OSHA Investigates Deaconess Hospital Crane Accident

OKLAHOMA CITY –

The collapse of a crane at a metro hospital yesterday isnt the first time equipment owned by Rent-A-Crane has been involved in an accident. Two years ago, a man died when a piece of a crane fell.

Investigators are trying to determine what went wrong at Deaconess Hospital yesterday.

Just feet from where children play is the yellow tape marking the spot where the crane came crashing down in a familys backyard. The crane fell only inches from a gas meter and narrowly missed power lines.

Some neighbors heard and saw the crane collapse.

Somebody was watching out for everybody, said George Frank.

Frank thinks it was a one-time accident and doesnt expect any more near misses near his backyard.

Emergency crews say the crane was removing a cooling tower from the hospitals roof when the crane tipped over.

Somebody better watch what they do with those cranes, Frank said.

Labor investigators were brought in to determine the exact cause of the collapse.

The crane belongs to the local company Rent-A-Crane, the same company involved in a deadly accident in 2010 on the Chesapeake Energy campus.

One man died and another man was injured when a piece of the crane fell onto the workers.

People near Deaconess Hospital are thankful no one was hurt and that this accident didnt turn tragic.

OSHA has not released any details about the accident because it is an open investigation.

Rent-A-Crane issued the following statement through its attorney:

The incident that occurred yesterday at Deaconess Hospital is under investigation and the company is not able to comment at this time.

With respect to the unfortunate accident that occurred in 2010 in Oklahoma City, the Rent-A-Crane family was deeply saddened by the loss of Michael Parsons, who was a highly qualified crane operator and valuable employee. Contrary to recent news reports, while litigation has been filed, Rent-A-Crane is not a party to that litigation and has not been sued. Rather, Mr. Parsons estate and another injured employee claim, among other things, that the accident was caused by a defective crane design and inadequate warnings.

Rent-A-Crane remains 100% committed to a safe working environment for its employees and customers.

Ryan Leonard, attorney for Rent-A-Crane of Oklahoma, Inc.

Hospital crane accident not first for crane company

03OKLAHOMA CITY We have new information about the company operating the crane that tipped over Wednesday at Deaconess Hospital. The crane was removing a cooling tower from the hospital roof when it tipped and slammed into some cars.

It came to rest in a backyard after missing power lines and crashing through a fence.

No one was hit or hurt in the process.

After reviewing safety records, it turns out this is not the first accident involving the company operating this crane.

Rent-A-Crane was involved in a fatal accident on the Chesapeake campus in 2010.

Michael Parsons, 42, was killed when something fell off a crane there.

OSHA also listed Rent-A-Crane as a company cited in a crane accident death in Dallas in 2007.

Rent A Crane released this statement Thursday afternoon:

“The incident that occurred yesterday at Deaconess Hospital is under investigation and the company is not able to comment at this time. With respect to the unfortunate accident that occurred in 2010 in Oklahoma City, the Rent-A-Crane family was deeply saddened by the loss of Michael Parsons, who was a highly qualified crane operator and valuable employee. Contrary to recent news reports, while litigation has been filed, Rent-A-Crane is not a party to that litigation and has not been sued. Rather, Mr. Parsons estate and another injured employee claim, among other things, that the accident was caused by a defective crane design and inadequate warnings. Rent-A-Crane remains 100 percent committed to a safe working environment for its employees and customers.” – Ryan Leonard, attorney for Rent-A-Crane of Oklahoma, Inc.

More digging shows the laws about crane operations in Oklahoma are changing.

Right now the state does not require crane operators to be certified.

However that will not be the case in a few years.

Were told the state will require all crane operators to be certified by 2014.

We do not know if the crane operator in Wednesdays accident was certified or not, but most companies do require the certification for their employees even though the state does not yet demand it.

Unrelated accidents claim the lives of Texas man, Florida man

EFFINGHAM —
An elderly Flora man and an El Paso, Texas, man, who was struck outside his semitrailer following a previous accident, died in unrelated accidents early Monday.

The first accident occurred at 5:44 a.m. on the eastbound lanes of Interstate 70 at milepost 73 following a previous accident in the same location in which a tractor-trailer driven by James E. Tinsley, 53, of El Paso, Texas, struck another eastbound truck from behind, according to Fayette County Coroner Bruce Bowen. Tinsley then lost lighting on his truck as a result of the crash, which happened before daybreak, and remained in the driving lane of Interstate 70.

Tinsley exited his tractor-trailer to set up flags and while standing alongside it was struck by another eastbound tractor-trailer driven by John M. Barney, 51, of O’Fallon, Mo. Tinsley was killed instantly, according to Bowen, who pronounced him dead at the scene at 6:35 a.m. An autopsy was to be performed Tuesday.

Barney was taken to Fayette County Hospital, where his condition is unknown because the hospital does not release patient information. Illinois State Police District 12 cited Barney for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

The crash is being investigated by the coroner and ISP.

Another fatal accident occurred later Monday on U.S. 50 in Clay County at 3:47 p.m.

According to ISP, a semitrailer driven by John Paul Loveless, 30, of Cape Girardeau, Mo., was traveling westbound on U.S. 50, approaching Stanford Road. A northbound vehicle driven by Eugene R. England, 86, of Flora was stopped on Stanford Road, preparing to cross U.S. 50, didn’t yield to the semitrailer and began to cross. Loveless did not have time to stop and struck England’s vehicle on the passenger side.

England was pronounced dead at the scene by Clay County Coroner Wes Miller. No autopsy is planned.