AWEA releases guidance for determining crane ground bearing capacities

Safety is a key value for the U.S. wind industry, and it’s an area where we’re always striving to do better. Crane operations have emerged as one of those places in need of improvements, and to combat this trend AWEA created the EHS Crane Task Force.

Initiated in early 2019, the purpose of the task force is to reduce the frequency, severity, and risk of crane incidents in the wind industry by providing a network of organizations to share crane activity best practices. Guidance for Determining Ground Bearing Capacities is the first document created by the task force. This document is intended to provide guidance to the wind industry regarding procedures and methodologies for determining the Ground Bearing Capacity of the crane path prior to the crane travel.

The purpose of this document is to further the wind industry’s understanding of the risks associated with crane travel and to help mitigate them in the following areas:

  1. Health and safety of the crane operators and crews working in close proximity to the crane.
  2. Damage to equipment – cranes, support equipment, and installed turbines
  3. Schedule – through improved understanding and planning of crane paths that require alternative travel methods.
  4. Project delays caused by crane incidents
  5. Public relations issues specific to incidents
  6. Landowner issues specific to damage to land and/or agriculture

The guidance document is available online here. Please contact for more information on the EHS Crane Task Force, which will meet before the AWEA Wind Project O&M and Safety Conference on February 24.

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