Crane Fire Demonstrates Need For Safety Precautions Around Power Lines

A fire at a West Seattle construction site this morning shows how important it is to be safe around power lines. A crane operator was hoisting trusses for a building when part of the machinery came into contact with a power line. The surge of electricity started a fire that eventually engulfed the crane’s cab. Fortunately, no one was injured.

A fire at a West Seattle construction site Thursday morning shows how important it is to be safe around power lines.

 

A crane operator was hoisting trusses for a building when part of the machinery came into contact with a power line. The surge of electricity started a fire that eventually engulfed the crane’s cab. Fortunately, no one was injured.

 

Here’s what the West Seattle Blog wrote about the fire:

8:27 AM: Seattle Fire is upgrading a “car fire” call in the 4700 block of SW Andover to a “full response” so lots of units are heading that way and we’re told the smoke is visible for some ways around. First units on scene are describing it as a “well-involved crane” with “power lines below the crane” – dangerous situation – avoid the area. Our crew just arrived and says it’s in the alley between 47th and 48th. From the scanner, the fire is “confined to (the mobile crane) and fence.” Firefighters are working to keep it from spreading.

8:38 AM: We’ve added a short Instagram video clip from our crew atop this story. Firefighters say the fire’s under control. No injuries reported. The smoke was visible from as far away as downtown.

8:46 AM: Update from our crew at the scene: The mobile crane was lifting roof trusses for a construction project nearby. Those items are largely undamaged. The fire response is scaling down. No report of flames spreading to nearby homes – firefighters got it handled in time.

8:54 AM: SFD tells us they believe the fire started when the crane touched a wire, which would explain commenters’ reports of a brief power outage at about the same time.

9:00 AM: We still have crews at the scene but also just have heard via scanner that Seattle City Light has advised SFD to keep a 30-foot safety perimeter around the burned crane.

9:23 AM: Thanks to everyone who sent photos, and to those with additional scene info in comments. The scene, meantime, has stabilized to some degree; we will be checking back later.

9:39 AM: Also via scanner – the power lines “are still energized” and they’re awaiting City Light’s arrival to cut the power as well as a salvage crew to remove the crane.

10:07 AM: Not sure how this will affect people in the area but now they’re saying SCL won’t be able to shut down the power until noon or so. At least one SFD engine is remaining on scene TFN.

 

You can read Seattle Fire Department’s Fire Lines post here: Fire Lines

And get safety tips from us here: City Light Safety Tips