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Crane crash did happen

April 17, 2007 | Comments (0)

On April 4th we received information that the giant Sampson gantry crane, one of two 850 tonne 70 metre high by 120 metre span cranes known as Samson and Goliath, had tipped over, after hitting a smaller crane.

The Harland and Wolff yard showing Sampson and Goliath along with the Hensen cranes

At the time we did all we could to confirm the news, Harland and Wolff was unwilling to say anything about a crane accident and only one local paper carried the article and no photos were available. On top of this Sampson seemed to be upright and OK.

Sampson carrying out a lift, the crane that fell is in the foreground

We assumed after a while that it was an April fool’s joke that had missed the day.

However we can now confirm that Sampson did strike a 25 metre high 95 tonne rail mounted Henson crane, a type of heavy duty tower crane, but it was this crane which came crashing down narrowly missing three men working on (painting) the jib of an almost identical crane nearby.. One of the painters filmed the entire event on his mobile phone.

Harland and Wolff has now admitted that there was a crane accident after the BBC managed to get its hands on some video footage of the crane falling over. A Harland spokesman added "We can make no further comment as the incident is currently the subject of an investigation. We are relieved that no injuries were caused."

The Harland and Wolff yard is famous for having built the Titanic but has gone through tough times in recent years. Today, the company’s main business is in ship repair and conversion work, ship design and bridge building. The shipyard also has the largest dry dock in the world...
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