In the 1970s, a crane we designed collapsed in New Jersey. It had not been built with the right material. The operator cab fell, but landed on a container full of soft cheese and the operator survived.
That failure was a result of a brittle fracture. Picture a small windshield crack that appears but doesn’t grow much until—bang—it spiderwebs across the glass without warning. That happens to cranes. A crack appears, and the maintenance people just weld over it. That’s like painting over a crack in your windshield. It doesn’t resolve the problem.