A telehandler with a lifting attachment was being used to lift a motor and gearbox out of service on a sand plant in a quarry. The lifting chain was attached to a lifting eyebolt on top of the motor.
When the motor and gearbox were lifted the eyebolt failed (snapped off at the collar) and the load fell 750mm onto the plant walkway.
No one was hurt.
The motor shaft was seized onto the gearbox preventing the two items being split and lifted separately.
The lifting eyebolt was designed for lifting the motor only, with a safe working load of 300kgs. The combined weight of the motor and gearbox was 400kgs (eyebolt/load was therefore 100kgs overloaded).
The weight of the gearbox offset the load, preventing a balanced vertical lift and creating lateral shear force on the eyebolt. The eyebolt is designed for lifting the motor vertically.
The use of the telehandler also limited lifting options available.
The person responsible for designing the lift had not adequately assessed it and/or made suitable changes when conditions changed (i.e. when the motor and gear box could not be separated in situ)