By: Chelsea Giles

WM Cranes pride themselves in offering quality crane rentals and lifting services. Cranes are amazing pieces of machinery that help us build bigger office buildings, bridges, and skyscrapers. Every modern skyline was built thanks to cranes and ever-advancing crane technology, but here are some things you didn’t know about cranes.

9 Facts About Cranes

  1. The first human-made crane was built by the Ancient Greeks in 500 BC. This primitive, wooden form has since been improved hundreds of times, but it was a modern wonder in the Greek’s world. The machine was powered by humans and animals to pull heavy objects up and construct some of the most beautiful structures of the Ancient World. One of the Greeks most famous building, the Parthenon, shows evidence of cranes used in its construction.
  2. In the Middle Ages, a new addition was added to the Greek’s crane. This addition, called a “jib,” allowed the crane’s arm to move horizontally, not just vertically. During this time, the crane was first used in harbors to unload cargo from ships.
  3. When the steam engine was invented in the 19th century, this technology was added to power cranes, eliminating the need for animals and humans to power cranes.
  4. In the 1950s, stronger steel was being manufactured and cranes were put on the back of trucks, introducing the first mobile crane.
  5. Today, there are over 200,000 cranes used around the world. It is estimated that 125,000 cranes are used in the construction industry, and 80,000-100,000 cranes are used in general and maritime industries.
  6. The tallest crane in the world is a Liebherr type 357 HC-L. It can lift up to 18 tons at 44 meters/minute. It was used in the construction of the Kingdom Tower in Saudi Arabia, the world’s tallest building.
  7. Although cranes are helpful, they can be dangerous. In the US, there are about 90 crane-related deaths each year.
  8. Out of all crane accidents, 11% are caused by some kind of mechanical failure. If caught beforehand, a lot of these failures can easily be prevented, which is why WMs Cranes are inspected daily by operators and yearly by Inspectors.
  9. Cranes have many different purposes and are used for many specific projects. Across all industries, there are over 20+ specialized types of cranes, all used for various purposes. Some of these crane types include: mobile cranes, tower cranes, rough terrain crane, truck mounted crane.

The next time you see a crane, you won’t just see another tall structure- you’ll see a full history of modernizing buildings, safety conscious operators, and the amazing things that cranes have built. If you have any questions about renting cranes on your next project, contact WM Services Crane & Rigging at (208) 547-4707. With over 30 years experience and various crane systems available, WM Services will have to solution to any question you may have.