A lot of safety discussions center around how to keep yourself from falling off or being launched from lifts, but not many safety discussions involve how to get off of them when you’re in danger. Just recently, two construction workers in Boise, Idaho had to make some quick decisions as their welding blanket caught fire while they were in the lift.
At the time of the fire, the boom lift was extended roughly 60 feet in the air and they were too far away from the building to be able to jump to safety. Worse yet, the control board on the basket no longer was disabled due to the fire. As the flames started to get larger, quick thinking workers on ground level were able to swing the basket towards the building, which allowed the two men to jump to a ledge on the sixth floor. The two men were able to get away with only minor burns and were treated for smoke inhalation and KBOI in Boise reports they are doing well.
I’m not sure there are many situations than being trapped by a fire, but these two aren’t the first to have to jump to safety to avoid being badly injured. Dramatic footage of a construction worker trapped on a 5th floor balcony of a $50 million Houston apartment complex engulfed in flames was caught on video in 2014. In the video, you can see the worker lowering himself down the fifth floor balcony and swinging onto the fourth floor balcony, where he was rescued by a team of firemen. That building, which was nearing completion, was completely destroyed by the fire.
Luckily for the crew at the recent Boise job site, the fire was able to be contained within the basket of the lift. It’s a sobering reminder that job sites can and do catch fire and split second decisions need to be made in order to save lives when it happens.
Below is the raw video footage of the men jumping off of the lift:
Below is the full news story from KBOI:
The NFL is a cash cow and nothing makes that more evident than the soaring costs to build the newest NFL stadiums. The past four stadiums to open were the Minnesota Vikings’ US Bank Stadium (watch timelapse here), the San Francisco 49ers’ Levi’s Stadium, the New York Jets/Giants’ MetLife Stadium, and the Dallas Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium. All four surpassed $1 Billion in construction cost. The first stadium to open after the Millennium was the Cincinnati Bengals’ Paul Brown Stadium, which only cost a miniscule (relatively) $455 million ($626 million in 2016 dollars) to build. The oldest stadium still in use by any NFL team is the Oakland Raiders’ Coliseum, which was completed in 1966 and cost $25.5 million ($186 million in 2016 dollars). That stadium also spent $200 million ($302 million in 2016 dollars) in renovations in 1995 and 1996. As you can see, dollars spent on NFL stadiums have increased significantly in the past few decades and there’s no end in sight.
Not all demolition videos can be implosions and that’s OK, because each type of demolition is its own art form. Sometimes contractors are bound by the constraints of the job, especially when located in an area with a large concentration of pedestrians and other public areas. That was the case for the construction site of the future One Vanderbilt Tower in New York City, which just completed the demolition of five different buildings covering an entire city block.
The number one goal on every construction site should be that all workers make it home safe at the end of the day. The sad reality is that hundreds of construction workers are killed on the job site every year. Last year, contractors were working on an indoor activity center for a high school in Argyle, Texas, when the 30 foot tall structure quickly collapsed, killing one man in the process.
Construction work can be a workout in and of itself many times. The hours are long, the tools and materials are heavy, but that’s not stopping a young worker in central China from adding some additional exercises to his daily routine.
The weight of dirt is serious business and the force it provides should not be underestimated. Depending on the moisture content, soil can weigh around 2,000 pounds per cubic yard. Many construction workers die each year from trench collapses due to improper shoring and benching techniques, but weight and force calculations are also extremely important in the design and construction of retaining walls.
It’s not often that a gigantic pack of construction vehicles are seen on the same site together, been when they do, it’s pretty memorizing. Some of our favorite construction videos of all time involve more machines than you would think could fit in one space, like this 10 hour demolition of a Canadian Overpass or this video of 116 excavators working side-by-side in China. Very few jobsites have the luxury of throwing a bunch of machines and labor on a project, but, if performed correctly, it can get a job done pretty quickly.
China builds infrastructure…and some of the world’s most impressive infrastructure, at that. While the United States’ latest grade for bridges, roads, and other transportation systems was a D+, China keeps plugging away on upgrades and new construction. Some scholars have started to question China’s spending on infrastructure, some going as far to say that it’s forcing itself into financial ruin, but, as of right now, there are no signs of slowing down.
Just because construction work happens every day, doesn’t make it any less thrilling of a job. Some people like to climb mountains, others like to climb building that are under construction and bridges that need maintained. Some people don’t like looking over balconies a few stories off the ground, yet many times construction and maintenance workers have to actually do work while dangling 500 feet up in the air.
There are people who spend their lives searching for Big Foot or the Lock Ness Monster, but sometimes humans only find legends when they’re not specifically looking for them. Reports have surfaced this week of a construction crew in Altamira, Para in Brazil which has apparently found the largest snake in history on their job site.
Last year, we shared a video of 6 Scottish high rise buildings that were imploded simultaneously, which was one of our favorite demolition videos of 2015. The problem, however, was that only 4 of them actually fell completely, causing delays as crews had to use high reach machinery to complete the job.