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Updated: August 16, 2012 11:44 IST

Some Metro Rail cranes lacking in maintenance

Special Correspondent
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Proper maintenance of cranes is crucial to mass construction projects such as Metro Rail, say experts. Photo: R. Ragu.
Photo: R. Ragu. Proper maintenance of cranes is crucial to mass construction projects such as Metro Rail, say experts. Photo: R. Ragu.

A certain number of cranes being used in different Metro Rail construction sites are found wanting in maintenance, the ongoing safety audit has shown.

CMRL officials said they would not be able to give a number, as the list has to be compiled across construction sites.

The audit, being conducted in the wake of the Metro Rail site accident near Pachaiyappa’s College that killed a worker and injured six others on August 8, seeks to assess prevalent safety standards in the equipment being used currently.

It is being carried out by the general consultant to CMRL, along with plant and machinery experts engaged by the contractors.

“We have found out that some of the machines need to be attended to before they get re-certified. In the coming week, we will address this and then have the machinery re-certified,” a senior official of Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) said.

Each of the 32 Metro stations being constructed across the city employs four to six cranes.

Though the recent accident was attributed to a human error – the crane operator on duty used the crane to move the reinforcement cage horizontally, while cranes are designed to lift heavy objects vertically – the issue of maintenance of cranes is crucial in mass construction project such as this, say senior officials.

In addition to maintaining the cranes, relevant training for operators is vital, say engineers at CMRL. “Each crane may have certain specific features and operators have to be trained to operate it accordingly. That is why a licence from the manufacturer, certifying that such training has been offered, is necessary,” the senior official said.

In the coming week, the CMRL will have a complete picture of whether the different contractors engaged in construction work have ensured that the safety standards are adhered to without any compromise.

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