Last year, a devastating crane collapse killed more than 100 people and injured more than 200 others in Mecca, located in Saudi Arabia. Reports indicated that, at the time of the collapse, the boom was erected approximately 620 feet (190m). A strong wind storm with gusts of up to 50mph (80km/h), according to CNN’s weather service, and up to 65mph (105km/h), according to another nearby crane’s wind gauge. After the collapse, the manufacturer of the collapsed crane, Liebherr, conducted an investigation and deemed the crane to be “technically faultless.” The company stated that the operating instructions of the crane clearly showed that the crane could not withstand such high winds with the boom still extended.
14 people are standing trial from the Binladen group, the contractor on the job, according to the Saudi Gazette. The Gazette also reported that the engineer, one of the defendants, recently told the Jeddah Summary Court that the crane was operating without a license and most of the workers on site were not aware of the existence of the operations manual book.
Informed sources have told the Saudi Gazette that the defendants are facing a variety of charges, including negligence, which could result in a find of up to $8,000 (30,000SR) and a maximum jail sentence of 6 months.
A special thank you to Alex Barthet of The Lien Zone for alerting us of the update.
Full story: Crane that fell on Grand Mosque was operating without license | Saudi Gazette