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HSE Serve Prohibition Notice on Falcon Crane Hire

Published on January 24, 2007 at 6:35 AM

This week the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) served a Prohibition Notice on Falcon Crane Hire Ltd of Shipdam, Norfolk which required them, with immediate effect, to take out of service all tower cranes in their fleet which have not been subject to a thorough examination by an independent competent person.

HSE has taken this action following the collapse of two of the company’s tower cranes in less than four months at sites in Battersea ( London) and Liverpool. Both incidents are the subject of on-going investigations and it is therefore too early for us to be able to identify the exact causes of either failure. Nevertheless, HSE have decided to adopt a precautionary approach and require the company to demonstrate those cranes which have been thoroughly examined by competent persons employed by them, are safe to continue in operation. Any lessons learnt from the investigations will be shared with the industry as soon as possible.

The Notice will affect up to 180 tower cranes which are erected currently on construction sites throughout Great Britain. Cranes which have already been examined by an independent competent person are not affected by the Notice and can continue in service. We are conscious of the severe disruption this will cause but we are sure that the industry will support our action in the interests of the safety of workers and the public.

HSE would like to emphasise that Falcon Crane Hire Ltd has cooperated fully and have agreed the steps they will take to comply with the Notice. HSE will be working with them closely to ensure the remediation process is carried out as quickly as possible so that the cranes can return to use. Falcon Crane Hire Ltd are in the process of informing all the construction companies whose sites are affected and are preparing a programme for the examinations.

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