In the wake of the devastating tower crane collapse in Kelowna, WorkSafe BC has released a safety bulletin. The bulletin outlines the safe procedures for a common way of assembling and dismantling tower cranes called “top climbing”.
Top climbing is hazardous work that must only be performed by qualified workers. These hazards were highlighted in July 2021 when a tower crane collapsed while being dismantled in Kelowna. Five people were killed, including four workers and a person unrelated to the construction site. Another worker was injured. The bulletin notes that failure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions may result in a structural failure that puts lives and property at risk. The bulletin provides an overview of what top climbing entails, the hazards, employer responsibilities, safe work practices, and legal and regulatory requirements.