Allegations of corruption and shaky oversight are plaguing the construction industry following two fatal crane collapses in New York City earlier this year. Critics point to failures at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration in explaining the deaths of at least 72 workers in crane-related accidents since 2006. For its part, the construction industry maintains that it has a strong safety record and is working closely with officials to prevent other accidents.
Here in the Metroplex, we’ve seen more crane activity due to new construction in Fort Worth and Arlington and due to Barnett Shale activity. This has caused an increase in injuries, unfortunately. Incidents we’re seeing are most often caused by operator error and poor maintenance rather than structural failure or weather-related problems. Stricter oversight, better training and more preventative maintenance would all go a long way towards alleviating some of these problems.