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Work more safely with a crane inspection checklist

Lower the risk of injury and accidents in your business with crane inspection checklists, stay legally compliant, and keep your equipment in good working order

What is a crane inspection checklist?

A crane safety inspection checklist is a way of thoroughly inspecting cranes before, during, and after each shift. Inspections can diagnose problems early and prevent dangerous workplace accidents from occurring. Ensuring that cranes are working properly and optimally helps keep bystanders safe as well.

Regular crane inspections lower the chance of costly fines and repairs, and keep you compliant with legal standards and regulations issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Crane inspections are conducted by trained and experienced safety officers.

Types of crane inspection checklists


According to OSHA and Crane Manufacturers Association of America (CMAA) standards, designated managers and supervisors must perform three different types of inspections using an OSHA crane inspection checklist. These should be regularly performed as long as cranes are in use.


Initial inspection

All new and altered cranes are required as per OSHA Standard 1910.179 to undergo inspection before they can be used. Appointed personnel must supervise the installation and inspect the functionality of crane components.

Frequent inspection

Frequent inspections are conducted at daily, weekly, or monthly intervals, depending how often your crane is used. Make sure these inspections include the date and the inspector’s signature. Things to assess during frequent inspections include:

  • Misconfigurations that affect the crane’s optimal performance
  • Deterioration or leakage in various parts like hydraulic systems, drain pumps, valves, or tanks
  • Damages, like a cracked or deformed hook
  • Deformities and damages in the hoist chains
  • Excessive wear of components
  • Whether the wire rope reeving system is still working as described in the manufacturer manual

Periodic inspection

Periodic inspections are similar to frequent inspections because they also depend on how often the crane is used. For example, cranes that haven’t been used for a month but were used within the last six months must undergo a thorough periodic inspection before they can be used again.

Some of the items to inspect are the same as in frequent inspections. But there are a few additional elements. During a periodic inspection, you need to:

  • Inspect any cracked, deformed, or corroded parts
  • Check any loose bolts or rivets, worn or distorted pins, cracked or worn sheaves and drums, clamping devices, bearings, gears, rollers, and shafts
  • Check for excessive wear on the brake and clutch system, ratchets, and paws
  • Look for inaccuracies in different indicators (like the fuel gauge)
  • Ensure that there are no faulty or unsafe parts such as leaking exhaust

Two most common hazards to address in a crane safety checklist


According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, there are an average of 42 deaths as a result of crane accidents each year. Knowing the hazards involved when operating or working with cranes can save your or your colleagues’ lives.


Here are the two most common safety hazards and their causes:


1. Electrical hazards


Fifty percent of accidents that involve overhead cranes happen when metal parts touch a power source, such as a high-voltage power line. When moving materials underneath or near cranes, there’s a high chance that a crane’s hoist line will come into contact with electricity sources.


When this happens, anyone near the machine is at risk of electrocution. It’s important to map out work routes before you begin a job, so these collisions can be avoided.


2. Falling loads

Falling loads are the most common and most dangerous hazards. A falling load can lead to injuries and death, as well as damage buildings and properties. These damages can cost you lots of money and time.

Falling loads are a result of:

  • Incompetence
    Crane operators should receive adequate training so they can do their jobs safely and competently
  • Mechanical failure
    Prevent mechanical failures with regular and thorough crane inspections
  • Two blocking
    Two blocking is when an uppermost hoist line part comes into contact with the upper block boom tip, increasing tension on the line and causing loads to fall
  • Slipping
    Make sure you secure loads properly to avoid slipping
  • Overloading
    If a load exceeds the equipment’s capacity, it’s subject to stress that can damage the machine

Workflow automation software for crane inspection checklists

Crane inspections need to cover a lot of variables in order to make sure equipment is safe to use. By using workflow automation software to digitize crane inspection checklists, you can streamline the process. Use Lumiform’s desktop and mobile app to automate the inspection and issue resolution processes, saving yourself time and improving the quality of checks.

Lumiform’s crane inspection software does this by:

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