This Monday Tech Talk will take a look at wind speeds and crane safety. Weather conditions on construction sites can become very dangerous if work continues. One dangerous aspect is high winds, especially how they could effect cranes or work being done on heights. All cranes use load charts that are prepared as if there is no wind. Because of that, manufacturers also list wind limits when the crane is in use, such as maximum wind gusts before the crane must stop or decrease operations.

Studies show that between 2000 & 2010 there were 1,125 incidents & 780 fatalities world wide due to crane tower incidents. 23% of these incidents were caused by high winds. High winds are classified a winds that exceed 64,4 kilometer per hour. The maximum recommended wind speed for tower cranes are 60KPH, depending on what loads are being lifted as well as the surrounding area conditions. Any wind exceeding 72KPH are strictly prohibited.

Hazards That Winds Creates:

  • Falling objects from heights
  • Unplanned movement of power lines
  • Fall of loads while carrying heavy lifting
  • Increased load due to wind pressure on lifting equipment
  • Equipment damage, dragged or tipped around

Wind Pressure & Wind Speed

Wind is moving air, the flow of air moves from the higher pressure areas to the lower pressure areas due to changes on atmospheric pressure and temperature. Wind speed is measured at ±10 meters above the ground and it increases with height, the higher the height, the stronger the wind speed. Another characteristic of wind speed is it increases with pressure as well, the stronger the wind speed, the stronger the pressure.

Wind pressure is the total force exerted upon a structure by wind.

Wind speed is how fast the air is moving at a certain point.

Cairnmead presents our Monday Tech Talk – Wind Speeds & Crane Safety and has many more topics to explore. For more information on wind speed and crane safety:

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