The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) in Singapore has taken action against 79 companies for unsafe practices and crane operations.

The crack-down follows Operation Goldcrest, a special enforcement operation conducted from July 1 to August 31 this year.

According to a press release, a total of 80 worksites were inspected by MOM's Occupational Safety and Health Division, and 194 crane-related contraventions of the Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) Act were uncovered.

Of these contraventions, 98 resulted in composition fines that totalled more than $95,000.

The other contraventions saw 96 Notices of Non-Compliance issued to companies to warn them against unsafe lifting practices.

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The MOM has also instructed the companies involved to address the findings of inspections and will monitor these efforts closely. The top five contraventions uncovered included:

1. Failure to maintain cranes in good working condition

2. Failure to establish and implement a proper lifting plan

3. Using defective lifting gear or lifting gear that had not been examined by an authorised examiner

4. Failure to implement a proper Permit-To-Work system

5. No indication of the Safe Working Load and lifting machine number on the lifting machine

Despite none of the contraventions warranting a stop-work order, the type and number of contraventions remain a concern.

“The crane industry’s practices remain a serious concern. Besides the safe deployment of cranes, crane owners and occupiers have the responsibility to ensure that their cranes and lifting operations do not endanger workers or the public," said Er. Ho Siong Hin, MOM’s commissioner for WSH.

"MOM will take stern action against errant crane companies and occupiers. All occupiers and crane owners ought to put in place robust maintenance regimes and safety systems so that we can put an end to unsafe lifting operations."

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