Broken cause of wire rope for special equipment was analyzed by macroscopic inspection, fracture analysis, microstructure observation, chemical composition analysis, dismantling test, and so on. The results show that the wire rope failed by fatigue fracture. During use, the wire rope was subjected to complex alternating stresses such as tension, bending, torsion, extrusion and vibration, leading to local stress concentration of the outer strand wires and core wires of the rope; meanwhile, the rising temperature during the extrusion and friction process led to the surface phase transition. Therefore microcracks were initiated and propagated, resulting in the fracture. The core wires wore faster than the outer strand wires, and first failed. After the failure of the rope core, the outer strand wires wore up quickly, resulting in the overall failure of the wire rope.