Reaching New Heights

Mountain Crane

The sheer idea that a project could stand or fall based on the professionalism and quality of this piece is overlooked, rather unfairly, and if the truth be told, without this direct input, the project would not get off the ground – quite literally.

Regardless of the nature of a project, it is simply impossible to imagine any form of success without the assistance of cranes and lifts. Furthermore, the role of the crane is so vital to the safe completion of a project that it is of paramount importance that the provider regards safety as the single most important factor of its business model. One such provider, a company with an unrivalled safety record and a fleet of over one hundred cranes, serving a wide range of industries including plant maintenance, steel erection, pre-cast tilt ups and wind farm construction, is Mountain Crane.

Early days and expansion

Now in its tenth year of business, Mountain Crane started out as so many companies do, sacrificing in order to grow and scale the business.

Mountain Crane has experienced substantial growth in the ten years since the company was formed. While this level of expansion is always welcome, when the growth is as rapid as that experienced by Mountain Crane it can lead to challenges. “It was rather rapid growth. The first couple of years were kind of the proving stages to make sure that they could sustain the company, adding a few cranes here and a few jobs there – making sure you had the right talent. Paul Belcher has a talent for finding the right talent. That was one of his number one challenges, finding the right people for the right jobs. So those first couple of years were spent growing the company, getting the right number of cranes, adding major clients that allowed Mountain Crane to hire more, purchase more and expand more out of our sphere of influence. When we started, one hundred percent of our work was in the state of Utah. Now, thirty percent is in Utah and the remaining seventy is out of state.”

Safety as a priority

One area in which Mountain Crane stands ahead of its competitors is that it views safety as a primary concern. It is refreshing to see a company that does not throw out the term safety thoughtlessly; the concept is at the heart of every business decision the company makes. “One thing that Mountain Crane can offer is one of the best safety ratings in the world,” says Garrett. “One of the main industry organizations, the SCRA, will typically hand out a safety award every year, out of its 8,700 members worldwide. We have won the top safety Zero Accident Award twice back to back. To win it once is outstanding; to win it twice is pretty much unheard of. To have won it once and now twice, back to back, is quite telling.

“We have only been around ten years, unlike some companies that have been around for one hundred years. Last year, on certain things that we did, we had an excess of 200,000 man-hours with zero accidents. A lot of companies claim safety but it is on paper. Everyone on our sites is trained in safety and we’ve got a safety department whose role is solely safety and training.”

Leading edge equipment

Another area in which Mountain Crane takes immense pride is in its standard of equipment. In order to stay ahead of its competitors, a company must use cutting edge tools in order to provide a better standard of service. “If you want an innovative edge with your competitors, using precision equipment sets you apart in terms of bringing costs down and doing a job more effectively and safely,” says Garrett. “For example, we just purchased two specific cranes that no one else in the world has, the Manitowoc MLC 650 and the MLC 300. In addition to precision equipment our engineering department also provides highly detailed critical lift plans for every project. These things will continue to set us apart from the competition for years to come.”

Looking forward

As it operates out of numerous locations nationwide and leads the way in terms of equipment, it is staggering to think that Mountain Crane has only been in existence for ten years. With such a rapid expansion in such a short time, one wonders what the company will do next in terms of strategic and geographical growth. “We are based in Salt Lake City,” Garrett says, “and have since grown into a number of other locations. You can find us throughout the country with a strong presence in Washington, Idaho, Nevada, Texas, Wyoming, Michigan and Colorado. We’ve also done a great deal outside the United States. With that said, there are a number of states that we still don’t do a lot of business with, for one reason or another. However, we are constantly looking to do more work in a variety of different areas.

“We have a variety of different projects that we can do because we have a specialization in everything from tilt-ups and concrete construction to refineries and hydro-electrical power. One of our specialties is in wind turbines, maintenance and construction. Some of the top companies in the world seek us out because we have a specialization in these areas. We also have highly specialized equipment such as our fleet of self-propelled and non-self-propelled Goldhofer units.”

With such a broad range of specialties and an ever expanding national footprint, it is safe to say that although Mountain Crane has only been on the map for the past decade, it will be around for many more years to come.

May 25, 2020, 5:13 PM EDT