A number of readers have alerted us to the fact that exceptionally heavy rains earlier this year has left the ground soft in places and undermined previously firm ground.
This has been particularly true in the UK, parts of Australia and the North America, while ground conditions have largely improved and dried out the top layers, the exceptional nature of the rain washed away some of the sub strata, making sink holes more likely this spring and summer.
The road in Grimsby, UK suddenly subsided
So if you are using a crane or platform of any significant size, it would be wise to be extra cautious when selecting the size of outrigger mats, spreader plates and cribbing etc… that you plan to use.
Perhaps go one size larger than you might normally calculate and if using heavier self propelled equipment consider using ground cover plates.
While big spreader plates might not have helped in some of the examples below, it will certainly help in the more typical conditions. But use extra caution and look out for the signs of soft ground. Click here to go directly to the IPAF ready reckoner to help calculate mat size
A cyclone may have caused this sink hole in Queensland
Rain undermined this road in Brighton, UK
A hole opened at the Corvette museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky, this February