Crane Accident in Bexar County, Texas

by | Apr 3, 2024 | Construction Accident, Personal Injury

There was a crane accident in Bexar County, Texas on April 1, 2024.  According to reports, a crane toppled over while performing work on the Interstate 35 median.  The crane landed on a vehicle driving on Interstate 35.  One worker and two people in the car sustained injuries in the accident.

A crane mounted on a bucket truck can topple over due to several factors, with improper load handling being one of the primary causes. Cranes are designed to lift and move loads within specific weight limits and at certain angles. Exceeding these weight limits or extending the crane arm beyond its safe operational radius can destabilize the truck, leading to a potential topple. This situation is particularly risky when the load is not properly secured or is unevenly distributed, creating an imbalance. Operators must be meticulously aware of the crane’s capacity and ensure that all loads are within the specified limits and correctly balanced to prevent such accidents.

Another critical factor that can contribute to the toppling of a crane on a bucket truck is operating on uneven or unstable ground. The stability of the truck is paramount when deploying the crane, as uneven ground can shift the vehicle’s center of gravity, increasing the risk of tipping. This risk is exacerbated if the truck’s outriggers, designed to stabilize the vehicle during crane operations, are not correctly deployed or if the ground beneath them cannot adequately support the weight. Before crane operation begins, a thorough assessment of the terrain and proper outrigger deployment are essential steps to ensure the truck remains stable and level, reducing the risk of toppling.

Furthermore, environmental conditions play a significant role in the stability of crane operations. High winds can exert additional force on the crane boom and the load, acting as a sail and further destabilizing the bucket truck. Operators need to be acutely aware of weather conditions and avoid crane operations in windy environments, particularly when lifting loads at height, which increases the crane’s exposure to wind. Adherence to safety guidelines regarding weather conditions, along with continuous monitoring of wind speeds during operation, is crucial. By understanding and mitigating these risks—through proper load management, ensuring stability on solid ground, and respecting environmental conditions—operators can significantly reduce the chances of a crane on a bucket truck toppling over, ensuring the safety of both the operators and surrounding area.

There have been a number of recent incidents involving cranes.  There was a crane accident in El Paso, Texas on January 26, 2024.  A boom truck collapsed onto an apartment building in Norwood, Massachusetts on March 15, 2024.  A crane struck power lines at the Catskill Marina before catching fire in Catskill, New York on March 25, 2024.

Companies, supervisors, and workers may not be fully aware of the hazards of operating cranes.  As a result, they may not have implemented proper policies and procedures to minimize risks.  One mechanism to safely evaluate and prepare for risks is through the use of a Job Safety Analysis (“JSA”) or Risk Assessment, which is standard in the industry.  When this does not occur, it can result in catastrophic personal injury or death.  In a JSA, each step of the job is examined to identify potential hazards and to recommend the safest way to perform the work in order to minimize those risks.  According to OSHA:

A job hazard analysis is a technique that focuses on job tasks as a way to identify hazards before they occur. It focuses on the relationship between the worker, the task, the tools, and the work environment. Ideally, after you identify uncontrolled hazards, you will take steps to eliminate or reduce them to an acceptable risk level.

Our experienced lawyers have handled personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits of all kinds and have the skills needed to represent the families of loved ones who have lost their lives or those who have been seriously injured as a result of a crane accident. The experienced personal injury and wrongful death attorneys at Spagnoletti Law Firm can help you understand your rights if you or a loved one was a victim of an accident involving a crane.

Our lawyers have represented numerous workers who have sustained serious and catastrophic injuries on a job site as a result of the negligence of another party.  Our experienced attorneys have previously been involved in numerous lawsuits involving cranes.  There are strict and short time limits on making claims, so please contact us online or call 713-804-9306 or 877-678-5864 to learn more about your legal rights.