Crane fails and sends 32-tonne concrete structure crashing

WorkSafe is making inquiries into a serious incident in which a precast concrete structure weighing 32 tonnes fell while being lifted by two cranes at a factory in Dandenong on Tuesday. 


The structure fell to the ground when a gantry crane being used in the lift failed. There were no injuries. 

The serious nature of the incident has prompted WorkSafe Executive Director of Health and Safety, Marnie Williams, to issue a warning to employers about the importance of crane safety.

“We are thankful there were no injuries, but it is a stark reminder to every employer that uses a crane to manage all the risks and ensure safety is a priority,” Ms Williams said. “Because inquiries into this incident are ongoing, we cannot release further details at this stage.”

Ms Williams said that with so much construction work going on across Melbourne, many worksites were lifting heavy loads daily.

“Cranes are an essential part of many industries but work involving cranes is high risk and must be treated with the utmost care and caution,” Ms Williams said. “Failure to do otherwise could have tragic consequences.”

When using cranes, measures to manage the risks include:

Selecting the proper crane and lifting equipment for the task, size and weight of the load.

For construction work, ensuring a Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS) is created and adhered to.

Ensuring cranes are maintained in accordance with the manufacturer’s specifications and requirements.

Checking that crane operators have the skills, training and licences to operate safely.

Creating and adhering to safe systems of work and ensuring all workers are properly trained and competent before commencing the task.