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FLORIDA CRANE LEGISLATION

Most people who responded to last week’s Quick Poll about a proposed crane safety bill in the Florida Legislature expressed the opinion that laws can’t prevent accidents. Nevertheless, State Rep. Greg Evers, R-Milton, introduced House Bill 609 during the current session in Tallahassee and has been keeping a close eye on Miami-Dade County’s newly passed crane ordinance. Here are his thoughts:

“This issue has been on my plate for 18 months because of crane incidents. In the past few weeks alone there have been accident in New York City, Miami and Aventura, and I’m sorry to say but Miami-Dade’s legislation, even as tough as it is, would not have stopped the problem that happened.

“No personnel were supposed to be down there at the site around the bottom of that crane (in Downtown Miami). Those two guys were violating federal rules, and this is one reason I’m adding language to a proposed statewide bill.

“A statewide bill is necessary because Florida has 67 different counties. How would a crane owner be able to keep up with all the separate regulations for all the counties? The reason I’m trying to get this bill passed is to ensure safety and make it statewide.

“Once the bill goes to the House floor, we have one more time to amend it, address any problems and add more regulations as far as being safer. Regulations don’t necessarily make you safe, but if you follow the process it will help.

“Right now the major concern is the tower cranes, and I don’t believe in unnecessary regulation. The tower crane has been an issue for so long, it’s time to stop allowing folks to kill themselves.”

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