Bucket mat

Spotted by a reader in Germany, an All Terrain crane set up with the help of an excavator bucket.

We have few details on exactly when and where this was taken, although we do know that the crane is owned by rental company Helling, which is based in the Stuttgart region of Southern Germany.
A view from the other end

Close up of the mat bucket

It looks as though the crane approached the lift on a narrow embanked road with fairly steep sides, according to our correspondent, there was insufficient timber cribbing or matting to cope with bank for all four outriggers, so an excavator bucket was brought into play to act as cribbing. In addition to the unconventional mat the operator has deemed it necessary to block up the outrigger beam from the edge of what looks like a light duty road.
The other side of the road – we assume

It is possible that this was all done in order to install the counterweight and slew over the rear ready to drive into a final/safer place from where it was to carry out the lifts? Judge for yourself if you think this is acceptable or safe practice under any circumstances. In the meantime it is definitely one for our Death Wish series.


I had second thoughts today about my earlier post. Long timbers employed to create a table or huge pallet under the crane would not be wise because the berm on both sides of the road might allow the pallet to rock back. The timbers would need to be shored up underneath them.

Aug 28, 2019

I understand the backhoe operator had previously flunked out of crane school.

Small wonder.

Aug 27, 2019

The other side is worse,I cant remember the ratio of distance from hole to depth of hole but there is no way you could make a lift of any size in this situation.Swinging the ballast over that side alone could cause the bank to collapse.

Aug 27, 2019

The risks are numerous. One wrong move could ruin the excavator bucket the pavement edge the work that’s already been done and allow the crane to tip. Perhaps they should have built a “table” (mat) for the crane using 6” x 6” x 20’ timbers laid parallel to each other. This would have been a lot of setup work to make for a safe lift.

Aug 27, 2019

At least it's not too far to Liebherr Ehingen from Stuttgart to send all the broken bits, when it all goes pear shaped

Aug 27, 2019
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