At any mine site with crane-assisted construction or overhead repairs under way, what goes up must come down — at the right time and under complete control. Here’s how the latest crane tech can help ensure that outcome.

When miners say things are “looking up,” it’s unlikely they’re talking about overhead safety awareness. Similarly to many other industrial environments, the usual visual focus in surface mining is largely on what’s in front of or below a worker, and that can be a dangerous fixation: there are often hazards overhead ranging from improperly secured or controlled crane loads to fasteners, tools and parts dropped from height during maintenance and repair activities.

The cost of lifting and overhead-safety-related mishaps can be staggeringly high, from both financial and personnel health aspects. A recent analysis by overhead crane manufacturer Konecranes of Occupational Safety and Health Administration-reported crane incidents in the United States, involving a study tracking 249 incidents over a 10-year period, showed that the average cost to an employer from a major crane-related injury was $200,000. A crane-related fatality costs an average of $4 million.

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