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Date PostedOctober 27, 2012

Operating Cranes and Plant near Overhead Electric Lines

Source : Elliott Brown

One of the most common causes of electrocution associated with construction work has been identified as contact with over-head power lines.

Any worker involved with cranes, concrete booms, elevating work platforms and earthmoving equipment need to be aware of this hazard and inspect the area of operation prior to beginning work to identify where power lines are present that may present a hazard.

All power lines should be treated as live and be de-energised before work can begin. An exclusion zone should be created to keep workers out of the danger zone.

Employers, together with the workers involved should assess the risk and then attempt to eliminate it before beginning work. If the risk cannot be eliminated, those in charge should attempt to isolate it. This can be done by erecting a physical barrier to prevent any part of the machine or the load from encroaching on the exclusion zone and injuring someone outside of the zone for example or redesigning equipment to make it safer.

The final step in ensuring safety would be to implement risk treatment measures. By implementing these measures it is possible to reduce the number of workers that are electrocuted on construction sites each year.


Steven Asnicar is regarded as a leader across many fields of industry. In particular, his specialisation across the health, infrastructure, construction, resource and utility sectors has seen him successfully change the dynamics of these industries through the introduction of new strategic, marketing, training and technical frameworks. Steven works closely with industry peak bodies such as Safework Australia, Australian Logistics Council, National Advisory for Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment (NATESE) and the Council of Australian Governments in the development of new delivery standards and industry specific programs.

Posted in General Construction, White Card, White Card Construction Site Safety Articles Tagged with: , , , ,


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