if you're going to be working on the San Gorgonio Wind Farms in Southern California, chances are good that you'll be using high capacity cranes. By 2008, the San Gorgonio wind farm housed over 3,000 wind turbines. Each turbine is hoisted into place using heavy duty cranes. Before you start working in the wind farms, it's crucial that you understand crane safety. Here are four simple safety tips that will protect you from crane injuries while installing – and maintaining – the wind turbines.
Always Perform Pre-Work Inspections
The crane you'll be using will be hoisting wind turbines that might be over 200 ft. tall. The blades that are attached to the top of the turbine tower are over 100 ft. long. To protect yourself, and those around you, it's important that you perform a pre-work inspection at the beginning of each workday. During the inspection, you should slowly walk around the entire crane looking for signs of mechanical, electrical, hydraulic or structural defects. If you see signs of defects, do not start your crane. Instead, locate your site foreman and inform them of the issues.
Be Aware of Overhead Hazards
Wind turbines are installed near electrical wires and transformer towers – both of which can pose serious electrical hazards for you and your crane. Before you begin operating your crane, make a mental note of where each electrical hazard is. For your safety, as well as the safety of others, you should always know where the overhead hazards are located.
Watch for Wind Changes
The San Gorgonio Pass is notorious for high winds. The San Gorgonio Pass is one of the regions in Southern California that experiences frequent Santa Ana wind storms. Strong winds can wreak havoc on a crane while it's in service. While you're operating your crane, it's important that you monitor the winds in the area. Pay particular attention to increases in wind speed and direction. A sudden increase in wind speed could cause your crane to topple over.
Know the Ground Conditions
The desert floor of Southern California is mostly sand and rock – both of which can create an unsteady foundation for your crane. When stabilizing your crane for operation, be sure you've positioned it on a flat, solid surface. This will help ensure that the soil doesn't shift under your crane, causing it to collapse.
If you're going to be installing wind turbines in the San Gorgonio wind farms, you need to make sure you take proper safety precautions. The tips provided here will help keep you safe while you're operating your crane. For maximum protection, you should also follow all the safety procedures implemented by your company and site foreman. Contact a business, such as the Lockwood Brothers Inc for more information.