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Dropped object: Window fell from crane cabin

What happened
A window came loose from the crane operator’s cabin on a DSV, and fell approximately 4m to deck. No one was injured. It happened when, during a pause in crane operations, the crane boom was slewed away from personnel working on deck, and the crane operator asked to stand by for further instructions.

While waiting, he noticed a grease stain on the outside of the cabin wind shield. He opened the cabin upper window from the inside, in order to make it easier to clean the stain, when the hinges failed and the window fell out and down to the main deck. The crane operator immediately shouted to deck personnel to watch themselves as the window was falling down. Everyone got clear; no one was hurt as no one was under the crane cabin at that time. Our member held a “safety stand down” and a dropped object hazard hunt was conducted on the main deck.

What went wrong/causes

The hinges on the crane window failed, and the window fell out. Causal factors include:

  • Inadequate design/construction of window/crane cabin;
  • Inadequate maintenance/inspection of the crane window/crane cabin;
  • Awareness of working at height, or of dropped object risks, may not extend to commonly unnoticed parts of the infrastructure of the vessel, platform or even of buildings, for example, windows.

Actions taken:

  • Review, design and propose a new upper window hinge connection. This will apply to any other window hinge connections that are identical or similar;
  • Develop checklist to address the inspection of windows, doors and hinge connections elsewhere;
  • Correspond with the window/hinge manufacturer on the deeper causes of the hinges failing.

Parts, pieces, or debris falling from cranes – for whatever reason – remains a significant cause of dropped object reports amongst IMCA members.

Browse to for a list of IMCA safety flash incidents relating to objects dropped from cranes.

Safety Event

Published: 15 November 2017
Download: IMCA SF 29/17

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