Eco Biz – SB GREEN BUILDING

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State keeps two Seattle construction cranes shut down

In a recent news brief aggregated by LoopNet and originating from the Puget Sound Business Journal, three construction “hybrid” cranes remain closed down after the state L&I Department first closed them down earlier this month. According to a June 5th news article by Sonia Krishnan at the Seattle Times, the state took action because they perceived “potential safety problems.” Krishnan explained that the department cited, “possible electrical and structural issues with the cranes, which were all manufactured by the same Chinese company, Sun Cranes, and distributed by a Texas company” (Krishnan).

Krishnan reported that the decision to close down the cranes came after “an analysis from independent engineers showed the electrical system in all three cranes had not been ‘evaluated and approved for use,”’ which was information she found in a department news release. Krishnan asserted that a faulty system can lead to dropped loads or other problems. Some of the hazzards she cited from the department’s news release included an incident where a worker was “badly burned on one of the cranes in January” (Krishnan). Luckily, these cranes are the only three erected in this state.

According to a July 6th blog by The Faber Law Group, a crane collapsed in Bellevue (2006) killing a person who lived across the street from the construction site. The firm also reported in the aftermath of the incident that the Department of Labor and Industries is drafting a new safety law concerning the regulation of crane operators. However, they mentioned that such a law would not go into effect until approximately the year 2010.