Construction crane concerns cited for Hurricane Irma
Written by Miami Today on September 5, 2017
The National Hurricane Center’s advisory Tuesday afternoon (9/5) lists Irma as a Category 5 hurricane moving west at a speed of about 14 miles per hour with maximum sustained winds of 185 miles per hour – one of the strongest hurricanes in history.
Currently, there are 20 to 25 construction cranes in the City of Miami, according to city officials in a statement released late Tuesday. These tower cranes are designed to withstand winds up to 145 miles per hour, not a Category 5 Hurricane.
Deputy Director of the Building Department Maurice Pons said he would not advise staying in a building next to a construction crane during a major hurricane like Irma.
The crane’s arm has to remain loose; it is not tied down. The arm’s counterbalance is very heavy and poses a potential danger if the crane collapses, he said.
When Miami-Dade County issues an evacuation order, city officials urge residents to comply. If you live in a high-rise and decide not to evacuate, the safest place in the building to ride out a hurricane is an interior, concrete enclosed stairwell, city officials advised.
Construction sites in the City of Miami are on lockdown so materials can be cleaned up, removed or tied down. The only exception would be for work to prevent projectiles, for example, roof tile installation.
“We urge all our residents to take warnings and evacuation orders seriously. We prepare for the worst and pray for the best,” said City Manager Daniel Alfonso.
For the latest, check with the National Hurricane Center at www.nhc.noaa.gov