To ensure that equipment is in a safe condition, the standard requires a variety of inspections. The following inspections are required of all equipment:
- Shift inspections
- Monthly inspections
- Annual inspections
- Shift, monthly, and annual wire rope inspections (if the equipment uses wire rope)
In addition, the following special inspections are required in particular circumstances:
- Post-assembly inspections
- Pre- and post-erection inspections of tower cranes
- Equipment used in severe service
- Equipment not in regular use
- Inspections of certain modified equipment
- Inspections of certain repaired/adjusted equipment
As described below, certain inspections must be conducted by a competent person and others by a qualified person. See section 1401 (definitions) for an explanation of these terms.
A competent person must visually inspect the equipment each shift the equipment is used. Taking apart equipment components and booming down is not required as part of this inspection unless the results of the visual inspection or trial operation indicate that further investigation necessitating taking apart equipment components or booming down is needed. At a minimum the inspection must include all of the following:
- Control mechanisms for maladjustments interfering with proper operation
- Control and drive mechanisms for apparent excessive wear of components and contamination by lubricants, water or other foreign matter
- Air, hydraulic, and other pressurized lines for deterioration or leakage, particularly those which flex in normal operation
- Hydraulic system for proper fluid level
- Hooks and latches for deformation, cracks, excessive wear, or damage such as from chemicals or heat
- Wire rope reeving for compliance with the manufacturer’s specifications
- Wire rope (see section 1413 for the rules for wire rope inspections)
- Electrical apparatus for malfunctioning, signs of apparent excessive deterioration, or dirt or moisture accumulation
- Tires (when in use) for proper inflation and condition
- Ground conditions around the equipment for proper support, including ground settling under and around outriggers/stabilizers and supporting foundations, ground water accumulation, or similar conditions
- The equipment for level position within the tolerances specified by the equipment manufacturer’s recommendations, both before each shift and after each move and setup
- Operator cab windows for significant cracks, breaks, or other deficiencies that would hamper the operator’s view
- Rails, rail stops, rail clamps and supporting surfaces when the equipment travels on rails
- Safety devices and operational aids for proper operation
- For derricks, guys for proper tension (section 1436)
- Deficiencies identified during the most recent annual inspection that the inspector determined must be monitored in the monthly inspections
If the inspection shows that a safety device (see section 1415 for a list of required safety devices) is not working properly, the equipment must not be used. If it shows that an operational aid (see section 1416 for a list of required operational aids) is not working properly, the equipment may be used for a limited period of time (7 or 30 calendar days depending on the type of operational aid) as long as specified temporary alternative precautions are taken. For the other items covered by the inspection, if the inspector finds any deficiency in an item, he/she must determine if the deficiency is serious enough to be a safety hazard. If so, the equipment must not be used until the deficiency is corrected. Shift inspections need not be documented.
The monthly inspection is the same as a shift inspection for most equipment. For tower cranes, the following additional items must be included (section 1435):
- Tower (mast) bolts and other structural bolts (for loose or dislodged condition) from the base of the tower crane up or, if the crane is tied to or braced by the structure, those above the uppermost brace support
- The uppermost tie-in, braces, floor supports and floor wedges where the tower crane is supported by the structure, for loose or dislodged components
Documentation of monthly inspection
The following information must be documented and maintained for a minimum of three months by the employer that conducts the inspection:
- The items checked and the results of the inspection
- The name and signature of the person who conducted the inspection and the date
The annual inspection must be conducted by a qualified person and is far more thorough than a shift or monthly inspection. In addition to those items that must be checked during a shift inspection, the annual inspection must include:
Equipment structure (including the boom and, if equipped, the jib) as follows:
- Structural members: deformed, cracked, or significantly corroded
- Bolts, rivets and other fasteners: loose, failed, or significantly corroded
- Welds for cracks
- Sheaves and drums for cracks or significant wear
- Parts such as pins, bearings, shafts, gears, rollers and locking devices for distortion, cracks, or significant wear
- Brake and clutch system parts, linings, pawls, and ratchets for excessive wear
- Safety devices and operational aids for proper operation (including significant inaccuracies)
- Gasoline, diesel, electric, or other power plants for safety-related problems (such as leaking exhaust and emergency shutdown feature) and conditions, and proper operation
- Chains and chain drive sprockets for excessive wear of sprockets and excessive chain stretch
- Travel steering, brakes, and locking devices, for proper operation.
- Tires for damage or excessive wear.
- Hydraulic, pneumatic and other pressurized hoses, fittings, and tubing, as follows:
- Flexible hose or its junction with the fittings for indications of leaks
- Threaded or clamped joints for leaks
- Outer covering of the hose for blistering, abnormal deformation, or other signs of failure/impending failure
- Outer surface of a hose, rigid tube, or fitting for indications of excessive abrasion or scrubbing
- Hydraulic and pneumatic pumps and motors, as follows:
- Performance indicators: unusual noises or vibration, low operating speed, excessive heating of the fluid, low pressure
- Loose bolts or fasteners
- Shaft seals and joints between pump sections for leaks
- Hydraulic and pneumatic valves, as follows:
- Spools: sticking, improper return to neutral, and leaks
- Valve housing cracks
- Relief valves: failure to reach correct pressure (if there is a manufacturer procedure for checking pressure, it must be followed)
- Hydraulic and pneumatic cylinders, as follows:
- Drifting caused by fluid leaking across the piston
- Rod seals and welded joints for leaks
- Cylinder rods for scores, nicks, or dents
- Case (barrel) for significant dents
- Rod eyes and connecting joints: loose or deformed
- Outrigger or stabilizer pads/floats for excessive wear or cracks
- Slider pads for excessive wear or cracks
- Electrical components and wiring for cracked or split insulation and loose or corroded terminations
- Warning labels and decals originally supplied with the equipment by the manufacturer or otherwise required under this standard: missing or unreadable
- Originally equipped operator seat (or equivalent): missing
- Operator seat: unserviceable
- Originally equipped steps, ladders, handrails, or guards: missing
- Steps, ladders, handrails, or guards: in unusable/unsafe condition
- For tower cranes, all turntable and tower bolts must be inspected for proper condition and torque (section 1435)
- For derricks, gudgeon pins for cracks, wear, and distortion, and foundation supports for continued ability to sustain the imposed loads (section 1436)
If necessary, disassembly is required to complete the annual inspection. Also, the inspection must include functional testing to determine that the equipment as configured in the inspection is functioning properly.
If the qualified person who conducts the inspection identifies any deficiency in any of the items inspected and determines that the deficiency constitutes a safety hazard, the equipment must be taken out of service until the deficiency is corrected. (See the discussion above under shift inspections for the corrective action required if an operational aid is not working properly). If the qualified person determines that, though not presently a safety hazard, the deficiency needs to be monitored, the employer must ensure that the deficiency is checked in the monthly inspections.
Documentation of annual/comprehensive inspection
The following information must be documented, maintained, and retained for a minimum of 12 months, by the employer that conducts the inspection:
- The items checked and the results of the inspection
- The name and signature of the person who conducted the inspection and the date
Before the equipment can be used, it must be inspected by a qualified person to ensure that it is configured in accord with manufacturer equipment criteria. This qualified person may be the A/D director. Where manufacturer equipment criteria are unavailable, a qualified person must:
- Determine if a registered professional engineer (RPE) familiar with the type of equipment involved is needed to develop criteria for the equipment con- figuration. If an RPE is not needed, the employer must ensure that the criteria are developed by the qualified person. If an RPE is needed, the employer must ensure that they are developed by an RPE
- Determine if the equipment meets these criteria before the equipment is used
Pre- and Post-Erection Inspection of Tower Cranes (Section 1435(f))
Tower crane components must be inspected by a qualified person before being erected for damage or excessive wear. The qualified person must pay particular attention to components that will be difficult to inspect thoroughly during shift inspections.
If the qualified person determines that a component is damaged or worn to the extent that it would create a safety hazard if used on the crane, that component must not be erected on the crane unless it is repaired and, upon re-inspection by the qualified person, found to no longer create a safety hazard. If the qualified person determines that, though not presently a safety hazard, the component needs to be monitored, the employer must ensure that the component is checked in the monthly inspections. Any such determination must be documented, and the documentation must be available to any individual who conducts a monthly inspection.
In addition to the other requirements listed above for post-assembly inspections, the following requirements must be met:
- A load test using certified weights, or scaled weights using a certified scale with a current certificate of calibration, must be conducted after each erection.
- The load test must be conducted in accord with the manufacturer’s instructions when available. Where these instructions are unavailable, the test must be conducted in accord with written load test procedures developed by a registered professional engineer familiar with the type of equipment involved.
Severe Service Inspections
Where the severity of use/conditions is such that there is a reasonable probability of damage or excessive wear (such as loading that may have exceeded rated capacity, shock loading that may have exceeded rated capacity, or prolonged exposure to a corrosive atmosphere), the employer must stop using the equipment and a qualified person must:
- Inspect the equipment for structural damage to determine if the equipment can continue to be used safely
- In light of the use/conditions determine whether any items/conditions that must be inspected during an annual inspection need to be inspected; if so, the qualified person must inspect those items/conditions
Inspection of Equipment Not in Regular Use
Equipment that has been idle for three months or more must be inspected by a qualified person in accord with the requirements for monthly inspections before being used.
Inspection of Modified Equipment
Equipment that has had modifications or additions which affect the safe operation of the equipment (such as modifications or additions involving a safety device or operational aid, critical part of a control system, power plant, braking system, load-sustaining structural components, load hook, or in-use operating mechanism) or capacity must be inspected by a qualified person after such modifications/additions have been completed, prior to initial use. Note that, under section 1434, any such modification/addition must be approved by either the manufacturer or a registered professional engineer. The inspection must assure that the modifications or additions have been made in accord with that approval and must include functional testing of the equipment.
Inspection of Repaired/Adjusted Equipment
Equipment that has had a repair or adjustment that relates to safe operation (such as a repair or adjustment to a safety device or operator aid, or to a critical part of a control system, power plant, braking system, load-sustaining structural components, load hook, or in-use operating mechanism) must be inspected by a qualified person after such a repair or adjustment has been completed, prior to initial use. The qualified person must determine if the repair/adjustment meets manufacturer equipment criteria (where applicable and available). Where manufacturer equipment criteria are unavailable or inapplicable, the qualified person must determine if a registered professional engineer (RPE) is needed to develop criteria for the repair/adjustment. If an RPE is not needed, the employer must ensure that the criteria are developed by the qualified person. If an RPE is needed, the employer must ensure that the criteria are developed by the RPE. The inspection must determine if the repair/adjustment meets the criteria developed by the RPE or qualified person and must include functional testing.