Proposal to limit age of cranes in New York City

13 December 2013

A proposal has been issued from the New York City mayor’s office for legislation to limit the age of cranes operating in the US city.

Michael Bloomberg, Mayor, and Robert Limandri, Buildings Commissioner, announced on 10 December a proposal for legislation for a 25 year age limit to remove older cranes from operation and improve the safety of crane operations at construction sites. The bill would prohibit mobile and tower cranes manufactured more than 25 years ago from operating in New York City. Cranes would be removed from service based on the original date of manufacture or based on the age of the crane’s oldest component, whichever is greater, the statement said.

In addition, all cranes would require “load cycle counters to record data regarding every lift that a crane performs – which is critical to setting maintenance schedules and overall operability over a crane’s service life,” it said in the statement.

“A strict limit on the service life of cranes will ensure that older models are continually phased out and replaced with the most sophisticated and technologically advanced equipment available. Requiring crane owners to update their crane fleet and make new cranes available will help maintain New York City’s position as a worldwide leader in construction,” the statement continued.

Mayor Bloomberg requested the bill following what the mayor’s office described as years of research on practices in other jurisdictions and extensive engagement with the City’s development and construction stakeholders.

“New York City has some of the toughest crane regulations in the world, and we enforce crane regulations more stringently than anywhere else,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Since 2008, the City has adopted more than 25 new construction safety laws, conducted tougher inspections and raised licensing standards for crane operators. This legislation builds on those efforts by ensuring only state-of-the art, highly reliable equipment is transforming New York City’s skyline,” Bloomberg continued.

“Imposing a limit on the age of cranes will bring our policy in line with the reality of advances in safety and technology in the crane industry,” said LiMandri. “As building in New York City continues to accelerate, we must encourage crane manufacturers to supply the construction industry with modernized equipment. In partnership with Mayor Bloomberg and the City Council, we have made impressive gains in increasing the City’s oversight of crane operations and demonstrated our commitment to making construction safer for workers and the public.”

In addition to improving safety, the mayor said it will encourage investment in the research and design of new crane technologies that meet New York City’s high safety standards and unique needs.

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