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After seven accidents were reported this year, involving crane and lifting operations in Singapore, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has launched an enforcement operation to ensure contractors remain vigilant.
Most of the accidents report occurred on construction sites, for which investigations are ongoing. No fatalities or serious injuries were reported. However, MOM has stated that “it is crucial to weed out unsafe crane and lifting operations.”
Its enforcement operation will be conducted over about two weeks ending late March 2015.
Under the Workplace Safety and Health Act, companies that fail to take reasonably practicable measures to ensure the safety and health of their workers can be fined up to $500,000 for a first offence.
MOM’s director of occupational safety and health inspectorate, Chan Yew Kwong said the recent accidents were “totally unacceptable.”
He added, “Our preliminary findings indicated that many of these cases could have been prevented if there were proper implementation of lifting plans and regular functionality checks on crane’s safety devices to ensure that they are in good working condition.”
“Safety is paramount. Employers and occupiers ought to play their part in taking the necessary preventive measures to put an end to unsafe lifting operations.”
The ministry has issued a reminder to crane owners, operators and worksite occupiers of their responsibility to ensure that crane operations do not endanger the safety of their workers and the public.