Cranes are very important parts of the construction industry. However, the improper maintenance of cranes can lead to devastating accidents. Therefore, according to many regulations in different parts of the world, the fitness of a crane cannot simply be determined by the age of the crane. Jim Wiethon who is the principal and chairman at Haag said that the there are no correlations between accidents and age of the cranes. These were his words at the annual meeting of Specialized Carriers and Rigging Association which was held in Boca Raton. He also added that owing to the acceleration of the building industry in New York City it is important that all manufacturers provide with equipment that are modern and updated.
According to laws stipulated in Singapore all contractors are required to get their machines retired after they have reached appropriate age. This provision could be for twenty to thirty service years that depend on the capacity of the crane. However, one can ho for an extension of the service period provided if the inspection validates that the equipment is still safe for operation. Similar measures have been considered by the jurisdictions of Canada and US.
Vice president and COO of Woodland, Zack Parnell said that a crane does not get weathered by time but application and maintenance can play a big role in damaging the equipment beyond use. President of Cranes, Rob Weiss said that accidents are also very frequent with new cranes. He added that in reports of several recent unfortunate crane events in the New York City the cause of the accident was not the age of the crane but the maintenance.
According to the officials of safety and health in Singapore, the laws have been surfaced on account of the all the accidents that had happened in the region for dysfunctional equipment which have been put to use for prolonged service periods. However, it has also been reported that the age laws of Singapore have been prepared with more focus on curbing foreign competition than the safety concern.
However, the law has not been gladly accepted by all members of the construction industry. It has been said by crane experts that the recent laws are only reactionary. They have also opined that that these laws have been implemented as an attempt to mask other problems like ill maintenance of construction machinery. There have been different rebuttals against the retirement laws passed in this regard.
Some experts are of the belief that time does have an effect on the functionality of a carne. Some of the arguments in favor of the law of crane retirement include that that crane members become much stressed and in fact that could be the most stressed parts of the entire routine engineering. In many cases, cracks are detected only after the occurrence of a major accident. After the detection it is often found that those small cracks have been avoided for a long time only to let it be aggravated to something big.