Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement

Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS Template) delivered in Microsoft Word format for easy editing.

Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement

Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS)

Whether you need to get on site to start work, looking to create a safe work environment or pitching for that next big contract or government tender - the Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement is easy tocustomise, easy to use and integrate into your current Safety Management System. If you don't have a Safety Management System, we need to talk, seriously, and you don't need to be carrying that level of risk exposure in your business - we can help.

Look, we understand that business should be rewarding and not consumed by tedious red tape. The Safe Work Method Statement Template we create is in an easy to understand format, while at the same time being some of the highest quality documents in the industry. Our SWMS documents get you onsite, save you loads of time and are very user-friendly. This way, you can get on with doing what you do best.

The Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS) covers the following Job Steps, including potential hazards, control measures and risk ratings:

  1. Planning and preparation
  2. Training and capabilities
  3. Assess onsite conditions
  4. Set up work area
  5. Temporary Traffic Control (TMP)
  6. Delivery of materials and equipment
  7. Inspection of crane
  8. Checking of slings & lifting gear
  9. Slinging of loads
  10. Movement of loads
  11. Depositing loads
  12. On completion

The Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement, includes;


Risk Assessment Matrix | Hierarchy of Controls | PPE | Emergency Response

Your Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement is ready to be used in three easy steps:

  1. Add your company logo and details to the SWMS Template.
  2. Identify site specific risks.
  3. Address any site specific risks and add them to your SWMS Template.

Now that your Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS) is ready for use, you can also make the SWMS document available as a training resource for activities such as WHS-OHS Toolbox Meeting Talks or Workplace Inductions.

Bluesafe Quick Tips:

  1. Confirm the load weight.
  2. Visually and physically inspect the crane before use.
  3. Before use, ensure the crane is suitable for the planned hoisting task.

Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement

  • Detailed and pre-filled Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement.
  • Instant Delivery.
  • Fully editable Safe Work Method Statement Template.
  • Easy to use - no fuss customisation.
  • Referenced to AS/NZS (Standards) and Legislation. 
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View a Safe Work Method Statement Example

See an example of a Safe Work Method Statement Template below. All our SWMS Template documents are comprehensive in nature, easy to use, and are a huge time saver. Our Safe Work Method Statement Templates are quick and easy to customise to your specific business or operation and are perfectly suited for every day use, for larger contracts and tenders right through to qualifying for contractor management platforms such as CM3.

What is a Safe Work Method Statement?

A SWMS is a document that outlines the high-risk construction work activities that will be performed at a workplace, the hazards that will be present as a result of these activities, and the controls that will be implemented to mitigate the risks.

A single SWMS can be utilised for numerous high-risk construction work activities, such as employing powered mobile plant, working at heights of more than 2 metres, and working near to a road that is used by traffic other than pedestrians.

A SWMS is an administrative control that is used to support higher-order controls, such as engineering controls, that are designed to remove or reduce hazards to health and safety.

A SWMS differs from other documentation such as a Job Safety Analysis or a Safe Operating Procedure in that it focuses on specific jobs or processes. A SWMS isn't meant to be a procedure; rather, it's a tool for supervisors and workers to check and monitor the workplace control measures. For high-risk work activities, a PCBU (Person Conducting a Business or Undertaking)  must prepare a Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS) or check that one has been prepared before starting work. It is important to note that before any work process has started, a SWMS must be prepared.

A PCBU, on the other hand, also must manage health and safety hazards by eliminating or reducing them as much as possible. Before beginning any work on a project, the principal contractor must also obtain a copy of the SWMS.

What information does a Safe Work Method Statement need to contain?

A Safe Work Method Statement should identify high-risk work and any specify hazards related to high-risk construction work as well as any health and safety risks. The SWMS should describe the risk-control measures to be implemented, monitored, and reviewed and also should describe how the risk-control measures will be effective at reducing or eliminating the risk, and how they will be implemented, monitored, and reviewed.

A Safe Work Method Statement should be concise and focus on outlining the specific risks identified for the high-risk work to be performed, as well as the control measures to be implemented to ensure that the work is completed safely.

A long and overly complex Safe Work Method Statement which could be difficult to comprehend, implement and monitor or review may be confusing for workers to mentally digest and therefore is not ideal in helping to reduce or eliminate risks in the workplace. It is imperative that workers, and especially those who do not speak English, are able to understand the Safe Work Method Statement. Consider having pictures or diagrams added to the SWMS as a more effective way of presenting information contained within the SWMS.

The SWMS should also contain other regulatory requirements to protect health and safety of all personnel, such as controlling noise exposure and manual job risks. Also, keep in mind that evidence of a completed risk assessment may be required by the regulator or for auditing reasons if the Safe Work Method Statement is based on a workplace-specific risk assessment.

Who's Responsible for creating the Safe Work Method Statement?

In collaboration with workers who will be directly engaged in the activity, the person responsible for carrying out the work is usually best equipped to prepare the SWMS document. In most cases, this means that a Safe Work Method Statement is created by the builder for his or her employees, or by the subcontractor for their employees.

To establish who is in the best position to prepare the Safe Work Method Statement, the principle contractor, builder, and/or subcontractors should decide who will take responsibility for the SWMS.

It's also a requirement that all managers, contractors, supervisors, and workers be involved in the creation of a Safe Work Method Statement. Workers must be consulted so that they understand the SWMS in depth and what they must do to establish and maintain risks and implement control measures to manage the risk. Sharing information and utilising workers' knowledge and experience may also aid in ensuring that the task is completed in accordance with the SWMS.

If your workplace has a Health and Safety Representative, they should also be contacted while creating a Safe Work Method Statement.

What does the principal contractor's responsibility entail?

Before beginning work, a principal contractor must take all reasonable steps to obtain a SWMS from any contractor performing high-risk work. If no SWMS exists, the principal contractor must arrange for one to be created, for example by the contractor or subcontractor.

A general contractor should establish plans to ensure that high-risk work is carried out safely and in compliance with the Safe Work Method Statement. This can be done by keeping an eye on how the SWMS is being implemented on the ground.

The principal contractors' WHS management plan must also include detailed arrangements for collecting, assessing, monitoring, and reviewing the SWMS, according to the WHS Regulations.

How to Write a Safe Work Method Statement 

If you're looking to write your own Over head Crane Safe Work Method Statement, the first step is to create the document as a Safe Work Method Statement Template. This way, you can use the same SWMS Template and then adjust the document for each different overhead crane project as needed, making sure that your Overhead Crane SWMS Template addresses any site specific risks.

The fastest and most cost effective solution would be to purchase a Bluesafe Overhead Crane SWMS Template. However, if you decide to take the route of writing your own overhead crane SWMS.

There are some fundamental requirements and information which you may want to consider adding to your Overhead Crane SWMS such as:

  • Details of the person(s) responsible for making sure implementation, monitoring and compliance of the Overhead Crane SWMS as well as any reviews and modifications.
  • Any information detailing safety meetings or toolbox talks in relation to overhead crane work, scheduled in accordance with legislative requirements to first identify any site hazards where the overhead crane work is being conducted, secondly, communicate the risks and hazard in relation to the overhead crane work being done.
  • Any changes added to the Overhead Crane SWMS after an incident or a near miss.

Note: The Overhead Crane SWMS must be kept and be available for inspection at least until the overhead crane work is completed. Where the OverheadCrane SWMS is revised, all versions of the SWMS Template should be kept. If a notifiable incident occurs in relation to the Overhead Crane Safe Work MethodStatement, the Overhead Crane SWMS must be kept for a minimum of two years from the date of the incident.

Your Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement Template should list any high risk construction work, such as:

  • Does the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS involve a risk of a person falling more than 2 meters?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out on or near pressurised gas mains or piping?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out on a telecommunication tower?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out on or near chemical, fuel or refrigerant lines?
  • Does the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS involve demolition of an element of a structure that is load-bearing?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out on or near energised electrical installations or services?
  • Does the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS involve demolition of an element related to the physical integrity of a structure?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out in an area that may have a contaminated or flammable atmosphere.
  • Does the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS involve, or is likely to involve, disturbing asbestos?
  • Does the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS involve tilt-up or precast concrete?
  • Does the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS involve structural alteration or repair that requires temporary support to prevent collapse?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out on, in or adjacent to a road, railway, shipping lane or other traffic corridor?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out in or near a confined space?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out in an area of a workplace where there is any movement of powered mobile plant?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out in/near a shaft or trench deeper than 1.5m or tunnel involving use of explosives?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out in areas with artificial extremes of temperature?
  • Is the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS carried out in or near water or other liquid that involves a risk of drowning?
  • Does the overhead crane work outlined in the Overhead Crane SWMS involve diving work? 

Your Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement should also identify any high-risk machinery or equipment in operation near the work site, such as:

  • Forklift
  • Crane
  • Hoist
  • Overhead Crane
  • Backhoe
  • Loader
  • Boom Lift
  • Elevated Work Platform (EWP)
  • Genie Lift
  • Trencher
  • Drilling Rig
  • Trucks
  • Formwork
  • Bobcat
  • Flammable Gas
  • Fuel
  • Dozer
  • High Voltage
  • Mulcher
  • Tilt-up Panels
  • Roller
  • Scissor Lift
  • Tractor 

Your Overhead Crane SWMS should also list any Personal Protective Equipment such as:

  • Foot Protection - Boots or closed in shoes
  • Hand Protectiglazinon - Gloves
  • Head Protection - Hard hat or helmet
  • Hearing Protection - Ear plugs or ear muffs
  • Eye Protection - Safety glasses, goggles or face shields
  • Respiratory Protection - Face masks etc
  • Face Protection - Face shield, welding mask etc
  • High Visual Clothing
  • Protective Clothing - Overalls etc
  • Fall Protection - Safety harness, edge protection etc
  • Sun Protection - Sunscreen, hat etc
  • Hair and Jewellery Secured - Hair Net, etc 

The Overhead Crane SWMS must be reviewed continually to ensure it remains effective and relevant. The Overhead Crane SWMS must be reviewed (and revised if necessary) if relevant control measures in relation to overhead crane work are revised. The review process should be carried out in consultation with workers (including contractors and subcontractors) who may be affected by the Overhead Crane and their health and safety representatives who represented that work group at the workplace.

When the Overhead Crane SWMS has been revised, the person conducting a business or undertaking must ensure:

  1. All persons involved in the overhead crane work are advised that a revision has been made and how they can access the revised Overhead Crane SWMS;
  2. Persons who will need to change a work procedure or system as a result of the review are advised of the changes in a way that will enable them to implement their duties consistently with the revised Overhead Crane SWMS; and,
  3. Workers that will be involved in the overhead crane work are provided with the relevant information and instruction that will assist them to understand and implement the revised Overhead Crane SWMS.

When preparing your Overhead Crane SWMS, here are some topics you might want to also include to ensure you have covered as many risks and hazards as possible.

Planning and Preparation When Working With and Around Overhead Crane.

When writing your Overhead Crane SWMS, establish any policies, procedures and systems for working with Overhead Crane in consultation with the Principal Contractor and workers while being sure to establish:

  • Health and Safety guidelines for overhead crane work
  • Emergency plans and evacuation procedures for the Overhead Crane SWMS
  • Worker inductions for Overhead Crane
  • Toolbox talks (safety meetings) added to the Overhead Crane SWMS
  • Outline details of supervision of the site and workers on the Overhead Crane SWMS
  • Check all workers qualifications, permits and competencies for Overhead Crane operations
  • Ensure the Overhead Crane and any related equipment is functioning correctly
  • Hazard reporting procedures in place and added to the Overhead Crane SWMS
  • Incident reporting procedures in place and added to the Overhead Crane SWMS
  • Exclusion zones when conducting overhead crane work
  • Risk Assessment for TASK completed and noted on the Overhead Crane SWMS
  • Electrical NO GO ZONES identified, discussed and documented. 

Assessment of Site Conditions 

Thoroughly assess the work site/area conditions when working with overhead crane and ensure that:

  1. A risk assessment of the overhead crane work is conducted
  2. Suitable access and adequate space to conduct overhead crane work safely
  3. Consult with all stakeholders on potential hazards and risks when conducting overhead crane work
  4. Consultation with all relevant workers and personnel for Overhead Crane SWMS details
  5. If conducting Overhead Crane at night, ensure there is adequate lighting
  6. Check that the work environment is suitable for overhead crane work

Overhead Crane Training and Worker QualificationsE

Ensure all workers have the appropriate licenses in conducting Overhead Crane as well as any qualifications that may be required for various overhead crane projects before starting work. If White Cards are required, retain copies of all cards, licenses and qualifications of personnel.

All personnel must:

  1. Be trained and/or have received instructions on the Overhead Crane SWMS including all safety and emergency procedures.
  2. Be qualified, knowledgeable and competent in Overhead Crane operations and overhead crane work as well as all delegated tasks/responsibilities
  3. Be fully aware and understand the scope of work in relation to the Overhead Crane SWMS

Below are some examples of some Control Measures to be implemented when creating your own Overhead Crane Safe Work Method Statement Template:

  • Make sure that crane can move freely on its rails and those clamps or locks are able to hold bridge firmly in the selected position.
  • Carriage must move freely across bridge.
  • Any fitted lifting component and winch must operate properly.
  • Make sure the working load limit (WLL) of the crane is displayed clearly adjacent to or on the crane.
  • Remote controllers, pendants or controls must be clearly identified with both function and the direction the switch or the button controls.
  • On the underside of the crane, clearly display the control directions.
  • Never use a machine if damaged or faulty.
  • Never overload lifting equipment or crane.
  • Before and following use, inspect all slings, shackle, links, chains and other terminal equipment for damage or excessive wear.
  • The working load limit of all parts and slings must be stamped, tagged or otherwise clearly marked on the equipment.
  • Inspect all wire rope slings for broken wires. If over 10%of wires are broken in any single rope lay, or any length of the rope, equal to8 diameters of the rope, discard the rope.
  • Never use faulty or defective equipment.
  • When slinging loads, observe all limit tables and data.
  • For handling wire ropes, using leather or cut-resistant gloves is recommended.
  • Make sure that the working limit of the lifting gear is not exceeded by the method of slinging.
  • For handling sharp or rough objects, wearing cut-resistant gloves is necessary.
  • Avoid bringing slings into contact with sharp edges and corners of loads.
  • For shortening legs of chain sling sets, use shortening links.
  • Make sure that parts or slings are not able to move or slip when load is applied.
  • Where a sling could damage the load, provide packing or insulation.
  • Always refer to slinging tables.
  • Wearing hand protection is required.
  • For reducing bends, use packing.
  • Never use bolts to shorten legs.
  • Inspect the slinging before fully lifting the load.
  • Never lift loose parts on a pallet, always place loose parts in a cage or box.
  • Dislodged or loose parts may create a risk of head injury.
  • Falling objects may create a risk of injury to the feet.
  • Dust and other particles falling from loads may create a risk of eye injury.
  • When moving long objects, be careful as the object could swing during movements.
  • Avoid sudden movements or jerking while traveling.
  • Do not move slung loads over other persons.
  • Wearing head protection is required.
  • Wearing Type 1 footwear is required.
  • Wearing eye protection is required.
  • For controlling long loads, use tail rope.
  • For controlling movements, use tail rope.
  • Do not allow unauthorized entry.
  • Make sure the location, where load is to be deposited, is free of obstructions.
  • To avoid crushing or other damage to slings and gear, provide dunnage or packing under the loads, when lowering onto ground.
  • Caught slings under the load must not be pulled by the crane.
  • Do not keep feet near to loads being deposited on ground.
  • Wearing hand protection is necessary.
  • Wearing Type 1 footwear is necessary.

National: View the Model Codes of Practice for Excavation Work on Safe Work Australia's website here.
Victoria: Victoria's Code of Practice for Excavation Work may be viewed on Work Safe Victoria's website here.