This year American Cranes & Transport’s (ACT) annual roundtable on safety and training included thought from Debbie Dickinson, Executive Director, Crane Institute Certification (CIC). ACT posed the questions and Dickinson and two other ‘industry gurus’ provided answers.
ACT: What are the biggest obstacles crane and transport companies face in establishing and maintaining a strong safety culture?
Dickinson: The majority of employers realize that safety pays. Yet, it’s common knowledge that profits improve when time and expense are lower. The lure of getting work done faster may tempt an employer to take risks that are unnecessary. Companies with a strong safety culture need checks and balances that deter the “just this one time” risk taker. If the economy rebounds or dips, the drive to be more profitable can comprise safety. Employers can protect themselves, their equipment and personnel by sending clear and frequent messages that safety rules.
Next, the crane and rigging industry has a strong population of workers over the age of 50. With that age comes a wide range of experience. However, in some cases, older operators might not be as familiar and comfortable with the technology that is now common in cranes. On the other end of the spectrum, younger workers may lack the years of experience and jobsite savvy to spot trouble and prevent accidents. Training and certification is not a one-size-fits-all solution. The jobs and personnel need a plan that is flexible enough to teach and assess skill at different levels.
Courtesy of American Cranes & Transport
January 2014, Volume 10, Issue 1