WSH Alert: Lorry crane operator strangled by web sling while rigging load

24 Nov 2015

A lorry crane operator was tasked to unload pallets of load from the lorry bed to the storage yard using the lorry crane. He proceeded to prepare for the lifting operations by rigging a pallet of load to the lorry crane via the web slings attached to the lorry crane boom. He was standing between two pallets of load when the lorry crane boom suddenly slewed. This resulted in his neck being caught by one of the web slings and his body was caught in between the pallets. He died on the spot

Figure 1: View of accident scene.


Persons in control of or carrying out similar lorry crane lifting operations and related work activities are advised to consider the following safety measures to prevent similar accidents:

Remote Control for Crane Operation
• Refrain from walking or performing other tasks while operating the remote control. Always de-energise the remote control when not in use. This is to avoid accidental activation of the remote control (e.g. if the controls hit against surrounding objects) which can result in unintended movement of the crane.

Lifting Plan
• Establish and implement a lifting plan.

• The lifting plan should include safe lifting procedures, positions of lifting points, roles of personnel and load characteristics.

Work Coordination
• Ensure proper communication is established among all personnel involved in the lifting operation, such as the crane operator, rigger and signalman.

• Inform all personnel of all potential hazards and the available control measures e.g. keeping clear of the slewing zone to prevent struck by or caught in between moving objects.

• Exercise adequate supervision to ensure Safe Work Procedures (SWPs) and precautionary measures are followed.

Operator Competency
• Ensure that only trained and competent personnel are allowed to operate the lorry crane. Under the Workplace Safety and Health (Operation of Cranes) Regulations 2011, all lorry crane operators must attend and complete the Lorry Crane Operator Course (LCOC).

• Ensure that the operator is familiar with the risks associated with the operation of the lorry crane and the measures available to reduce the risks.

Risk Assessment
Conduct a thorough Risk Assessment (RA) for all work activities to manage any foreseeable risk that may arise in connection with the use and operation of the lorry crane. The RA should cover but not limited to the following areas:

• Rigging of load
• Conveyance and placement of load
• Using the remote control
• Working on lorry bed
• Emergency response in various contingencies

Further Information

Workplace Safety and Health Act – click here
Workplace Safety and Health (Risk Management) Regulations – click here
Workplace Safety and Health (Operation of Cranes) Regulations 2011 – click here
Approved Code of Practice on Workplace Safety and Health Risk Management – click here
Approved Code of Practice on Safe Lifting Operations in the Workplaces – click here
MOM Circular on Mandatory Training Requirement for Lorry Crane Operator – click here

Visit the WSH Council’s website now for updates on WSH-related matters, information and events.