OSHA Proposes Changes to Crane Operator Requirements

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is moving to finalize changes to its crane operator certification requirements.

In a notice of proposed rulemaking published May 21, OSHA proposed to amend its rule for cranes and derricks in construction, 29 C.F.R. § 1926, Operator Qualification and Certification, to clarify the training and certification requirements for crane operators and add a new requirement for employers to evaluate crane operators.

The rules require employers to allow only employees that are certified or licensed in crane operations to use the equipment.

However, the new proposal removes a contentious provision that would have required third-party testers to indicate the type and rated operating capacity of equipment an operator was certified to operate.

OSHA is leaving intact the requirements for certification or licensing of crane operators, a provision long opposed by NAHB.

NAHB believes that no one should operate any crane that they do not know how to operate. It is the responsibility of the operator’s employer to make sure the equipment operator has the knowledge and skill to run the relevant type of crane the operator will be using and is competent to do so safely.

NAHB still maintains that the requirements that impose third-party operator certification are unreasonable as it pertains to the size of cranes used in home building. NAHB believes that none of the options set forth in the rule for operator licensing or certification is feasible or practical for the home building industry.

Although the rulemaking process is not yet complete, crane operators must comply with the certification requirements by Nov. 10.

Comments on the proposed rule are due June 20. OSHA is accepting comments from the industry through Regulations.gov, Federal e-Rulemaking Portal, or by fax or mail.

For more information please contact Rob Matuga.

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