On Thursday, November 1, a crane overturned in Homestead. The incident took place at a construction site at 1586 NE Eight Street. The Miami-Dade Fire Rescue responded to the incident and reported that one person was injured and taken to Jackson South Medical Center. Initial reports indicated the injured individual was a construction worker. Another crane incident took place the same day in West Miami. Near 8th Street and SW 63rd Avenue, a crane became out of control and rotating. Steel cables from the crane became wrapped around power lines, causing a short in the electrical system. While residents were left without power, luckily no one was injured.These two incidents were both extremely dangerous, and crews are lucky that more people were not injured. Unfortunately, injuries and fatalities involving cranes occur each year. If you were injured or a loved one was killed in a crane accident, call our Miami construction accident lawyers at Gerson & Schwartz P.A. at (877) 475-2905.
Crane Accident Statistics
Between 2011 and 2015, there were 220 crane-related deaths, according to the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Over this 5-year period, this amounted to an average of 44 deaths per year. Texas saw the most crane-related deaths with 40 between 2011 and 2015. Florida had the third most crane-related fatalities at 11, just behind Illinois’ 12 crane-related deaths. California and Pennsylvania each had 10 crane-related deaths during this time period. A little more than half of the crane-related deaths occurred because a construction worker was struck by an object or piece of equipment. Many of these fatalities were because of a falling object or equipment, more specifically, an object falling from a crane. Additionally, transportation crane accidents and workers falling to a lower level were common.
Common Causes of Crane Accidents
Like any type of construction accident, there are common underlying reasons. It is rare for a construction accident to occur as a complete fluke. It is almost never a pure accident. Instead, accidents happen at construction, warehouse, factory, and offshore sites because someone did not do their job properly. Someone’s negligent behavior allowed something to go wrong, which in turn could lead to worker injuries and deaths.
Some of the most common causes of crane accidents include:
- Improper outrigger use: It is very dangerous for a crane to tip over. The crane operator, workers below the crane, and pedestrians outside of the work area can be affected. A common reason for cranes tipping over is improper outrigger use, which can arise in several ways. In some situations, the ground conditions are not suitable for a crane. An outrigger pad on a wet, unlevel, or otherwise unsuitable area makes it impossible to maintain control of the crane’s position.
- Excess weight: Different cranes are designed to carry different loads, and all cranes have strict weight limits. Access weight in a load can cause the crane to fail, including the crane dropping the load, tipping, or the boom collapsing.
- Improper rigging: Cranes are meant to carry large, heavy, and awkwardly shaped loads. However, to do so safely, the rigging must be secure. Unsecured or improper rigging can lead to dropped loads. Improper riggings usually arise because of human error. A worker may use an old or broken piece of equipment, or a worker may not adhere to proper procedure. Workers also may try to move a load when they do not have the proper equipment to do so in order to save time and money.
Have You Been Affected by a Crane Accident?
If you were injured in a crane accident or your loved one was killed when a crane failed or dropped an object, contact our Miami construction accident attorneys at Gerson & Schwartz P.A. We will thoroughly review the accident and gather evidence as to what happened and who is at fault. If you were a worker at the site and someone from outside of your employer caused the crane accident, then we can represent you in a third-party liability claim. If you were a pedestrian injured in a crane accident, then we can represent you in a personal injury lawsuit against the liable business.
To talk with an attorney at Gerson & Schwartz P.A., you can reach out online or at (877) 475-2905.