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Lightning and equipment

Discussion in 'Safety Issues' started by digger242j, Jul 9, 2005.

  1. Randy88

    Randy88 Senior Member

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    So if I were sitting in the truck at the time would the strike have killed me or the concussion of the tires exploding or metal parts flying around?
     
  2. Tiny

    Tiny Senior Member

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  3. akroadrunner

    akroadrunner Well-Known Member

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    Occupation:
    Gravel Pit/ Trucking/Owner
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    Alaska
    Our 110' logging tower got hit many times over the years. Often fried the electronics. We usually shut down as a storm approached and took the talkie tooter system out. Sometimes the storm came to quick. Saw my brother get knocked on his ass once when we were standing at the base of the tower when it was hit. He had a chainsaw in his hands. I think the end of the bar was touching the base of the tower. One time our rigging crew was standing in a creek while the rigging was being lowered when the tower was hit. Glad they didn't have a hold of those chokers. Another time the hook tender was laying out a new road. had the hindue of the haywire attached to the strap holding the haul back block. He got nailed, but I think much of the lightning was dissapated by the cable laying on the wet ground. Dangerous indeed.
     
  4. BDFT

    BDFT Senior Member

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    Location:
    Northwest BC
    I had a lightning bolt pass over top of the truck I was loading, between my 550 Barko and a Washington 108 and continue on over the hill we were on to strike a tree about half a mile away. The lightning was horizontal and right at my eye level on the Barko. That was 20 years ago and I can still see the flash. Why it didn't hit the loader or the 70' boom on the yarder, I'll never know.
     
  5. Taylortractornu

    Taylortractornu Charter Member

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    Occupation:
    Privvate landfill operator/manager
    Location:
    Iuka, Mississippi
    At the landfill we work through the rain but sometimes We let lightning slip up on us. Especially if we are working a cell in the main pit its easy for it to get there. Sometimes I will not see a flash but see it. Ive had a spring storm blow up and be striking all around. That old open cab D5B seems mighty slow lol. Since we got the D4H with a cab Ill work in it more even real bad stuff the other day I had to move a surface water diversion berm. I know the cab should work like a Faraday Cage. Back when I was 21 I was running a 5299 and had 120 foot boom I was on the side of the Tennessee river. We were installing an intake tower for a treatment plant and I was runnin the crane some. I I coulnd boom down and a storm rolled down the the river. We had a really had packed clay road and the rain. Our trucks couldnt get out or up one hill as it was so slick. Most of the crew got in my crane, and some of the concrete workers got under a 30by30 Symon form. The ret got in the woods. The old crane actually got struck. I was in the seat and just felt a tingle. I had a flag on the stinger and it was singed pretty good. THe folks on the ground got a good jolt.

    At work we have a rul that 45 minutes after the last thunder before we can get back out. We noticed when its dry for a while and the and is blowing is the worst time for a lightning.
     
  6. blitz138

    blitz138 Senior Member

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    I work alot on draglines, almost every dragline now days has a lightening detector. When the alarm goes off, mining stops and you get out of the dragline, they shut it down and cut the pwoer. I dont know for sure what would happens when one gets hit, I think it would be different since a dragline runs off A/C. If anyone knows for sure please let me know.
     
  7. Nige

    Nige Senior Member

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    We're in a major area here for thunderstorms, and they can strike at any time although they are more common in summer. 4 years ago a lightning strike from what was pretty much a cloudless sky killed a guy sitting under a tree having his lunch, so it focused peoples minds wonderfully.

    We have a system of detectors all round the perimeter of the site that can detect lightning discharges at a maximum of 50 miles distance. If a strike occurs at 30-50 miles we go on a low level (yellow) alert and work continues normally. If a strike occurs in the 10-30 mile range we go on a medium (orange) alert. Work continues but everyone working outside has to be aware of where their nearest lighning shelter is. If a strike occurs at less than 10 miles we go on high (red) alert and all outside work is stopped. On this highest level of alert all personnel must be either inside a building, in a vehicle with the windows rolled up, or in an approved lighning shelter. If we have a red alert then we must go at least 30 minutes with no strikes inside a 10-mile distance before the alert is lifted, even then it might only be lifted to orange level if we are still seeing strikes in the 10-30 mile range. However even during red alert the operation of all mining/earthmoving equipment continues as normal. That said we have no electrically-powered equipment like draglines or shovels, all our kit is diesel-powered.

    In the past I've seen us go on red alert around lunchtime and not go out of it until well into the evening. It plays havoc with construction, not so much with mining.
     
  8. truckdoctor

    truckdoctor Well-Known Member

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    Occupation:
    mechanic
    Location:
    reno nevada
    I just got in and saw this thread and wanted to make a comment about tires as an insulator. The last company I worked at used rough terrain cranes to set up drill rigs for geothermal wells. One rig move we were moving a rig on the site of a power plant. It was the middle of winter and there was snow on the ground. The crane operator was passing under the main power lines out of the powerplant and came in contact with them. The arc from the power lines killed the scale and burned dime sized holes in all four tires in the side walls about six inches up the side wall. I don't believe that tires will insulate well.
     
  9. pjflyer

    pjflyer Well-Known Member

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    While this isn't about being on the ground. I've been hit several times in my years in an airplane. Never been electrocuted, but it depends on where it enters and exits the airplane, and the path it takes in between. Sometimes there has been no electronic damage to frying radios and other electronics. An inspection is always done to do a systems test plus find the burn marks where it entered and exited. Granted we don't fly through t-storms, but to avoid all weather out of the range of lightning isn't always possible or practicle. Just my 2c.
     
  10. GBH

    GBH Member

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    Jul 24, 2012
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    Location:
    East Coast
    Lightning Strike Safety Facts
    • Lightning can strike from as far away as 10 Miles from the leading or trailing edge of a storm.
    • 30% of victims are struck under blue skies before storms arrive.
    • 60% of victims are struck under blue skies after storms have passed.
     
  11. LuNaTIcFrEAk

    LuNaTIcFrEAk Member

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    Location:
    Canada
    Safety Alert I got this this week.

    On July 15, 2012 at approximately 2300 hours driver of 777F haul truck was parked at the 1135 waste dump waiting out an electrical storm. Truck was struck by lightning causing significant damage to the rear of the truck. One left side outside duel was propelled away from the truck approximate 250 meters. The rim of this tire was another 50 meters further. All 4 rear tires were blown out and cab windows shattered. Driver exited the truck as quickly as he could and ran away to a safe distance from the truck.
    Untitled.jpg Untitled1.jpg
     
  12. blitz138

    blitz138 Senior Member

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    I got an email with tons of pics from this strike. I couldnt figure out how to repost them here.
     
  13. mitch504

    mitch504 Senior Member

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    I'm glad that driver was okay, and I'll bet when he was running you couldn't have caught him w/ a top fuel dragster.

    This kinda proves the Faraday cage theory, seems he was safer in the cab.
     
  14. Nige

    Nige Senior Member

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    If I was the operator I'd have sat tight in the cab. However it's alot easier to say that on here than to have to sit through it though. The temptation to run must be awful strong. Must resist ............... ;)
     
  15. Dustindlb

    Dustindlb Active Member

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    Nov 9, 2012
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    Occupation:
    Truck crane operator
    Location:
    Louisiana
    I have always been told that you are safe in the cab of a crane if lightning strikes. I have also been told not to exit said crane until it is properly grounded because the machine (as well as the ground around it can store energy).

    I know the reason we drive rods into the ground and attach to our bigger cranes is not in case of lightning strike (lightning is completely unpredictable and will ground wherever it darn well pleases) rather to keep static electricity from building in the machine and popping people. Due to the high altitudes and surface areas in the air, moving wind and moisture is known to cause static electricity.

    I have heard tale of a person getting their car hit on a bridge while in motion and not being harmed but I cannot personally confirm...