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Scaffolding Collapse

Discussion in 'Safety' started by ruinexplorer, Jul 18, 2008.

  1. ruinexplorer

    ruinexplorer Minion CB Mods Premium Member Fight Leukemia

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    Scaffolding Collapse, Injures Four - Videos - WVIT

    Just thought you guys might want to keep this type of thing in mind while preparing your next event. There is no reason not to be safe (did someone mention piss poor planning?). Fortunately, no one was seriously injured in this one.
     
  2. MNicolai

    MNicolai Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    There are questions on my mind after seeing that, and many of them may be rhetorical, but I'll amuse myself and post them anyways.

    Did it collapse, or did it actually topple over?

    Were the bottom fittings casters or plates?

    What do they mean, when they talk about inspections? Scaffolding like that is the kind that you setup, and if it's on level ground, all of the pieces are in place, and it's not overly top-heavy, you use it. Not exactly the kind of thing that many things could go wrong with.

    It appeared to be on stage, so though I would assume that's level ground, was the scaffolding, in fact, level?

    That said, was the group doing anything to make it excessively top-heavy, such as hanging lights on it, putting a load on the top of it, but all on one side, etc, etc? My experience is that scaffolding like that is rated to go at least 4 stories high, so I don't see under normal conditions, that should be a problem unless somebody did something to offset the balance.
     
  3. hillbillyfunk

    hillbillyfunk Member

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    after seeing the news report I can tell a few things that were done incorrectly. At 1:37 I notice that the scaffold still standing has a small truss with lights hung on it, there are no guide wires (guy-wires) or base weight/ counter balance and the light truss is not centered on the support.

    it fell over due to being top heavy. (note 1:44 in the news broadcast, I can see the cables and lights attached to the fallen scaffold )

    it looks like plate set onto wooden planks on the soil.

    Check for level, walk around it, shake it, look for settling, make certain all braces and guides are in good order.

    I was working a rock gig this weekend and the promoter set up two scaffolds on either side of the FOH tents for follow spots. On load in I inspected the scaffold and discovered poor safety railing on the top deck (they used zip ties to erect a railing) and unstable soil under the feet. I decide to put the spots on the low deck instead of all the way up at the 16' top of it. The promoter got upset about the follow spots being so low and I simply responded "The scaffolds cannot hold that much top weight, they will fall over" .

    It looks like they made it top heavy with an off center load. Scaffolds are seriously dangerous. In this situation they should have had stakes in the ground with guide lines (guy lines) to the towers.
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2008
  4. midgetgreen11

    midgetgreen11 Active Member

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    It appears that they tried to create a truss out of it, which... wouldn't you buy/rent TRUSS for doing that?
     
  5. MNicolai

    MNicolai Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    As a school, if it's not something they already own they won't. They're too busy working to try to skimp the budget. Thus the unfortunately reality of modern life.
     
  6. ruinexplorer

    ruinexplorer Minion CB Mods Premium Member Fight Leukemia

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    I believe they said that the truss and scaffolding was from a set company, not provided by the school. Which is another good thing, check references on the company you hire to provide services. Service is like product, you usually get what you pay for.
     
  7. Pie4Weebl

    Pie4Weebl Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    For the crowd claiming "oh noes" they hung lights on it, you can in fact do that with scaffolding, I've seen it done by annually by one of the most reputable companies in town....

    Only time will tell what actually went wrong.
     
  8. RichMoore

    RichMoore Member

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    IMHO, if they were going to hang lights on the scaffold, they should have made the base level wider. By that I mean, if you go up three levels, the base level should have been three times its width. That will give you a much more solid base and a wider stance for the higher section. Sure, it makes a bigger footprint and takes more scaffold and costs more money but if it keeps anyone from being injured, then it is well worth it. You can NEVER be too safe.
     

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