Crane disasters became quite common in the world as the anticipation for rapid urban development has increased globally. Bigger building, bigger projects, and exploding payrolls for the biggest construction companies have attracted a glut of workers, trained and untrained, to build these projects. Regardless of how long is dedicated to safety, accidents and crane collapses will happen.
Big Blue – Milwaukee, WI 1999 – The larger the gear that’s used the larger the accident that may happen. On a frigid mid-day in July of 1999 occurred the crane accident of all crane accidents. A 567 foot crane in use had its own name, and to this day the accident is still referred to as Big Blue. Crane operators working on Miller Park in Milwaukee, WI were moving the largest piece of rooftop for the stadium, estimated at 423 tons.
Boston, MA 2006 – Many construction incidents occur in construction zones, but sometimes they happen in the center of a town. A 10 ton construction platform plummeted 13 stories onto the traffic below instantly killing 3 people. The scaffolding in question wasn’t a crane of any sort, however it deserves a spot on this list.
In Nov, 2006 in Bellevue, Washington, a crane operator was shutting down his crane to go home for the day. Witnesses reported hearing a loud crack sound right before the crane fell on the surrounding condos.
NY, NY 2007 – Another accident happened in December, 2007 when the lifting sling of a crane snapped. A crane towering over 200 feet in the air crashed into a number of buildings and completely swept a townhouse. This accident marked the worst single death toll by a crane in New York City history.
Miami, FL 2008 – March, 2008 was a bad month for cranes. While NY was still twisted by its string of accidents Miami, FL was ready for its own tragedy. The crane which was helping to build a 46 story skyscraper Biscayne Bay suddenly moved to a home below crushing two workers and injuring five more. The same construction site had received a minumum of one previous security breaches along with numerous complaints from members of the community.