RESCON and partners release best practices guide
By Adam FreillConstruction Equipment Health & Safety
Residential builders and industry stakeholders have developed a guide for erecting, operating and dismantling tower cranes.
A new guide is available for builders and trade contractors erecting, operating and dismantling tower cranes. Developed by the Residential Construction Council of Ontario (RESCON) and a group of industry partners the comprehensive best practices guide is part of an ongoing commitment to continuous improvement.
The document, Construction Industry Code of Practice: Safe Use of Tower Cranes, outlines the mechanical, electrical and structural inspections that are required prior to erecting a tower crane on a building site, the methodologies and safe practices that should be followed when erecting the crane, and the functional and operational tests needed before it is put into operation.
“Health and safety is our top priority. Through the use of a continuous improvement model, we will continue to focus on the safety of the residential construction sector,” stated RESCON vice-president Andrew Pariser, chair of the association’s safety committee. “By documenting best practices that exceed legislative and regulatory requirements, we can make meaningful safety improvements. The code of practice was put together with input from various associations, engineers, suppliers, and health and safety professionals.”
RESCON and its members, as well as the Ontario Formwork Association (OFA) and James Wilkinson, P.Eng. of Wilkinson Technical Services Inc., played a critical role in developing the guide, along with RESCON’s crane safety committee and health and safety committee.
The guide covers inspections and reviews, as well as safe operating practices, including climbing and dismantling procedures. It also outlines documentation requirements and requirements when multiple cranes are used on a project site.
“The safe operation of tower cranes on construction sites requires the co-operation of everybody involved in a project – from the crane operators who run the equipment to those who oversee the project,” says Wilkinson. “We want to make sure that everyone in the industry understands the requirements and necessary procedures they must follow, including the mandatory documentation they must maintain to ensure construction worksites remain safe.”
The organizations involved do not intend for the guide to replace regulatory requirements or applicable codes and standards and see the document as a guide that can assist constructors in understanding proper procedures and documentation. While the primary scope applies to tower cranes, the general practices and procedures for hoisting and rigging set out in the guide may also apply to other hoisting equipment on a project.
“High-rise forming companies are leaders when it comes to health and safety. We want to build on that leadership position and will continue to dedicate resources focused on crane safety,” says Dennis Cancian, executive director of the OFA. “This guide documents existing best practices and will help inform all parties of their responsibilities, making sure everyone is aware of the rules and procedures.”
The guide will be distributed to all RESCON members and sent to the Infrastructure Health and Safety Association and Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development.
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