Tandem Lifting Gone Wrong in Michigan

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20210617 telehandler accident michigan

Two telehandlers overturned in Traverse City, Michigan, on Monday, while carrying out a tandem lift.

The SkyTrak telehandlers were apparently lifting a barge between them using canvas strap type slings looped around the boom. They were lowering it into the river when one of them lost stability, tipping forward and passing the bulk of the load to the other telehandler, causing both to overturn.

The incident occurred on the first day of construction after the crew had already managing to lower a barge in the river to serve as a construction platform. The second tandem lift however did not go quite as smoothly. Traverse City fire chief Jim Tuller confirmed that both operators had managed to jump clear, and that no one was hurt.

A 170 tonne all-terrain crane was brought in from local company Team Elmers to remove and replace the telehandlers without a hitch. Firefighters placed a boom across the river to contain the hydraulic fluid and fuel that leaked from the machines.

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