Thursday, December 30, 2010

The Division of Labor: Tower Climbers

Just watching this video is super intense. I can't imagine actually doing it.



  1. I love the shots where the guy hooks his lanyard over the open ladder rung, like that's going to save him when he falls.

    There's no excuse for designs like this. The engineers who design these structures have included zero safety into these buildings. They do it because it's cheaper and they know that can probably hire somebody fool hardy or desperate enough to do the job.

    There is absolutely no reason why if you can build a tower that tall, that will stand up through all of the weather nature can throw at it, that you can't include a safe method for a person to climb to the top of it to perform the regular maintenance.

    Why can they get away with this? Because the people working on these things fall under the state regulated workers compensation laws, which automatically limit the employers and insurance companies liability, plus OSHA allows them to get away with it. Government sanctioned incompetence enforced by the state.

  2. I agree. Watching this had me on the edge of my seat.

    I knew a guy in college that did this kind of work. His best friend was his partner. One day, on a water tower, the friend fell to his death.

    A friend of mine in Illinois speacilizes in cell towers. His pay is decent and sporadic, but I wouldn't compare it to a guy that has to climb tv towers--there's tall and dangerous and then there's tv towers.

    If you had a house full of kids to feed, a sick wife and a mortgage to pay, then I would hope this job would pay enough to solve your financial problems. Remember that in the depression, scores of lives were lost on projects such as the Hoover Dam, Golden Gate Bridge and the like. Hard times and desparation drove them to the dangerous work.