Lift Hook FEA Analysis Showing Deflection
FEA Results Showing Deflections on Lift Hook

We performed a forensic failure analysis on a damaged mining lift hook. As a worker was lifting and moving a cylindrical metal basket loaded with parts, the lift hook bracket assembly that secured the basket to the crane hook had failed. As a result, the basket loaded with parts, weighing approximately 1400 to 1600 pounds, had fallen and struck the employee.

We were retained by an attorney to investigate to evaluate the safety, design and structural integrity of the lift hook bracket assembly and determine the root cause of the accident. A three dimensional finite element model of the lift hook assembly was performed, consisting of over 75,000 elements and 120,00 nodes to evaluate the failure mode. 

The model included the base plate, the lift hook bracket and the nuts connecting the lift hook bracket to the plate. Several studies were performed on the location of the 1500 lb load. We determined that even if the load was centered, the stresses in the bracket assembly would have likely failed in fatigue.

Studies were also performed for the load located in offset locations. This condition increases the stresses in the bracket due to additional bending – thus resulting in a lower fatigue life.


In addition to engineering design, analysis and troubleshooting services – we also perform forensic engineering investigations. Call to discuss your engineering challenges.

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Tom O’Donnell, PE
Murals of Projects

(412) 835-5007

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