Countless job sites rely on the versatility and capability of mobile cranes for a variety of construction and demolition works. Regardless of the task at hand, safety should always be paramount whenever mobile cranes are present on-site. If you plan to rent a mobile crane for your job site, keep these basic yet essential safety tips in mind.

1. Always Conduct a Safety Inspection Prior to Use

You can count on your rental agency to keep its mobile cranes in excellent condition, but safety is ultimately in your hands. Regular safety inspections are crucial for keeping your rental equipment in one piece and your operators and nearby workers out of harm's way.

All safety inspections should be performed on-site and recorded by each operator. Your safety inspection checklist should cover a broad range of crucial items, including checks for obvious damage and wear exceeding mechanical or safety limits. Any flaws or violations found should be corrected by authorized mechanics prior to using the equipment.

2. Identify Existing Hazards -- and Spot New Hazards, Too

Hazards exist everywhere on the typical job site, so it's your responsibility to identify all possible hazards and take steps to avoid them. That includes using mobile cranes on soft or unstable ground or lifting materials without securing them properly. Don't forget about active power lines, sky bridges and other overhead hazards.

3. Never Exceed Load Limits for Any Reason

Load limits exist for a reason. Pushing your mobile crane beyond the limits of its lifting capacity not only places your workers in serious danger, but it also places the equipment itself at risk of severe damage or destruction. Boom collapses and turnovers are just some of the dangers that exist when overloaded mobile cranes are pushed past their limits.

Always be mindful of the limits posted on your equipment's load charts. Pay close attention to the type of materials being lifted and avoid lifts that exceed the crane's maximum lift capacity. Don't force undersized equipment to shoulder load-exceeding burdens -- always use the right mobile crane for the job.

4. Always Use Experienced Operators

This tip seems like a no-brainer, but you'd be surprised at how so many companies cut corners by using inexperienced operators. Allowing someone who isn't properly trained to safely use a mobile crane is always a recipe for disaster. You should always rely on experienced and well-trained crane services personnel to operate your lifting equipment, no matter how minor the lifting task.