Workplace Safety Singapore
Workplace Safety Singapore: 3 Must-Read Facts On Lorry Crane Safety
In the past few years, there has been a considerable increase in workplace incidents involving lorry cranes due to their increased prevalence. Workplace Safety and Health Guidelines (WSH) should be practised to avoid improper deployment of outriggers, ground failure, mechanical failure, and unsafe operations.
These deadly incidents are some (direct or indirect) causes. Similar to other lifting devices, the improper usage of lorry cranes for lifting activities might pose potential dangers.
1. What Are Workplace Safety And Health (WSH) Guidelines Singapore?
These guidelines aim to increase the workplace safety and health (WSH) consciousness of all relevant parties, including owners, users, and operators. These WSH practices address the safe work procedures, pertinent risks, hazards, and setting up lorry cranes.
Here are workplace safety and health guidelines to prevent accidental injury when operating lorry cranes.
2. Workplace Safety and Health (WSH): Safe Work Procedures Of Lorry Cranes
The rated capacity of a truck crane is the load that the crane is designed to hoist for a particular load configuration or load position. A truck crane’s rated capacity refers to the maximum weight the device may lift in a specific load arrangement.
The rated capacity should be based on the following factors:
- The crane manufacturer’s rated capacity for a specific outrigger size and configuration;
- The type of lorry chassis fitted with the crane structure;
- The method of mounting the crane to the lorry chassis;
- The stability tipping factor selected for the crane-lorry combination; and
- The existence of derated capacity zones.
Other operational issues that can affect rated capacity include:
- Tire pressure – Ensure tires are inflated to the manufacturer’s specifications.
- Wind load – Be careful when lifting heavy objects during high winds. When necessary, use taglines or cease lifting operations.
- Operation manner of crane – The crane should be operated as smoothly as possible. Do not abruptly start or stop the crane.
- Load level of a lorry – A loaded lorry can stabilise the truck.
- Extension of outriggers – Extend outriggers fully.
- Surface or ground quality – Ensure that the lorry is on solid, stable and level ground.
- Weight of sling accessories – Always consider the weight of any lifting beam, slings or accessories plus the load to be lifted.
Lifting Around Personnel Or The Public
Risk control procedures, such as marking the lifting zone and preventing unauthorised entry of any employee while the lifting operation is in progress, must be implemented when loads are raised close to people (such as workers or public members).
No one should lift or suspend the weight above their heads. During a lifting operation, the operator must be alerted verbally or visually if any personnel are entering the lifting zone.
Under the law with Section 7(2) of the WSH council (Operation of Cranes) Regulations, a registered crane operator may be required to provide a medical certificate attesting to his/her fitness to operate a mobile or tower crane.
Lorry crane operators are advised to undergo periodic medical checks to detect early warning indications of illness or other personal comorbid problems, such as diabetes.
Then, intervention programs can be implemented to control the illness and prevent further hazards.
In the risk assessment, other health-related hazards, such as fatigue, should be recognised, and suitable control measures should be implemented. These dangers can affect one’s judgement and lead to disastrous mishaps.
It is necessary to maintain accurate logs (e.g., logbooks) of lorry crane usage to avoid unauthorised use of equipment. Personnel without proper training and/or authorisation must not be permitted to operate lorry cranes, as doing so is exceedingly dangerous.
If a lorry crane is equipped with a remote control, care must be taken to remove the remote control’s key while not in use. If the remote control is not used for an extended period, it should be stored in a secure area that only authorised employees can access.
Safe Use of Remote Controls
The flexibility of remote controls gives the operator a better perspective of the lifting process. Additionally, it permits the operator to maintain a safe distance from moving parts and potential falling debris.
However, remote controls can be dangerous if they are not used properly or following the manufacturer’s instructions. The following precautions must be observed when operating a lorry crane through remote control:
- All operational and functional tests involving a lorry crane remote should be done regularly. Always test the controls and emergency stop button.
- Correctly use the neck strap. It frees both hands for rigging and operating the crane. The remote won’t get damaged or lost. Before turning on the remote, wear the strap to prevent accidental lorry crane operation.
- Ensure the remote is fully charged and a replacement battery is accessible.
- The operator should always have a clear view of the cargo, vehicle, crane, and intended course.
- It’s unsafe to use a lorry crane remote while walking. If repositioning, deactivate the remote control keys.
- Never leave the remote control on, as accidentally running the crane might be fatal.
- Under no circumstances should anyone stand or walk underneath the crane boom or the load while it is being lifted.
- Never put yourself in the position of choosing between the load and the lorry crane or any immovable/fixed structure.
- Never get too close to the load while standing to avoid physical injury.
- If there are no lifting activities to perform, the controller must always be disconnected or deactivated using the emergency stop button.
3. Workplace Safety and Health (WSH): Risk Assessment
A written risk assessment is necessary for the functioning of a lorry crane to identify the applicable dangers and related controls to implement WSH management systems of work.
Safely operating the crane is an integral part of any comprehensive work system. Workers who operate, maintain, or otherwise come into contact with loader cranes should have thorough education and training. Manpower is needed in operating a crane, and teamwork is necessary.
When operating the crane, the operator must wear protective gear, including a hard hat, high-visibility clothing, and shoes.
Under the WSH council, every workplace must complete a Risk Assessment (RA) for every work activity.
Risks in the workplace can be evaluated in three simple steps:
STEP 1: Hazard Identification
Determine the hazards associated with each job procedure and the potential injuries or illnesses that may occur from these hazards. Individuals who may be at risk due to exposure to these dangers can also be identified.
STEP 2: Risk Evaluation
Estimate the risk levels and acceptability of the identified risks based on the following:
- The severity of the hazard; and
- The probability of the incident
STEP 3: Risk Control
Risk controls should be selected based on the results of the risk appraisal in STEP 2 to minimise or contain the detected risk to an acceptable level.
These risk controls must be both efficient and feasible. The Hierarchy of Control must implement control measures to reduce risks and eliminate hazards.
Hierarchy of Control:
Eliminating risk removes a worker’s exposure to hazards, making accidents and illness impossible. Elimination is the most effective risk control approach. Once a risk is eliminated, it won’t appear on future forms.
Substitution entails exchanging a risk for another that carries less danger.
Engineering controls are tangible ways of mitigating risk. Among these are alterations to the work environment or processes.
These controls decrease or eliminate exposure to a hazard by following procedures or instructions. Documentation should emphasise all steps of work procedures and controls required to safely execute work activities.
Personal Protective Equipment
The correct usage of PPE helps keep workers safe on the job.. For PPE to be effective, the user must always wear it correctly when exposed to dangers.
In addition to fitting the user properly, the PPE must be kept clean and stored in a suitable location while not in use.
4. Workplace Safety and Health (WSH): Common Hazards
- Outriggers Not Fully Extended/Deployed Properly – Incorrect or incomplete deployment of outriggers may result in the toppling of the lorry crane due to instability.
- Overloading Or Poor Maintenance – The lorry crane could break down due to overloading or lack of maintenance.
- Improper deployment of outriggers on unsafe ground conditions – The outriggers could be damaged if they were to be deployed incorrectly and forced through the soft ground or foundation. The cranes may topple as a result of this.
- Carrying out lifting operations over human and property – Moving heavy objects or people with a lift poses risks. If the lifting process goes wrong, lives could be lost and property destroyed.
- Use of faulty lifting gears or improper rigging – Improper rigging and defective lifting equipment risk death and severe property damage.
- Working in confined spaces – Working in a construction site often has to work in confined spaces like tanks or crawl spaces that can be exposed to dangerous substances, get electrocuted, cause explosions, or suffocate.
5. Setting Up A Lorry Crane (WSH Standard)
The ground must be strong enough to support the lorry crane’s weight. Pre-operational ground assessments should be done to ensure proper load-bearing capacity. A competent person should do this operational assessment, considering manufacturer-provided information (e.g. maximum vertical load per stabiliser) and load details.
Deployment of Outriggers
Before setting up the lorry crane, further precautions should be implemented if the pre-operation assessment of the ground conditions reveals that the ground has insufficient load-bearing capacity.
These methods may include applying stabilising cushions to distribute the applied forces. Any foundation or load distribution arrangements must be documented and communicated to the lifting crew. Manpower is needed to be able to exercise these practices.
The outriggers are the stabilising system consisting of the outrigger arms and the vertical stabiliser legs. The outrigger’s primary role is to increase the stability of the lorry crane during the lifting operation.
When the outriggers are fully extended, the lorry crane gains the stability and balance it needs to be operated safely and efficiently.
The installation site must have sufficient space for the lorry crane to move into place, set up, and operate. There should also be sufficient space between the lorry crane and other objects/structures/buildings to reduce the risk of entanglement and property damage.
The regulations of the Street Works Act and the Road Traffic Act must be followed when utilising lorry cranes to perform work on public roadways.
When lorry cranes move on public roads:
Always observe the vertical height clearance of structures (such as overhead bridges) and ensure that there is adequate clearance;
Ensure that the crane boom is properly stowed. Do not disable or circumvent the boom stowing limit switch;
Always adhere to the posted speed limit;
Adverse Weather Conditions
Singapore has two monsoon seasons, from December to March and from June to September, as well as two inter-monsoon seasons, from April to May and from October to November. During the monsoon seasons, one can anticipate heavy rains, high gusts, and thunder. Therefore, it is recommended to implement preventative measures for any mitigating factor posed by such adverse weather conditions, such as strong winds and lightning, including:
- Checking the weather forecast on the National Environment Agency’s website before beginning outdoor work;
- Halting all manual work, seeking shelter when adverse weather approaches, and having a designated person monitor the weather conditions.
Before performing the real lift, the operator should do a test lift and demonstrate visible leadership when lifting the load slightly off the ground and pausing to detect any anomalies. Test-lift is a crucial step that all operators must take, as it confirms the load’s stability, prevents overloading and may pose a lower risk when implementing the action plan.
Conclusion About Workplace Safety And Health Singapore (WSH)
The procedures mentioned above can help minimise accidents when following effective WSH standards on operating lorry cranes. Business decisions will be effective, as this can help actively engaged workers to adhere to WSH practices that can help smoothen the process and transaction of every business.
Before you rent a crane, make sure you have a solid understanding of the operational needs. Do you need more information? The Pollisum team can provide assistance.
Frequently Asked About Workplace Safety And Guidelines In Singapore
You can report your employers to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) for violations of Safe Management Measures or unsafe activities in the workplace. MOM will take each report carefully and maintain strict confidentiality about your identity.
To protect the crane operator and people in the surrounding area, operating a crane requires considerable training and adherence to predetermined guidelines. Strict compliance with the WSH council's standards should be followed because lorry crane safety is a crucial aspect of overall security, and in many instances, performing it can prevent future accidents.
Lorry Crane safety checklist regularly:
- Look for crane maladjustments daily.
- Inspect lines, tanks, valves, drain pumps, and other air or hydraulic systems daily for deterioration or leaks.
- Look for damaged hooks. Daily and monthly are required. For monthly inspections, keep a signature-dated certification record.
- Check hoist chain abnormalities, particularly end connections. Wear, twist, and distortion should be inspected daily, much like hooks.
Lorry cranes fall under the category of good vehicles and require annual inspections if the lorry cranes are less than 10 years old and semiannual (6-months) inspections if the lorry cranes are older than 10 years.