Crane Disposal

O’Brien Specialist Crane Services is a world authority on crane disposal, dismantling and demolition.


O’Brien Specialist Crane Services has unrivalled experience in the crane disposal sector and have carried out the dismantling and demolition of numerous crane types, completing projects on 5 continents working for some of the largest port and terminal operators, and port equipment manufactures around the world.

With an ageing fleet of cranes and the increasing size of vessels, many ports and terminals across the globe are looking to remove and dispose of redundant equipment to make way for larger and more efficient equipment to service the biggest of vessels afloat today. Our clients are looking for a low cost and highly efficient solution to the headache of crane disposal without causing disruption to the port’s operations.

Our unique and innovative methods of disposal are the answer to this problem. We work very closely with our clients to determine the individual needs of each project and from this we design a bespoke disposal package tailored to each client. We understand for almost all ports the main concern is disruption to terminal operations, which is why many clients turn to us, as we use the most technologically advanced methods of planning, preparation and disposal. We can offer a service that poses very little impact on terminal operations, in many cases only disrupting critical quayside operations for a 12 hour period. O’Brien Specialist Crane Services have fantastic working relationships with several international scrap metal brokers allowing us to realise the maximum value tied up within the asset which helps keep costs to an absolute minimum.

Methods of Disposal

A number of different methods have been used in the disposal of large quay cranes depending on each individual project. The first stage of any project is the initial site survey which allows us to determine the best solution for that project. The most important aspect at all times is safety which is why all of our methods aim to reduce risk to as low a level as possible.

Controlled Collapse

A controlled collapse of a crane involves a carefully designed and calculated sequence of structural pre-weakening followed by the application of sufficient force to induce a controlled collapse. There are many positives to a controlled collapse over more traditional methods, these include safety benefits the biggest of which is greatly reducing the number of man-hours spent working at heights by up to 90% and this almost eliminates exposure to the single highest risk faced during this type of work. Other benefits include a large cost saving as there are no requirements for heavy lift cranes and a greatly reduced impact to port operation due to the relatively short duration of the works.

Piecemeal Dismantling

The piecemeal dismantling of a redundant equipment involves using heavy lift mobile or crawler cranes to remove sections from the equipment working in a top-down manner. This is often regarded as the traditional method; however, O’Brien Specialist Crane Services use the latest technology and equipment when planning and executing this method to ensure we offer the safest and most efficient service possible. Regularly utilising specialist temporary work support systems, designed, engineered, and operated in house, to ensure total structural stability throughout.

Crane disposal is a complex task due to the size and weight of the structures involved, so regardless of the method, the key to a successful crane disposal project is planning. We have a highly skilled, experienced and world-renowned team on hand to carry out all planning and calculations meaning we are in total direct control of every aspect of any project. If the project requires it, we can also offer a 3D modelling and simulation service prior to execution using the latest computer software.

Call +44 (0) 191 691 6882 now for specialist advice


At O’Brien Specialist Crane Services we pride ourselves on our reputation for delivering project in the safest and most efficient way possible whilst ensuring total client satisfaction throughout. It’s the trust of our clients that has brought us to where we are today. Our case studies of selected previous projects illustrate our commitment to excellence.

CALL OUR TEAM NOW FOR HELP & ADVICE +44 (0) 191 691 6882

After you have typed in some text, hit ENTER to start searching...