are involved in more construction site accidents than any other piece of heavy equipment.

Some common causes of construction site crane accidents include:

  • Improper crane setup
  • Errors in erection, dismantling or extending the crane
  • Poor crane selection
  • Inadequate foundation for the crane
  • Operation near electrical wires
  • Wrong cue from the signal person
  • Mechanical failure
  • Structural failure
  • Operator error
  • Using the crane outside the manufacturer's specifications
  • Operation in poor weather
  • Failure to account for the crane's operational limits

OSHA guidelines for safe crane operation

To reduce the dangers of crane operation, OSHA advises the following:

  • Cranes should be operated only by qualified and trained workers.
  • Inspection by a trained person should be conducted before use.
  • The crane should be on a firm, level and stable surface.
  • Pins should not be unlocked or removed during assembly or disassembly, unless sections are blocked and secure.
  • Outriggers should be fully extended.
  • Accessible areas inside the crane’s swing radius should be barricaded.
  • Workers should be aware of overhead electric power lines and maintain at least a 10-foot safe working clearance from the lines.
  • All rigging should be inspected prior to use.
  • Hoist lines should not be wrapped around the load.
  • The correct load chart should be used for the crane’s current configuration and setup, load weight and lift path.
  • The load chart capacity should not be exceeded while making lifts.
  • The load capacity/balance should be verified and the brake system should be tested before delivering a load.
  • Loads should not be moved over workers.
  • Signals and manufacturer instructions should be followed during operation.

Putting experience and knowledge to work for you

Failure to abide by these rules may result in significant OSHA fines. However if an injury results from a failure, the victim may file a lawsuit to recover money for the negligence of the operator, crane owner, property owner, manufacturer, subcontractor or other responsible party.

According to OSHA, there are approximately 70 fatal occupational accidents every year related to cranes, derricks, hoists and hoisting accessories. Falls and electrocutions account for more than half of all crane operator fatalities. A crane operator’s risk of death is one in 1,000 over a working lifetime of 45 years.

Our attorneys are here to help. We immediately launch an investigation into an accident to determine how it happened and who is at fault. We put the full force of our wisdom and skill to work to obtain compensation for you and your family.

Call us when you need a reliable construction accident lawyer

If you were injured or a loved one was killed in a crane accident, it is important to seek legal help as soon as possible. These cases can be complex, and construction companies do everything in their power to avoid liability in an accident case. You need highly qualified help on your side. Contact Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson, PC online or at 888.746.8212 for a free consultation.

Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson PC
11 Park Place, Suite 1801
New York, New York,, 10007-2811 USA
888.746.8212