Crowland firm shows its metal for recovery

A four-man team from Crowland helped recover a 630ft machine in Scotland.
A four-man team from Crowland helped recover a 630ft machine in Scotland.
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A four-man team of crane specialists from Crowland were hauled into the spotlight when they recovered a 630ft machine that toppled in Scotland.

Crowland Cranes Ltd attracted a huge amount of TV and local media interest when the company completed the UK’s largest crane recovery in Peterhead.

Whyte Crane Hire had only taken delivery of the £3 million machine two weeks before it collapsed.

The 16-wheel Liebherr lifting machine sank into soft ground at Dales Park industrial estate back in May.

It is one of the UK’s largest road going cranes, capable of lifting 500 tonnes.

Earlier efforts to remove the 96-tonne vehicle by the owners had failed.

The Crowland firm, which designed and manufactured the specialist equipment needed for the recovery, is Aviva insurance’s only approved crane repair and recovery centre in the UK.

It took five months of meticulous planning, documentation and legal and HSE investigations before Crowland Cranes were able to fly a team of four engineers to Peterhead.

Then it took five days to prepare, recover and dismantle the crane ready for the road.

Pete Issitt, managing director of Crowland Cranes, said: “The damaged crane was lifted completely clear of the ground and rotated in the air using three cranes.

“This type of lifting operation on its own is extremely difficult to control, not adding to the fact of the unknown problems that can occur in a recovery process.

“During the recovery, there was a 500 meter radius police road closure, preventing the public accessing the vicinity.

“The accident has received a lot of industry attention, not only locally in Peterhead but on a global scale due to the size of recovery and nature of the accident.

“Our Facebook account has recorded over 116,000 hits and almost 2,000 comments.

”It was a good experience which Crowland Cranes shall refer to in the future.”

l Crowland Cranes Ltd has served the industry for over 35 years with used crane sales and service. Over the past ten years the company has grown considerably, with the addition of crane hire, crane spares and, most recently, the supply of lifting tackle through its sister business, TMC Lifting Supplies, and new cranes sales via Universal Cranes – a subsidiary of the Crowland Cranes group.