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New guidance for windfarm ground preparation

The International Crane Stakeholders Assembly (ICSA) has released a new guidance document entitled Mobile Crane Ground Preparation for Wind Farm Construction.

The document was approved at ICSA's most recent meeting on June 15th and can be downloaded free of charge from the download section of the assembly’s web site:, or simply by clicking here. It is also available on the web sites of the assembly’s seven members: AEM in the USA, CICA in Australia, CRAC in Canada, ESTA in Europe, JCA in Japan, plus FEM and the SC&RA.

The guidance focuses on two main areas:
1) The construction of all types of access roads and routes, including ground bearing pressures for crane weight on the road, route paths, including information such as swept path analysis to assist the determination of dimensional and clearance requirements for the crane route.
2) The construction of crane working areas, including suggestions on hardstand construction, ground bearing pressures for different lifting configurations, and ground level requirements for crane working areas.

The guide does not address road construction for transport of wind turbine components however.
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In the introduction, the guidance says: "Since most of the vehicles used for wind farm applications are special purpose vehicles or vehicles with heavy loads, the requirements and design standards of access roads and working areas should be specified by the controlling entity during the planning stage to ensure all construction activities can be conducted safely."

The new guidance is the fourth such document to be published by the ICSA. The other guidance notes are: Leaving mobile cranes unattended in (partially) erected mode, Lifting a load with several mobile cranes - multiple crane or tandem lifts and Lifting of persons with mobile cranes.

All are available for free download from the ICSA and its members websites. The organisation is also working on two more documents: Working with Mobile Cranes on Floating Barges and Using Mobile Cranes for Pile Driving/Extraction Work.

ICSA was set up to facilitate information sharing and dialogue among those involved with cranes worldwide, covering safety, technical and regulatory issues, as well as promote the harmonisation of international standards.