Jib drop in Sydney

The jib of a large luffing tower crane dropped onto the construction site below yesterday seriously injuring one of the men working below.

The incident occurred on the site of the new Fish market, where Multiplex is the main contractor. The crane, a 96 tonne Favelle Favco M860D, which can handle seven tonnes on the maximum 70 metre jib tip, was supplied by Marr Contracting which has already issued a safety bulletin stating that the cause of the failure was down to a luffing rope connection pin that was dislodged. The full bulletin can be found below. The injured man said to be in his 30s suffered a spinal injury and is being treated in hospital.

Thankfully the jib came down within the confines of the site and missed most of those working below. The site was closed down while Safe Work NSW carried out an investigation.

A Multiplex spokeswoman said: “The crane is within the compounds of the site. The site has been evacuated and there is no risk to the workforce or public. We are offering our full support to emergency services, SafeWork NSW and the workforce. We will work with the relevant authorities to carry out a full investigation.”


SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA: At approximately 12:30pm yesterday (Thursday 28 September 2023), there was an incident involving a M860D tower crane operating on the new Sydney Fish Markets construction site.

Marr Contracting is assisting our client and Safe Work NSW with investigations into the incident.
initial investigations have indicated that a connection pin at the luff rope termination point dislodged, causing the boom to fall.

As a precaution, all Marr cranes are currently being inspected by Marr’s Construction and Rigging team to ensure that all luff rope termination points are secure.

Marr recommends that all tower crane owners undertake the same measures.

Simon Marr
Managing director

Vertikal Comment

This is an excellent example of how incidents of this type should be handled, OK the fact that no one was killed, or is in hospital with a life threatening condition is a factor. But hats off to Simon Marr and Marr Contracting for being so punctual in getting the basic facts out there and warning others.

This contrasts starkly with the typical attitude shown in a number of European countries – particularly the UK - where contractors who are quick to pontificate about their safety culture and apply for safety awards, and yet as soon as an incident occurs on one of their sites they throw up a wall of silence and try to block any information escaping.

The situation is compounded by a pointlessly stupid blame culture where blame must be apportioned, ideally to a company that can pay a hefty fine, involving long tedious and generally pointless investigations looking more at how much a contractor might be fined, rather than focusing on the job of making the work place safer.

It is about time that the industry as a whole, all over Europe demanded a change and refuse to accept no or inertia. The aviation industry is acknowledged to be the safest by any measure, because it treats any incident openly and differently, how long will it take for those that can change the status quo to wake up and take action?

The following news bulletins tell the story from a local viewpoint.