[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 197 (Thursday, October 9, 2008)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 59714-59954]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-21993]



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Part II





Department of Labor





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Occupational Safety and Health Administration



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29 CFR Part 1926



Cranes and Derricks in Construction; Proposed Rule

Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 197 / Thursday, October 9, 2008 / 
Proposed Rules

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DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

29 CFR Part 1926

[Docket ID-OSHA-2007-0066]
RIN 1218-AC01


Cranes and Derricks in Construction

AGENCY: Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Labor.

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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SUMMARY: OSHA is proposing a rule to protect employees from the hazards 
associated with hoisting equipment when used to perform construction 
activities. Under this proposed rule, employers would first determine 
whether the ground is sufficient to support the anticipated weight of 
hoisting equipment and associated loads. The employer then would be 
required to assess hazards within the work zone that would affect the 
safe operation of hoisting equipment, such as those of power lines and 
objects or personnel that would be within the work zone or swing radius 
of the hoisting equipment. Finally, the employer would be required to 
ensure that the equipment is in safe operating condition via required 
inspections and employees in the work zone are trained to recognize 
hazards associated with the use of the equipment and any related duties 
that they are assigned to perform.

DATES: Submit comments (including comments to the information-
collection (paperwork) determination described under the section titled 
``Supplementary Information'' of this document), hearing requests, and 
other information by December 8, 2008. All submissions must bear a 
postmark or provide other evidence of the submission date. (See the 
following section titled ADDRESSES for methods you can use in making 
submissions.)

ADDRESSES: Comments and hearing requests may be submitted as follows:
     Electronic. Comments may be submitted electronically to 
http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal eRulemaking Portal. 
Follow the instructions online for submitting comments.
     Facsimile: OSHA allows facsimile transmission of comments 
and hearing requests that are 10 pages or fewer in length (including 
attachments). Send these documents to the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 
693-1648; hard copies of these documents are not required. Instead of 
transmitting facsimile copies of attachments that supplement these 
documents (e.g., studies, journal articles), commenters may submit 
these attachments, in triplicate hard copy, to the OSHA Docket Office, 
Technical Data Center, Room N-2625, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 
Constitution Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20210. These attachments must 
clearly identify the sender's name, date, subject, and Docket ID (i.e., 
OSHA-2007-0066) so that the Agency can attach them to the appropriate 
document.
     Regular mail, express delivery, hand (courier) delivery, 
and messenger service: Submit three copies of comments and any 
additional material (e.g., studies, journal articles) to the OSHA 
Docket Office, Docket ID OSHA-2007-0066 or RIN No. 1218-AC01, Technical 
Data Center, Room N-2625, OSHA, Department of Labor, 200 Constitution 
Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone: (202) 693-2350. (OSHA's TTY 
number is (877) 889-5627.) Please contact the OSHA Docket Office for 
information about security procedures concerning delivery of materials 
by express delivery, hand delivery, and messenger service. The hours of 
operation for the OSHA Docket Office are 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., e.t.
     Instructions. All submissions must include the Agency name 
and the OSHA Docket ID (i.e., OSHA-2007-0066). Comments and other 
material, including any personal information, are placed in the public 
docket without revision, and will be available online at http://
www.regulations.gov. Therefore, the Agency cautions commenters about 
submitting statements they do not want made available to the public, or 
submitting comments that contain personal information (either about 
themselves or others) such as social security numbers, birth dates, and 
medical data.
     Docket. To read or download comments or other material in 
the docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov or to the OSHA Docket 
Office at the address above. Documents in the docket are listed in the 
http://www.regulations.gov index; however, some information (e.g., 
copyrighted material) is not publicly available to read or download 
through this Web site. All submissions, including copyrighted material, 
are available for inspection and copying at the OSHA Docket Office. 
Contact the OSHA Docket Office for assistance in locating docket 
submissions.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: General information and press 
inquiries. Contact Ms. Jennifer Ashley, Director, Office of 
Communications, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor, Room N-3647, 200 
Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone (202) 693-
1999 or fax (202) 693-1634.
     Technical inquiries. Contact Mr. Garvin Branch, 
Directorate of Construction, Room N-3468, OSHA, U.S. Department of 
Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone 
(202) 693-2020 or fax (202) 693-1689.
     Copies of this Federal Register notice. Available from the 
OSHA Office of Publications, Room N-3101, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 
Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone (202) 693-
1888.
     Electronic copies of this notice. Go to OSHA's Web site 
(http://www.osha.gov), and select ``Federal Register,'' ``Date of 
Publication,'' and then ``2008.''
     Additional information for submitting documents. See 
section V.I. (``Public Participation'') of this notice.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. General

A. Table of Contents

    The following Table of Contents identifies the major preamble 
sections in this notice and the order in which they are presented:

I. General
    A. Table of Contents
    B. Hearing
II. Background
    A. History
    B. The Cranes and Derricks Negotiated Rulemaking Advisory 
Committee (C-DAC)
    C. Hazards Associated with Cranes and Derricks in Construction 
Work
III. The SBREFA Process
IV. Summary and Explanation of the Proposed Standard
V. Procedural Determinations
    A. Legal Authority
    B. Preliminary Economic Analysis and Initial Regulatory 
Flexibility Analysis
    C. OMB Review Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995
    D. Federalism
    E. State-Plan States
    F. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act
    G. Applicability of Existing Consensus Standards
    H. Review of the Proposed Standard by the Advisory Committee for 
Construction Safety and Health (ACCSH)
    I. Public Participation--Comments and Hearings

B. Hearing

    Requests for a hearing should be submitted to the Agency as set 
forth above under DATES and ADDRESSES.

II. Background

A. History

    The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (84 Stat. 1590, 29 
U.S.C.

[[Page 59715]]

651-678) (the OSH Act) authorizes the Secretary of Labor to adopt 
safety and health standards to reduce injuries and illnesses in 
American workplaces. Pursuant to that authority, the Secretary has 
adopted, among others, a set of safety and health standards applicable 
to the construction industry, 29 CFR Part 1926. Initially, standards 
for the construction industry were adopted under the Construction 
Safety Act, 40 U.S.C. 333. Under the Construction Safety Act, those 
standards were limited to employers engaged in federally-financed or 
federally-assisted construction projects. The Secretary subsequently 
adopted them as OSHA standards pursuant to Section 6(a) of the OSH Act, 
29 U.S.C. 655(a), which authorized the Secretary to adopt established 
federal standards as OSH Act standards within the first two years the 
OSH Act was effective (36 FR 25232, Dec. 30, 1971). Subpart N of 29 CFR 
part 1926, entitled ``Cranes, Derricks, Hoists, Elevators, and 
Conveyors,'' was originally adopted through this process.
    The section of subpart N of 29 CFR part 1926 that applies to cranes 
and derricks is Sec.  1926.550. That section relies heavily on national 
consensus standards that were in effect in 1971, in some cases 
incorporating the consensus standards by reference. For example, Sec.  
1926.550(b)(2) requires crawler, truck, and locomotive cranes to meet 
applicable requirements for design, inspection, construction, testing, 
maintenance, and operation prescribed in ANSI B30.5-1968, ``Crawler, 
Locomotive and Truck Cranes.'' Similarly, Sec.  1926.550(e) requires 
derricks to meet applicable requirements for design, construction, 
installation, inspection, testing, maintenance, and operation 
prescribed in ANSI B30.6-1969, ``Derricks.'' Since 1971, Sec.  1926.550 
has been amended substantively only twice. In 1988, a new paragraph (g) 
was added to establish clearly the conditions under which employees on 
personnel platforms may be hoisted by cranes and derricks. 53 FR 29116 
(Aug. 2, 1988). In 1993, a new paragraph Sec.  1926.550(a)(19) was 
added to require that all employees be kept clear of lifted and 
suspended loads.
    There have been considerable technological changes since the 1971 
OSHA standard was issued. For example, hydraulic cranes were rare at 
that time but are now prevalent. Although the OSHA standard remains 
largely unchanged, the construction industry has updated the consensus 
standards on which the OSHA standard is based. For example, the 
industry consensus standard for derricks was most recently updated in 
2003, and that for crawler, locomotive and truck cranes in 2004.
    In recent years, a number of industry stakeholders asked the Agency 
to update Subpart N's cranes and derrick requirements. They were 
concerned that accidents involving cranes and derricks continued to be 
a significant cause of fatal and other serious injuries on construction 
sites and believed that an updated standard was needed to address the 
causes of these accidents and to reduce their numbers. They emphasized 
that the considerable changes in both work processes and technology 
have made much of Subpart N obsolete.
    In response to these requests, in 1998 OSHA's Advisory Committee 
for Construction Safety and Health (ACCSH) established a workgroup to 
develop recommended changes to the Subpart N requirements for cranes 
and derricks. The workgroup developed recommendations on some issues 
and submitted them to the full committee in a draft workgroup report. 
(OSHA-2007-0066-0020). In December 1999, ACCSH recommended to OSHA that 
the agency consider using a negotiated rulemaking process as the 
mechanism to update Subpart N (ACCSH 1999-4, Ex. 100x, p. 112).

B. The Cranes and Derricks Negotiated Rulemaking Advisory Committee (C-
DAC)

    In July 2002, OSHA announced its intent to use negotiated 
rulemaking under the Negotiated Rulemaking Act (NRA), 5 U.S.C. 561 et 
seq., to revise the cranes and derricks standard. The Agency made this 
decision in light of the stakeholder interest in updating Subpart N, 
the constructive discussions and work of the ACCSH workgroup, ACCSH's 
recommendation, a positive assessment of the criteria listed in the NRA 
(5 U.S.C. 563(a)) for the use of negotiated rulemaking, and the 
Department of Labor's policy on negotiated rulemaking (See ``Notice of 
Policy on Use of Negotiated Rulemaking Procedures by Agencies of the 
Department of Labor,'' 57 FR 61925 (Dec. 29, 1992)). The Agency issued 
a notice of intent to use negotiated rulemaking for this project and 
establish the Cranes and Derricks Negotiated Rulemaking Advisory 
Committee (``C-DAC'' or ``the Committee'') (67 FR 46612, July 16, 
2002).
    Negotiated rulemaking is a process by which a proposed rule is 
developed by a committee comprised of members who represent the 
interests that will be significantly affected by the rule. Section 562 
of the NRA defines ``interest'' as follows:

    ``[I]nterest'' means, with respect to an issue or matter, 
multiple parties which have a similar point of view or which are 
likely to be affected in a similar manner.

    By bringing different viewpoints to the table and sharing views, 
the members of the negotiated rulemaking committee learn the reasons 
for different positions on the issues as well as the practical effect 
of various approaches. Each member of the committee participates in 
resolving the interests and concerns of other members. Negotiation 
allows interested parties, including members who represent the 
interests of employers who will be subject to the rule and the 
employees who stand to benefit from the safer workplaces the rule will 
produce, to become involved at an earlier stage of the rulemaking 
process. As a result, the rule that OSHA proposes will have already 
received close scrutiny by affected parties at the pre-proposal stage.
    The goal of the negotiated rulemaking process is to develop a 
proposed rule that represents a consensus of all the interests. The NRA 
defines consensus as unanimous concurrence among the interests 
represented on a negotiated rulemaking committee unless the committee 
itself unanimously agrees to use a different definition of consensus. 
As discussed below, C-DAC agreed by unanimous vote to a different 
definition: a consensus was reached on an issue when not more than two 
non-federal members dissented on that issue.
    In the July 2002 notice of intent to establish a negotiated 
rulemaking committee referred to above, the Agency listed key issues 
that OSHA expected the negotiations to address and the interests that 
OSHA had tentatively identified as being significantly affected by the 
rulemaking. Those interests were:

--Crane and derrick manufacturers, suppliers, and distributors.
--Companies that repair and maintain cranes and derricks.
--Crane and derrick leasing companies.
--Owners of cranes and derricks.
--Construction companies that use cranes and derricks.
--General contractors.
--Labor organizations representing construction employees who operate 
cranes and derricks.
--Labor organizations representing construction employees who work in 
conjunction with cranes and derricks.
--Owners of electric power distribution lines.
--Civil, structural and architectural engineering firms and engineering 
consultants involved with the use of cranes and derricks in 
construction.

[[Page 59716]]

--Training organizations.
--Crane and derrick operator testing organizations.
--Insurance and safety organizations, and public interest groups.
--Trade associations.
--Government entities involved with construction safety and with 
construction operations involving cranes and derricks.

    OSHA asked for public comment on whether interests other than those 
listed would be significantly affected by a new rule. It also solicited 
requests for membership on the committee. OSHA urged interested parties 
to communicate with others who shared similar interests and to begin 
organizing coalitions to support those interests in order to identify 
individuals for nomination to the committee.
    The Agency noted that the need to limit the committee's membership 
to a number that could conduct effective negotiations might mean that 
not all interests could be represented on the committee itself. 
However, OSHA further noted that interested persons had means other 
than committee membership available to participate in the committee's 
deliberations, including attending committee meetings and addressing 
the committee, providing written comments to the committee, and 
participating in committee workgroups. 67 FR at 46615.
    In response to its request for public input, the Agency received 
broad support for using negotiated rulemaking and 55 nominations for 
committee membership. To keep membership to a reasonable size, OSHA 
tentatively listed 20 potential committee members and asked for public 
comment on that proposed list. 68 FR 9036 (Feb. 27, 2003). In response 
to the comments, OSHA added three members to the committee--individuals 
from the mobile crane manufacturing industry, the Specialized Carriers 
& Rigging Association, and the outdoor advertising industry. 68 FR 
39879 (July 3, 2003).
    The members of the Committee, the organizations and interests they 
represent, and a summary of their qualifications at the time the 
Committee was formed are in Table 1 as follows:

           Table 1--The Qualifications of C-DAC Panel Members
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
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Stephen Brown, International Union of
 Operating Engineers (labor).
Title..................................  Director of Construction
                                          Training, International Union
                                          of Operating Engineers.
Organizations/Interests represented....  Organized construction
                                          employees who operate cranes
                                          and derricks, and work with
                                          such equipment.
Experience.............................  Worked in numerous positions in
                                          the construction industry over
                                          28 years, including Equipment
                                          Operator, Mechanic, and
                                          Training Director.
Michael Brunet, Manitowoc Cranes, Inc.
 (manufacturers and suppliers).
Title..................................  Director of Product Support for
                                          Manitowoc Cranes.
Organizations/Interests represented....  Crane manufacturers, suppliers,
                                          and distributors.
Experience.............................  Extensive engineering
                                          experience in crane
                                          engineering; participated in
                                          development of SAE and ISO
                                          standards for cranes.
Stephen P. Charman, Viacom Outdoor,
 Inc. (employer users).
Title..................................  Vice President (New York) of
                                          Viacom Outdoor Group.
Organizations/Interests represented....  Billboard construction.
Experience.............................  Over 43 years' experience with
                                          the construction industry,
                                          including specialized rigging.
Joseph Collins, Zachry Construction
 Corporation (employer users).
Title..................................  Crane Fleet Manager.
Organizations/Interests represented....  Highway/Railroad Construction.
Experience.............................  Over 30 years' experience with
                                          the construction industry in a
                                          variety of positions including
                                          crane operator, mechanic, and
                                          rigger.
Noah Connell, U.S. Department of Labor,
 Occupational Safety and Health
 Administration (government).
Title..................................  Director, Office of
                                          Construction Standards and
                                          Guidance.
Organization/Interests represented.....  Government.
Experience.............................  22 years' experience with
                                          government programs.
Peter Juhren, Morrow Equipment Company,
 L.L.C. (manufacturers and suppliers).
Title..................................  National Service Manager.
Organization/Interests represented.....  Tower crane distributor/
                                          manufacturer.
Experience.............................  22 years' experience with
                                          Morrow Equipment Company,
                                          L.L.C.
Bernie McGrew, Link-Belt Construction
 Equipment Corp. (manufacturers and
 suppliers).
Title..................................  Manager for Crane Testing,
                                          Product Safety, Metal Labs and
                                          Technical Computing.
Organization/Interests represented.....  Mobile crane manufacturers.
Experience.............................  Extensive engineering
                                          experience in crane
                                          engineering.
Larry Means, Wire Rope Technical Board
 (manufacturers and suppliers).
Title..................................  Rope Engineer.
Organization/Interests represented.....  Wire rope manufacturing
                                          industry.
Experience.............................  36 years' wire rope engineering
                                          experience.
Frank Migliaccio, International
 Association of Bridge, Structural,
 Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron
 Workers (labor organization).
Title..................................  Executive Director for Safety
                                          and Health.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Organized construction
                                          employees who operate cranes
                                          and derricks, and work with
                                          such equipment.
Experience.............................  31 years' experience in the
                                          ironworking industry,
                                          including ten years as
                                          Director of Safety and Health
                                          Training for the Ironworker's
                                          National Fund.

[[Page 59717]]

 
Brian Murphy, Sundt Corporation
 (employer users).
Title..................................  Vice President and Safety
                                          Director.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  General contractors/crane
                                          owners/users.
Experience.............................  Over 35 years' experience in
                                          the construction industry,
                                          most of them with Sundt.
George R. ``Chip'' Pocock, C.P. Buckner
 Steel Erection (employer users).
Title..................................  Safety and Risk Manager.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Steel Erection crane user/
                                          employers.
Experience.............................  Over 22 years' experience in
                                          the construction/steel
                                          erection industry.
David Ritchie, St. Paul Companies
 (trainer and operator testing).
Title..................................  Crane and Rigging Specialist.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Employee Training/Evaluation.
Experience.............................  Over 31 years' experience in
                                          the construction industry.
Emmett Russell, International Union of
 Operating Engineers (labor).
Title..................................  Director of Safety and Health.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Organized construction
                                          employees who operate cranes
                                          and derricks, and work with
                                          such equipment.
Experience.............................  Over 32 years' experience in
                                          the crane/construction
                                          industry, including ten years
                                          in the field as well as over
                                          20 years with IUOE.
Dale Shoemaker, Carpenters
 International Training Center (labor).
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Labor organizations
                                          representing construction
                                          employees who operate cranes
                                          and derricks and who work in
                                          conjunction with cranes and
                                          derricks.
Experience.............................  Became a crane operator in
                                          1973; served as a rigging
                                          trainer for labor
                                          organizations since 1986.
William Smith, Maxim Crane Works
 (lessors/maintenance).
Title..................................  Corporate Safety/Labor
                                          Relations Manager.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Crane/Derrick repair and
                                          maintenance companies.
Experience.............................  24 years' experience in the
                                          crane, rigging, and
                                          construction industry, both
                                          public and private sectors.
Craig Steele, Schuck & Sons
 Construction Company, Inc. (employer
 users).
Title..................................  President and CEO.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Employers/users engaged in
                                          residential construction.
Experience.............................  30 years' experience in the
                                          construction industry with
                                          Schuck & Sons Construction
                                          Company, Inc.
Darlaine Taylor, Century Steel
 Erectors, Inc. (employer users).
Title..................................  Vice President.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Steel Erection/Leased Crane
                                          Users.
Experience.............................  19 years with Century Steel
                                          Erectors, over 12 years in the
                                          construction safety field.
Wallace Vega III, Entergy Corp. (power
 line owners).
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Power line owners.
Experience.............................  35 years' experience in the
                                          power line industry.
William J. ``Doc'' Weaver, National
 Electrical Contractors Association
 (employer users).
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Electrical contractors engaged
                                          in power line construction.
Experience.............................  Over 53 years' electrical
                                          construction experience, 37 of
                                          which is spent in management
                                          positions.
Robert Weiss, Cranes, Inc. and A.J.
 McNulty & Company, Inc. (employer
 users).
Title..................................  Vice President and Project
                                          Manager for Safety
                                          (respectively).
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Employers/users engaged in
                                          precast concrete erection.
Experience.............................  20 years' experience in the
                                          precast and steel erection
                                          industry.
Doug Williams, C.P. Buckner Steel
 Erection (employer users).
Title..................................  President.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Buckner Heavy Lift Cranes.
Experience.............................  32 years' experience in the
                                          construction industry.
Stephen Wiltshire, Sports and Public
 Assembly Group, Turner Construction
 Corp. (employer users).
Title..................................  National Safety Director.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Employer/users of owned and
                                          leased cranes.
Experience.............................  28 years' experience in
                                          construction safety.
Charles Yorio, Acordia (Wells Fargo)
 (insurance).
Title..................................  Assistant Vice President.
Organization/Interests Represented.....  Insurance.
Experience.............................  17 years' experience in loss
                                          prevention and regulatory
                                          compliance.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    C-DAC was chaired by a facilitator, Susan L. Podziba of Susan 
Podziba & Associates, a firm engaged in public policy mediation and 
consensus building. Ms. Podziba's role was to facilitate the 
negotiations by:

[[Page 59718]]

    (1) Chairing the Committee's meetings in an impartial manner;
    (2) impartially assisting the members of the committee in 
conducting discussions and negotiations; and
    (3) supervising the taking of minutes and keeping of records and 
other relevant responsibilities, including the drafting of meeting 
summaries after each meeting to be reviewed and approved by C-DAC 
members.
    C-DAC first met from July 30 to August 1, 2003. Before addressing 
substantive issues, the Committee developed ground rules (formally 
approved on September 26, 2003) that would guide its deliberations. 
(OSHA-S030-2006-0663-0373). In addition to procedural matters, the 
ground rules addressed the nature and consequences of the Committee's 
decision-making. C-DAC agreed that it would make every effort to reach 
unanimous agreement on all issues. However, if the facilitator 
determined that unanimous consent could not be achieved, the Committee 
would consider consensus to be reached when not more than two non-
federal members (i.e., members other than the OSHA member) dissented. 
Under this definition, if OSHA dissented, there would be no consensus.
    This definition of consensus reflects the non-federal members' view 
that Agency support of the Committee's work was essential. The non-
federal members believed that, if OSHA dissented, there would be little 
likelihood that the Committee's work product would eventually be 
reflected in the final rule. These members wanted to ensure that 
concerns of the Agency that would prompt it to dissent were instead 
resolved in the negotiating process.
    Under this ground rule, if C-DAC reached a final consensus 
agreement on some or all issues, OSHA would use the consensus-based 
language on those issues for which agreement was reached as its 
proposed standard, and C-DAC members would refrain from providing 
formal written negative comment on those issues in response to the 
proposed rule.
    The ground rules provide that OSHA may only depart from this aspect 
of the agreement by either reopening the negotiated rulemaking process 
or providing to the C-DAC members a detailed statement of the reasons 
for altering the consensus-based language sufficiently far in advance 
of publication that the C-DAC members could express their concerns to 
OSHA. The Committee members could also provide negative or positive 
public comment in response to those changes. (OSHA-S030-2006-0663-
0373).
    A tentative list of issues for the Committee to address was 
published along with the final list of Committee members (68 FR at 
39879-90). At its initial meeting, the Committee reviewed and revised 
the issue list, adding several issues. (OSHA-S030-2006-0663-0372). The 
Committee met 11 times between July 30, 2003 and July 9, 2004. As the 
meetings progressed, the Committee reached consensus agreement on 
various issues and, at the final meeting, reached consensus agreement 
on all outstanding issues. The Committee's work product, which is the 
Committee's recommended regulatory text for the proposed rule, is 
referred to here as the C-DAC Consensus Document. (OSHA-S030-2006-0663-
0639). On October 12, 2006, ACCSH adopted a resolution supporting the 
C-DAC Consensus Document and recommending that OSHA use it as the basis 
for a proposed standard. (ACCSH 2006-1, Ex. 101x, pp. 248-49).
    As noted earlier, OSHA's assent was needed for C-DAC to reach 
consensus agreement on an issue. Thus, the fact that the Committee 
reached consensus agreement on all issues means that this proposal 
reflects OSHA's agreement with the Consensus Document. In the 
discussion of the various sections of the proposal below, when the 
Committee's views or conclusions are stated, OSHA agrees with those 
views or conclusions unless otherwise noted.
    In reviewing the Consensus Document to draft this proposed rule, 
OSHA identified certain problems in the Consensus Document. These range 
from misnumbering and other typographical/technical errors to 
provisions that appear to be inconsistent with the Committee's intent 
or that are worded in a manner that requires clarification. This 
proposed rule deviates from the Consensus Document where changes were 
clearly needed to reflect the Committee's intent, or to correct 
typographical/technical errors. With respect to substantive changes, 
the Agency has identified and explained them in the portions of this 
preamble that address the affected provisions.
    There are instances where it appears to the Agency that other 
changes may be needed for several reasons: To conform to the 
Committee's intent; where the precise form of a change needed to 
conform to that intent is not clear; or where an aspect of a 
significant issue appears not to have been considered by C-DAC. In each 
such instance OSHA has retained the regulatory language used in the 
Consensus Document but asks for public comment on them.
    Numerous Committee members had vast and varied experience in cranes 
and derricks in construction, which gave them a wealth of knowledge in 
the causes of accidents and safety issues involving such equipment. In 
addition, other members had substantial knowledge and experience in 
other types of subject areas that also related to crane and derrick 
safety. This is reflected in the summary of their qualifications (see 
list above).
    The members used this knowledge to identify issues that required 
particular attention and to devise regulatory language that would 
address the causes of such accidents. Their extensive practical 
experience in the construction industry and the other industries 
represented on the Committee helped them to design improvements to the 
current Subpart N requirements that would be practical and workable. 
This preamble describes the proposed standard and the Committee's 
reasons for resolving the various issues in the manner it did.
    In examining the causes of crane accidents and devising ways to 
reduce them, the Committee concluded that incorrect operation was a 
factor in many accidents. Operating a crane is a complex job requiring 
skill and knowledge. To operate a crane safely requires a thorough 
knowledge of the equipment and controls and a complete understanding of 
the factors that can affect the safety of its operation. The Committee 
believed that it was essential to address the issue of operator 
qualification so that accidents resulting from incorrect operation 
would be reduced.
    C-DAC spent considerable time and effort determining how the 
proposed rule could best ensure that equipment operators are well 
qualified. C-DAC decided that it was necessary for crane operators to 
be certified or qualified through a formal process to ensure that they 
possessed the degree of knowledge necessary to operate their equipment 
safely. The Committee's reasoning and the details of the qualification/
certification process are discussed below in connection with Sec.  
1926.1427, Operator Qualification and Certification.
    Another cause of numerous fatal and serious accidents that C-DAC 
addressed was equipment making electrical contact with power lines. 
Although Subpart N currently addresses this issue by requiring 
equipment to maintain a minimum distance from power lines that depends 
on the voltage of the line, the Committee identified reasons why the 
current standard was not preventing the many accidents that continue to 
occur. The Committee concluded that simply requiring a minimum 
clearance

[[Page 59719]]

distance was not sufficient to eliminate the human error that led to 
most instances of power line contact and that additional requirements 
that would help employers identify potential power line hazards and 
systematic procedures to protect against those hazards were needed to 
prevent power line contact. See the discussion below under Sec. Sec.  
1926.1407-1411, which deal with the various aspects of power line 
safety.
    As noted above, OSHA's current standard on cranes and derricks, 29 
CFR 1926.550, incorporates numerous national consensus standards by 
reference. The Committee reviewed the most recent versions of these 
consensus standards. For some issues, the Committee determined that a 
different approach was warranted (such as in the case of protections 
against power lines and operator qualification/certification). In many 
other instances the Committee determined that concepts in the consensus 
standards were appropriate but that different wording was needed to 
improve clarity and enforceability, or to be more readable within the 
structure of the proposed rule.
    Where the Committee incorporated consensus standards by reference, 
it agreed with the concepts, found the structure and wording 
appropriate, and determined that the incorporation of the provisions 
would not detract from its goal of producing a readable document. In 
addition, to avoid encumbering the text with too much length and 
technical detail that would hinder readability, C-DAC decided to 
incorporate by reference certain requirements from consensus standards 
where those requirements addressed highly technical topics, such as 
welding criteria.
    C-DAC also determined that some categories of equipment needed to 
be addressed differently than others. The proposed standard contains 
general requirements in Sec. Sec.  1926.1402-1434 that are appropriate 
for most types of equipment and workplaces but which contain certain 
specific exclusions. Sections 1926.1435-1441 each address a specific 
type of equipment, such as Sec.  1926.1435, Tower cranes. Those 
sections tailor the requirements of the proposed standard to 
accommodate the unique characteristics of that equipment. They state 
which of the general provisions in Sec. Sec.  1926.1402-1434 apply to 
that type of equipment and which do not. They also include requirements 
specific to that type of equipment either (as specified) as a 
substitute for, or in addition to, the general provisions in Sec. Sec.  
1926.1402-1434. In this way, C-DAC ensured that each type of equipment 
would be subject to requirements appropriate for that equipment.
    In drafting some of the provisions in this proposal, the Committee 
recognized that OSHA would be requiring cranes and derricks to be 
equipped with operational aids that have not been mandatory in the 
past. For some types of these aids, the Committee believed it would be 
impractical to require that cranes and derricks be retrofitted with the 
devices. In determining whether to propose that such requirements be 
prospective only, the Committee considered the degree of importance of 
the device to safety, whether the devices are required under industry 
consensus standards and, if so, the date they were first required under 
such standards. Recognizing that manufacturers generally follow 
industry consensus standards, C-DAC drafted these provisions to require 
equipment manufactured after the date an operational aid was required 
by an industry consensus standard to be equipped with the device.
    In situations where no industry consensus standard required that 
cranes or derricks be equipped with a certain operational aid or fall 
protection device, the Committee decided to allow sufficient lead time 
for manufacturers to install the aids and devices. The Committee 
proposed to require some aids and devices on equipment manufactured one 
year after the effective date of this standard. In other cases, the 
Committee specified that the aids and devices would be required on 
equipment manufactured after January 1, 2008.
    It is now evident that the standard will not be finalized by that 
date and that keying requirements to that date will not afford 
employers the lead time intended by the Committee. To conform this 
proposed standard to the Committee's intent, and to ensure that 
industry has sufficient lead time to equip cranes and derricks with the 
required aids and devices, OSHA is substituting ``more than one year 
after the effective date of this standard'' for ``January 1, 2008'' 
wherever that date appears in the Committee's draft.

C. Hazards Associated With Cranes and Derricks in Construction Work

    OSHA estimates that 89 crane-related fatalities occur per year in 
construction work. The causes of crane-related fatalities were recently 
analyzed by Beavers, et al. J.E. Beavers, J.R. Moore, R. Rinehart, and 
W.R. Schriver, ``Crane-Related Fatalities in the Construction 
Industry,'' 132 Journal of Construction Engineering and Management 901 
(Sept. 2006) (OSHA-2007-0066-0012). The authors searched OSHA's 
Integrated Management Information System (IMIS) database for all fatal 
accidents for 1997-2003 investigated by OSHA involving cranes in the 
construction industry. By searching the database for cases using the 
key words ``crane,'' ``derrick,'' or ``boom,'' they identified 381 IMIS 
files for the covered years in the federal program states, which 
include states with about 57% of all workers throughout the country. 
The authors requested the case files from OSHA so that they could 
confirm that a crane or derrick was involved in the fatality. Of the 
335 case files that OSHA provided, the authors identified 125 
(involving 127 fatalities) as being crane or derrick related. From 
these files, they determined that the percentages of fatalities caused 
by various types of incident are in Table 2 as follows:

  Table 2--The Causes of Fatalities during the Performance of Hoisting
                               Activities
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                Percent
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Struck by load (other than failure of boom/cable)............         32
Electrocution................................................         27
Crushed during assembly/disassembly..........................         21
Failure of boom/cable........................................         12
Crane tip-over...............................................         11
Struck by cab/counterweight..................................          3
Falls........................................................          2
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    A study by Suruda et al. examined the causes of crane-related 
deaths for the 1984-1994 period. A. Suruda, M. Egger, & D. Liu, 
``Crane-Related Deaths in the U.S. Construction Industry, 1984-94,'' 
The Center to Protect Workers' Rights (Oct. 1997) (OSHA-2007-0066-
0013). The authors examined OSHA IMIS data to identify the number of 
fatal accidents involving cranes and determine their causes. For the 
years in question, they found 479 accidents involving 502 fatalities. 
In the worst year, 1990, 70 deaths occurred.
    The authors noted some limitations in the data they examined: Data 
for California, Michigan, and Washington state were not available for 
1984-1989; the proportion of fatal accidents that OSHA and the states 
that enforce their own state plans investigate is unknown; and some of 
the investigation reports were not sufficiently detailed to allow the 
cause of the accident or the type of crane involved to be determined.
    The Suruda study determined that the number and the percentage of 
fatalities from various causes are in Table 3 as follows:

[[Page 59720]]



                 Table 3--The Causes of Crane Incidents
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Electrocution..............................................    198 (39%)
Crane assembly/disassembly.................................     58 (12%)
Boom buckling/collapse.....................................      41 (8%)
Crane upset/overturn.......................................      37 (7%)
Rigging failure............................................      36 (7%)
Overloading................................................      22 (4%)
Struck by moving load......................................      22 (4%)
Accidents related to manlifts..............................      21 (4%)
Working within swing radius of counterweight...............      17 (3%)
Two-blocking...............................................      11 (2%)
Hoist limitations..........................................       7 (1%)
Other causes...............................................      32 (6%)
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The proposed standard addresses the major causes of the equipment 
related fatalities identified in the Beavers and Suruda studies. The 
following is a brief synopsis of the sections in this proposed standard 
that address them; each proposed section is explained in detail later 
in this preamble.
    The electrocution hazard is addressed by proposed Sec. Sec.  
1926.1407-1411, which deal with various aspects of power line safety. 
These sections contain requirements designed to prevent equipment from 
contacting energized power lines. The proposed rule delineates 
systematic, reliable procedures and methods that must be used to 
prevent a safe clearance distance from being breached. If maintaining 
the safe clearance distance is infeasible, additional protections would 
be required, including grounding the equipment, covering the line with 
an insulating sleeve, and using insulating links and nonconductive tag 
lines.
    These procedures and methods are supplemented by requirements for 
training the operator and crew in power line safety and the requirement 
for operator qualification and certification in proposed Sec.  
1926.1427. C-DAC concluded that compliance with these training and 
certification requirements will not only reduce the frequency of power 
line contact but will give the workers the knowledge they need to help 
avoid injury in the event such contact does occur.
    Fatalities that involve employees being struck or crushed during 
assembly/disassembly are addressed in proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1403-
1406. These sections require certain specific safe practice procedures 
to be followed and for the employer to address a list of specific 
hazards. Also, assembly/disassembly must be supervised by an individual 
who is well qualified to see that these requirements are properly 
implemented.
    As the studies show and the Committee's experience confirms, many 
disassembly accidents occur when sections of lattice booms unexpectedly 
move and strike or crush an employee who is disassembling the boom. The 
proposal addresses this scenario in proposed Sec.  1926.1404(f) by 
prohibiting employees from being under the boom when pins are removed 
unless special precautions are taken to protect against boom movement.
    Accidents resulting from boom or cable failure are addressed in a 
number of provisions. For example, the proposed standard includes 
requirements for: Proper assembly procedures (proposed Sec.  
1926.1403); boom stops to prevent booms from being raised too far and 
toppling over backwards (proposed Sec.  1926.1415, Safety devices); a 
boom hoist limiting device to prevent excessive boom travel, and an 
anti-two-block device, which prevents overloading the boom from two-
blocking (proposed Sec.  1926.1416, Operational aids). Also, the 
inspection requirements (proposed Sec.  1926.1412) are designed so that 
a structural deficiency in a boom will be detected and addressed before 
an accident occurs. Cable failure will be avoided by compliance with 
proposed sections such as Sec.  1926.1413, Wire rope--inspection, Sec.  
1926.1414, Wire rope--selection and installation criteria, and the 
provision in proposed Sec.  1926.1416 requiring two-block protection.
    Crane tip-over is caused by factors such as overloading, improper 
use of outriggers and insufficient ground conditions. Proposed Sec.  
1926.1417, Operations, includes provisions designed to prevent 
overloading. That section prohibits the equipment from being operated 
in excess of its rated capacity and includes procedures for ensuring 
that the weight of the load is reliably determined and within the 
equipment's rated capacity. Proposed Sec.  1926.1404(q) has 
requirements for outrigger use designed to ensure that outriggers are 
properly set when they are needed to provide stability when a load is 
lifted. Proposed Sec.  1926.1402 has requirements designed to ensure 
sufficient ground conditions.
    The provisions on training and operator qualification and 
certification will also prevent this type of accident by ensuring that 
the operator is sufficiently knowledgeable and skilled to recognize 
situations when the crane may be overloaded and to either require that 
the situation be corrected or refuse to proceed in accordance with 
proposed Sec.  1926.1418, Authority to stop operation.
    Fatalities that result from workers being struck by the cab or 
counterweights will be avoided by compliance with proposed Sec.  
1926.1424, Work area control. That section would require that employees 
who must work near equipment with a rotating superstructure be trained 
in the hazards involved, that employers mark or barricade the area 
within the area covered by the rotating superstructure, and that the 
operator be alerted whenever an employee must enter that area and not 
rotate the superstructure until the area is clear. Protection against 
being struck by a counterweight during assembly/disassembly is provided 
by proposed Sec.  1926.1404(h)(9), which would require the assembly/
disassembly supervisor to address this hazard and take steps when 
necessary to protect workers against that danger.
    The proposal addresses a number of types of equipment failure that 
can result in the load striking a worker. Such accidents are directly 
addressed by proposed Sec.  1926.1425, Keeping clear of the load, and 
Sec.  1926.1426, Free fall/controlled load lowering. In addition, 
improved requirements in proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1419-1422 for 
signaling will help avoid load struck-by accidents caused by 
miscommunication.
    Improper operation, including, for example, the failure to 
understand and compensate for the effects of factors such as dynamic 
loading, can also cause employees to be struck by a load. Such 
incidents will be reduced by compliance with proposed Sec.  1926.1427, 
Operator qualification and certification and proposed Sec.  1926.1430, 
Training. Other provisions, such as those for safety devices and 
operational aids (proposed Sec.  1926.1415 and Sec.  1926.1416), and 
the requirement for periodic inspections in proposed Sec.  1926.1412, 
will also reduce the number of this type of accident.
    Protection against falling from equipment is addressed by proposed 
Sec.  1926.1423, Fall protection. That section would require new 
equipment to provide safe access to the operator work station by the 
use of devices such as steps, handholds, and grabrails. Certain new 
lattice boom equipment would have to be equipped with boom walkways. 
There are also fall protection provisions tailored to assembly and 
disassembly work and to other work. Proposed Sec.  1926.1431, Hoisting 
personnel, addresses fall protection when employees are being hoisted.
    OSHA has investigated numerous equipment accidents that have 
resulted in fatalities from the causes listed in the Beavers and Suruda 
studies. Below is a discussion of examples from OSHA's IMIS accident 
investigation reports from recent years that illustrate some of the 
types of accidents that occur when using the types of equipment covered 
by

[[Page 59721]]

this proposed standard and the ways that this proposed standard would 
prevent such incidents. These examples illustrate the limitations of 
the current standard and highlight the need for a revised standard that 
will address the causes of the equipment accidents that continue to 
kill and injure construction workers.
    1. February 16, 2004: 4 fatalities, 4 injuries. A launching gantry 
collapsed and fatally injured 4 workers and sent 4 other workers to the 
hospital. The launching gantry was being used to erect pre-cast 
concrete segments span by span. The manufacturer required that the rear 
legs and front legs be properly anchored to resist longitudinal and 
lateral forces that act on the launching gantry. The legs of the 
launching gantry were not properly anchored. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017).
    OSHA believes that this type of accident would be prevented by 
compliance with the provisions of this proposed standard for assembling 
equipment. Proposed Sec.  1403 requires that equipment be assembled in 
compliance with manufacturer procedures or with alternative employer 
procedures (see proposed Sec.  1406) designed, among other things, to 
prevent the equipment from collapsing. In addition, under proposed 
Sec.  1404, assembly must be conducted under the supervision of a 
person who understands the hazards associated with an improperly 
assembled crane and is well-qualified to understand and comply with the 
proper assembly procedures.
    2. January 30, 2006. 1 fatality. An employee was crushed by the 
lower end section of the lattice boom on a truck mounted crane while 
working from a position underneath the boom to remove the 2nd lower 
pin. When the 2nd lower pin was removed the unsecured/uncribbed boom 
fell on the employee. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017.1)
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1404(f) would prevent this type of accident by 
generally prohibiting employees from being under the boom when pins are 
removed. In situations where site constraints require an employee to be 
under the boom when pins are removed, the employer must implement other 
procedures, such as ensuring that the boom sections are adequately 
supported, to prevent the sections from falling onto the employee.
    3. July 23, 2001: 1 fatality. Employee failed to extend the 
outriggers before he extended the boom of a service truck crane to lift 
up some pipes. As he extended his boom, the crane tipped over on its 
side and an employee was struck on the head by the hook block as he 
stood near the rear of the truck. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017.10)
    This type of accident would be prevented by compliance with 
proposed Sec.  1926.1404(q), which contains several provisions designed 
to ensure that outriggers are deployed properly before lifting a load. 
In addition, the operator qualification and certification requirement 
of proposed Sec.  1926.1427, which is intended to ensure that operators 
understand and follow the safety requirements for the equipment they 
are operating, would help prevent this type of accident.
    4. March 8, 1999. 1 fatality. Some employees were using a mobile 
crane to maneuver a load of steel joists. The crane contacted a 7,200-
volt overhead power line, electrocuting an employee who was signaling 
and guiding the load. The crane operator jumped clear and was not 
injured. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017.11)
    Section 1926.1408 includes provisions that would prevent this type 
of accident. First, it would require the use of ``encroachment 
prevention'' measures designed to prevent the crane from breaching a 
safe clearance distance from the power line. Second, if tag lines are 
used to guide the load, they would have to be non-conductive. Third, if 
maintaining the normal clearance distance were infeasible, a number of 
additional measures would have to be used. One of those additional 
measures is the use of an insulating link between the end of the load 
line and the load.
    These measures would protect the employee guiding the load in 
several ways, including the following: First, they would reduce the 
chance that the crane would come into electrical contact with the power 
line. Second, if the employee were using a tag line to guide the load, 
it would have to be non-conductive, which would protect the employee if 
the load became energized.
    If the crane were intentionally operated closer than the normal 
clearance distance, and the employer complied with the additional 
protective measures required in that circumstance, an insulating link 
would be in place. In such a case, even if there was a failure of the 
encroachment prevention measures and electrical contact resulted, the 
insulating link would prevent the load from becoming energized and 
prevent the employee guiding the load from being electrocuted.
    5. August 21, 2003. 3 fatalities. A crane operator and two co-
workers were electrocuted when a truck crane's elevated boom contacted 
a 7,200 Volt uninsulated primary conductor 31 feet from the ground. 
When the operator stepped from the cab of the truck he created a 
conduction pathway to the ground through his right hand and right foot, 
causing him to be electrocuted. A co-worker attempted to revive the 
incapacitated crane operator with cardio-pulmonary resuscitation 
(``CPR'') while a third co-worker contacted 911 and returned to the 
incident location. When the third co-worker simultaneously touched the 
energized truck crane and the back of his co-worker performing CPR, the 
resulting pathway created a conduction pathway through the workers, 
electrocuting them all. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017.12).
    This type of accident would be avoided by compliance with the 
proposed rule. First, as explained in the previous electrocution 
accident examples, proposed Sec.  1926.1408 is designed to ensure that 
a minimum safe distance from the power line is maintained, which would 
prevent the equipment from becoming energized. Also, when working 
closer than the normal minimum clearance distance, the crane would have 
to be grounded; that would reduce the chance of an electrical pathway 
through the employees in this type of scenario.
    In addition, proposed Sec.  1926.1408(g) would require the operator 
to be trained to remain inside the cab unless there is imminent danger 
of fire or explosion. The operator must also be trained in the danger 
of simultaneously touching the equipment and the ground, as he did in 
this case, and in the safest means of evacuating the equipment. The 
crane's remaining crew must be trained to avoid approaching or touching 
the equipment. The required training would be reinforced by the 
electrocution warnings that must be posted in the cab and on the 
outside of the equipment.
    6. September 28, 1999: 1 fatality. A 19-year old electrical 
instrument helper was at a construction site that was on a 
manufacturing company's property. That morning a contractor had 
positioned a 50-ton hydraulic crane in an open area that consisted of 
compacted fill material. This was the only location that the crane 
could be situated because the receiving area for the equipment was very 
close to the property border. The crane was moving large sections of 
piping to a new location when it overturned and struck the helper.
    The crane's outriggers were set but matting was placed only under 
the northwest outrigger pad. At the start of the construction project, 
the manufacturing company cleared the site and had fill material 
brought in. The site was originally swamp and large amounts of fill had 
been brought in. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017.13).

[[Page 59722]]

    Proposed Sec.  1926.1402, Ground conditions, is designed to prevent 
this type of accident. Under that paragraph, care must be taken to 
ensure that the surface on which a crane is operating is sufficiently 
level and firm to support the crane in accordance with the 
manufacturer's specifications. A contributing factor to this accident 
may have been a lack of clarity regarding responsibility for adequate 
ground conditions due to the fact that the employer who operated the 
crane did not control the ground conditions on the property.
    Section 1926.1402 would impose specific duties on both the entity 
responsible for the project (the controlling entity) and the entity 
operating the crane to ensure that the crane is adequately supported. 
It places responsibility for ensuring that the ground conditions are 
adequate on the controlling entity while also making the employer 
operating the crane responsible for calling any deficiency to the 
controlling entity's attention and having it corrected before using the 
crane.
    7. June 17, 2006: 1 fatality. A crane was being used on a barge to 
install a dock in a waterway. Employees were preparing to move the 
barge. A spud pipe, which anchored the barge, was being raised by the 
barge-mounted crane when the hoisting cable broke, dropping the 
headache ball and rigging onto one of the employees. (OSHA-2007-0066-
0017.3).
    This type of accident can have various causes. An incorrectly 
selected wire rope (one that has insufficient capacity), use of a wire 
rope that is damaged or worn to the point where it needs to be 
replaced, or two-blocking, in which the headache ball is forced against 
the upper block, can each cause this type of failure. The provisions of 
proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1413 and 1414 on wire rope inspection, 
selection, and installation are designed to ensure that appropriate 
wire rope is installed, inspected and removed from service when its 
continued use would be unsafe. Section 1926.1416, Operational aids, 
contains provisions designed to protect against two-blocking.
    8. July 13, 1999: 3 fatalities. Three employees were in a personnel 
basket 280 feet above the ground. They were in the process of guiding a 
large roof section, being lifted by another crane, into place. Winds 
gusting to 27 miles per hour overloaded the crane holding the roof 
section; that crane collapsed, striking the crane that was supporting 
the personnel basket, causing the boom to fall. All three employees 
received fatal crushing injuries. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017.4 & OSHA-2007-
0066-0018).
    This type of accident would be prevented by compliance with 
proposed Sec.  1926.1417(n), which requires the competent person in 
charge of the operation to consider the effect of wind and other 
adverse weather conditions on the equipment's stability and rated 
capacity. In addition, proposed Sec.  1926.1431, Hoisting personnel, 
requires that when wind speed (sustained or gust) exceeds 20 mph, 
personnel are prohibited from being hoisted by a crane unless a 
qualified person determines it is safe to do so.
    9. November 7, 2005: 1 fatality. A construction worker was crushed 
between the outrigger and the rotating superstructure of a truck crane. 
He apparently tried to retrieve a level and a set of blueprints which 
were laying on the horizontal member of one of the outriggers at the 
same time the operator began to swing the boom. (OSHA-2007-0066-
0017.5).
    This type of accident would be avoided by compliance with proposed 
Sec.  1926.1424, Work area control. That section generally requires 
that employers erect barriers to mark the area covered by the rotating 
superstructure to warn workers of that danger zone. In addition, 
employees who must work near equipment with a rotating superstructure 
must be trained in the hazards involved. If an employee must enter the 
marked area, the crane operator must be alerted and not rotate the 
superstructure until the area is clear.
    10. March 19, 2005: 2 fatalities and 1 injury. During steel 
erection operations, a crane was lifting three steel beams to a parking 
garage under construction. The crane tipped over and the boom 
collapsed. The boom and attached beams struck concrete workers next to 
the structure. Two were killed and one injured. The accident apparently 
occurred as a result of overloading the crane. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017.6).
    Overloading a crane can cause it to tip over. When it does, the 
load or crane structure can strike and fatally injure workers who may 
be some distance from the crane. Proposed Sec.  1926.1417, Operations, 
includes provisions designed to prevent overloading. That section 
prohibits the equipment from being operated in excess of its rated 
capacity and includes procedures for ensuring that the weight of the 
load is reliably determined and within the equipment's rated capacity.
    The provisions on operator training and certification/qualification 
will also help prevent this type of accident by ensuring that the 
operator is sufficiently knowledgeable and skilled in recognizing 
conditions that would overload the crane.
    11. December 7, 2005. 1 fatality. Two cranes were being used to 
lower a concrete beam across the river. During the lowering process, 
the west side of the beam became lower than the east side. The 
consequent shifting of the load's weight to the west side crane caused 
that crane to tip over. The west end of the beam went into the river 
and the east end fell on the bank and a support mat, causing a flag 
person to be thrown into the beam. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017.7).
    This type of accident would be prevented by compliance with 
proposed Sec.  1926.1432, Multiple crane/derrick lifts. That section 
specifies that when more than one crane will be supporting a load, the 
operation must be performed in accordance with a plan developed by a 
qualified person. The plan must be designed to ensure that the 
requirements of this proposed standard will be met and must be reviewed 
with all individuals who will be involved in the process. Moreover, the 
lift must be supervised by an individual who qualifies as both a 
competent person and a qualified person as defined in this standard.
    In the type of scenario involved in this accident, a plan that 
would comply with this requirement would, for example, include a 
determination of the degree of level that is needed to be maintained in 
order to prevent either crane from being overloaded. In addition, such 
a plan would include a system of communications and a means of 
monitoring the operation designed to ensure that the cranes' operation 
was properly coordinated.
    12. May 7, 2004: 1 fatality. An employee, a rigger/operator-in-
training, was in the upper cab of a 60-ton hydraulic boom truck crane 
to set up and position the crane boom prior to a lift. The crane was 
equipped with two hoists, a main line and auxiliary. The main hoist 
line had a multi-sheave block and hook and the auxiliary line had a 285 
pound ball and hook. When the employee was extending the hydraulic 
boom, a two-block condition occurred with the auxiliary line ball 
striking the auxiliary sheave head, knocking the sheave and ball from 
the boom. The employee was struck in the head and killed by the falling 
ball. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017.8).
    This type of accident would be prevented by compliance with 
proposed Sec.  1926.1416, Operational aids, which requires protection 
against two-blocking. A hydraulic boom crane, if manufactured after 
February 28, 1992, would have to be equipped with a

[[Page 59723]]

device that automatically prevents two-blocking.
    Also, the operator-in-training in this case apparently did not 
understand that extending a hydraulic boom would move the sheave head 
toward the ball and could cause two-blocking. The proposed standard, 
through proposed Sec.  1926.1427(a) and (f), would avoid having 
inexperienced operators make this type of mistake by prohibiting an 
operator-in-training from operating a crane without supervision and 
without first having had enough training to enable the operator to 
perform the assigned task safely.
    13. April 26, 2006: One fatality. The deceased employee was part of 
a framing crew which was in the process of installing sheathing for a 
roof. A bundle of plywood sheathing was being hoisted by a crane to a 
location on the roof. As the crane was positioning the bundle of 
sheathing above its landing location, the load hoist on the crane free 
spooled, causing an uncontrolled descent of the load. The employee was 
under the load, preparing to position it to its landing spot, when the 
load fell and crushed him. (OSHA-2007-0066-0017.9).
    This type of accident would be prevented by compliance with Sec.  
1926.1426, Free fall and controlled load lowering, which prohibits free 
fall of the load line hoist and requires controlled load lowering when 
an employee is directly under the load.
    As discussed below in the Preliminary Economic Analysis, OSHA finds 
that construction workers suffer 89 fatal injuries per year from the 
types of equipment covered by this proposed standard. Of that number, 
OSHA estimates that 53 would be avoided by compliance with the proposed 
standard. In addition, OSHA estimates that the proposed standard would 
prevent 155 non-fatal injuries each year. Based on all of the available 
evidence and on the collective expertise of the members of C-DAC, OSHA 
preliminarily finds that construction workers are faced with a 
significant risk of death and injury resulting from equipment 
operations and that the risk would be substantially reduced by 
compliance with this proposed standard.
    During the SBREFA process, several Small Entity Representatives 
expressed concern that the C-DAC proposal was so long and complex that 
small businesses would have difficulty understanding it and complying 
with it. The SBREFA Panel recommended that OSHA solicit public comment 
on how the rule could be simplified and made easier to understand 
without creating ambiguities. OSHA welcomes public comment on this 
issue.

III. The SBREFA Process

    Before proceeding with a proposed rule based on the C-DAC Consensus 
Document, OSHA was required to comply with the Small Business 
Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq. 
(SBREFA). This required OSHA to draft an initial regulatory flexibility 
analysis that would evaluate the potential impact of the rule on small 
entities (defined as small businesses, small governmental units, and 
small nonprofit organizations) and identify the type of small entities 
that might be affected by the rule. In accordance with SBREFA, OSHA 
then convened a Small Business Advocacy Review Panel (``Panel'') 
composed of representatives of OSHA, the Office of Management and 
Budget, and the Office of Advocacy of the Small Business 
Administration. Individuals who were representative of affected small 
entities (Small Entity Representatives, or ``SERs'') were then 
identified for the purpose of obtaining advice and recommendations from 
those individuals about the potential impacts of the proposed rule.
    OSHA provided the SERs with the C-DAC consensus document and the 
draft regulatory flexibility analysis and afforded them the opportunity 
to submit written comments on those documents. The Agency also drafted 
questions asking them their views on the specific aspects of the C-DAC 
document it thought would be of most concern to small entities.
    The Panel conducted two conference calls with the SERs in which the 
SERs presented their views on various issues. After reviewing the SERs' 
oral and written comments, on October 17, 2006, the Panel submitted its 
report summarizing the requirements of the C-DAC proposal, the comments 
received from the SERs, and presenting its findings and 
recommendations. (OSHA-S030A-2006-0664-0019). In its findings and 
recommendations, the Panel identified issues that it believed needed 
particular attention and analysis in the proposal or for which it 
believed OSHA should explicitly solicit public comment.
    In the discussion that follows, OSHA addresses each of the Panel's 
findings and recommendations in the section pertaining to the issue 
involved. Table 4 summarizes the Panel's recommendations and the 
portions of this preamble in which they are discussed.

        Table 4--SBREFA Panel Recommendations and OSHA Responses
------------------------------------------------------------------------
      SBREFA panel recommendation                 OSHA response
------------------------------------------------------------------------
The Panel recommends that OSHA provide   See the Preliminary Economic
 full documentation for how it            Analysis (PEA), in section
 estimated the number of affected small   V.B. of this Federal Register
 entities and all other calculations      notice.
 and estimates provided in the PIRFA.
The Panel recommends that OSHA           See the Preliminary Economic
 reexamine its estimate of crane use in   Analysis (PEA), in section
 home building, the coverage of crane     V.B. of this Federal Register
 trucks used for loading and unloading,   notice.
 and the estimates of the number of
 jobs per crane. Changes in these
 estimates should be incorporated into
 the estimates of costs and economic
 impacts.
The Panel recommends that OSHA review    See the Preliminary Economic
 its estimates for the direct costs of    Analysis (PEA), in section
 operator certification and seek          V.B. of this Federal Register
 comment on these cost estimates.         notice.
The Panel recommends that OSHA           See the Preliminary Economic
 carefully examine certain types of       Analysis (PEA), in section
 impact that could result from an         V.B. of this Federal Register
 operator certification requirement,      notice.
 including reports of substantial
 increases in the wages of operators;
 the possibility of increased market
 power for firms renting out cranes;
 and loss of jobs for existing
 operators due to language, literacy,
 or knowledge problems; and seek
 comment on these types of impacts.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  See the Preliminary Economic
 studying the impacts of the              Analysis (PEA), in section
 implementation of operator               V.B. of this Federal Register
 certification in California.             notice.

[[Page 59724]]

 
The Panel recommends that OSHA           See the Preliminary Economic
 reexamine its estimates for the amount   Analysis (PEA), in section
 of time required to assess ground        V.B. of this Federal Register
 conditions, the number of persons        notice.
 involved in the assessment, and the
 amount of coordination involved;
 clarify the extent to which such
 assessments are currently being
 conducted and what OSHA estimates as
 new costs for this rule represent; and
 seek comments on OSHA's cost estimates.
The Panel recommends that OSHA           The Agency describes the
 carefully review the documentation       documentation requirements,
 requirements of the standard,            along with cost estimates, in
 including documentation that employers   the section of this Preamble
 may consider it prudent to maintain;     entitled ``OMB Review Under
 estimate the costs of such               the Paperwork Reduction Act of
 requirements; seek ways of minimizing    1995.''
 these costs consistent with the goals
 of the OSH Act; and solicit comment on
 these costs and ways of minimizing
 these costs.
The Panel recommends that OSHA examine   As explained in the discussion
 whether the inspection requirements of   of Sec.   1926.1412,
 the proposed rule require procedures     Inspections, OSHA's current
 not normally conducted currently, such   standard at 29 CFR 1926.550
 as lowering and fully extending the      requires inspections each time
 boom before the crane can be used and    the equipment is used as well
 removing non-hinged inspection plates    as thorough annual
 during the shift inspection, estimate    inspections. In addition,
 the costs of any such requirements,      national consensus standards
 and seek comment on these issues.        that are incorporated by
                                          reference include additional
                                          inspection requirements. This
                                          proposal would list the
                                          inspection requirements in one
                                          place rather than rely on
                                          incorporated consensus
                                          standards. OSHA does not
                                          believe this proposed standard
                                          imposes significant new
                                          requirements for inspections.
                                          Section 1926.1413(a)
                                          explicitly says that booming
                                          down is not required for shift
                                          (and therefore monthly)
                                          inspections.
                                         Similarly, OSHA does not
                                          believe that inspection of any
                                          of those items would require
                                          removal of non-hinged
                                          inspection plates. In the
                                          discussion of proposed Sec.
                                          1926.1412, OSHA requests
                                          public comment on these
                                          points.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  Currently, Subpart N, at 29 CFR
 the costs of meeting the requirements    1926.550(a)(2), requires load
 for original load charts and full        charts, so that is not a new
 manuals, and solicit comments on such    cost. Subpart N does not
 costs.                                   require manuals. OSHA believes
                                          that most crane owners and
                                          operators have and maintain
                                          crane manuals, which contain
                                          the load charts and other
                                          critical technical information
                                          about crane operations and
                                          maintenance. The Agency
                                          believes that the cost of
                                          obtaining a copy of a manual
                                          should be modest and solicits
                                          comment on how many owners or
                                          operators do not have full
                                          manuals for their cranes or
                                          derricks.
The Panel recommends that OSHA provide   See the Preliminary Economic
 full documentation for its analysis of   Analysis (PEA), in section
 the benefits the proposed rule is        V.B. of this Federal Register
 expected to produce and assure that      notice.
 the benefits analysis is reproducible
 by others.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA addresses this
 and solicit public comment on whether    recommendation in the
 the scope language should be clarified   discussion of proposed Sec.
 to explicitly state whether forklifts    1926.1400(c)(8) and solicits
 that are modified to perform tasks       public comment on the issue.
 similar to equipment (cranes and
 derricks) modified in that manner
 would be covered.
The Panel recommends that there be a     OSHA explains in the discussion
 full explanation in the preamble of      of proposed Sec.
 how responsibility for ensuring          1926.1402(e) how the various
 adequate ground conditions is shared     employers, including the
 between the controlling entity, and      controlling entity, the
 the employer of the individual           employer whose employees
 supervising assembly/disassembly and/    operate the equipment, and the
 or the operator.                         employer of the A/D supervisor
                                          share responsibility for
                                          ensuring adequate ground
                                          conditions.
The Panel recommends that OSHA restate   OSHA addresses this
 the applicable corrective action         recommendation in the
 provisions (which are set forth in the   discussion of proposed Sec.
 shift inspection) in the monthly         1926.1412(e) and solicits
 inspection section.                      public comment on the issue.
The Panel recommends that OSHA solicit   OSHA addresses this
 public comment on whether, and under     recommendation in the
 what circumstances, booming down         discussion of proposed Sec.
 should be specifically excluded as a     1926.1412(d) and solicits
 part of the shift inspection, and        public comment on the issues
 whether the removal of non-hinged        raised in the recommendation.
 inspection plates should be required
 during the shift inspection.
The Panel recommends that OSHA solicit   OSHA addresses this
 public comment on whether to include     recommendation in the
 an exception for transportation          discussion of proposed Sec.
 systems in proposed Sec.                 1926.1412(a) and solicits
 1926.1412(a), which requires an          public comment on the issues
 inspection of equipment that has had     raised in the recommendation.
 modifications or additions that affect
 its safe operation, and, if so, what
 the appropriate terminology for such
 an exception would be.
The Panel recommends that OSHA explain   In the explanation of Sec.
 in the preamble that the shift           1926.1412(d)(1) of the
 inspection does not need to be           proposed rule, OSHA explains
 completed prior to each shift but may    that the shift inspection may
 be completed during the shift.           be completed during the shift.
The Panel recommends that OSHA solicit   OSHA addresses this
 public comment about whether it is       recommendation in the
 necessary to clarify the requirement     discussion of proposed Sec.
 of proposed Sec.   1926.1412(d)(1)(xi)   1926.1412(d)(1)(xi) and
 that the equipment be inspected for      requests public comment on the
 ``level position''.                      issues raised in the
                                          recommendation.

[[Page 59725]]

 
The Panel recommends that OSHA solicit   There is no proposed
 comment on whether Sec.                  requirement to check the
 1926.1412(f)(2)(xii)(D) should be        pressure ``at each and every
 changed to require that pressure be      line.'' The provision simply
 inspected ``at the end of the line,''    states that relief valves
 as distinguished from ``at each and      should be checked for failure
 every line,'' and if so, what the best   to reach correct pressure. If
 terminology would be to meet this        this can be done at one point
 purpose. (An SER indicated that          for the entire system, then
 proposed paragraph (f)(2)(xiv)(D) of     that would satisfy the
 Sec.   1926.1412 should be modified to   requirement.
 ``checking pressure setting,'' in part
 to avoid having to check the pressure
 at ``each and every line'' as opposed
 to ``at the end of the line.'').
The Panel recommends that OSHA solicit   Proposed Sec.
 public comment on whether proposed       1926.1412(f)(2)(xx) does not
 paragraph (f)(2)(xx) of Sec.             require the corrective action
 1926.1412 should be deleted because an   to which the SER refers. If an
 SER believes that it is not always       inspection under proposed Sec.
 appropriate to retain originally           1926.1412(f) reveals a
 equipped steps and ladders, such as in   deficiency, a qualified person
 instances where they are replaced with   must determine whether that
 ``attaching dollies.''.                  deficiency is a safety hazard
                                          requiring immediate
                                          correction. If the inspection
                                          reveals that original
                                          equipment, such as stairs and
                                          ladders, have been replaced
                                          with something equally safe,
                                          there would be no safety
                                          hazard and no requirement for
                                          corrective action.
The Panel recommends that OSHA solicit   OSHA addresses this
 public comment on the extent of          recommendation in the
 documentation of monthly and annual/     discussion of proposed Sec.
 comprehensive inspections the rule       1926.1412(f) and requests
 should require.                          public comment on the issue.
The Panel recommends that OSHA solicit   OSHA addresses this
 public comment on whether the            recommendation in the
 provision for monthly inspections        discussion of proposed Sec.
 should, like the provision for annual    1926.1412(e) and requests
 inspections, specify who must keep the   public comment on the issue.
 documentation associated with monthly
 inspections.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA addresses this
 ways to account for the possibility      recommendation in the
 that there may sometimes be an           discussion of proposed Sec.
 extended delay in obtaining the part     1926.1416(d) and solicits
 number for an operational aid for        public comment on the issue.
 older equipment and solicit public
 comment on the extent to which this is
 a problem.
The Panel recommends that the provision  In the discussion of proposed
 on fall protection (proposed Sec.        Sec.   1926.1423, OSHA
 1926.1423) be proposed as written and    explains the Committee's
 that OSHA explain in the preamble how    rationale underlying the
 and why the Committee arrived at this    proposed section.
 provision.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA addresses these
 the potential advantages of and          recommendations in the
 solicit public comment on adding         discussion of proposed Sec.
 provisions to proposed Sec.              1926.1427 and requests public
 1926.1427 that would allow an operator   comment on the issues raised
 to be certified on a particular model    by the Panel.
 of crane; allow tests to be
 administered by an accredited
 educational institution; and allow
 employers to use manuals that have
 been re-written to accommodate the
 literacy level and English proficiency
 of operators.
The Panel recommends that OSHA clarify   The issue is discussed in the
 in the preamble how the proposed rule    explanation of the proposed
 addresses an SER's concern that his      rule for Sec.   1926.1427(h).
 crane operator would not be able to
 pass a written qualification/
 certification exam because the
 operator has difficulty in taking
 written exams.
The Panel recommends soliciting public   OSHA addresses this
 comment on whether the phrase            recommendation in the
 ``equipment capacity and type'' in       discussion of proposed Sec.
 proposed Sec.   1926.1427(b)(1)(ii)(B)   1926.1427(b)(1)(ii)(B) and
 needs clarification, suggestions on      requests public comment on the
 how to accomplish this, and whether      issue.
 the categories represented in Figures
 1 through 10 contained in ASME B30.5-
 2000 (i.e., commercial truck-mounted
 crane--telescoping boom; commercial
 truck-mounted crane--non-telescoping
 boom; crawler crane; crawler crane--
 telescoping boom; locomotive crane;
 wheel mounted crane (multiple control
 station); wheel mounted crane--
 telescoping boom (multiple control
 station); wheel mounted crane (single
 control station); wheel mounted crane--
 telescoping boom (single control
 station)) should be used.
The Panel recommends that OSHA ask for   OSHA addresses this
 public comment on whether the rule       recommendation in the
 needs to state more clearly that         discussion of proposed Sec.
 proposed Sec.   1926.1427(j)(1)(i)       1926.1430(c) and requests
 requires more limited training for       public comment on the issue.
 operators of smaller capacity
 equipment used in less complex
 operations as compared with operators
 of higher capacity, more complex
 equipment used in more complex
 situations.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA addresses this
 and ask for public comment on whether    recommendation in the
 a more limited training program would    discussion of proposed Sec.
 be appropriate for operations based on   1926.1430(c) and requests
 the capacity and type of equipment and   public comment on the issue.
 nature of operations.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA addresses this
 and ask for public comment as to         recommendation in the
 whether the supervisor responsible for   discussion of proposed Sec.
 oversight for an operator in the pre-    1926.1430(c) and requests
 qualification period (Sec.               public comment on the issue.
 1926.1427(f)) should have additional
 training beyond that required in the C-
 DAC document at proposed Sec.
 1926.1427(f)(2)(iii)(B).

[[Page 59726]]

 
The Panel recommends OSHA solicit        OSHA addresses these
 comment on whether there are qualified   recommendations in the
 persons in the field with the            discussion of proposed Sec.
 necessary expertise to assess how the    1926.1437(n)(2) and requests
 rated capacity for land cranes and       public comment on the issues.
 derricks used on barges and other
 flotation devices needs to be modified
 as required by proposed Sec.
 1926.1437(n)(2).
The Panel also recommends that OSHA      ...............................
 solicit comment on whether it is
 necessary, from a safety standpoint,
 to apply this provision to cranes used
 only for duty cycle work, and if so,
 why that is the case, and how ``duty
 cycle work'' should be defined.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA addresses this
 and ask for comment on whether it        recommendation in the
 would be appropriate to exempt from      discussion of proposed
 the rule small side boom cranes          paragraph Sec.   1926.1440(a)
 incapable of lifting above the height    and requests public comment on
 of a truck bed and with a capacity of    the issue.
 not more than 6,000 pounds.
The Panel recommends that OSHA solicit   The length and
 public comment on how the proposed       comprehensiveness of the
 rule could be simplified (without        standard is an issue for this
 creating ambiguities) and made easier    rulemaking. OSHA requests
 to understand. (Several SERs believed    comment on how and whether the
 that the C-DAC document was so long      proposal can be shortened or
 and complex that small businesses        simplified--made easier to
 would have difficulty understanding it   understand--and the effect of
 and complying with it.).                 that on addressing
                                          construction hazards.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA will consider developing
 outlining the inspection requirements    such an aid as a separate
 in spreadsheet form in an Appendix or    guidance document.
 developing some other means to help
 employers understand what inspections
 are needed and when they must be done.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  Some SERs requested
 whether use of the words ``determine''   clarification as to when
 and ``demonstrate'' would mandate that   documentation was required,
 the employer keep records of such        believing that the document
 determinations and if records would be   implicitly requires
 required to make such demonstrations.    documentation when it states
                                          that the employer must
                                          ``determine'' or
                                          ``demonstrate'' certain
                                          things. OSHA notes that it
                                          cannot cite an employer for
                                          failing to have documentation
                                          not explicitly called for in a
                                          standard. See also the
                                          discussion under proposed Sec.
                                            1926.1402(e).
The Panel recommends soliciting public   OSHA addresses this
 comment on whether the word ``days''     recommendation in the
 as used in Sec.  Sec.   1926.1416(d)     discussion of proposed Sec.
 and 1926.1416(e) should be clarified     1926.1416(d) and requests
 to mean calendar days or business days.  public comment on the issue.
The Panel recommends that OSHA           OSHA discusses in detail the
 carefully discuss what is included and   types of machinery that are
 excluded from the scope of this          included under this proposed
 standard.                                standard and those that are
                                          excluded in the explanation of
                                          Sec.   1926.1400.
The Panel recommends that OSHA gather    OSHA has obtained and evaluated
 data and analyze the effects of          a study by the Construction
 already existing certification           Safety Association of Ontario
 requirements.                            showing that Ontario's
                                          certification requirement has
                                          led to a substantial decrease
                                          in crane-related fatalities
                                          there.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA addresses this
 excluding and soliciting comment on      recommendation in the
 whether equipment used solely to         discussion of proposed Sec.
 deliver materials to a construction      1926.1400(c) and requests
 site by placing/stacking the materials   public comment on the issue.
 on the ground should be explicitly
 excluded from the proposed standard's
 scope.
The Panel recommends that OSHA should    The information and opinions
 consider the information and range of    submitted by the SERs are part
 opinions that were presented by the      of the record for this
 SERs on the issue of operator            rulemaking, and OSHA will
 qualification/certification when         consider them along with the
 analyzing the public comments on this    other public comments on the
 issue.                                   proposed rule.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA addresses this
 and solicit public comment on            recommendation in the
 expanding the levels of certification    discussion of proposed Sec.
 so as to allow an operator to be         1926.1427(j)(1) and requests
 certified on a specific brand's model    public comment on the issue.
 of crane.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA addresses this
 and solicit public comment on            recommendation in the
 expanding the levels of operator         discussion of proposed Sec.
 qualification/certification to allow     1926.1427(j)(1) and requests
 an operator to be certified for a        public comment on the issue.
 specific, limited type of
 circumstance. Such a circumstance
 would be defined by a set of
 parameters that, taken together, would
 describe an operation characterized by
 simplicity and relatively low risk.
 The Agency should consider and solicit
 comment on whether such parameters
 could be identified in a way that
 would result in a clear, easily
 understood provision that could be
 effectively enforced.
The Panel recommends that OSHA consider  OSHA addresses this
 and solicit public comment on allowing   recommendation in the
 the written and practical tests          discussion of Sec.
 described in Option (1) of Sec.          1926.1427(b)(3) and requests
 1926.1427(b) to be administered by an    public comment on the issue.
 accredited educational institution.
The Panel recommends that OSHA solicit   OSHA addresses this
 public comment on making it clear        recommendation in the
 that: (1) an employer is permitted to    discussion of proposed Sec.
 equip its cranes with manuals re-        1926.1427(h)(1) and requests
 written in a way that would allow an     public comment on the issues.
 operator with a low literacy level to
 understand the material (such as
 substituting some text with pictures
 and illustrations), and (2) making it
 clear that, when the cranes are
 equipped with such re-written manuals
 and materials, the ``manuals'' and
 ``materials'' referred to in these
 literacy provisions would be the re-
 written manuals.

[[Page 59727]]

 
The Panel recommends that OSHA explain   OSHA will issue a Small
 in a Small Business Compliance Guide     Business Compliance Guide
 that the certification/qualification     after a final rule is issued
 test does not need to be administered    and will explain these points
 in English but can be administered in    in the Guide.
 a language that the candidate can
 read; and that while the employee
 would also need to have a sufficient
 level of literacy to read and
 understand the relevant information in
 the equipment manual, that requirement
 would be satisfied if the material is
 written in a language that the
 employee can read and understand.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

IV. Summary and Explanation of the Proposed Standard

    The following discussion summarizes and explains each provision in 
the proposal and the substantive differences between the proposal and 
OSHA's current standard for cranes and derricks at 29 CFR 1926.550, 
which is located in Subpart N of OSHA's standards for construction 
work. In the discussion, OSHA explains corrections and clarifications 
it has made to the language in the C-DAC Document. The Agency also 
identifies other areas in the C-DAC Document it believes could benefit 
from modifications to the C-DAC language and asks for public comment on 
the need for such changes and, in some instances, the appropriateness 
of particular clarifying language.

Section 1400 Scope

    Paragraphs (a) through (d) of proposed Sec.  1926.1400 set forth 
the scope of the proposed rule. Proposed paragraphs (a) through (c) 
describe, respectively, what equipment is included, the application of 
the standard to equipment used with attachments, and specific 
exclusions.

Combining a Functional Description With a List of Covered Equipment

    Proposed paragraph (a) provides a functional definition of the 
covered equipment as well as a non-exclusive list of what is covered. 
C-DAC considered choosing between these approaches, but ultimately 
decided to use a combination of the two. The Committee also agreed that 
equipment listed in this proposed paragraph should be defined; these 
definitions, among others, are set forth in Sec.  1926.1401, 
Definitions. It should be noted that the scope of some of the listed 
equipment is further delineated in the section of the standard that 
specifically relates to that equipment (for example, Sec.  1926.1436, 
Derricks and Sec.  1926.1438, Overhead & Gantry Cranes). OSHA believes 
that this format strikes an appropriate balance between clarity and 
avoiding unintended limitations that might eliminate new and/or other 
existing technology that is similar to the listed examples.
    The decision to propose a functional definition with a non-
exclusive list of covered equipment followed considerable discussion. 
The Committee settled on a definition that focuses on the equipment's 
elemental functions--hoisting, lowering, and horizontally moving a 
suspended load. The goal of this definition is to cover both existing 
and new technologies that share those same functions. Committee members 
rejected using just a list of equipment because: (1) Even the most 
comprehensive list might inadvertently omit existing technologies, and 
(2) they wanted to provide leeway in the scope for applying the new 
standard to future technologies.
    On the other hand, C-DAC decided against a functional definition 
alone because that might include equipment that the standard was not 
designed to address (for example, equipment that poses a different set 
of hazards than those addressed by the standard). The list provides a 
context in which to apply the functional definition. The Agency 
believes that this hybrid approach addresses C-DAC's concerns.

Dedicated Pile Drivers

    The Committee quickly agreed to include most of the items on the 
non-exclusive list. However, several items were included only after 
considerable debate. For example, C-DAC's decision to include dedicated 
pile drivers followed much discussion, including a panel presentation. 
The panel was comprised of a manufacturer, represented by Ahti Knopp 
and Pentti Heinonen, President, of Junttan, as well as a user, 
represented by Pat Karinen and Dan Kuhs, of Pile Drivers Local Union 34 
and 56. The focus of the discussion was whether to include machinery 
that fell outside what the industry traditionally considered to be a 
crane or derrick covered by existing Subpart N.
    Although the manufacturer's representatives stated that they did 
not consider their equipment to be cranes, they ultimately supported 
the inclusion of dedicated pile drivers in the proposed standard for 
several reasons. Specifically, they emphasized certain mechanical 
similarities and the need for timely regulation. However, they 
requested that the standard be adjusted to address the equipment's 
unique characteristics.
    The users on the panel, citing the similarities in functional 
capabilities and hazards between dedicated pile drivers and cranes, 
also supported their inclusion. They were particularly concerned about 
the need to establish required inspections for dedicated pile drivers 
in view of the stress placed on this type of equipment.
    The Committee acknowledged the dilemma it faced in establishing the 
parameters of the proposed standard--including machines not typically 
described as cranes versus omitting machines similar in hazards and 
construction--but ultimately decided to include dedicated pile drivers. 
Prior to that decision, however, several members voiced concerns.
    For example, some members were worried that including these 
machines might encourage their ``use as cranes,'' that is, primarily 
for hoisting objects. The manufacturer representatives pointed out that 
while these machines are designed to hoist within a very limited range 
and capacity, it is inappropriate to use them for hoisting beyond those 
restricted limits. Others were concerned that some requirements in the 
proposed standard might be a ``bad fit'' for these machines. In 
response to such concerns, the Committee included dedicated pile 
drivers but tailored the requirements of the standard to take into 
account the specific characteristics of such equipment. As a result, 
proposed Sec.  1439, Dedicated pile drivers, provides that most 
provisions of the standard apply to dedicated pile drivers but excludes 
some that the Committee believed were inappropriate for such equipment.
    OSHA believes that this approach is appropriate to propose because 
it

[[Page 59728]]

provides a workable approach that addresses the unique aspects of the 
equipment.

Multi-purpose Machines

    The concept of ``multi-purpose machines'' was discussed in depth. 
This term, as used in the proposed standard, refers to a relatively new 
type of equipment that is designed to be configured in a variety of 
ways to perform a variety of different types of functions. For example, 
during the discussion, C-DAC members noted that this type of machinery 
in one configuration works as an aerial forklift, and in another 
configuration works as a crane.
    The Agency believes that the Committee developed an appropriate 
approach to coverage of this equipment. Specifically, the Committee 
defined this category of equipment in Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions, to 
cover only machinery ``designed to be configured in various ways'' and 
has included it within the proposed scope of the standard only when 
configured ``to hoist (by means of a winch or hook) and horizontally 
move a suspended load.'' In short, a multi-purpose machine would only 
be covered by the proposed standard when configured as a crane.
    For example, a machine might be configured variously as a rough-
terrain type forklift, work platform, or as a crane. Such a machine 
would only be covered by the proposed standard when configured as a 
crane. Conversely, a traditional rough-terrain forklift is originally 
designed solely as a forklift. Even if an employer suspends a load from 
its fork, it would still be configured (and can only be configured) as 
a rough terrain forklift. Such forklifts are not multi-purpose machines 
and would specifically be excluded from the standard's coverage by 
proposed Sec.  1926.1400(c)(8).
    For the same reason, aerial lifts that may have an incidental 
capacity to hoist (by means of suspending loads from the boom) are not 
multi-purpose machines. Even aerial lifts that are equipped with a low 
capacity hoisting device (usually located at basket level) are not 
``designed to be configured in various ways'' and, as such, would not 
fall within the definition of a multi-purpose machine. Such aerial 
lifts are designed to be configured in only one way, that is, as an 
aerial lift. In fact, the provision that specifically excludes aerial 
lifts, proposed Sec.  1926.1400(c)(5), emphasizes that point in its 
description of aerial lifts by saying ``[e]quipment originally designed 
as vehicle-mounted aerial devices (for lifting personnel) * * *.''
    The Agency agrees with the Committee that it is appropriate to 
propose covering multi-purpose equipment in this proposed standard 
(when configured as a crane) to protect employees from the types of 
hazards that are associated with the other equipment included in the 
Scope.

Other Listed Equipment

    Some members were concerned that proposing to include industrial 
cranes on the list would result in such cranes being covered by this 
proposed standard even when used in a factory/general industry setting. 
That is not the case--this proposed standard applies only to employers 
engaged in construction, and therefore would apply to such equipment 
only when used in construction.
    The Committee decided to cover side-boom cranes, which are included 
in the current Subpart N.\1\ Committee members noted that side-boom 
cranes (defined in proposed Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions) share 
characteristics with cranes. One member also stated that the American 
Pipeline Association supports their inclusion.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ 29 CFR 1926.550(a)(18) of Subpart N requires sideboom cranes 
mounted on wheel or crawler tractors to meet the requirements of SAE 
J743a-1964.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Additional machinery that is proposed to be covered that is either 
not currently covered or not specifically addressed by Subpart N 
include cranes on a monorail, luffing tower cranes, straddle cranes, 
pedestal cranes and shearleg derricks (see Sec.  1926.1436, Derricks). 
Each of these meets the functional definition in the proposed standard 
and presents the same types of hazards.

Attachments

    Proposed Sec.  1926.1400(b) would establish that equipment 
otherwise covered by proposed Sec.  1926.1400(a) would remain within 
the scope of the proposed standard when used with attachments that are 
either ``crane-attached or suspended.'' As defined in Sec.  1926.1401, 
an ``attachment'' is ``any device that expands the range of tasks that 
can be done by the equipment. Examples include, but are not limited to: 
an auger, drill, magnet, pile-driver, and boom-attached personnel 
platform.'' This definition reflects an inclusive approach with respect 
to the use of attachments.
    The Committee recognized that equipment using these attachments 
retain their fundamental nature as cranes, including most of the 
hazards typically associated with crane use. For example, hazards 
associated with ground conditions, assembly/disassembly and operation 
near power lines, as well as the importance of proper signaling, work 
area control, and operator knowledge and skill, remain the same while 
an attachment is in use. Consequently, the proposed standard as a whole 
is well suited to the use of this equipment with attachments.
    The ACCSH December 2002 work group document provided C-DAC with an 
initial list of possible attachments (hooks, magnets, grapples, 
clamshell buckets, orange peel buckets) to be covered by the new rule. 
(OSHA-2007-0066-0020). Committee members suggested the remaining 
examples.
    Whether the proposed rule should apply to a personnel platform that 
is pinned to the boom was the subject of considerable discussion. Such 
a personnel platform was the subject of a presentation to C-DAC by Dan 
Wolff of the National Crane Corporation. Currently, Subpart N 
explicitly addresses suspended personnel platforms but does not 
specifically mention boom-attached personnel platforms. The Committee 
confirmed in its discussions that installing a boom-attached personnel 
platform does not change the nature of the equipment to the type of 
aerial lift that is excluded by this proposed standard (see proposed 
Sec.  1926.1400(c)(5)). The Committee was concerned that a failure to 
specifically address this type of platform could result in confusion as 
to whether its use would be governed by this standard or by the aerial 
lift standard. C-DAC concluded that it was appropriate to explicitly 
include boom-attached personnel platforms in this standard.
    Committee members expressed some concern as to whether the use of 
such an attachment involves additional hazards not addressed in this 
proposed standard. The Agency is asking for public comment on whether 
there are additional requirements that should apply when using a 
personnel platform that is attached directly to the boom.

Exclusions

    Proposed paragraph (c) lists machinery that is specifically 
excluded from the scope of the proposed rule. The Committee referenced 
a list in the ACCSH December 2002 work group document as a starting 
point for discussion (OSHA-2007-0066-0020). As a result of that 
discussion, modifications to that list were made. As discussed below, 
the Agency believes that the list in the proposed standard, in 
combination with proposed paragraphs (a) and (b), sets appropriate 
limits to the proposed standard's scope.

[[Page 59729]]

    Proposed paragraph (c)(1) states that machinery otherwise included 
under proposed Sec.  1926.1400(a) but ``converted or adapted for non-
hoisting use'' is excluded. Power shovels, excavators and concrete 
pumps are listed as nonexclusive examples of such ``conversions/
adaptations'' or modified machinery.
    The view of the Committee was that, in most cases, once machinery 
that would otherwise be included under proposed Sec.  1926.1400(a) is 
converted or adapted for non-hoisting use, the configuration and nature 
of operation of the machinery is generally changed to the point where 
many of the proposed provisions would not be directly relevant to the 
hazards presented. In contrast, as discussed above, C-DAC believed that 
equipment used with ``crane-attached or suspended'' attachments 
typically retain many of their original characteristics and the 
proposed provisions remain relevant.
    The Agency recognizes that there may be some instances where 
covered equipment used with an attachment is similar in purpose to 
machinery converted or adapted for non-hoisting use. For example, a 
crane with a drilling attachment will serve the same function as a 
machine converted to a dedicated drilling rig. Nonetheless, the Agency 
believes that the approach recommended by C-DAC and reflected in the 
proposed rule sets an appropriate dividing line between covered and 
excluded machinery. The crane's hoisting mechanisms are mostly still 
present while the attachment is in use, and the crane's hoisting 
capability will likely be called upon fully once the attachment is 
removed. Having the machine move in and out of coverage of the rule as 
attachments are put on and taken off would create significant 
confusion. Furthermore, most of the operational characteristics and 
hazards of the equipment remain the same while the attachment is in 
use. The Agency believes that, overall, this represents a sensible 
approach to setting the breadth and limits of the proposed standard. -
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2) contains a specific list of excluded 
material handling machinery. This provision reflects C-DAC's decision 
to name specific material handling machinery that is excluded rather 
than simply reference ``material handling machinery'' as a generic 
basis for exclusion. The Committee indicated that a generic exclusion 
based upon material handling would be too broad. For example, a crane, 
when equipped with a clamshell bucket, is used for material handling, 
and C-DAC believed such equipment should be covered by the proposed 
standard.
    C-DAC also agreed to a Committee member's suggestion of specifying 
that the listed machinery is excluded even when used with rigging to 
lift suspended loads. C-DAC acknowledged that some of the hazards of 
using this material handling machinery in this way are similar to the 
hazards associated with equipment covered by the proposed rule. 
However, the Committee also believed the differences between the 
covered equipment and the material handling machinery is such that one 
standard could not be readily designed to suit both. It should be noted 
that another construction standard, 29 CFR 1926.602 in subpart O--Motor 
Vehicles, Mechanized Equipment, and Marine Operations, covers material 
handling equipment.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(3) excludes automotive wreckers and tow 
trucks ``when used to clear wrecks and haul vehicles.'' A Committee 
member, citing C-DAC's focus on construction activities, questioned the 
need for this provision. In response, another member explained that 
some of these vehicles have substantial hoisting capacity. The 
implication of that observation is that these machines have the 
capability of hoisting construction material and so some construction 
employers may use them for that purpose. Consequently, C-DAC decided to 
cover them generally, but to exclude them when used for clearing wrecks 
and hauling vehicles. The exclusion is based on the Committee's view 
that, even if done as a construction activity (which would be very 
rare), clearing wrecks and hauling vehicles is a highly repetitious, 
predictable type of operation that is sufficiently distinct from 
typical construction crane and derrick use to justify an exclusion from 
the proposed rule. It should be noted that ``cranes designed for . . . 
automobile wreck clearance'' are excluded from the scope of ASME B30.5-
2004.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(4), service trucks with mobile lifting 
devices for use in the power line and electric service industries, such 
as digger derricks, are excluded when engaged in certain listed 
activities for those industries. This machinery is currently covered by 
Subpart N, with the exception of certain provisions, by virtue of Sec.  
1926.952(c). We note that ASME B30.5-2004 excludes digger derricks and 
``cranes manufactured specifically for, or when used for, energized 
electrical line service'' from the scope of that industry consensus 
standard.
    C-DAC ultimately adopted this exclusion because of the narrow, 
specialized range of activities and circumstances in which such trucks 
are used. The Agency is asking for public comment as to whether such an 
exclusion is appropriate and whether safety problems would be created 
by excluding them from coverage under the proposed standard.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(5) specifically excludes machinery 
originally designed as vehicle mounted aerial lifts and self-propelled 
elevating work platforms. The language of this provision reflects C-
DAC's intent to differentiate between equipment with an attachment such 
as a personnel platform pinned to the boom, which is within the scope 
of the proposed rule, and machinery originally designed to be 
configured only as an aerial lift, which is excluded. In excluding this 
machinery, the Committee discussed the fact that some aerial lifts have 
a small capacity auxiliary winch. C-DAC decided not to include such 
machinery. The use of such winches is only incidental to an aerial 
lift's primary function. Also, another standard, Sec.  1926.453, 
addresses aerial lifts.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(6) excludes telescopic/hydraulic gantry 
systems. This machinery is also not currently covered by Subpart N or 
any ANSI/ASME standards. C-DAC made the decision to exclude this 
machinery after extensive discussion between members and a presentation 
by Mr. Kevin Johnston of J&R Engineering Co., Inc.
    The decision was based upon several factors. One factor was the 
difference in design between this machinery and other equipment covered 
by the proposed rule. Telescopic/hydraulic gantry systems consist (in 
their most basic configuration) of a header beam that is supported on 
each side by hydraulic jacks. The load is suspended by rigging from the 
header beam. The load is raised and lowered by raising and lowering the 
jacks.
    This type of design involves hazards that are unique to this type 
of equipment. For example, keeping the jacks plumb and closely 
coordinating their movements is very important. Mr. Johnston noted that 
because of these differences, many of the requirements in the proposed 
standard would not be workable or needed. Also, hazards unique to this 
type of machinery would not be addressed.
    C-DAC was concerned that a failure to include this machinery in the 
proposed rule could result in there being no applicable OSHA 
requirements. The Committee was particularly concerned about this

[[Page 59730]]

because there was no industry consensus standard for telescopic/
hydraulic gantry systems. Once the Specialized Carriers & Rigging 
Association (SC&RA) indicated its willingness to draft and complete a 
voluntary consensus standard for this machinery within a short time 
frame, the Committee was satisfied that the best approach was to 
exclude telescopic/hydraulic gantry systems from the proposed rule.
    The Agency notes that, in the fall of 2004, SC&RA did in fact 
complete a voluntary consensus standard for telescopic/hydraulic gantry 
systems. (OSHA-2007-0066-0027). Accordingly, the Agency agrees with C-
DAC that, under these circumstances, these systems should be excluded 
from the proposed rule.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(7), stacker cranes are excluded. This 
machinery, covered by ASME B30.18, was similarly excluded in the ACCSH 
draft. The Agency believes that these cranes are rarely used in 
construction, and that their configuration is too unlike other 
machinery covered by this proposed standard to warrant inclusion.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(8) excludes powered industrial trucks 
(forklifts). As noted during the C-DAC meetings, this machinery is 
already covered by Sec.  1926.602 of Subpart O--Motor Vehicles, 
Mechanized Equipment, and Marine Operations. The Agency believes that 
this type of machinery is mostly used in a manner that does not involve 
suspended loads and would often require different responses to the 
hazards presented than provided in this proposed standard. Therefore, 
the Agency agrees with C-DAC that this machinery should be excluded 
from the proposed standard.
    During the SBREFA process, one Small Entity Representative stated 
that the C-DAC document does not contain a provision explicitly 
excluding coverage of machines that are originally designed to function 
primarily as forklifts but are modified to perform tasks similar to 
cranes and derricks that are covered under the standard. The Panel 
recommended that OSHA consider and solicit public comment on whether 
the scope language should be modified to explicitly state whether 
forklifts modified in such a manner are covered. OSHA welcomes comment 
on this issue.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(9) excludes mechanic's trucks with hoisting 
devices when used in activities related to equipment maintenance and 
repair. The treatment of this machinery is similar to that of 
automotive wreckers and tow trucks. This exclusion reflects the 
Committee's conclusion that mechanic's trucks, when used in these 
support activities, have the capability of hoisting construction 
material and so some construction employers may use them for that 
purpose. Consequently, C-DAC decided to cover them generally, but to 
exclude them when used for equipment maintenance and repair activities. 
The exclusion is based on the Committee's view that, even if done as a 
construction activity (which would be very rare), the maintenance and 
repair activities are highly repetitious, predictable types of 
operations that are sufficiently distinct from typical construction 
crane and derrick use to justify an exclusion from the proposed rule.
    In proposed paragraph (c)(10), machinery that hoists by using a 
come-a-long or chainfall is excluded. This exclusion reflects currently 
industry practice as exemplified by OSHA's steel erection standard. The 
definition of ``hoisting equipment'' in OSHA's steel erection standard, 
Sec.  1926.751, defines ``come-a-long'' as ``a mechanical device 
typically consisting of a chain or cable attached at each end that is 
used to facilitate movement of materials through leverage'' and notes 
that such a device is not considered ``hoisting equipment.'' Sec.  
1926.1401 of this proposed standard sets forth the same definition of 
``come-a-long'' as OSHA's steel erection standard. Committee members 
decided that a specific exclusion was needed because these devices, 
that members term ``tools of the trade,'' are not all human-powered and 
thus might otherwise fall within the scope of the proposed rule. C-DAC 
was of the view that these tools are unlike the equipment covered by 
the proposed rule in terms of both scale and the set of hazards 
associated with their use.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(11) excludes dedicated drilling rigs. This 
exclusion was agreed upon after substantial discussion among Committee 
members. It should be noted that neither Subpart N nor other OSHA 
construction standards currently cover dedicated drilling rigs 
specifically.
    Much of the specific information as to the nature of dedicated 
drilling rigs and the concerns of drill rig industry stakeholders was 
ascertained during a panel discussion chaired by members of the 
International Association of Foundation Drilling. Panel members 
emphasized that, in their view, a dedicated drilling rig is not a 
crane, but rather is designed to function as excavating equipment.
    In support of that position, the panelists noted that, unlike 
cranes, this machinery lacks load charts and has only limited 
horizontal movement, radius, and hoisting capabilities. They also 
stated that although many are equipped with an auxiliary service winch, 
the primary use of this machinery is not for hoisting. Panelists 
suggested that accidents associated with the use of dedicated drilling 
rigs tend to result from improper use (that is, attempting to use them 
for more extensive hoisting work, beyond the narrow limits set by 
manufacturer specifications). Finally, the speakers emphasized that 
while they did not believe this machinery should be regulated as cranes 
under the proposed rule, if they were to be regulated, they should be 
under a more closely related standard, such as the excavation standard.
    Several additional concerns were examined in the course of the 
discussion. Some members suggested that dedicated pile drivers and 
dedicated drilling rigs be treated in the same manner--to either cover 
or exclude both. Others responded that the disparate treatment is 
justified by the fact that dedicated pile drivers are frequently used 
on barges, which involves additional hazards, and the more widespread 
use of that machine's hoisting function. Some members expressed concern 
that the inclusion of dedicated drilling rigs under the proposed rule 
would encourage their misuse as cranes.
    The Committee decided that the arguments for excluding dedicated 
drilling rigs outweighed those for including them. The Agency agrees; 
while there are certain similarities to dedicated pile drivers in that 
both have an auxiliary hoisting capability, the dedicated drilling rigs 
are not typically used on barges and there seems to be less abuse of 
their very limited hoisting capabilities. Specific public comment is 
requested on these issues.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(12) contains an exclusion for gin poles used 
during the erection of communication towers. It is the Agency's 
understanding that the erection of communication towers is a 
specialized subset of the construction industry, and involves issues 
that go beyond those C-DAC was designed to address. OSHA is therefore 
not proposing to include gin poles used for this purpose in the 
proposed rule.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(13) excludes tree trimming and tree removal 
work from the scope of the proposed rule. In correspondence to the 
Committee (OSHA S030-2006-0663-0534), the Tree Care Industry 
Association had requested that their work be excluded from the proposed 
rule. The Committee noted that the vast majority of the tree care 
industry's work does not take place

[[Page 59731]]

in construction and agreed that such work should be excluded. The 
Agency believes that, since tree trimming and tree removal work so 
rarely falls within construction, it is appropriate to exclude tree 
trimming and removal from the proposed rule.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(14) excludes anchor handling with a vessel 
or barge using an affixed A-frame. C-DAC decided to exclude this 
activity after the Cranes on Barges Work Group found that there would 
be problems tailoring the general requirements of the C-DAC draft to 
address the use of these specialized devices.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(15), the final item listed, excludes 
roustabouts. The Committee was of the view that the proposed rule is 
not suited to addressing these devices, which are moved about by hand.
    The SBREFA Panel recommended that OSHA consider, and solicit 
comment on, whether equipment used solely to deliver materials to a 
construction site by placing/stacking the materials on the ground 
should be explicitly excluded from the scope of the rule. OSHA requests 
public comment on this issue.

    Note: OSHA replaced the word ``Equipment'' used in proposed 
Sec. Sec.  1926.1400(c)(1), (c)(5) and (c)(10) of the C-DAC 
Consensus Document with the word ``Machinery.'' This was done 
because ``equipment'' is a defined term in the proposed standard 
that refers to covered equipment and, thus, cannot be used to mean 
excluded machinery.

Unspecified Equipment

    Proposed paragraph (d) is included to clarify that all provisions 
of the proposed rule apply to covered equipment unless otherwise noted. 
This paragraph was included because there are some types of equipment 
for which only limited requirements apply, and others where there are 
special requirements that supplement, rather than displace, the other 
requirements in the proposed rule. To avoid confusion, this proposed 
paragraph establishes that all parts of the proposed rule apply unless 
a provision specifically identifies other parts of the proposed rule as 
inapplicable, or identifies the only provisions of the standard that 
are applicable.

Controlling Entities

    Proposed paragraph (e) provides that the duties of controlling 
entities \2\ are not limited to the duties specified in Sec. Sec.  
1926.1402(c), (e) and 1926.1424(b). This was included to clarify that 
the controlling entity duties specified in the proposed rule are 
intended to supplement, rather than displace, controlling entity duties 
under OSHA's multi-employer policy.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ The definition of ``controlling entity'' is explained in the 
discussion of proposed Sec.  1926.1402(c).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Agency has clear authority to include in this proposed rule the 
provisions in proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1402(c), (e) and 1926.1424(b), 
which would apply specific requirements to controlling entities. First, 
the plain language of the OSH Act and its underlying purpose support 
OSHA's authority to place requirements on employers that are necessary 
to protect the employees of others. Second, congressional action 
subsequent to passage of the OSH Act recognizes this authority. Third, 
OSHA has consistently interpreted its statutory authority as permitting 
it to impose obligations on employers that extend beyond their own 
employees, as evidenced by the numerous standards, including several 
construction standards, that OSHA has promulgated with multi-employer 
provisions. Finally, OSHA's authority to place obligations on employers 
that reach beyond an employer's own employees has been upheld by 
numerous courts of appeals and the Occupational Safety and Health 
Review Commission (OSHRC).
    The purpose of the Act is to assure so far as possible safe and 
healthful working conditions for every working man and women in the 
nation. 29 U.S.C. 651(b). To achieve this goal, Congress authorized the 
Secretary to establish mandatory occupational safety and health 
standards. The Act broadly defines an OSHA standard as a rule that 
``requires conditions, or the adoption or use of one or more practices, 
means, methods, operations, or processes, reasonably necessary or 
appropriate to provide safe or healthful employments and places of 
employment.'' 29 U.S.C. 652(8). See Building and Constr. Trades Div., 
AFL-CIO v. Brock, 838 F.2d 1258, 1278 (DC Cir. 1988). OSHA standards 
must prescribe measures that are appropriate to protect ``places of 
employment''; nothing in the statutory language suggests that OSHA may 
do so only by regulating an employer's interaction with its own 
employees. On the contrary, the Act's broad language gives OSHA almost 
``unlimited discretion'' to devise means to reach the statutory goal. 
See United Steelworkers v. Marshall, 647 F.2d 1189, 1230 (DC Cir. 
1980), cert. denied, 453 U.S. 913 (1981).
    Similarly, Section 5(a)(2) provides that each employer ``shall 
comply with occupational safety and health standards promulgated under 
this Act.'' \3\ Nothing in this language suggests that compliance is 
required only when necessary to protect the employers' own employees, 
or that the employer is entitled to endanger other employers' employees 
at the worksite. Finally, Section 6(b)(7) of the Act authorizes the 
Secretary to ``prescribe the use of labels or other appropriate forms 
of warning as are necessary to insure that employees are apprised of 
all hazards to which they are exposed.'' 29 U.S.C. 655(b)(7). Again, 
this authority is not limited to labels that would warn the employer's 
own employees of the hazard. Given the distribution of potentially 
hazardous products in commerce, employees are predictably exposed to 
hazardous conditions created by other employers. Requiring employers to 
include hazard information needed by downstream employees is a 
necessary and appropriate means to ensure that the employees are 
apprised of all hazards to which they are exposed.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ This language is in marked contrast to the language of 
Section 5(a)(1) of the Act (known as the ``general duty clause''), 
which requires each employer to ``furnish to each of his employees 
employment and a place of employment which are free from recognized 
hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious 
physical harm to his employees.'' 29 U.S.C. 654(a)(1) (emphases 
added). See Brennan v. OSHRC, 513 F.2d 1032, 1037-38 (2nd. Cir. 
1975).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In short, the statute focuses on workplace conditions to effectuate 
the OSH Act's congressional mandate, and not on a particular employment 
relationship. The OSH Act's underlying purpose is broad--to assure safe 
and healthful working conditions for working men and women--and 
Congress made clear that it expected the Act to protect all employees. 
(H. Rep. No. 91-1291, 91st Cong., 2d Sess., p. 14-16 (July 9, 1970)). 
Numerous references in the legislative history of the Act require 
employers to provide a safe and healthful ``place of employment'' (see, 
e.g., S. Rep. No. 91-1282, 91st Cong., 2d Sess., p. 10 (October 6, 
1970)). The OSH Act tasks OSHA with promulgating rules that will create 
safe places of employment, notwithstanding the many varied employment 
relationships that might exist at a worksite.
    Subsequent congressional action has also recognized OSHA's 
authority to impose responsibilities on employers to protect employees 
who are not their own. For example, Congress directed OSHA to develop a 
chemical process safety standard (the PSM standard) requiring employers 
to ``ensure contractors and contract employees are provided appropriate 
information and training'' and to ``train and educate

[[Page 59732]]

employees and contractors in emergency response.'' (29 U.S.C. note) 
(quoting Pub.L. 101-549, Title III, Sec. 304, November 15, 1990, 104 
Stat. 2576). This is a clear ratification of the Agency's authority to 
require employers to protect the employees of others. Congress also 
approved of the Agency's authority when it relied on the provisions of 
OSHA's Hazard Communication standard in promulgating the Emergency 
Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (42 U.S.C. 11001-11050) 
(EPCRA). OSHA's Hazard Communication standard, among other things, 
requires a manufacturer of a hazardous chemical to ``inform not only 
its own employees of the dangers posed by the chemicals, but downstream 
employers and employees as well.'' Martin v. American Cyanamid Co., 5 
F.3d 140, 141 (6th Cir. 1993). Congress incorporated provisions of the 
Hazard Communication standard in EPCRA as a basis for triggering 
obligations on owners or operators of facilities producing hazardous 
chemicals to provide local governments with information needed for 
emergency response. Had Congress not approved of the multi-employer 
provisions in the Hazard Communication standard, it would not have 
approved of it as a basis for obligations in the EPCRA.
    Furthermore, OSHA has consistently interpreted the OSH Act as 
authorizing it to impose multi-employer obligations in its standards. 
In addition to the Hazard Communication standard and PSM standard 
discussed above, OSHA included multi-employer provisions in its powered 
platforms standard, which requires that a building owner inform 
employers that the building installation has been inspected and is safe 
to use. 29 CFR 1910.66(c)(3). OSHA has also imposed multi-employer 
obligations in other construction standards.
    For example, in the construction asbestos standard, OSHA requires 
building owners/employers to perform initial monitoring for asbestos 
and to communicate the presence of asbestos or presumed asbestos 
containing materials to prospective employers whose employees 
reasonably can be expected to work in exposed areas. 29 CFR 
1926.1101(k)(2). In the recently promulgated steel-erection standard, 
OSHA imposed duties on controlling contractors to ensure that site 
conditions are safe for steel erection. 29 CFR 1926.752(c). OSHA just 
recently proposed in updates to its electric-power transmission and 
distribution construction standard similar multi-employer communication 
provisions. See 70 FR 34947-48. OSHA's inclusion of multi-employer 
provisions in this proposed rule is fully consistent with its past 
practice of ensuring the safety and health of all employees at 
construction worksites.
    Finally, OSHA's authority to impose these provisions is confirmed 
by the decisions of numerous courts of appeals and the Occupational 
Safety and Health Review Commission holding that an employer's duties 
and OSHA standards may extend beyond an employer's own employees. See 
Universal Constr. Co. v. OSHRC, 182 F.3d 726, 728 (10th Cir. 1999) 
(following decisions from Second, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth and Ninth 
Circuits); Access Equip. Sys., 18 BNA OSHC 1718, 1722-24 (No. 95-1449, 
1999). But see Melerine v. Avondale Shipyards, Inc., 659 F.2d 706 (5th 
Cir. 1981). The DC Circuit suggested in Anthony Crane Rental, Inc. v. 
Reich, 70 F.3d 1298, 1306 (DC Cir. 1995), however, that 29 CFR 
1910.12(a)--a rule promulgated by OSHA to adopt Construction Safety Act 
(CSA) standards as OSHA standards--might limit an employer's 
obligations under the construction standards in part 1926 to its own 
employees. The court did not reach the issue, noting that the parties 
had not briefed it. The proposed cranes and derricks in construction 
standard will be included in part 1926.
    Paragraph 1910.12(a) is consistent with the promulgation of 
requirements that place obligations on employers necessary to protect 
the employees of others. The provision states:

    The standards prescribed in part 1926 of this chapter are 
adopted as occupational safety and health standards under section 6 
of the Act and shall apply, according to the provisions thereof, to 
every employment and place of employment of every employee engaged 
in construction work. Each employer shall protect the employment and 
places of employment of each of his employees engaged in 
construction work by complying with the appropriate standards 
prescribed in this paragraph.

    The language of the provision supports OSHA's interpretation that 
an employer's responsibilities can extend beyond the employer's 
employees. The first sentence makes the construction standards 
applicable to every employment and to every ``place of employment'' of 
every construction employee. This is broad language that does not limit 
an employer's obligations to its own employees. The second sentence, by 
providing that each employer must protect the employment and the places 
of employment of each of his employees, does not limit an employer's 
obligations to only protecting his or her employees and does not negate 
the broad reach of the first sentence. The two sentences, read 
together, require employers to comply with standards at all sites where 
they are working in order to protect employees who are predictably 
present at those sites.
    The sole purpose of the provision was to ``adopt and extend'' 
existing Construction Safety Act (CSA) standards applicable under the 
OSH Act. 29 CFR 1910.11. Under the CSA, standards applied only to 
employers with Federally funded contracts, and only with respect to 
employees engaged on those Federal projects. See 29 CFR part 1926 
subpart B; CH2M Hill, Inc. v. Herman, 192 F.3d 711, 718 n.1 (7th Cir. 
1999). The function of 29 CFR 1910.12(a) was to adopt the CSA standards 
as OSHA standards and in so doing to make it clear that neither of 
those limitations would apply. Thus, OSHA stressed that compliance 
would broadly extend to each construction employer (not just those with 
Federal contracts) and to every construction employee (not just those 
working on Federal projects). In no way did OSHA intend for the 
language of 29 CFR 1910.12(a) to restrict its authority to promulgate 
construction standards that establish obligations extending beyond an 
employer's own employees.
    Other factors confirm that OSHA had no intention in 29 CFR 
1910.12(a) to bar multi-employer responsibilities under the 
construction standards. OSHA issued the regulation without notice and 
comment under Section 6(a) of the Act. That section provided authority 
only to adopt established federal standards, such as the CSA standards, 
without making any substantive changes. Usery v. Kennecott Copper 
Corp., 577 F.2d 1113 (10th Cir. 1977). The CSA regulations did not 
limit multi-employer responsibilities; the regulations expressly 
provided for them. 29 CFR 1926.16. OSHA could not have intended to 
limit statutory obligations in an action under Section 6(a).
    In addition, concurrently with issuance of 29 CFR 1910.12(a), OSHA 
issued its initial Field Operations Manual, which expressly directed 
issuance of citations to construction employers who created a hazard 
endangering their own employees or those of another employer. The 
Agency has also consistently promulgated rules in 29 CFR Part 1926 that 
expressly extend employers' obligations beyond their own employees. The 
requirements in proposed 29 CFR 1926.1204 reflect this consistent 
interpretation and will ensure that all employees on construction 
worksites are protected from the hazards of confined spaces.
    The Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission's recent 
decision in

[[Page 59733]]

Secretary of Labor v. Summit Contractors (OSHRC Docket No. 03-1622 
(April 27, 2007), has no application to this proposed rule. In Summit, 
a divided Review Commission vacated citations issued to a controlling 
employer for violations of a construction standard. The two 
Commissioners who joined in this result issued separate opinions; each 
read 29 CFR 1910.12(a) as establishing a limitation on the Agency's 
authority to hold controlling employers accountable for violations. 
OSHA believes this view is mistaken, and has appealed the OSHRC 
decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals (8th Cir. No. 07-2191).
    Moreover, Summit has no bearing on the duties established under the 
proposed rule. The Summit opinions interpreted OSHA's intent under then 
existing rules. They did not question OSHA's authority under the Act to 
establish multi-employer obligations through rulemaking. OSHA is 
exercising its authority under Section 6(b) to issue this proposed 
rule, and nothing in 29 CFR 1910.12(a) limits an employer's compliance 
obligations under the rule.
    Proposed paragraph (f) would require that where a provision in the 
proposed rule directs an operator, crewmember or other employee to take 
a specified action, it would be the employer's responsibility to 
establish work rules to require the relevant employees to take that 
action, and to effectively communicate and enforce those work rules. 
This paragraph clarifies the employer's obligations with regard to such 
provisions.

Terminology

    According to Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions, two terms are defined as 
meaning all equipment covered by this subpart: ``Equipment'' and 
``cranes/derricks.'' In reviewing the C-DAC document, OSHA has found 
that in some places it uses the word ``crane'' standing alone when C-
DAC's intent was to refer to all covered equipment. To avoid any 
ambiguity, OSHA has modified the document where appropriate to replace 
``crane'' with either ``equipment'' or ``crane/derrick.'' Where 
``crane'' is used in a way that is technically correct, as in referring 
to ``tower cranes,'' OSHA has not changed it.
    In instances where the C-DAC document uses the phrase ``crane 
operator,'' OSHA has deleted the word ``crane.'' By definition (in 
Sec.  1926.1401) ``operator'' refers to the equipment operator and, in 
many locations, the C-DAC document already uses ``operator'' without a 
modifier to refer to the equipment operator. Therefore, use of 
``crane'' to modify ``operator'' is unnecessary and potentially 
confusing.

Section 1401 Definitions

    C-DAC included a number of definitions to clarify the meaning of 
terms used in the proposed standard. Many of the defined terms are 
commonly used in the industry, and C-DAC in most instances relied on 
standard industry sources or its own understanding of how terms are 
used in the industry to help ensure that the definitions would be 
readily understood by employers and employees. Industry sources on 
which C-DAC relied include existing OSHA standards, consensus 
standards, and ``A Glossary of Common Crane and Rigging Terms'' 
(Specialized Carriers and Rigging Foundation 1997) (``SC&RF 
Handbook'')(OSHA-2007-0066-0019). Some definitions were also included 
to ensure that certain terms used in the proposed standard have a 
precise, unambiguous meaning.
    Where defined terms are used primarily in a single section or group 
of sections (such as Sec. Sec.  1926.1407-1411 on power line safety), 
the definition will be explained in the preamble to that section or 
group. Definitions that are used in a number of sections will be 
explained in this section. Table 5 shows the section or paragraph where 
each definition is discussed.

                     Table 5--Index of Defined Terms
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Section or paragraph where definition
              Term                     is discussed in the preamble
------------------------------------------------------------------------
A/D supervisor.................                   Sec.   1926.1404(a)(1)
Articulating crane.............                         Sec.   1926.1401
Assembly/Disassembly...........                         Sec.   1926.1403
Assist crane...................                   Sec.   1926.1404(h)(4)
Attachments....................                   Sec.   1926.1400(b)(2)
Audible signal.................                      Sec.   1926.1419(b)
Blocking.......................                   Sec.   1926.1404(h)(2)
Boatswain's chair..............                      Sec.   1926.1431(o)
Bogie..........................                         Sec.   1926.1435
Boom (equipment other than                              Sec.   1926.1401
 tower crane)..................
Boom (tower cranes)............               Sec.   1926.1435(e)(5)(ii)
Boom angle indicator...........             Sec.   1926.1416(d)(1)(i)(A)
Boom hoist limiting device.....                   Sec.   1926.1416(d)(1)
Boom length indicator..........                   Sec.   1926.1416(e)(3)
Boom stop......................                   Sec.   1926.1416(a)(2)
Boom suspension systems........                   Sec.   1926.1404(h)(7)
Builder........................                   Sec.   1926.1436(c)(1)
Calculate......................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Center of gravity..............                   Sec.   1926.1404(h)(6)
Certified welder...............                   Sec.   1926.1431(e)(5)
Climbing.......................                   Sec.   1926.1435(b)(7)
Come-a-long....................                  Sec.   1926.1400(c)(10)
Competent person...............                         Sec.   1926.1401
Controlled load lowering.......                      Sec.   1926.1426(d)
Controlling entity.............                      Sec.   1926.1402(c)
Counterweight..................                   Sec.   1926.1404(h)(9)
Crane/derrick..................                         Sec.   1926.1400
Crawler crane..................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Crossover points...............              Sec.   1926.1413(a)(3)(iii)
Dedicated channel..............                      Sec.   1926.1420(b)
Dedicated pile-driver..........                      Sec.   1926.1439(a)
Dedicated spotter (power lines)                      Sec.   1926.1407(b)

[[Page 59734]]

 
Directly under the load........                   Sec.   1926.1425(e)(1)
Dismantling....................                         Sec.   1926.1405
Drum rotation indicator........                   Sec.   1926.1416(e)(5)
Electrical contact.............                    Sec.   1926.1407-1411
Employer-made equipment........                   Sec.   1926.1437(m)(4)
Encroachment...................                    Sec.   1926.1407-1411
Equipment......................                         Sec.   1926.1400
Equipment criteria.............                Sec.   1926.1412(b)(1)(i)
Fall protection equipment......                      Sec.   1926.1423(d)
Fall restraint system..........                      Sec.   1926.1423(d)
Fall zone......................                      Sec.   1926.1425(b)
Flange points..................              Sec.   1926.1413(a)(3)(iii)
Floating cranes/derricks.......                         Sec.   1926.1437
For example....................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Free fall (of the load line)...                      Sec.   1926.1426(d)
Free surface effect............               Sec.   1926.1437(m)(5)(ii)
Hoist..........................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Hoisting.......................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Include/including..............                         Sec.   1926.1401
Insulating link/device.........                Sec.   1926.1408(b)(4)(v)
Jib stop.......................                   Sec.   1926.1415(a)(3)
Land crane/derrick.............                      Sec.   1926.1437(h)
List...........................                   Sec.   1926.1437(e)(1)
Load...........................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Load moment (or rated capacity)                   Sec.   1926.1416(e)(4)
 indicator.....................
Load moment (or rated capacity)                   Sec.   1926.1416(e)(4)
 limiter.......................
Locomotive crane...............                         Sec.   1926.1401
Luffing jib limiting device....                   Sec.   1926.1416(d)(2)
Marine hoisted personnel                     Sec.   1926.1431(b)(2)(iii)
 transfer device...............
Marine worksite................              Sec.   1926.1431(b)(2)(iii)
Mobile cranes..................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Moving point-to-point..........                   Sec.   1926.1423(d)(1)
Multi-purpose machine..........                      Sec.   1926.1400(a)
Nationally recognized                          Sec.   1926.1427(b)(1)(i)
 accrediting agency............
Non-conductive.................                   Sec.   1926.1407(b)(2)
Operational aids...............                         Sec.   1926.1416
Operational controls...........                   Sec.   1926.1417(b)(2)
Operator.......................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Overhead and gantry cranes.....                         Sec.   1926.1438
Paragraph......................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Pendants.......................                   Sec.   1926.1404(h)(8)
Personal fall arrest system....                      Sec.   1926.1423(f)
Portal cranes..................                   Sec.   1926.1415(a)(1)
Power lines....................                    Sec.   1926.1407-1411
Procedures.....................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Proximity alarm................                   Sec.   1926.1407(b)(3)
Qualified evaluator (not a                        Sec.   1926.1428(a)(2)
 third party)..................
Qualified evaluator (third                        Sec.   1926.1428(a)(2)
 party)........................
Qualified person...............                         Sec.   1926.1401
Qualified rigger...............                   Sec.   1926.1425(c)(3)
Range control warning device...                   Sec.   1926.1407(a)(3)
Rated capacity.................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Rated capacity indicator.......                   Sec.   1926.1416(e)(4)
Rated capacity limiter.........                   Sec.   1926.1416(e)(4)
Repetitive pickup points.......              Sec.   1926.1413(a)(3)(iii)
Running wire rope..............            Sec.   1926.1413(a)(2)(ii)(A)
Runway.........................           Sec.   1926.1431(k)(12)(ii)(A)
Section........................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Side-boom crane................                         Sec.   1926.1440
Special hazard warnings........                  Sec.   1926. 1417(c)(1)
Stability (flotation device)...              Sec.   1926.1437(m)(5)(iii)
Standard Method................                      Sec.   1926.1419(c)
Such as........................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Superstructure.................                   Sec.   1926.1424(a)(1)
Tag line.......................                   Sec.   1926.1407(b)(2)
Tender.........................                   Sec.   1926.1437(j)(3)
Tilt-up or tilt-down operation.                      Sec.   1926.1425(e)
Tower crane....................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Travel bogie (tower cranes)....               Sec.   1926.1435(d)(2)(iv)
Trim...........................                   Sec.   1926.1437(e)(1)
Two blocking...................                   Sec.   1926.1416(d)(3)

[[Page 59735]]

 
Unavailable procedures.........                      Sec.   1926.1417(b)
Up to..........................                         Sec.   1926.1401
Upperstructure.................                   Sec.   1926.1424(a)(1)
Upperworks.....................                   Sec.   1926.1424(a)(1)
Wire rope......................                         Sec.   1926.1413
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Four terms that are defined in the C-DAC document--``alongside,'' 
``appointed person,'' ``blind pick,'' and ``power down,''--were used by 
C-DAC in earlier drafts but are not used in the proposed standard. OSHA 
has therefore not included them in this section.
    ``A/D supervisor'' means ``an individual who meets this standard's 
requirements for an A/D supervisor, irrespective of the person's formal 
job title or whether the person is non-management or management 
personnel.''
    ``Articulating crane'' means ``a crane whose boom consists of a 
series of folding, pin connected structural members, typically 
manipulated to extend or retract by power from hydraulic cylinders.'' 
This definition is taken from the SC&RF Handbook definition of 
``articulating boom crane.''
    ``Assist crane'' is ``a crane used to assist in assembling or 
disassembling a crane.''
    ``Assembly/Disassembly'' means ``the assembly and/or disassembly of 
equipment covered under this standard. With regard to tower cranes, 
``erecting and climbing'' replaces the term `assembly,' and 
`dismantling' replaces the term `disassembly.' ''
    ``Attachments'' means ``any device that expands the range of tasks 
that can be done by the equipment. Examples include, but are not 
limited to: an auger, drill, magnet, pile-driver, and boom-attached 
personnel platform.'' This definition is discussed under paragraph 
1400(b) in the explanation of this proposed standard.
    ``Audible signal'' means ``a signal made by a distinct sound or 
series of sounds. Examples include, but are not limited to, sounds made 
by a bell, horn, or whistle.''
    ``Blocking'' (also referred to as ``cribbing'') ``is wood or other 
material used to support equipment or a component and distribute loads 
to the ground. Typically used to support latticed boom sections during 
assembly/ disassembly and under outrigger floats.''
    ``Boatswain's chair'' is ``a single-point adjustable suspension 
scaffold consisting of a seat or sling (which may be incorporated into 
a full body harness) designed to support one employee in a sitting 
position.''
    ``Bogie'' is synonymous with ``travel bogie,'' which is defined 
below.
    ``Boom (equipment other than tower crane)'' means ``an inclined 
spar, strut, or other long structural member which supports the upper 
hoisting tackle on a crane or derrick. Typically, the length and 
vertical angle of the boom can be varied to achieve increased height or 
height and reach when lifting loads. Booms can usually be grouped into 
general categories of hydraulically extendible, cantilevered type, 
latticed section, cable supported type or articulating type.'' This 
definition is taken from the SC&RF Handbook.
    ``Boom (tower cranes).'' On tower cranes: if the ``boom'' (i.e., 
principal horizontal structure) is fixed, it is referred to as a jib; 
if it is moveable up and down, it is referred to as a boom.
    ``Boom angle indicator'' is ``a device which measures the angle of 
the boom relative to horizontal.''
    ``Boom hoist limiting device'' ``includes boom hoist disengaging 
device, boom hoist shutoff, boom hoist disconnect, boom hoist hydraulic 
relief, boom hoist kick-outs, automatic boom stop device, or derricking 
limiter. This type of device disengages boom hoist power when the boom 
reaches a predetermined operating angle. It also sets brakes or closes 
valves to prevent the boom from lowering after power is disengaged.''
    ``Boom length indicator'' ``indicates the length of the permanent 
part of the boom (such as ruled markings on the boom) or, as in some 
computerized systems, the length of the boom with extensions/
attachments.''
    ``Boom stop'' ``includes boom stops, (belly straps with struts/
standoff), telescoping boom stops, attachment boom stops, and 
backstops. These devices restrict the boom from moving above a certain 
maximum angle and toppling over backward.''
    ``Boom suspension systems'' are ``a system of pendants, running 
ropes, sheaves, and other hardware which supports the boom tip and 
controls the boom angle.''
    ``Builder'' means ``an employer builder/constructor of equipment.'' 
This definition is discussed under Sec.  1926.1436(c)(1) in the 
explanation of this proposed standard.
    ``Calculate'' ``includes use of a calculator.'' The Committee 
included this definition to make clear that persons who performed 
calculations under this standard may use any method, including use of a 
calculator, that yields accurate results.
    ``Center of gravity.'' ``The center of gravity of any object is the 
point in the object around which its weight is evenly distributed. If 
you could put a support under that point, you could balance the object 
on the support.''
    ``Certified welder'' is ``a welder that meets the nationally 
recognized certification requirements that are applicable to the task 
being performed.''
    ``Climbing'' is ``the process in which a tower crane is raised to a 
new working height, either by adding additional tower sections to the 
top of the crane (top climbing), or by a system in which the entire 
crane is raised inside the structure (inside climbing).''
    ``Come-a-long'' means ``a mechanical device typically consisting of 
a chain or cable attached at each end that is used to facilitate 
movement of materials through leverage.''
    ``Competent person'' is ``a person who is capable of identifying 
existing and predictable hazards in the surroundings or working 
conditions which are unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous to employees, 
and who has authorization to take prompt corrective measures to 
eliminate them.'' This definition is taken from 29 CFR 1926.32(f), 
which defines ``competent person'' under OSHA's construction standards. 
Those standards assign duties to ``competent persons'' that are similar 
to those assigned under this proposed standard.
    ``Controlled load lowering'' means ``lowering a load by means of a 
mechanical hoist drum device that allows a hoisted load to be lowered 
with maximum control using the gear train or hydraulic components of 
the hoist mechanism. Controlled load lowering requires the use of the 
hoist drive motor,

[[Page 59736]]

rather than the load hoist brake, to lower the load.''
    ``Controlling entity'' is ``a prime contractor, general contractor, 
construction manager or any other legal entity which has the overall 
responsibility for the construction of the project--its planning, 
quality and completion.''
    ``Counterweight'' is a ``weight used to supplement the weight of 
equipment in providing stability for lifting loads by counterbalancing 
those loads.''
    ``Crane/derrick'' includes ``all equipment covered by this 
Subpart.''
    ``Crawler crane'' means ``equipment that has a type of base 
mounting which incorporates a continuous belt of sprocket driven 
track.'' This definition is based on the definition of ``crawler'' in 
the SC&RF Handbook. Current industry terminology refers to crawler 
cranes and truck cranes together as ``mobile cranes.'' See definition 
of ``mobile crane'' below.
    ``Crossover points'' are ``locations on a wire rope which is 
spooled on a drum where one layer of rope climbs up on and crosses over 
the previous layer. This takes place at each flange of the drum as the 
rope is spooled onto the drum, reaches the flange, and begins to wrap 
back in the opposite direction.''
    ``Dedicated channel'' is ``a line of communication assigned by the 
employer who controls the communication system to only one signal 
person and crane/derrick or to a coordinated group of cranes/derrick/
signal person(s).''
    ``Dedicated pile-driver'' is ``a machine that is designed to 
function exclusively as a pile-driver. These machines typically have 
the ability to both hoist the material that will be pile-driven and to 
pile-drive that material.''
    ``Dedicated spotter (power lines)'' is defined as follows: ``In 
order to be considered a dedicated spotter, the requirements of Sec.  
1926.1428 (signal person qualifications) must be met and his/her sole 
responsibility is to watch the separation between the power line and: 
the equipment, load line and load (including rigging and lifting 
accessories), and ensure through communication with the operator, that 
the applicable minimum approach distance is not breached.''
    ``Directly under the load'' means ``a part or all of an employee is 
directly beneath the load.''
    ``Dismantling'' ``includes partial dismantling (such as dismantling 
to shorten a boom or substitute a different component).''
    ``Drum rotation indicator'' is ``a device on a crane or hoist which 
indicates in which direction and at what relative speed a particular 
hoist drum is turning.''
    ``Electrical contact'' refers to ``when a person, object, or 
equipment makes contact or comes in close proximity with an energized 
conductor or equipment that allows the passage of current.''
    ``Employer-made equipment'' means ``floating cranes/derricks 
designed and built by an employer for the employer's own use.''
    ``Encroachment'' is ``where any part of the crane, load line or 
load (including rigging and lifting accessories) breaches a minimum 
clearance distance that this subpart requires to be maintained from a 
power line.''
    ``Equipment'' means ``equipment covered by this subpart.''
    ``Equipment criteria'' means ``instructions, recommendations, 
limitations and specifications.''
    ``Fall protection equipment'' means ``guardrail systems, safety net 
systems, personal fall arrest systems, positioning device systems or 
fall restraint systems.''
    ``Fall restraint system'' means ``a fall protection system that 
prevents the user from falling any distance. The system is comprised of 
either a body belt or body harness, along with an anchorage, connectors 
and other necessary equipment. The other components typically include a 
lanyard, and may also include a lifeline and other devices.''
    ``Fall zone'' means ``the area (including but not limited to the 
area directly beneath the load) in which it is reasonably foreseeable 
that partially or completely suspended materials could fall in the 
event of an accident.''
    ``Flange point'' is ``a point of contact between rope and drum 
flange where the rope changes layers.''
    ``Floating cranes/derricks'' means ``equipment designed by the 
manufacturer (or employer) for marine use by permanent attachment to a 
barge, pontoons, vessel or other means of flotation.''
    ``For example'' means ``one example, although there are others.'' 
This definition was included to demonstrate and clarify the usage of 
the word.
    ``Free fall (of the load line)'' means ``where only the brake is 
used to regulate the descent of the load line (the drive mechanism is 
not used to drive the load down faster or retard its lowering).''
    ``Free surface effect'' is ``the uncontrolled transverse movement 
of liquids in compartments which reduce a vessel's transverse 
stability.''
    ``Hoist'' is ``a mechanical device for lifting and lowering loads 
by winding rope onto or off a drum.'' A hoist is the primary lifting 
mechanism used by cranes and derricks.
    ``Hoisting'' is ``the act of raising, lowering or otherwise moving 
a load in the air with equipment covered by this standard. As used in 
this standard, `hoisting' can be done by means other than wire rope/
hoist drum equipment.'' This definition makes clear that ``hoisting'' 
is broad enough to encompass all movement of a load in the air by 
cranes/derricks and is not limited to movement caused by wire rope/
hoist drum equipment. For example, movement resulting from booming out 
a hydraulic boom that is holding a load would be ``hoisting.''
    ``Include/including'' means ``including, but not limited to.'' This 
definition demonstrates and clarifies the usage of the word.
    ``Insulating link/device'' is ``an insulating device listed, 
labeled, or accepted by a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory in 
accordance with 29 CFR 1910.7.''
    ``Jib stop,'' which is also referred to as a jib backstop, ``is the 
same type of device as a boom stop but is for a fixed or luffing jib.''
    ``Land crane/derrick'' is ``Equipment not originally designed by 
the manufacturer for marine use by permanent attachment to barges, 
pontoons, vessels, or other means of floatation.''
    ``List'' is the ``angle of inclination about the longitudinal axis 
of a barge, pontoon, vessel or other means of flotation.''
    ``Load'' refers to ``the object(s) being hoisted and/or the weight 
of the object(s); both uses refer to the object(s) and the load-
attaching equipment, such as, the load block, ropes, slings, shackles, 
and any other ancillary attachment.'' This definition makes clear that 
in calculating the weight of the load for purposes such as making sure 
that the lift is within the equipment's rated capacity, the weight of 
all objects used to attach the load to the equipment must be included. 
As drafted by C-DAC, ``load'' referred to the weight of the object 
being lifted but not the object itself. However, ``load'' is used 
throughout the proposed standard to refer to the object being hoisted 
in addition to the weight of the load. OSHA has modified the C-DAC 
definition accordingly.
    ``Load moment (or rated capacity) indicator'' is ``a system which 
aids the equipment operator by sensing the overturning moment on the 
equipment, i.e., load multiplied by radius. It compares this lifting 
condition to the equipment's rated capacity, and

[[Page 59737]]

indicates to the operator the percentage of capacity at which the 
equipment is working. Lights, bells, or buzzers may be incorporated as 
a warning of an approaching overload condition.''
    ``Load moment (or rated capacity) limiter'' is ``a system which 
aids the equipment operator by sensing the overturning moment on the 
equipment, i.e., load multiplied by radius. It compares this lifting 
condition to the equipment's rated capacity, and when the rated 
capacity is reached, it shuts off power to those equipment functions 
which can increase the severity of loading on the equipment, e.g., 
hoisting, telescoping out, or luffing out. Typically, those functions 
which decrease the severity of loading on the equipment remain 
operational, e.g., lowering, telescoping in, or luffing in.''
    ``Locomotive crane'' is ``a crane mounted on a base or car equipped 
for travel on a railroad track.'' OSHA included this definition to 
remain consistent with the industry's use of the term as indicated in 
the SC&RF Handbook.
    ``Luffing jib limiting device'' ``is similar to a boom hoist 
limiting device, except that it limits the movement of the luffing 
jib.''
    ``Marine hoisted personnel transfer device'' is ``a device, such as 
a `transfer net,' used to hoist an employee to or from a marine 
worksite that is designed to protect the employee during a marine 
transfer and that allows for rapid entry/exit from the device. Such 
devices do not include a boatswain's chair when hoisted by equipment 
covered by this standard.''
    ``Marine worksite'' is ``a construction worksite that is located 
in, on or above the water.''
    ``Mobile crane'' is ``a lifting device incorporating a cable 
suspended latticed boom or hydraulic telescopic boom designed to be 
moved between operating locations by transport over the road.'' This 
definition is derived from the SC&RF Handbook. The term ``mobile 
crane,'' as used in ASME B30.5-2004, ``Mobile and Locomotive Cranes,'' 
encompasses crawler cranes, truck cranes, and other wheel-mounted 
cranes. The 1968 version of ANSI B30.5, which is incorporated by 
reference into Subpart N, is entitled ``Crawler, Locomotive and Truck 
Cranes'' and also covered crawler cranes, truck cranes, and other 
wheel-mounted cranes (in addition to locomotive cranes). C-DAC included 
its definition of ``mobile cranes'' to reflect current industry 
terminology, which now refers to crawler cranes, truck cranes, and 
other wheel-mounted cranes collectively as ``mobile cranes.''
    The SC&RF Handbook definition states that in Europe, ``mobile 
crane'' refers to a crane mounted on a truck carrier. The C-DAC draft 
of the definition of ``mobile crane'' included this reference to 
European terminology. While the European terminology describes a device 
that is included in this proposed rule's definition of mobile crane, 
OSHA has deleted the reference to the European terminology because it 
could be read to mean, erroneously, that only truck cranes fall within 
the definition of ``mobile cranes.'' As noted above, crawler cranes and 
wheel-mounted cranes other than truck cranes also qualify as ``mobile 
cranes.''
    ``Moving point to point'' means ``the times during which an 
employee is in the process of going to or from a work station.''
    ``Multi-purpose machine'' means ``a machine that is designed to be 
configured in various ways, at least one of which allows it to hoist 
(by means of a winch or hook) and horizontally move a suspended load. 
For example, a machine that can rotate and can be configured with 
removable tongs (for use as a forklift) or with a winch pack, jib (with 
a hook at the end) or jib used in conjunction with a winch. When 
configured with the tongs, it is not covered by this Subpart. When 
configured with a winch pack, jib (with a hook at the end) or jib used 
in conjunction with a winch, it is covered by this Subpart.''
    ``Nationally recognized accrediting agency'' is ``an organization 
that, due to its independence and expertise, is widely recognized as 
competent to accredit testing organizations.''
    ``Non-conductive'' means that, ``because of the nature and 
condition of the materials used, and the conditions of use (including 
environmental conditions and condition of the material), the object in 
question has the property of not becoming energized (that is, it has 
high dielectric properties offering a high resistance to the passage of 
current under the conditions of use).''
    ``Operational controls'' are ``levers, switches, pedals and other 
devices for controlling equipment operation.''
    ``Operational aids'' are ``devices that assist the operator in the 
safe operation of the crane by providing information or automatically 
taking control of a crane function. These include, but are not limited 
to, the devices listed in Sec.  1926.1416 (``listed operational 
aids'').''
    ``Operator'' is ``a person who is operating the equipment.'' The 
term is therefore not restricted to job title but includes any and all 
persons who actually operate the equipment. The Committee included this 
definition to make clear that anyone operating equipment must meet all 
of the requirements of this subpart that apply to ``operators.''
    ``Overhead and gantry cranes'' is defined to include ``overhead/
bridge cranes, semigantry, cantilever gantry, wall cranes, storage 
bridge cranes, launching gantry cranes, and similar equipment, 
irrespective of whether it travels on tracks, wheels, or other means.''
    ``Paragraph'' refers to ``a paragraph in the same section of this 
subpart that the word `paragraph' is used, unless otherwise 
specified.'' For example, proposed paragraph 1423(a)(1) refers to 
``paragraphs (b), (c)(2), and (e).'' Under this definition, it is 
understood that those are paragraphs in Sec.  1423. By contrast, 
paragraph 1439 refers to certain paragraphs in other sections and 
therefore includes the section designation in the reference, for 
example, ``paragraph 1416(d)(3).''
    ``Pendants'' are defined to ``include both wire and bar types. Wire 
type: A fixed length of wire rope with mechanical fittings at both ends 
for pinning segments of wire rope together. Bar type: Instead of wire 
rope, a bar is used. Pendants are typically used in a latticed boom 
crane system to easily change the length of the boom suspension system 
without completely changing the rope on the drum when the boom length 
is increased or decreased.''
    ``Personal fall arrest system'' means ``a system used to arrest an 
employee in a fall from a working level. It consists of an anchorage, 
connectors, a body harness and may include a lanyard, deceleration 
device, lifeline, or suitable combination of these.''
    ``Portal cranes'' are ``a type of crane consisting of a rotating 
upperstructure, hoist machinery, and boom mounted on top of a 
structural gantry which may be fixed in one location or have travel 
capability. The gantry legs or columns usually have portal openings in 
between to allow passage of traffic beneath the gantry.''
    ``Power lines'' are ``electric transmission and distribution 
lines.''
    ``Procedures'' ``include, but are not limited to: instructions, 
diagrams, recommendations, warnings, specifications, protocols and 
limitations.'' Several paragraphs of this proposed standard, such as 
Sec.  1926.1417(a), require employers to follow manufacturer 
procedures. C-DAC developed this definition to make clear that 
``procedures'' in a provision such as Sec.  1926.1417(a) is to be 
interpreted broadly to include all recommendations by the manufacturer

[[Page 59738]]

regardless of the format of those recommendations.
    ``Proximity alarm'' is ``a device that provides a warning of 
proximity to a power line that has been listed, labeled, or accepted by 
a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory in accordance with 29 CFR 
1910.7.''
    ``Qualified evaluator (not a third party)'' means ``a person 
employed by the signal person's employer who has demonstrated that he/
she is competent in accurately assessing whether individuals meet the 
qualification requirements in this subpart for a signal person.''
    ``Qualified evaluator (third party)'' is an ``entity that, due to 
its independence and expertise, has demonstrated that it is competent 
in accurately assessing whether individuals meet the qualifications in 
this Subpart for a signal person.'' This definition is discussed under 
Sec.  1926.1428(a)(2) in the explanation of this proposed standard.
    ``Qualified person'' means ``a person who, by possession of a 
recognized degree, certificate, or professional standing, or who by 
extensive knowledge, training and experience, successfully demonstrated 
the ability to solve/resolve problems relating to the subject matter, 
the work, or the project.'' This definition corresponds to the 
definition of ``qualified'' in 29 CFR 1926.32(m). Its use here reflects 
the fact that the duties assigned to ``qualified persons'' under this 
proposal are similar to those assigned persons with comparable 
qualifications under other OSHA construction standards. By defining 
this term in the same way it is defined under other OSHA standards, C-
DAC sought to make clear that construction industry employers could 
continue to rely on their understanding of the qualifications for a 
``qualified person'' that is applied under existing standards.
    ``Qualified rigger'' is ``a rigger who meets the criteria for a 
qualified person.''
    ``Range control warning device'' is ``a device that can be set by 
the equipment operator to warn that the boom or jib tip is at a plane 
or multiple planes.''
    ``Rated capacity'' is ``the maximum working load permitted by the 
manufacturer under specified working conditions. Such working 
conditions typically include a specific combination of factors such as 
equipment configuration, radii, boom length, and other parameters of 
use.'' The first sentence of this definition is taken from the SC&RF 
Handbook. The second sentence was added by C-DAC to clarify the meaning 
of ``working conditions.'' Many crane/derrick accidents result when the 
equipment's ``rated capacity'' is exceeded, and the Committee sought to 
provide an unambiguous definition of the term to promote compliance 
with provisions that use the term. In reviewing the C-DAC consensus 
document, OSHA noted that ``rated load'' and ``rated load capacity'' 
were used in various places to mean the same thing as the Committee's 
definition of ``rated capacity.'' For consistency and to reflect the 
intention of the Committee, all references to ``rated load'' and 
``rated load capacity'' in the consensus document have been changed to 
``rated capacity.''
    ``Rated capacity indicator'' is an alternative term for ``load 
moment indicator,'' which is defined above.
    ``Rated capacity limiter'' is an alternative term for ``load moment 
limiter,'' which is defined above.
    ``Repetitive pickup points'' are ``when operating on a short cycle 
operation, the rope being used on a single layer and being spooled 
repetitively over a short portion of the drum.''
    ``Running wire rope'' is ``a wire rope that moves over sheaves or 
drums.''
    ``Runway'' is ``a firm, level surface designed, prepared and 
designated as a path of travel for the weight and configuration of the 
crane being used to lift and travel with the crane suspended platform. 
This surface can be an existing surface or created for purposes of the 
work activity.''
    ``Section'' means ``a section of this subpart, unless otherwise 
specified.'' This definition is included to ensure that the reader 
understands what ``section'' means in this standard.
    ``Side-boom crane'' is ``a track-type or wheel-type tractor having 
a boom mounted on the side of the tractor, used for lifting, lowering, 
or transporting a load suspended on the load hook. The boom or hook can 
be lifted or lowered in a vertical direction only.''
    ``Special hazard warnings'' are ``warnings of site-specific hazards 
(for example, proximity of power lines).''
    ``Stability (flotation device)'' means ``the tendency of a barge 
pontoon, vessel or other means of flotation to return to an upright 
position after having been inclined by an external force.''
    ``Standard Method'' means ``the protocol in Appendices for hand 
signals.''
    ``Such as'' means ``such as, but not limited to.'' This definition 
was included to demonstrate and clarify the usage of the phrase.
    ``Superstructure'' is a synonym for ``upperstructure'' and 
``upperworks,'' which is defined below.
    ``Tag line'' is a rope (usually fiber) attached to a lifted load 
for purposes of controlling load spinning and pendular motions or used 
to stabilize a bucket or magnet during material handling operations. 
This definition is included to ensure that the use of this term for the 
application of this proposed standard is consistent with how tag lines 
are commonly used to control loads during hoisting operations.
    ``Tender'' is ``an individual responsible for monitoring and 
communicating with a diver.''
    ``Tilt-up or tilt-down operation'' is the ``raising/lowering of a 
load from the horizontal to vertical or vertical to horizontal.''
    ``Tower crane.'' C-DAC defined a tower crane as: A type of lifting 
structure which utilizes a vertical mast or tower to support a working 
boom (jib) suspended from the working boom. While the working boom may 
be fixed horizontally or have luffing capability, it can always rotate 
about the tower center to swing loads. The tower base may be fixed in 
one location or ballasted and moveable between locations.''
    In reviewing this language, OSHA believes that several changes are 
needed. First, a characteristic of tower cranes that is missing from 
the C-DAC definition is that the working boom is in an elevated 
position above the ground. Second, the working boom on some tower 
cranes, even of the non-luffing type, may not be at a 90-degree angle 
to the tower, and so the term ``fixed horizontally'' may not always be 
appropriate. Third, there are ``top slewing'' tower cranes--those in 
which the working boom rotates on the top of a fixed tower, and 
``bottom slewing'' tower cranes--those in which the tower itself (with 
the working boom fixed to it) rotates on its base. The definition does 
not make clear that both types are considered tower cranes for purposes 
of this proposed standard.
    Therefore, the Agency has modified this language for the definition 
in the proposed rule as follows:

    A type of lifting structure which utilizes a vertical mast or 
tower to support a working boom (jib) in an elevated position. Loads 
are suspended from the working boom. While the working boom may be 
of the fixed type (horizontal or angled) or have luffing capability, 
it can always rotate to swing loads, either by rotating on the top 
of the tower (top slewing) or by the rotation of the tower (bottom 
slewing). The tower base may be fixed in one location or ballasted 
and moveable between locations.

    OSHA requests public comment on these changes.
    ``Travel bogie (tower cranes)'' is ``an assembly of two or more 
axles arranged to permit vertical wheel displacement

[[Page 59739]]

and equalize the loading on the wheels.''
    ``Trim'' is the ``angle of inclination about the transverse axis of 
a barge, pontoon, vessel or other means of flotation.''
    ``Two blocking'' means ``a condition in which a component that is 
uppermost on the hoist line such as the load block, hook block, 
overhaul ball, or similar component, comes in contact with the boom 
tip, fixed upper block or similar component. This binds the system and 
continued application of power can cause failure of the hoist rope or 
other component.''
    ``Unavailable procedures'' means ``procedures that are no longer 
available from the manufacturer, or have never been available from the 
manufacturer.''
    ``Upperstructure'' is a synonym for ``superstructure'' and 
``upperworks,'' which is defined below.
    ``Upperworks'' means ``the revolving frame of equipment on which 
the engine and operating machinery are mounted along with the 
operator's cab. The counterweight is typically supported on the rear of 
the upperworks and the boom or other front end attachment is mounted on 
the front.'' ``Superstructure'' and ``upperstructure'' are synonyms for 
``upperworks.''
    The second sentence of C-DAC's version of this definition stated: 
``The counterweight is typically supported on the rear of the 
upperstructure * * *.'' OSHA has changed the word ``upperstructure'' to 
``upperworks'' to avoid any confusion that could be caused by using one 
synonym in the definition of another.
    ``Up to'' means ``up to and including.'' This definition is 
included to make the meaning of the phrase clear.
    ``Wire rope.'' The C-DAC document defined this term as ``rope made 
of wire,'' the definition that is used in this proposed rule. However, 
some wire rope has a fiber core, which proposed Sec.  1926.1414 permits 
to be used for purposes other than boom hoist reeving. However, the C-
DAC definition indicates that such rope would not be considered ``wire 
rope.'' OSHA requests public comment on whether a more suitable 
definition would be the one used by SC&RF, which is the following:

    A flexible rope constructed by laying steel wires into various 
patterns of multi-wired strands around a core system to produce a 
helically wound rope.

Section 1402 Ground Conditions

    The Committee believed that the failure to have adequate ground 
conditions is a significant crane safety problem. Adequate ground 
conditions are essential for safe crane operations because the crane's 
capacity and stability depend on such conditions being present.
    In the Committee's view, there have been several key problems 
regarding ground conditions. First, cranes are commonly brought on site 
by a subcontractor, who typically neither has control over ground 
conditions nor knowledge of hidden hazards. For example, an HVAC 
subcontractor will usually not have the contractual authority to alter 
site conditions and will not know about hidden conditions such as sewer 
lines under the area where the crane will be located. Consequently, 
when ground conditions are inadequate, the subcontractor is typically 
unable to correct those conditions itself. Attempts to get other 
entities at the site to correct the conditions are often unsuccessful, 
which has led to cranes being set up on inadequate ground conditions.
    Another problem is that the entity that usually does have such 
authority--the controlling entity--may not have the expertise to know 
what changes are needed to make the ground conditions suitable for 
crane operations. This proposed section is designed to address these 
problems so that ground conditions will be made sufficient for safe 
crane operations.
Paragraph 1402(a) Definitions
    Proposed paragraph (a) provides definitions of key terms used in 
this proposed section.
    The term ``ground conditions'' would be defined as the ability of 
the ground to support the equipment (including slope, compaction and 
firmness). The Committee believed that slope, compaction and firmness 
are the key factors that are involved in the ability of the ground to 
support the equipment.
    ``Supporting materials'' would be defined as meaning blocking, 
mats, cribbing, marsh buggies (in marshes/wetlands), or similar 
supporting materials or devices. Such materials typically help to 
distribute the load of the crane over a broad area and/or assist in 
leveling the equipment. The list in the definition of examples of such 
materials is nonexclusive--it includes similar materials and devices 
that would serve the same purpose(s).
Paragraph 1402(b)
    Under proposed paragraph (b), the equipment would be prohibited 
from being assembled or used unless ground conditions are firm, drained 
(except for marshes/wetlands), and graded to a sufficient extent so 
that, in conjunction (if necessary) with the use of supporting 
materials, the equipment manufacturer's specifications for adequate 
support and degree of level of the equipment are met. A crane's 
stability depends (in part) on the crane being level, and ``degree of 
level'' is a term used in the industry to describe the manufacturer's 
specification for how level the crane must be.
    The Committee believed that crane tip-over incidents caused by 
inadequate ground conditions are a significant cause of injuries and 
fatalities. Conditions that enhance the chance of such accidents 
include ground that is wet or muddy, poorly graded, or that is loose 
fill (or otherwise disturbed soil) that has not been compacted. The 
Committee believed that requiring adequate ground conditions will 
prevent many of these accidents.
    This proposed provision would not require the ground conditions 
alone to be sufficient to support the equipment. The Committee 
recognized that such a requirement would be unnecessarily restrictive, 
since adequate support can often be achieved with the use of supporting 
materials. However, supporting materials cannot compensate for all 
ground condition problems. As a result, the Committee found that an 
appropriate approach would be to require that ground conditions be 
sufficiently firm, drained (except for marshes/wetlands) and graded to 
a sufficient extent so that, in conjunction (if necessary) with 
supporting materials, the support and degree of level would be 
adequate. ``Adequate'' in this context would mean sufficient to meet 
the equipment manufacturer's specifications for support and degree of 
level of the equipment.
    In practical terms, the ultimate test of whether this criterion is 
met is whether the equipment can be set up so that it is within the 
manufacturer's specifications for the needed support for the equipment 
and the degree of level of the equipment and whether it can remain 
within those specifications while in use.
    The Committee considered using more specific criteria, such as 
specifications for slope, compaction and firmness. That approach was 
rejected by the Committee for two reasons. First, in its view, such 
specifications would be unduly burdensome since employers would need to 
conduct complex tests with sophisticated instruments to ensure 
compliance. Second, it believed that such tests are unnecessary because 
the person or persons supervising the equipment assembly and the crane 
operator would have sufficient expertise to assess the adequacy of 
ground conditions without the use of complex

[[Page 59740]]

ground assessment tests and related instruments.
    The individual (or team) supervising the equipment assembly 
(referred to in proposed Sec.  1926.1404(a) as the ``A/D supervisor'') 
would, under proposed Sec.  1926.1404(a), individually or collectively 
meet the definition of both a competent and qualified person. Also, 
under proposed Sec.  1926.1427 (and specifically proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(j)(1)(i)(E)(1)), the crane operator would have technical 
knowledge applicable to the suitability of the supporting ground and 
surface to handle expected loads. In view of that level of knowledge, 
the Committee believed that both the A/D supervisor and the crane 
operator would be able to assess the adequacy of ground conditions 
without the use of complex ground assessment tests and related 
instruments.
    OSHA notes that proposed Sec.  1926.1402(e) refers to the 
``individual'' supervising the equipment assembly. Since the individual 
or individuals supervising the equipment assembly are referred to 
throughout this proposed rule as the ``A/D supervisor,'' \4\ OSHA has, 
for clarity, replaced the phrase ``individual supervising the equipment 
assembly'' in Sec.  1926.1402(e) with ``A/D supervisor.''
    Proposed paragraph 1402(b) would require the ground to be drained 
except for marshes/wetlands. This exception was included because the 
Committee was aware that, in many instances, the draining of marshes/
wetlands is prohibited or restricted by environmental laws. Since there 
are devices available, such as marsh buggies, that are designed to 
provide adequate support to cranes in such areas (a marsh buggy is a 
device designed to support equipment such as a crane in swampy terrain; 
it can cross such terrain with that equipment on board), the Committee 
believed that such an exception would be appropriate.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \4\ ``A/D supervisor'' is defined in proposed Sec.  1926.1401, 
Definitions.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Paragraph 1402(c)

    Under proposed paragraph 1402(c), the controlling entity would have 
several specific duties regarding ground conditions. ``Controlling 
entity'' is defined in proposed Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a prime 
contractor, general contractor, construction manager or any other legal 
entity which has the overall responsibility for the construction of the 
project--its planning, quality and completion.'' This definition, which 
mirrors the definition of ``controlling contractor'' in the steel 
erection standard, subpart R of 29 CFR part 1926, reflects the core 
principle of general supervisory control over the construction site as 
the central theme of the concept. The Committee believed that 
``controlling entity'' would be a better term for this concept than 
``controlling contractor'' because some employers may mistakenly 
believe that ``controlling contractor'' refers only to general 
contractors. Since in some instances an entity other than a general 
contractor has general supervisory control of the worksite, such an 
entity would meet the terms of the definition.
    Proposed paragraph 1402(c)(1) would require the controlling entity 
to ensure that ground preparations necessary to meet the requirements 
in proposed paragraph (b) of this section are provided.
    Currently, Subpart N does not specify who is responsible for 
providing for such preparations. In effect, reliance is placed on the 
various parties to work out who would have such responsibility through 
contractual arrangements. In the experience of a number of Committee 
members, in many instances the parties are unable to agree on who will 
have (or has) that contractual responsibility, with the result that 
inadequate ground conditions often do not get corrected. Consequently, 
the Committee believed that it is necessary to specify who will have 
ground condition responsibility.
    In the Committee's view, the crane user and operator typically do 
not have the equipment or authority to make such preparations. In 
contrast, the controlling entity, due to its control of the worksite, 
has the requisite authority and is in the best position to arrange for 
adequate ground conditions. The Committee considered the fact that some 
controlling entities claim to not know when a crane will arrive at the 
site, and would therefore be unable to timely arrange for the necessary 
ground condition preparations. However, the Committee found this 
unpersuasive. It believed that the controlling entity, by virtue of its 
control over the site and normal business responsibilities for the 
construction project itself, is fully able to be cognizant of 
construction schedules and information about crane use by its 
subcontractors.
    The Committee was concerned, however, that some controlling 
entities may lack the expertise to recognize when ground conditions are 
inadequate. To address this concern, the Committee developed proposed 
Sec.  1926.1402(e). Under that proposed provision, if the A/D 
supervisor or the operator determines that ground conditions do not 
meet the requirements in proposed paragraph (b) of this section, that 
person's employer would be required to have a discussion with the 
controlling entity.\5\ This discussion would concern the ground 
preparations that are needed so that, with the use of suitable 
supporting materials/devices (if necessary), the requirements in 
proposed paragraph (b) of this section can be met. This discussion 
would serve as a mechanism for those with expertise regarding the 
ground conditions needed to meet proposed paragraph (b) of this section 
to convey that information to the entity responsible for making the 
necessary preparations.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \5\ The SBREFA Panel recommended that OSHA consider whether use 
of the words ``determine'' and ``demonstrate'' would require 
employers to make and keep records to support such determinations 
and demonstrations. OSHA notes that records would not be required in 
these instances. Only where this proposal explicitly requires the 
employer to maintain records or documentation (see, e.g., proposed 
Sec.  1926.1412(e)(3) on documentation of monthly inspections) is an 
employer required to create and/or maintain records.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed paragraph 1402(c)(2) addresses the problem of hidden 
hazards beneath the equipment set-up area. Open spaces underground, 
such as from voids, tanks, and utilities such as sewer, water supply 
and drain pipes, can greatly compromise the ability of the ground above 
them to support the equipment. At the set-up area, there are often no 
readily apparent visual clues above ground that such hazards exist 
under the area. In the experience of members of the Committee, because 
of the hidden nature of these hazards, accidents have occurred when 
cranes have been set up above such hazards and a portion of the ground 
has given way.
    Under proposed paragraph 1402(c)(2), the controlling entity would 
be required to inform the user of the equipment and the equipment 
operator of the location of hazards beneath the equipment set-up area 
(such as voids, tanks, utilities) that are identified in documents 
(such as site drawings, as-built drawings, and soil analyses) if they 
are available to the controlling entity.
    In developing this proposed provision, the Committee was mindful 
that the controlling entity often has access to documents that may 
identify the location of such hazards. For example, a sewer line may be 
marked on a site drawing, an as-built drawing, or in a soil analysis. 
Under this proposed provision, if the controlling entity has such a 
document, whether at the site or at an off-site location, it would be 
required to inform the equipment user and operator of the location of 
the hazard as identified in it. If the

[[Page 59741]]

controlling entity does not possess such a document, it would not be 
required to obtain it from another source.
    The proposed provision would not require the controlling entity to 
identify hazards that are not identified in such documents. In other 
words, it would not require the controlling entity to arrange for tests 
to be done at the site to determine if such hazards are present. The 
Committee believed that such a requirement would be unduly burdensome 
on the controlling entity. In its view the proposed provision would be 
sufficient because such hazards are typically identified in these 
documents in the normal course of business.
    The Committee also believed that the duty to provide this 
information should be limited to hazards identified in documents that 
are available to the controlling entity. Requiring the controlling 
entity to obtain such information from other sources would, in effect, 
require it to arrange for testing. As explained above, the Committee 
believed such a duty would be unduly burdensome and unnecessary.
    During the SBREFA meeting an SER commented on the difficulty and 
time consumed in getting approval from the controlling entity to make 
sure ground conditions were adequate, especially since many controlling 
entities were resistant to checking the site themselves for adequate 
ground conditions. The commenter further stated that his company relies 
on the steel erectors to test ground conditions for the proper support 
and that this system seems to work fine. OSHA notes that while the 
proposed rule would not preclude such arrangements, the responsibility 
for meeting the requirements of proposed paragraph (c) would 
nonetheless rest with controlling entity. Moreover, OSHA believes that 
this comment is illustrative of the need for the standard to require 
the controlling entity's involvement in this phase of the project.
    Another SER expressed concern that the rule could not be properly 
implemented due to the number of communication channels a subcontractor 
would have to juggle before finally getting in contact with the 
controlling entity. For example, a subcontractor may have to go through 
several other subcontractors before it reaches the controlling entity. 
OSHA believes that, if controlling entities had the responsibilities 
set out in proposed paragraph (c), controlling entities would be more 
likely to facilitate such communication.
Paragraph 1402(d)
    In the event that no controlling entity exists, proposed paragraph 
1402(d) provides that the requirement in paragraph (c)(1) of this 
section shall be met by the employer that has authority at the site to 
make or arrange for ground preparations needed to meet paragraph (b) of 
this section. For example, if the employer who hires the crane has the 
authority to get the ground prepared in the absence of a controlling 
entity, the responsibility for complying with proposed paragraph (b) 
would fall to that employer. However, that employer would not be 
required to comply with proposed paragraph (c)(2) of this section. This 
is because the information required to be disclosed under proposed 
paragraph (c)(2) is not likely to be available to that employer.
Paragraph 1402(e)
    Proposed paragraph 1402(e) would establish a mechanism for a 
controlling entity to obtain information from the A/D supervisor or the 
equipment operator about insufficient ground conditions and the 
preparations needed to correct the problem. Specifically (as discussed 
above in the context of proposed Sec.  1926.1402(c)(1)), if the A/D 
supervisor or equipment operator determines that ground conditions do 
not meet the criteria in proposed paragraph (b) of this section, that 
person's employer would be required to have a discussion with the 
controlling entity regarding the ground preparations needed so that, 
with the use of suitable supporting materials/devices (if necessary), 
the requirements in proposed paragraph (b) can be met.
    The Committee believed that, in some instances, the controlling 
entity may lack the expertise needed to know what ground preparations 
may be needed. In such cases, it is necessary for the information it 
needs to be provided by the A/D supervisor or operator, who have that 
expertise, so that the preparations needed for safe crane operations 
can be made.
    For example, controlling entity C, who has experience working with 
only relatively light, low capacity cranes, believes that the ground in 
set-up area Q is suitable. However, the crane that is going to be used 
is a high capacity crane. Because of the substantially greater weight 
of the high capacity crane, a greater degree of compaction of the soil 
in set-up area Q is needed. When the operator of the high capacity 
crane arrives at the site, the operator recognizes the need for more 
compaction. In this example, under this proposed provision, the 
operator's employer would then be required to have a discussion with 
controlling entity C regarding the need for greater compaction. As a 
result of the ensuing discussion, controlling entity C would have the 
additional information it needs so that it could then comply with 
proposed paragraph (c)(1) of this section by ensuring that the 
additional compaction needed to meet the criteria in proposed paragraph 
(b) of this section is performed.
    Also, proposed Sec.  1926.1402(e) would place a duty on the 
employer of the A/D supervisor or equipment operator irrespective of a 
controlling entity's lack of expertise. For example, if the controlling 
entity fails to ensure necessary ground condition preparations, action 
would be required of the A/D supervisor's or operator's employer. If 
either determined that ground conditions were insufficient to meet the 
proposed paragraph (b) criteria, that employer would be required to 
discuss the preparations that needed to be made with the controlling 
entity. The Committee believed that, in such circumstances, such a 
discussion would make it more likely that the requirements in proposed 
paragraph (b) would be met which, as discussed above, is necessary for 
safe crane operations.

Sections 1403-1406 Assembly and Disassembly

    Proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1403 through 1926.1406 set out 
requirements designed to ensure the safety of employees while equipment 
is assembled and disassembled, which includes the erecting and 
dismantling of tower cranes. C-DAC members indicated that, in their 
experience, the failure to adequately address hazards associated with 
these processes is a significant cause of injuries and fatalities. Two 
analyses of data support their view.
    A recent analysis of data published in the Journal of Construction 
Engineering and Management, authored by J.E. Beavers, J.R. Moore, R. 
Rinehart and W.R. Schriver, found that being ``crushed during assembly/
disassembly'' was the third highest proximate cause of crane related 
fatalities during 1997 to 2003.\6\ (OSHA-2007-0066-0012). Contributing 
physical factors included improper assembly, improper disassembly 
(specifically, pin removal), and improper boom support. The study 
indicates that these assembly/disassembly fatalities occurred while 
using lattice boom cranes.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \6\ This study found that being struck by a load was the number 
one proximate cause of crane-related fatalities, followed by 
electrocution. Crushed by assembly and disassembly made up 12% of 
the total number of crane related fatalities in this study.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    A 1997 study by A. Suruda, M. Egger and D. Liu analyzed crane 
related

[[Page 59742]]

fatalities from 1984 to 1994.\7\ This study determined that crane 
assembly and disassembly was the second leading cause of crane related 
fatalities, comprising 12% (or 58 deaths) of the total number of crane 
fatalities from 1984 to 1994. More specifically, a majority of these 
fatalities involved lattice boom cranes and a relatively small number 
involved tower cranes.\8\ Almost 90 percent of the fatalities involving 
lattice boom cranes resulted when employees were removing boom pins 
from underneath an unsupported boom. (A. Suruda, et al., ``Crane-
Related Deaths in the U.S. Construction Industry, 1984-94'' (1997) 
(OSHA-2007-0066-0013).\9\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \7\ This study was limited to crane related fatalities in the 
U.S. construction industry.
    \8\ Out of the 58 fatalities, 93% involved lattice boom cranes 
and 7% involved tower cranes.
    \9\ In contrast, a 34-year study (1969-2002) conducted by the 
Province of Ontario indicates that dismantling the boom is not a 
leading cause of mobile crane fatalities. This study concluded that 
dismantling the boom ranked sixth out of eight causes of mobile 
crane fatalities within the Province of Ontario during 1969 through 
2002. Dismantling the boom comprised only 4% of the fatalities 
during this time period. (OSHA-2007-0066-0009).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Committee also concluded that the most effective way to reduce 
these injuries and fatalities would be to have a standard that 
comprehensively addresses these hazards.
    Note that the term ``procedures'' which is used in the proposed 
assembly/disassembly provisions is defined (see Sec.  1926.1401) to 
include (but is not limited to) instructions, diagrams, 
recommendations, warnings, specifications, protocols and limitations. 
The operation of an ``assist'' crane used to help in the assembly/
disassembly process is not covered by the assembly/disassembly 
requirements but is covered by the other sections of this proposed 
standard.

Section 1403 Assembly/Disassembly--Selection of Manufacturer or 
Employer Procedures

    In Sec.  1926.1401, ``assembly/disassembly'' is defined to mean 
``the assembly and/or disassembly of equipment covered under this 
standard. With regard to tower cranes, `erecting and climbing' replaces 
the term `assembly,' and `dismantling' replaces the term `disassembly.' 
'' C-DAC did not originally include a definition of ``assembly/
disassembly,'' but OSHA added this definition to avoid any implication 
that Sec. Sec.  1926.1403-1406 on ``assembly/disassembly'' do not apply 
to tower cranes because the terms ``assembly'' and ``disassembly'' are 
not commonly used in the industry in referring to tower cranes. 
Instead, the words ``erecting,'' ``climbing,'' and ``dismantling,'' are 
used, and the definition of ``assembly/disassembly'' makes it clear 
that Sec. Sec.  1926.1403-1406 apply to tower cranes and, for that 
purpose, use tower crane terminology.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1403 would require employers to choose among 
two options: Assemble and disassemble cranes and derricks by following 
the manufacturer's procedures, or use their own assembly/disassembly 
procedures (if they meet the proposed rule's criteria in Sec.  
1926.1406). Note, though, that the assembly/disassembly requirements in 
proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1404 and 1405 must be met regardless of which 
option the employer selects.
    Committee members discussed whether employers should be required to 
comply with the manufacturer's procedures, or if deviations from those 
procedures should be allowed. The Committee determined, and OSHA 
agrees, that deviations should be allowed for two reasons. First, 
manufacturers' procedures are typically designed for use in ``ideal'' 
environments: Large, flat, dry, unencumbered open areas. However, such 
conditions are not typical, especially in urban areas. Consequently, 
employers are currently unable to implement those procedures in those 
situations. Second, members were of the view that there is often more 
than one way to safely assemble and disassemble a crane, and that it is 
unnecessary to mandate that in every case the manufacturer procedures 
be used.
    The Committee also agreed that, while use of methods other than 
those of the manufacturer should be allowed, such employer-developed 
procedures need to meet certain benchmarks (see the criteria in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1406) to ensure that they are adequate to protect 
the employees during the assembly/disassembly process.

Section 1404 Assembly/Disassembly--General Requirements (Applies to All 
Assembly and Disassembly Operations)

    In examining the underlying causes of fatalities and injuries from 
assembly/disassembly accidents, the Committee determined that a 
systematic, proactive approach, designed to highlight the key hazards 
involved, was needed. C-DAC developed a list of those hazards and then 
considered how to deal with each one. It became apparent in that 
discussion that the action needed to address some of these hazards is 
specific and straightforward. These are addressed in paragraphs (a) 
through (g) and (j) through (q) of this proposed section. However, with 
regard to others, the wide variety of circumstances and methods that 
could be used to address them made specifying particular, detailed 
actions impractical and needlessly inflexible. For those, C-DAC decided 
to require that the hazard be addressed but to have an Assembly/
Disassembly supervisory (A/D supervisor) determine how to deal with 
them; these are covered in paragraph (h). Note that the requirements in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1404 would apply irrespective of whether 
manufacturer or employer procedures were used.

New Issue

    The Agency has been investigating a March 15, 2008 collapse of a 
tower crane in New York City. One aspect of that investigation has 
focused on the use of synthetic slings in the process of attaching a 
bracing collar to the tower (the installation of such collars is part 
of the crane assembly process). This prompted the Agency to examine the 
existing OSHA standards applicable to the use of synthetic slings 
during crane assembly/disassembly.
    In the course of that examination, OSHA has determined that neither 
Subpart N nor 29 CFR 1926.251, Rigging equipment for material handling, 
specifically addresses the hazard posed when a synthetic sling is used 
in a manner that can cause compression or distortion of the sling, or 
when the sling is in contact with a sharp edge. Consequently, the 
Agency is considering adding a provision to Sec.  1926.1404 to address 
these hazards.\10\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \10\ C-DAC did not consider hazards associated with the use of 
synthetic slings during assembly/disassembly.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    One way of addressing these hazards would be to prohibit the use of 
synthetic slings in the assembly/disassembly of equipment covered by 
this proposed standard. Another way that the Agency is considering to 
address these hazards is to require padding or similar measures when 
needed to protect the slings from being damaged such as from being cut, 
compressed or distorted. OSHA requests public comment on this issue.
Paragraph 1404(a) Supervision--Competent--Qualified Person
    Proposed paragraph (a) would require supervision of the assembly/
disassembly process by an ``A/D supervisor.'' Section 1926.1401 defines 
``A/D supervisor'' as ``an individual who meets this proposed 
paragraph's criteria for being an A/D supervisor, irrespective of the 
person's formal job title or whether the person is non-management or 
management personnel.'' C-DAC defined the term in this way to make

[[Page 59743]]

clear that it is the substance of the individual's qualifications, and 
not his or her job title or position in the company hierarchy, that 
determines whether the person is qualified to act as an A/D supervisor.
    The A/D supervisor would have to meet the definition of both a 
``competent'' and ``qualified'' person as OSHA defines those terms.\11\ 
The Committee believed that having an A/D supervisor overseeing the 
assembly/disassembly process who had both the authority to correct a 
hazard or stop the process and who had the expertise of a qualified 
person was necessary to ensure the safety of the operation.
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    \11\ Proposed Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions, defines a 
``competent person'' as: One who is capable of identifying existing 
and predictable hazards in the surroundings or working conditions 
which are unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous to employees, and who 
has authorization to take prompt corrective measures to eliminate 
them. Section 1401 defines a ``qualified person'' in this proposed 
standard as: One who, by possession of a recognized degree, 
certificate, or professional standing, or who by extensive 
knowledge, training, and experience, has successfully demonstrated 
his ability to solve or resolve problems relating to the subject 
matter, the work, or the project. These definitions are essentially 
the same as the definitions in 29 CFR 1926.32(f) and 29 CFR 
1926.32(m).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Many of the hazards involved in the process are not obvious to 
those with limited knowledge and experience in assembly/disassembly. 
There are numerous scenarios in which there is stored kinetic energy in 
the equipment's component parts. The installation or removal of 
components in the wrong order, or using the wrong procedure, can 
release that energy in ways that would be unexpected to those with 
little knowledge of the process.
    For example, failure to place blocking in the correct position 
under a boom can lead to unexpected movement or collapse of the boom 
when a pin that is in tension is removed. Workers unfamiliar with the 
concept of pins in tension may not recognize the dangers of removing it 
in that circumstance. Having a person overseeing the process that has 
the expertise needed to know how the process is supposed to be done, 
the ability to recognize dangerous situations and how to remedy them, 
and the authority to take corrective action, is crucial to ensuring 
that the assembly/disassembly process is completed safely.
    The Committee agreed that the A/D supervisor did not have to be one 
individual since two people (one with the requisite expertise and the 
other with the authority to take corrective action), working as a team, 
would be as effective in overseeing the process as one individual.
    The A/D supervisor would oversee the implementation of the proposed 
requirements in paragraphs (a) through (g) and (j) through (q) of this 
proposed section, and would also address the hazards as described in 
paragraph (h) of this proposed section.
Paragraphs 1404(b) Knowledge of the Procedures, and 1404(c), Review of 
the Procedures
    Proposed paragraph (b) would require that the A/D supervisor 
understand the assembly/disassembly procedures. In addition, proposed 
paragraph (c) requires the A/D supervisor to review them prior to 
starting the process unless experience in having used them on the same 
type and configuration of equipment makes their review unnecessary. One 
example would be an A/D supervisor who has overseen the erection of a 
tower crane with the same configuration for numerous jobs in the past 
year. If that A/D supervisor had, through that repetitive experience, 
developed a knowledge and understanding of the assembly procedures to 
the point where reviewing them prior to beginning assembly was no 
longer necessary, he/she would not be required to review them.
    Without a thorough knowledge of these procedures, the A/D 
supervisor would be unable to ensure that the assembly/disassembly 
process is conducted safely.
Paragraph 1404(d) Crew Instructions
    Under this proposed provision, before beginning assembly/
disassembly operations, the A/D supervisor would have to determine that 
the crew members understand their tasks and the associated hazards, as 
well as any hazardous positions/locations that they need to avoid.
    The Committee was of the view that accidents during assembly/
disassembly are often caused by misunderstandings of the employees 
working in the assembly/disassembly crew as to their tasks and how they 
are to be performed, as well as a failure to recognize potentially 
dangerous areas in and around the equipment. The details of these tasks 
and, in particular, the location of danger areas from which workers 
need to keep themselves and their extremities clear, often vary from 
one machine to another. Having the A/D supervisor check to make sure 
that the crew members know this essential information before starting 
the assembly/disassembly process would be, in the Committee's view, an 
effective and practical means of addressing this aspect of the problem.
Paragraph 1404(e) Protecting Assembly/Disassembly Crew Members Out of 
Operator View
    One of the hazards identified by the Committee is an operator 
swinging or moving the crane/derrick when assembly/disassembly 
personnel are in a crush/caught-in-between zone and out of the 
operator's view. The Committee believed that an effective and practical 
means of preventing these accidents would be through a communication 
procedure that would provide key information to, and coordination 
between, the operator and these workers.
    This provision would therefore require that the crew member inform 
the operator that he/she is going to a location in, on, under, or near 
the equipment or load that is out of view of the operator where the 
movement of the equipment could injure the worker. The operator would 
be prohibited from moving any part of the crane/derrick or load until 
the operator gives a warning (the significance of which is understood 
by the crew member) and sufficient time for the crew member to move to 
a safe location, or the operator is informed through a pre-arranged 
means of communication that the crew member has moved to a safe 
location. Committee members indicated that the use of the (understood) 
warning coupled with sufficient time to exit, and the use of a pre-
arranged means of communication, are each currently used by many 
employers and have proved to be effective.
    One Committee member suggested that instead of requiring that the 
crew member directly inform the operator of his/her location, the rule 
should permit the crew member to provide this information to the 
operator through a third person. For example, the crew member would 
instruct his/her foreman to radio the information to the operator. Such 
a change could be made by changing the last phrase in proposed 
paragraph (e)(1) of this section to read, ``the crew member shall 
inform the operator directly or through someone instructed by the crew 
member that the crew member is going to that location.'' OSHA is asking 
for public comment on this suggestion. In particular, OSHA is asking 
for comment on whether this approach would be as protective of the crew 
members as the proposal, given that it would allow indirect 
communication between the crew members and the operator.

[[Page 59744]]

Paragraph 1404(f) Working Under the Boom, Jib or Other Components
    The proposed provision would establish a general prohibition 
against employees being under the component when pins or similar 
devices are being removed (note that this provision is similar to 
section 5-3.1.3(l) of ASME B30.5-2004). An exception is provided for 
instances where the employer demonstrates that site constraints require 
being positioned under the component and the employer takes steps to 
minimize the risk of dangerous movement and duration and extent of 
exposure.
    The Committee discussed the inherently hazardous nature of removing 
pins while being under the boom (and jib or similar components). If the 
wrong pins are removed while employees are under the component, it can 
move or collapse, posing a severe hazard to the worker. Even when pins 
are removed in the correct order, there may be unexpected stresses in 
the component which, as stored kinetic energy that may not be apparent 
until that energy is released upon the removal of the pin--at which 
time unexpected movement of the component may result. While other 
proposed provisions in the assembly/disassembly sections address this 
same hazard in other ways, these provisions in combination form a 
layered approach to safety.
    The Committee discussed whether any exceptions should be allowed to 
the prohibition against workers being under the component during pin 
removal. It determined, after considerable discussion, that the only 
type of situation where it may be inappropriate to apply the 
prohibition involves site constraints. For example, in some 
circumstances there is no room to assemble/disassemble the boom 
horizontally using ground support, and the boom has to be assembled/
disassembled ``in the air'' (that is, at an angle well above 
horizontal, or over an area, such as a large excavation, where there is 
no ground available for support). In some of those situations, one or 
more employees may have to be under the boom for certain periods of 
time in the pin removal process.
    Therefore, the proposed provision includes an exception to cover 
such instances. However, in those instances the hazard of being under 
the component is still present. Because of that, the Committee believed 
it important to limit the application of the exception and, where it 
would apply, to ensure that steps would be taken to limit the risks 
involved. Therefore, the exception would be applicable only where the 
employer demonstrates that site constraints require being positioned 
under the component and the employer takes steps to minimize the risk 
of dangerous movement and duration and extent of exposure.
    An example of a method for minimizing that risk and the exposure is 
provided in proposed Non-Mandatory Appendix D. The Committee considered 
making that method mandatory, but decided to include it only as an 
example because there may be other effective methods, which should not 
be excluded.
Paragraph 1404(g) Capacity Limits
    This proposed provision would require that the rated capacity 
limits for loads imposed on the equipment, each of its components, 
(including rigging), lifting lugs and equipment accessories being 
assembled or disassembled not be exceeded. The provision would apply 
``during all phases of assembly/disassembly.'' One example of the risk 
created by not following capacity limits is the process of installing 
counterweights. In some cases the crane being assembled is used to 
install its own counterweights. Early in this process, when few 
counterweights are in place, the crane's capacity will be so limited 
that swinging beyond a certain point, or booming out beyond a certain 
point, may cause it to overturn.
    It should be noted that where an assist crane is being used during 
the assembly/disassembly of another crane/derrick, the requirements for 
rated capacity during operations must be met under proposed Sec.  
1926.1417(o), Compliance with rated capacity, with respect to the 
assist crane.
Paragraph 1404(h) Addressing Specific Hazards
    For assembly and disassembly, this provision sets out specific 
hazard topics which the A/D supervisor must address. The Committee 
believed that requiring specific means and methods for protecting 
against these hazards (and, where specified goals are stated, for 
attaining those goals) would be too limiting. Therefore, the A/D 
supervisor must consider each listed hazard, determine the appropriate 
means of addressing it, and oversee the implementation of that method.
Paragraph 1404(h)(1) Site and Ground Bearing Conditions
    This proposed provision would work in conjunction with proposed 
Sec.  1926.1402, which addresses ground conditions for both assembly/
disassembly and use of the equipment, including ground condition 
criteria. Proposed Sec.  1926.1404(h)(1) would require the A/D 
supervisor to assess the ground conditions for conformance with those 
criteria, and to assess the site for suitability for assembly and 
disassembly.
    Before beginning assembly/disassembly, the A/D supervisor would 
have to make the determination that ground bearing conditions are 
adequate to support the equipment during assembly/disassembly (the 
concept of adequate ground bearing conditions is discussed in detail 
above regarding proposed Sec.  1926.1402). In addition, the A/D 
supervisor would have to consider the adequacy of site conditions which 
might affect the safety of assembly or disassembly. For example, at a 
construction site in an industrial facility with overhead piping 
carrying hazardous materials, the A/D supervisor would have to consider 
the potential for the equipment contacting the piping in determining 
where and how to conduct the assembly/disassembly operations.
Paragraph 1404(h)(2) Blocking Material and 1404(h)(3) Proper Location 
of Blocking
    These two provisions address the hazards associated with inadequate 
blocking. ``Blocking'' (also referred to as ``cribbing'') is defined in 
Sec.  1926.1401 as ``wood or other material used to support equipment 
or a component and distribute loads to the ground. Typically used to 
support latticed boom sections during assembly/disassembly and under 
outrigger floats.'' This definition is from the SC&RF Handbook.
    Proper blocking plays an important role in assembly/disassembly 
safety. Blocking is used in a variety of circumstances to compensate 
for minor ground sloping and/or to enhance stability by spreading out 
the area over which forces from the load are transferred to the ground. 
It is used to help support assembled equipment (usually placed under 
outrigger pads) and during assembly/disassembly to support components. 
Blocking that is undersized, insufficient in type or number, in poor 
condition, and/or stacked in an unstable manner could lead to a failure 
of support and consequent unplanned movement or collapse of the 
equipment or component.
    When used to support lattice booms or lattice components, the 
failure to place blocking in the correct location could have several 
dangerous consequences. For example, incorrect placement in some 
instances could cause a part of the lattice boom/component to bear too 
much force and damage it. That damage could

[[Page 59745]]

compromise structural integrity and, in some cases, may not be 
immediately noticed. If the assembly process were to continue 
nonetheless, the boom/component could fail.
    Improper blocking location may also result in a failure to provide 
adequate support of the boom/component. One example is blocking used to 
provide support to a boom section that will need it later in the 
disassembly process, such as after pins are removed. If the blocking is 
in the wrong place, once the pins are removed, unplanned movement or 
collapse could result. Note that proposed Sec.  1926.1404(h)(3) on 
proper blocking location is similar to section 5-3.1.3(k) of ASME 
B30.5-2004 (blocking to be appropriately placed to prevent inadvertent 
dropping of the boom).
    Proposed paragraph (h)(3) (Proper location of blocking) is 
unchanged from the C-DAC document and its applicability is limited to 
lattice booms and components. However, it is the Agency's understanding 
that other types of booms and components (i.e., those for hydraulic 
cranes) also are at times assembled and disassembled in the field and 
may similarly need blocking. Consequently, it appears to the Agency 
that it may be appropriate to broaden the provision so that it would 
apply to all booms and components, not just lattice boom and 
components. OSHA is soliciting comments from the public on whether 
proposed paragraph (h)(3) of this section should be broadened to apply 
to all booms and components.
Paragraph 1404(h)(4) Verifying Assist Crane Loads
    This proposed paragraph requires that, when using an assist crane, 
the loads that will be imposed on the assist crane at each phase of 
assembly/disassembly must be verified in accordance with proposed Sec.  
1926.1417(o)(3) to avoid exceeding the assist crane's rated capacity. 
``Assist crane'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a crane used to 
assist in assembling or disassembling a crane.'' When used for this 
purpose, an ``assist crane'' is subject to all applicable provisions of 
this standard, including the requirement of proposed paragraph (o) of 
this section that it not be used in a manner that exceeds its rated 
capacity.
    The Committee was concerned that, at times, resulting loads on 
assist cranes during the assembly/disassembly process are not properly 
anticipated. For example, when a boom is being disassembled in a 
cantilevered position, an assist crane is sometimes used to help 
support the boom. In some instances, the load prior to pin removal is 
within the assist crane's rated capacity, but exceeds its rated 
capacity once the pins are removed, causing a collapse.
    The Committee discussed having one section on capacity limits for 
equipment, equipment components and accessories as well as for any 
assist equipment used while assembling or disassembling. The Committee 
agreed that having a separate section on capacity limits for assist 
cranes was less confusing and would help highlight the hazard as it 
pertains to assembly/disassembly.
Paragraph 1404(h)(5) Boom and Jib Pick Points
    This proposed provision would require the A/D supervisor to address 
the hazard of using improper boom and jib pick points. Specifically, 
the points of attachment of rigging to a boom/jib or boom/jib 
section(s) must be suitable for preventing structural damage. Such 
damage could compromise structural integrity and, in some cases, may 
not be immediately noticed. If that component were nonetheless used, 
the boom/component could fail.
    The points of attachment also need to facilitate the safe handling 
of these components. Typically facilitating the safe handling of the 
boom/jib or boom/jib sections means using pick points that will result 
in the boom/section being at an intended angle (that is, 90 degrees to 
the load line or some other intended angle) when hoisted. For example, 
if the boom/section is intended to be horizontal, and only one pick 
point is going to be used, the pick point must coincide with the center 
of gravity. If the boom/section is intended to be at some other angle, 
a pick point would need to be identified that would generate that 
intended angle. Failure to use an appropriate pick point in this regard 
can create a situation in which there is a greater likelihood of 
unintended movement in connecting or disconnecting the boom/section.
Paragraph 1404(h)(6) Center of Gravity
    In a variety of instances the method used for maintaining stability 
during assembly/disassembly depends on supporting or rigging a 
component (or set of components) so that it remains balanced throughout 
the process. In such instances the A/D supervisor would be required to 
identify the center of gravity of the load.
    The ``center of gravity'' of an object is defined in Sec.  
1926.1401 as ``the point in the object around which its weight is 
evenly distributed. If you could put a support under that point, you 
could balance the object on the support.'' This definition is similar 
to the one in the SC&RF Handbook.
    One example of where it would be necessary to identify the center 
of gravity is where the assembly/disassembly crew relies on an assist 
crane to suspend a component in a horizontal position. In such 
instances the center of gravity must be identified in order to 
correctly install the rigging. If the center of gravity were not 
identified, employees might try to compensate by riding on the section/
component while it is being moved into place, which is quite dangerous. 
Also, in such a situation, if the component gets ``hung-up,'' it can 
move unexpectedly if it becomes freed.
    In contrast, some methods for maintaining stability do not depend 
on rigging or supporting the component to attain horizontal balance. 
For example, if two adjoining sections of a boom are being disconnected 
from each other, and both sections are supported at all four end points 
by blocking, identifying the center of gravity of each section would 
not normally be necessary.
    The Committee anticipated that there may be instances where the 
assembly/disassembly method being used necessitates the identification 
of the center of gravity, but the employer is unable to get sufficient 
information to make that identification accurately. In those instances, 
measures would be required to be put in place that would prevent 
unintended dangerous movement resulting from an inaccurate 
identification of the center of gravity. An example of one such method 
is described in the proposed Non-Mandatory Appendix D of proposed 
subpart CC.
Paragraph 1404(h)(7) Stability Upon Pin Removal
    This proposed paragraph requires that boom sections, boom 
suspension systems (such as gantry A-frames and jib struts) or 
components must be rigged or supported to maintain stability upon the 
removal of the pins. ``Boom suspension systems'' are defined in Sec.  
1926.1401 as ``a system of pendants, running ropes, sheaves, and other 
hardware which supports the boom tip and controls the boom angle.'' 
This definition is the same as that for ``boom suspension'' in the 
SC&RF Handbook.
    The Committee identified the process of pin removal as one that has 
proved to be particularly hazardous. Potential energy in these 
sections, systems and components can be released suddenly during this 
process, resulting in unanticipated movement, ranging from shifting to 
collapse. Even small movements can result in injury,

[[Page 59746]]

including amputations; larger movements and collapses can cause fatal 
injuries.
    The Committee determined that the key to preventing these injuries 
and fatalities is through ensuring that the sections/components will 
remain stable upon the removal of the pins. Instability can have a 
variety of causes, including improper assembly/disassembly sequencing, 
improper rigging, incorrectly designed support, blocking failures and 
ground compression. Therefore, under this proposed provision, the A/D 
supervisor would be required to make sure that the sections/components 
are rigged or supported by maintaining stability once the pins are 
removed.
Paragraph 1404(h)(8) Snagging
    This proposed paragraph requires that suspension ropes and pendants 
not be allowed to catch on the boom or jib connection pins or cotter 
pins (including keepers and locking pins). In Sec.  1926.1401, 
``pendants'' are defined to ``include both wire and bar types. Wire 
type: a fixed length of wire rope with mechanical fittings at both ends 
for pinning segments of wire rope together. Bar type: Instead of wire 
rope, a bar is used. Pendants are typically used in a latticed boom 
crane system to easily change the length of the boom suspension system 
without completely changing the rope on the drum when the boom length 
is increased or decreased.'' This definition is similar to that in the 
SC&RF Handbook, but with the addition of the reference to ``bar type'' 
pendants.
    Many times the pendant cables hang alongside the boom and may get 
caught (snagged) on the pins, bolts, or keepers as the operator raises 
the boom. If this were to occur the cables could be damaged or the boom 
may rise then drop suddenly as a snagged cable releases from the pin. 
This can result in shock loading and damaging cables and components. 
For example, under this proposed provision, once all the boom sections 
are installed and the pendants are pinned together, the A/D supervisor 
must ensure that care is taken when raising the boom so that pendant 
cables and hoist cables do not snag on the pins or any other component 
during the boom raising process.
Paragraph 1404(h)(9) Struck by Counterweights
    ``Counterweight'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as a ``weight used 
to supplement the weight of equipment in providing stability for 
lifting loads by counterbalancing those loads.'' This definition is 
taken from the SC&RF Handbook.
    Counterweights are usually large, heavy plates made of steel and/or 
concrete. The A/D process typically involves the installation and 
removal of counterweights. This proposed provision would require that 
the A/D supervisor address the hazard of employees being struck by them 
during their installation/removal. During the installation/removal 
process, employees typically are in close proximity to them. An 
employee could be struck by a counterweight or crushed between it and 
the crane structure if it were to sway as it was being installed or 
removed. The A/D supervisor would be required to address this aspect of 
the hazard, such as by taking steps to have the operator minimize the 
amount of sway and by positioning the employees to minimize their 
hazard exposure.
    Additionally, after the counterweights are installed, the crane may 
have to swing to complete the boom assembly. The A/D supervisor would 
be required to address this aspect of the hazard as well, such as 
through the proper positioning of the employees and enhancing their 
awareness of the counterweight swing zone so that they will avoid being 
struck or crushed.
Paragraph 1404(h)(10) Boom Hoist Brake Failure
    This proposed provision addresses a hazard that can occur both 
during assembly and disassembly, although it is more typically a hazard 
during assembly. In many older cranes the boom hoist brake mechanism 
has an external or internal mechanical brake band that operates by 
pressing against the hoist drum. As the configuration of the crane 
changes and, for example, more boom is added, this type of boom hoist 
brake may slip unless it has been adjusted to hold the extra weight. 
The Committee was concerned that the inability of an unadjusted brake 
to hold the increased load will not be evident until the additional 
boom section(s) has been added and the operator attempts to rely on the 
brake in a subsequent phase of the operation. If the operator does not 
first raise the boom a small amount after the section has been added 
(with the crew clear of the boom) to test the brake, employees could be 
injured later in the process when the operator manipulates the boom and 
finds that he/she is unable to brake it.
    To address this hazard, the employer would be required to test the 
brake to determine if it can hold the load. In many cases, if it is 
insufficient, an adjustment to the brake will correct the problem. If 
it remains insufficient, the employer would be required to use a boom 
hoist pawl, other locking device, back-up braking device, or another 
method of preventing dangerous boom movement (such as blocking or using 
an assist crane to support the load) from a boom hoist brake failure.
    The Agency is concerned that the text of the proposed provision may 
not be sufficiently clear regarding the timing of this brake test. 
OSHA's interpretation is that the test would need to be done 
immediately after each section (or group of sections) is installed, and 
after all sections are in place. OSHA is soliciting public comment on 
this issue and if it is necessary to revise the language of the 
provision to clarify when the test must be done.
Paragraph 1404(h)(11) Loss of Backward Stability
    The Committee identified three points during the assembly/
disassembly process at which there is a heightened risk of loss of 
backward stability; these are: when swinging the upperworks, during 
travel, and when attaching or removing equipment components. Therefore, 
under this proposed provision, before any of these occur, the A/D 
supervisor would be required to consider whether precautions need to be 
instituted to ensure that backward stability is maintained.
    The illustration contained within the proposed requirements for 
loss of backward stability (Sec.  1926.1404(h)(11)) is taken from the 
``Mobile Crane Manual,'' published by the Construction Safety 
Association of Ontario.
Paragraph 1404(h)(12) Wind Speed and Weather
    Committee members believed that wind velocity and weather must be 
considered so that crane stability and capacity are not compromised. 
The Committee considered the option of establishing a maximum wind 
speed, as well as the option of incorporating ANSI's provisions 
regarding wind speed. However, it believed that selecting any one 
particular speed as a maximum would be arbitrary because of the variety 
of factors involved. For example: different cranes and crane types vary 
with respect to the ``sail'' area they present; an assembly process 
involving use of an assist crane may require lower wind speeds than one 
in which no assist crane is used; and assembly/disassembly operations 
done ``in the air'' (that is, with the boom elevated in the air, 
without ground support for the boom) may require lower wind speeds than 
a boom assembled/disassembled on the ground.

[[Page 59747]]

    The Committee ultimately decided that a better approach would be to 
have the A/D supervisor determine the maximum safe wind speed under the 
circumstances.
    Other weather conditions that can affect the safety of assembly/
disassembly would include, for example, ice accumulation on crane 
components. Ice can both add to the weight of the components and create 
slippery, dangerous surfaces on which employees work. The A/D 
supervisor must consider if weather conditions affect the safety of the 
operation.
    Paragraph 1404(i). [Reserved.] OSHA is proposing to reserve this 
paragraph because it can be difficult for readers to distinguish (i) 
from (j).
Paragraph 1404(j) Cantilevered Boom Sections
    Members of the Committee believed that a common mistake in 
assembly/disassembly is cantilevering too much boom. When too much boom 
is cantilevered structural failure can occur in components such as the 
mast/gantry, boom sections and lifting lugs. Employees may be struck by 
falling components from this type of failure. To prevent accidents from 
cantilevering too much boom during assembly/disassembly, this provision 
would require manufacturer's limitations on cantilevering not to be 
exceeded.
    If the manufacturer's limitations were not available, the employer 
would be required to have a registered professional engineer (RPE) 
determine the appropriate limitations, and to abide by those 
limitations. The Committee believed that in such cases there would need 
to be a requirement that the RPE's determination be in writing to 
ensure that the assessment has been done.
Paragraph 1404(k) Weight of Components
    As with any load to be lifted by a crane/derrick, the weight of the 
components must be available to the operator so that the operator can 
determine if the lift can be performed within the crane/derrick's 
capacity. This proposed requirement would apply irrespective of whether 
the component is being hoisted by the crane being assembled/
disassembled or by an assist crane.
    Paragraph 1404(l). [Reserved.] OSHA is proposing to reserve this 
paragraph because it is inconvenient for readers to distinguish the 
letter ``l'' from the Arabic number ``1.''
Paragraph 1404(m) Components and Configuration
    This proposed provision deals with the selection of components that 
will be used to comprise the crane/derrick, the configuration of the 
equipment, and its inspection upon completion of assembly. Proper 
selection of components and proper configurations are explained in the 
manufacturer's instructions, limitations, and specifications. Regarding 
component selection, the provision would address the hazards associated 
with use of components that the manufacturer had neither intended nor 
planned for incorporation into the equipment.
    The Committee believes that the use of such components could 
adversely affect the capacity and performance of the crane/derrick, 
cause the manufacturer's specifications (including the load chart) and 
instructions to be inapplicable, and adversely affect other components 
on the crane/derrick.
    Similar hazards are posed by configuring the crane/derrick in a 
manner that does not accord with the manufacturer's instructions, 
limitations and specifications. An example given by the Committee was 
trucks carrying boom sections arriving out of sequence. To save time, 
some employers assemble the sections in the order in which they arrive 
rather than waiting for the correct section. This would result in a 
crane/derrick configured differently than intended by the manufacturer. 
Because the crane/derrick is designed and tested as a unit, the failure 
to configure the crane/derrick as the manufacturer had intended could 
present the same hazards as those described above for improper 
component selection.
    The Committee recognized that, especially in the case of very old 
equipment where the manufacturer no longer exists, there are instances 
where the employer can no longer obtain the manufacturer's 
instructions, limitations and specifications regarding the selection of 
components and configuration of the equipment. In such instances the 
proposed provision would require that a registered professional 
engineer familiar with the type of equipment involved approve, in 
writing, the component selection and configuration.
    Another proposed section (Sec.  1926.1434) would allow cranes/
derricks to be modified under certain circumstances. To the extent a 
crane/derrick were modified in accordance with that section, the 
employer would not be required to follow the manufacturer's original 
instructions, limitations and specifications regarding component 
selection and configuration regarding those modifications. Instead, 
under proposed paragraph (m)(1)(ii) of this section, the employer would 
be required to follow the component selection and configuration 
requirements approved in accordance with proposed Sec.  1926.1434.
    Finally, this proposed provision would require that the equipment 
be inspected after assembly has been completed to ensure that the 
component selection and configuration are correct.
Paragraph 1404(n) Manufacturer Prohibitions
    As explained above regarding proposed Sec.  1926.1403, an employer 
would be able to choose to use either manufacturer assembly/disassembly 
procedures or its own (as long as they met the requirements in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1406). However, in either case, the Committee believed that 
manufacturer prohibitions regarding assembly or disassembly would need 
to be met. In the Committee's view, a prohibition specified by the 
manufacturer signals that, if not heeded, a significant hazard would 
likely be created.
Paragraph 1404(o) Shipping Pins
    In order to properly address the hazards the Committee was 
concerned with, the Agency rewrote the language that C-DAC had 
originally agreed upon for this proposed provision. The original (C-
DAC) language read as follows:

    (o) Shipping pins. Reusable shipping pins, straps, links and 
similar equipment must be removed and stowed in accordance with 
manufacturer instructions.

    In studying the regulatory text as it was originally drafted it 
appeared the language did not accurately reflect the intentions of the 
Committee. The provision was intended to address two hazards. The first 
hazard is the failure to remove items such as shipping pins, which if 
left in place during operation could damage the equipment. For example, 
if shipping pins are not removed and the boom is raised up, the boom 
could be damaged. The second hazard is injury to employees where items 
such as shipping pins are removed but not properly stowed (i.e., placed 
in a special hole or bracket designed to keep the item from being 
dislodged) or stored on the equipment (such as in an equipment box in 
the cab) after assembly. Where these items are left lying on the 
equipment and not properly stowed or stored they present a falling 
object hazard to employees. To better reflect the Committee's 
intentions the Agency has altered the C-DAC language. The proposed 
provision reads:


[[Page 59748]]


    (o) Shipping pins. Reusable shipping pins, straps, links and 
similar equipment must be removed. Once they are removed they must 
either be stowed or otherwise stored so that they do not present a 
falling object hazard.

    The Agency welcomes any comments with respect to this change.
Paragraph 1404(p) Pile Driving
    This proposed provision would prohibit equipment used in pile 
driving operations from having a jib attached. The constant pounding of 
the pile driving hammer and the sometimes rapid descent of the pile 
causes the boom to bounce. If a jib were installed on the tip, as the 
boom bounces the jib could be thrown backward against its stops, which 
would likely cause structural damage to the boom. The damage could 
cause the boom to immediately fail or could diminish its capacity.
Paragraph 1404(q) Outriggers
    This proposed paragraph specifies requirements regarding outrigger 
deployment. These requirements reflect current industry best practices 
in the use of outriggers. Failure to use outriggers in accordance with 
these practices could result in the overturning of the crane.

Section 1926.1405 Disassembly--Additional Requirements for Disassembly 
of Booms and Jibs (Applies to Both the Use of Manufacturer Procedures 
and Employer Procedures)

    The Committee believed that many of the accidents associated with 
cranes occur during the removal of pendant, boom and jib pins. These 
accidents typically occur because of a failure to recognize that, in 
certain situations, particular pins are ``in tension.'' If removed 
while in that state the result will be unplanned movement of a 
component or the collapse of the boom or jib.
    Consequently, the Committee believed that the removal of pendant, 
boom section and jib pins warrants heightened attention. This proposed 
section focuses on protecting employees from these hazards during the 
dismantling of booms and jibs, either when disassembling the crane/
derrick or when changing the length of a boom or jib. To make clear 
that ``dismantling'' includes activities such as shortening a boom, 
proposed Sec.  1926.1401 defines ``dismantling'' to include ``partial 
dismantling (such as dismantling to shorten a boom or substitute a 
different component).''
    In this proposed section the Committee identified particular 
scenarios that, in the experience of many of the Committee members, 
pose specific hazards in disassembly if the wrong pins (that is, pins 
that are in tension) are partly or completely removed. The failure to 
follow the provisions would very likely result in unintended movement 
and or collapse of the components. OSHA believes that these 
requirements will help to prevent unintended movement or collapse of 
booms or jibs as they are being disassembled.
    While discussing the hazards associated with disassembly, the 
Committee reviewed particular illustrations from the ``Mobile Crane 
Manual'' by Construction Safety Association of Ontario. It was agreed 
that including these illustrations would be an effective way of 
communicating the dangers and the precautions specified in this 
proposed section.

Section 1406 Assembly/Disassembly--Employer Procedures--General 
Requirements

    Under proposed Sec.  1926.1403, employers would be permitted to 
follow their own procedures for assembling and disassembling a crane/
derrick instead of those of the manufacturer. When doing so, the 
employer would have to ensure that its procedures met the general 
requirements in proposed Sec.  1926.1406.
    The proposed general requirements would focus on a ``layered'' 
strategy for preventing injuries and fatalities during this process: 
maintaining stability of the equipment and its components and 
positioning employees so that their exposure to unintended dangerous 
movement is minimized. This reflects the Committee members' experience 
that maintaining stability and avoiding dangerous positions are the key 
elements to preventing these accidents.
    In addition, under proposed paragraph (b) of this section, the 
employer would be required to have its procedures developed by a 
qualified person. The Committee believed that, due to the complexity of 
the factors involved and the resultant expertise needed to develop such 
procedures, it would be necessary for them to be developed by a 
qualified person.
    Note that the Agency wording in proposed Sec.  1926.1406(a)(1) 
includes a modification of the language in the C-DAC document. The C-
DAC document stated:

    (1) Prevent unintended dangerous movement, and to prevent 
collapse, of part or all of the equipment.

    Read literally, this would mean that the employer could choose to 
design the procedures to prevent collapse either of part or of all of 
the equipment. The intent of the Committee was that the procedures must 
not allow unintended dangerous movement of any part of the equipment. 
Therefore, the Agency modified this language so that the proposed 
provision reads as follows:

    (1) Prevent unintended dangerous movement, and to prevent 
collapse, of all parts of the equipment.

Sections 1407-1411 Power Lines

Introduction

    Proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1407 through 1926.1411 set out proposed 
requirements designed to help ensure the safety of employees while 
cranes/derricks are being assembled, disassembled, operated, or while 
they travel under power lines. Section 1401 defines ``power lines'' as 
``electric transmission and distribution lines.'' This definition makes 
it clear that these sections apply to all electric transmission and 
distribution lines. C-DAC defined ``power lines'' as ``electrical 
distribution and electric transmission lines,'' but OSHA changed the 
definition to make the terminology consistent with Subpart V of 29 CFR 
part 1926, which applies to the construction of ``electric transmission 
and distribution lines and equipment.'' 29 CFR 1926.950(a).
    The Committee believed that there is a need to reduce the number of 
fatalities resulting from electrical contact with power lines. In its 
experience, the presence of power lines at construction sites poses a 
significant hazard to employees at the site. Power lines can be a 
hazard not only during the operation of cranes and derricks, such as 
lifting operations, but also during assembling and disassembling the 
equipment and traveling with such equipment under power lines. 
Employees are at risk of serious injury or death if the equipment they 
are in, on or near is at a construction site where there are power 
lines.
    The Committee's perception of the significance of this problem is 
confirmed by data that indicate that electrocution is one of the 
leading causes of crane-related fatalities on construction sites. 
During the years 1992 to 2005, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) 
reported 1,153 crane-related fatalities. These statistics include 
fatalities across all industries and are not exclusive to construction 
crane-related fatalities. Of those total crane-related fatalities the 
second highest cause is attributed to cranes contacting overhead power 
lines (19% or 219 fatalities). Specifically for the year 2005, BLS 
reported 85 crane-

[[Page 59749]]

related fatalities and 12 (or 14%) of those fatalities resulted from 
cranes contacting overhead power lines. (OSHA-2007-0066-0026).
    In addition, a recent analysis of data published by the American 
Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), authored by J.E. Beavers, J.R. 
Moore, R. Rinehart and W.R. Schriver, found that electric shock caused 
by cranes and other lifting equipment contacting a power source was the 
second highest proximate cause (after being struck by a load) of crane-
related fatalities in the construction industry from 1997 to 2003. 
These fatalities all involved the failure to maintain the minimum 
approach distances set out in the existing Subpart N, Sec.  1926.550 
provisions.\12\ J.E. Beavers et al., ``Crane-Related Fatalities in the 
Construction Industry,'' 132 Journal of Construction Engineering and 
Management 901, 903-04 (2006) (OSHA-2007-0066-0012).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \12\ The authors determined that a crane's boom was generally 
the component which made contact with the power line.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Construction Safety Association of Ontario conducted an 
extensive study which reviewed crane fatalities from 1969 through 2002 
in the Province of Ontario. (OSHA-2007-0066-0009). This study showed 
that the number one cause of mobile crane fatalities in the Province of 
Ontario construction industry during these 34 years was due to power 
line contact, with 50 of the 115, or 43%, of the mobile crane 
fatalities caused by power line contact.
    A 1997 study by A. Suruda, M. Egger and D. Lui, analyzed crane 
related fatalities in the U.S. construction industry from 1984 to 1994. 
This study determined that electrocution by power line contact was the 
leading cause of crane related fatalities in the U.S. construction 
industry, with 39% of the 502 fatalities caused by electrocution from 
power lines. In addition, the findings of this study further confirmed 
previous studies which indicated that power line contact contributes to 
a significant number of crane related fatalities.\13\ A. Suruda et al., 
``Crane-Related Deaths in the U.S. Construction Industry, 1984-94,'' 
The Center to Protect Workers' Rights (Oct. 1997) (OSHA-2007-0066-
0013).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \13\ These studies include: D. MacCollum, ``Critical Hazard 
Analysis and Crane Design,'' Professional Safety (1980); D. Dickie, 
``Crane Study Confirms Downward Trend, Underlines Importance of 
Training,'' The Crane Report (1993).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed Sec.  1926.1401 defines ``electrical contact'' as follows:

    When a person, object, or equipment makes contact or comes in 
close proximity with an energized conductor or equipment that allows 
the passage of current.

    The Committee decided that it was necessary to define the term 
``electrical contact'' to clarify that the term is not limited to a 
person, object, or equipment making physical contact with a power line 
but includes situations in which the object comes close enough to a 
power line for current to arc between the power line and the object and 
thereby energize the object.
    Currently Subpart N, in 29 CFR 1926.550(a)(15)(i) and (ii), 
addresses power line hazards by specifying the minimum distance that 
must be maintained between a crane and an energized power line. For 
lines rated 50 kilovolts (kV) or below, the minimum distance is 10 
feet; for lines over 50 kV, the minimum distance is 10 feet plus 0.4 
inches for each 1 kV over 50 kV (we will refer to this Subpart N 
requirement in this preamble as the ``10 foot rule''). However, the 
existing Subpart N provisions, which instruct employers to maintain a 
minimum clearance distance, do little by way of requiring employers to 
implement measures to help prevent operators from inadvertently 
breaching that distance.
    The only preventative measure in Subpart N is a requirement, in 
paragraph 1926.550(a)(15)(iv), to use a spotter ``where it is difficult 
for the operator to maintain the desired clearance by visual means.'' 
In discussing how to reduce power line fatalities, the Committee 
determined that a systematic, proactive approach to preventing power 
line contact is needed.
    First, in the Committee's experience, it is difficult for the 
operator, from his/her position in the crane's cab, to determine if the 
crane or load is 10 feet (or other applicable minimum distance) from a 
power line. According to C-DAC, generally operators know the 10 foot 
rule but they have problems being able to perceive or visually 
determine when the part of the equipment or load closest to the power 
line has reached the 10 foot rule's distance. The operator might think 
he/she is maintaining the required minimum distance when in fact the 
crane or load is closer than that to the line. Except for the limited 
requirement to use a spotter mentioned above, the existing Subpart N 
standard does not require any methodology or aids to be provided in 
each case to help the operator identify the location of this invisible 
boundary or otherwise avoid it.
    Second, the Committee believed that operators sometimes breach the 
minimum clearance distance when they forget about the presence of a 
power line. For example, an operator might conclude at the beginning of 
a shift that he/she can pick and set all necessary loads while 
maintaining the required minimum distance but may thereafter be called 
upon to pick or set a load closer to the power line than normal. Having 
once concluded that the power line presents no problem, the operator 
might not recognize that the situation has changed and that there is 
now a danger of breaching the minimum distance.
    Another scenario is when an operator concentrates so strongly on 
tasks related to moving the load, particularly if the load is one that 
requires the crane to be operated near its capacity, that he/she 
forgets about the power line. By not providing encroachment prevention 
measures, the current standard does not help the operator maintain the 
10 foot rule and therefore does not address scenarios where operators 
forget about the presence of a power line.
    Further, the current standard's provision for a spotter does not 
adequately address these scenarios. By requiring a spotter only ``where 
it is difficult for the operator to maintain the desired clearance by 
visual means,'' the provision implies that typically it is not 
difficult for the operator to accurately judge the distance and the 
equipment's or load's distance from the boundary. However, a crane 
operator, no matter how experienced, is normally not well-positioned to 
judge either the boundary distance or the distance the equipment or 
load is from it. In most cases the power line is thin, high up, and 
poorly contrasted against the sky.
    Adding to the operator's difficulty is a confusion of angles posed 
by the power lines, load line, boom, and position of the operator away 
from the boundary. These factors are compounded by the distorting 
effects of distance on depth perception. Despite these factors, the 
operator must be able to accurately ascertain the location of an 
invisible boundary and judge relatively small distances with a high 
degree of precision.
    Even a small misjudgment can result in the minimum clearance 
distance being breached. In short, the current standard assumes a 
degree of visual acuity that experience has shown is unrealistic. The 
high number of fatalities that continue to result from electrocution by 
power lines demonstrates that the current, limited provision regarding 
a spotter is not effective.
    Third, the Committee discussed the reality that many employers 
intentionally perform work closer than the 10 foot rule to energized 
power lines. In only two circumstances does the current standard allow 
the operation of cranes closer than the 10 foot rule.

[[Page 59750]]

The first instance is where the power lines have been deenergized and 
visibly grounded and the second is where insulating barriers (separate 
from the equipment) have been erected to prevent physical contact.
    Committee members noted that typically neither of these measures is 
implemented. Specifically, the Committee believed that most employers 
elect not to use the option to deenergize and ground because of the 
time, expense and difficulty in making those arrangements. In addition, 
the Committee determined that an ``insulating barrier'' of the type 
that is currently available does not, by itself, adequately protect 
employees because these barriers are only effective for ``brush'' 
contact. If there is more than brush contact, they will not protect 
employees from electrocution because the equipment will pierce the 
device. In order to address the lack of compliance and the insufficient 
protections provided to employees who work closer than the 10 foot 
rule, the Committee developed new provisions that it believed would be 
both realistic and effective for safely working in such circumstances.
    To summarize, the Committee found that the existing Subpart N 
provisions are inadequate. They fail to require employers to implement 
measures that would help prevent operators from inadvertently breaching 
the minimum clearance distance. The Committee determined that a 
systematic, proactive approach to preventing power line contact is 
needed. It recognized that while such an approach is necessarily more 
complex than the current 10 foot rule, it is essential to accomplishing 
the goal of reducing power line related fatalities and injuries.

Brief Overview of Proposed Requirements

    The proposed standard would require the implementation of a 
systematic, proactive approach to dealing with the hazard of power 
lines. This approach would be comprised of the following steps: (1) 
Identify the work zone and assess it for power lines--determine how 
close the crane could get to them. The employer would have the option 
of doing this assessment for the area 360 degrees around the crane or 
for a more limited, demarcated area; (2) If the assessment showed that 
the crane could get closer than a trigger distance--20 feet for lines 
rated up to 350 kV (50 feet for lines rated over 350 kV)--then 
requirements for additional action would be triggered.
    Specifically, unless the power lines were deenergized and grounded, 
encroachment/electrocution prevention measures would have to be 
implemented to prevent the crane from breaching a minimum clearance 
distance and protect against electrocution. The employer would be 
allowed to choose among several minimum clearance distance options.
    For example, for lines up to 350kV, the minimum clearance distance 
options would be: (1) 20 feet; or (2) the distance specified in Table A 
for the line's voltage (Table A is the ``10 foot rule''; see discussion 
of Table A below); or (3) a distance closer than what is specified in 
Table A.
    However, there are limitations to the availability of some of these 
options, and the number of mandatory encroachment prevention (and 
other) measures increases when using a clearance distance closer than 
Table A.
    The proposed standard uses the word ``encroachment'' to describe a 
situation in which equipment gets closer than the minimum allowed 
clearance distance to a power line. Under Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions, 
encroachment ``is where any part of the crane, load line or load 
(including rigging and lifting accessories) breaches a minimum 
clearance distance that this Subpart requires to be maintained from a 
power line.'' Encroachment prevention measures are critical to 
compliance with this proposed standard's minimum distance requirements.
    A similar approach to power line safety was developed for 
preventing electrocutions during the assembly and disassembly of 
equipment. This is addressed in a separate proposed section because the 
assembly/disassembly process involves some different circumstances than 
are present during operation.

Section 1407 Power Line Safety (Up to 350 kV)--Assembly and Disassembly

    The proposed requirements in Sec.  1926.1407 address the hazards of 
assembling and disassembling equipment near power lines up to 350 kV. 
The requirements in proposed 1407 are similar in most respects to the 
requirements in proposed Sec.  1926.1408, which address operations of 
equipment near power lines.
    OSHA notes that when an assist crane is used during the assembly or 
disassembly of another crane/derrick, the use of the assist crane, with 
respect to power line safety, would be considered ``operations'' and 
therefore covered by proposed Sec.  1926.1408 (or, for power lines over 
350 kV, proposed Sec.  1926.1409). This is because the assist crane has 
already been assembled and is being used for a crane operation. 
Therefore, use of the assist crane would be required to comply with 
proposed Sec.  1926.1408 during the assembly/disassembly process rather 
than with proposed Sec.  1926.1407.
    In contrast, a crane that is not yet fully assembled is often used 
to complete its own assembly. For example, a crane is often used to 
load its own counterweights. Similarly, it may unload its 
counterweights in its own disassembly process. Such activities would be 
covered under proposed Sec.  1926.1407 since it is being assembled/
disassembled.
Paragraph 1407(a)
    Under this proposed paragraph, before beginning assembly or 
disassembly, the employer would be required to determine if any part of 
the crane, load or load line (including rigging and lifting 
accessories) could get, in the direction or area of assembly, closer 
than 20 feet to a power line. In other words, the employer would use 
the direction or area of assembly or disassembly in evaluating whether 
any such part could come closer than 20 feet. If this 20 foot 
``trigger'' determination is positive, then the employer would be 
required to take additional steps. Specifically, the employer would be 
required to meet the proposed requirements under either, Option (1), 
Option (2) or Option (3) of Sec.  1926.1407(a). If any part of the 
crane, load or load line could not come within more than 20 feet of a 
power line the employer would not be required to take any further 
action under this proposed section.
    Upon further review of C-DAC's Sec.  1926.1407(a), OSHA realized 
there was an inadvertent omission. The C-DAC regulatory text read:

    (a) Before assembling or disassembling a crane, the employer 
must determine if any part of the crane, load, or load line 
(including rigging and lifting accessories) could get, in the 
direction or area of ``assembly,'' within 20 feet of a power line 
during the assembly/disassembly process.

    These provisions were intended to apply to both assembly and 
disassembly. The employer needs to evaluate power lines with respect to 
the direction or area of assembly when preparing to assemble the crane, 
and the direction or area of disassembly when preparing to disassemble 
the crane. A reference to ``disassembly'' in this regard was 
inadvertently omitted. Therefore, OSHA has changed the regulatory text 
to read:

    (a) Before assembling or disassembling a crane, the employer 
must determine if any part of the crane, load, or load line 
(including rigging and lifting accessories) could get, in

[[Page 59751]]

the direction or area of ``assembly/disassembly,'' closer than 20 
feet to a power line during the assembly/disassembly process.\14\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \14\ As explained below, OSHA is changing ``within 20 feet of a 
power line'' wherever it appears in the C-DAC document to ``closer 
than 20 feet to a power line'' to avoid potential confusion over 
whether ``within'' means breaching or not breaching the 20 foot 
distance.

    The phrase ``direction or area of assembly/disassembly'' is 
designed to address the fact that, in some cases, the assembly or 
disassembly of a crane takes place not just in an ``area,'' that is, a 
fixed portion of the work site, but also in a ``direction.'' For 
example, when disassembling a crane, the disassembly process takes 
place in an area that includes the area under and around the boom's 
path as it is lowered to the ground (in most, but not all cases, the 
boom is lowered to the ground for the disassembly process). Under this 
provision, the employer would be required to assess the promixity that 
the boom will be in to the power line in its path of travel to (and on) 
the ground.
    In another example, when assembling a lattice boom crane, the 
``area'' involved will expand as boom sections are added.\15\ This area 
expands in the ``direction'' in which the boom sections are added. The 
power line assessment has to be made for the portion of the site that 
will be involved as these boom sections are added.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \15\ This also occurs with telescopic extensible boom cranes 
when a ``dead man section'' is added to the boom.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In addition, ``direction'' includes the direction that, for 
example, the boom will move as it rises into the air after the boom has 
been assembled on the ground. For example, the boom, when fully 
assembled on the ground, may be more than 20 feet from a power line. 
However, when raising it from the ground, it may get closer than 20 
feet. Accordingly, under this language, the ``direction'' that the boom 
will travel as it is raised must also be evaluated for proximity to 
power lines.
    Another example is the assembly of a tower crane. As tower sections 
are added, the assembly process may get closer to power lines than when 
the process began on the ground. That ``direction'' of assembly upwards 
must also be evaluated.
Paragraph (a)(1) Option (1)
    An employer choosing Option 1 would protect against electrocution 
by having the power lines deenergized and visibly grounded. Where the 
employer elects this option, it would not have to implement any of the 
encroachment/electrocution prevention measures listed in proposed Sec.  
1926.1407(b). This option helps to eliminate the electrical hazards 
which are present with power lines.
    However, some amount of time is needed to arrange for the utility 
owner/operator \16\ to deenergize and ground the line. Also, in some 
instances, especially where the construction project is small, the cost 
of deenergizing and grounding may be a substantial portion of the cost 
of the project. The Committee recognized that, in practice, largely 
because of these factors, deenergizing and grounding has not been 
routinely done.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \16\ OSHA notes that the phrase ``utility owner/operator'' 
reflects scenarios where utilities may not be operated by an owner 
but by some entity other than the owner. Therefore wherever the 
phrase ``utility owner/operator'' is used in the standard or in the 
preamble it is meant to apply to utility owners or utility 
operators. In addition, in various places in the original C-DAC 
document, the Committee had used the terms ``power line owner,'' 
``power line owner/operator'' or a variation of those terms. The 
Agency has changed those terms to ``utility owner/operator'' or a 
variation of those terms. The Agency has changed those terms to 
``utility owner/operator'' to be consistent throughout the proposed 
regulatory text.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Therefore, the Committee believed that providing other safe and 
practical options would help to reduce unsafe practices in the 
industry. Those other options (Options 2 and 3 in proposed Sec.  
1926.1407(a)) combined with proposed Sec.  1926.1407(b) are designed to 
be effective protection against the hazards of electrocution.
Paragraph (a)(2) Option (2)
    Under Option 2 (proposed Sec.  1926.1407(a)(2)), the employer would 
be required to maintain a minimum clearance distance of 20 feet. To 
help ensure that this distance is not breached, the employer would have 
to implement the encroachment prevention measures in proposed Sec.  
1926.1407(b). Under this proposed option, no part of the crane, load or 
load line, including rigging and lifting accessories, would be 
permitted closer than 20 feet to the power line.
    Employers using this proposed option would, in most cases, have to 
stay further away from the power line than under the existing Subpart 
N's 10 foot rule (employers wanting to use the 10 foot rule would have 
to use proposed Option 3, discussed below).\17\ However, an advantage 
of this proposed option to many employers is that they would not have 
to determine the exact voltage of the power line as they would if they 
were to apply Subpart N's 10 foot rule. They would only have to 
determine that the line voltage is equal to or less than 350 kV. As a 
practical matter, since many employers rely on the utility owner/
operator to provide voltage information, this option would save them 
that step.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \17\ As discussed above, the 10 foot rule is a scale of voltages 
and distances that begins at 10 feet.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Committee believed that, since the minimum clearance distance 
would be 20 feet, there would be no diminution of safety under this 
option since the maximum possible clearance distance under the current 
Subpart N's formula is 20 feet. In fact, in the Committee's experience, 
most power lines encountered by most employers have voltages that, 
under the current Subpart N formula, require a minimum clearance 
distance of 10 feet. Therefore, use of this option would, in most 
cases, result in a higher margin of safety. Employers who do not need 
to get closer than 20 feet in order to assemble/disassemble the crane 
could use this option and would be saved the step of obtaining the 
exact line voltage.
    As noted above, in addition to maintaining a minimum clearance 
distance of 20 feet, employers using this option would be required to 
implement the encroachment prevention and other measures specified in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1407(b).
Paragraph (a)(3) Option (3)
    Under Option 3 (proposed paragraph Sec.  1926.1407(a)(3)), the 
employer would be required to maintain a minimum clearance distance in 
accordance with Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408). Under Table A, 
depending on the voltage of the power line, the minimum approach 
distance ranges from 10 feet to 20 feet for lines up to 350 kV. 
Therefore, the minimum clearance distance would be essentially the same 
under Option 3 as under Subpart N's 10 foot rule. Under this option the 
employer would be required to determine the line's voltage.
    As a practical matter, in the Committee's experience, the power 
lines most typically encountered by most employers would require a 
minimum clearance distance of 10 feet under Table A. As a result, 
employers could usually assemble/disassemble equipment closer to the 
lines under this option than under Option 2.
    Table A in essence is based upon the same formula as is currently 
used in existing Subpart N (the 10 foot rule) and is similar to Table 1 
in ASME B30.5-2004. Unlike Subpart N, which requires employers to 
calculate the minimum clearance distance from a formula, Table A sets 
forth specified clearance distances in a readily understood table and 
requires no calculations. The Committee believed that a table with 
specified clearance distances is more

[[Page 59752]]

readily applied than the formula set out in the existing Subpart N 
requirements.
    The enhanced safety that would result under this option would stem 
from the fact that, first, there would be an affirmative obligation on 
the employer to determine the power line voltage so that the correct 
Table A minimum clearance distance could be determined. Second, in 
addition to maintaining the minimum clearance distance specified in the 
Table, employers using this option would be required to implement the 
encroachment prevention and other measures specified in proposed Sec.  
1926.1407(b).
    In reviewing C-DAC's draft of this provision, the Agency realized 
that C-DAC inadvertently failed to explicitly state that the Table A 
minimum clearance distance must not be breached. OSHA has modified 
proposed paragraph Sec.  1926.1407(a)(3)(ii) to correct this error. 
Therefore, the last sentence of the C-DAC language has been expanded to 
read as follows:

    If so, then the employer must follow the requirements in 
paragraph (b) to ensure that no part of the crane, load line, or 
load (including rigging and lifting accessories), gets closer to the 
line than the minimum clearance distance.
Paragraph 1407(b) Preventing Encroachment/Electrocution
    Once an employer has determined that some part of the crane, load 
or load line could come within the trigger distance of 20 feet of a 
power line (see Sec.  1926.1407(a)), if it chooses either Option (2) or 
(3) of Sec.  1926.1407(a) it would be required to implement 
encroachment prevention measures to help ensure that the applicable 
minimum clearance distance (20 feet under Option 2 or the Table A 
distance under Option 3) is not breached.\18\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \18\ Alternatively, under Option (1), the employer could have 
the lines deenergized and grounded. If Option (1) were selected, no 
further action under this section would be required.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Most of the measures in this proposed paragraph are designed to 
help the employer maintain the appropriate clearance distance and 
thereby prevent electrical contact while in the process of assembling 
or disassembling equipment. Some of the measures are designed to 
prevent electrocution in the event of electrical contact. The committee 
believed these proposed requirements would add layers of protection to 
help keep employees safe from power lines during the assembly or 
disassembly of the equipment.
Paragraph 1407(b)(1)
    Under proposed paragraph (b)(1), the employer would be required to 
conduct a planning meeting with the Assembly/Disassembly Supervisor (A/
D Supervisor), operator, assembly/disassembly crew and other workers 
who will be in the assembly/disassembly area (including the area of the 
load). This planning meeting must include reviewing the location of the 
power line(s) and the steps that will be implemented to prevent 
encroachment and electrocution.
    As discussed below, under this proposed paragraph, certain 
encroachment/electrocution prevention measures would be required (they 
are listed in proposed paragraph (b)(1) and (2) of this section). In 
addition, the employer would be required to select at least one 
additional measure from the list in proposed Sec.  1926.1407(b)(3). In 
the planning meeting, the employer would be required to make that 
selection and review all the measures that will be used to comply with 
this section.
    The purpose of this proposed requirement is to ensure that the 
operator and other workers who will be in the area understand these 
measures and how they will be implemented. That understanding is 
important to their successful implementation. Because of the critical 
nature of these measures, and the seriousness of the consequences to 
the safety of the employees if they are not implemented correctly, the 
Committee believed that it is necessary for there to be a structured 
process by which the employer communicates this information.
Paragraph 1407(b)(2)
    Proposed paragraph (b)(2) would require that where tag lines are 
used they must be non-conductive. This provision uses two terms that 
are defined in Sec.  1401. ``Tag lines'' is defined as ``a rope 
(usually fiber) attached to a lifted load for purposes of controlling 
load spinning and pendular motions or used to stabilize a bucket or 
magnet during material handling operations.'' Thus, one end of a tag 
line is attached to the load and the other end is held by an employee 
who controls the load's motion by exerting force on the line.
    If the equipment or load were to make electrical contact with a 
power line while an employee was holding a tag line that was able to 
conduct electricity, the employee could be electrocuted. The 
requirement that the tag line be non-conductive is designed to protect 
against such an event. Section 1926.1401 defines ``non-conductive'' as 
meaning that, ``because of the nature and conditions of the materials 
used, and the conditions of use (including environmental conditions and 
condition of the material), the object in question has the property of 
not becoming energized (that is, it has high dielectric properties 
offering a high resistance to the passage of current under the 
conditions of use).''
    This definition recognizes that it is not only the inherent 
property of the tag line material that results in it being non-
conductive but also the conditions of use. For example, if an otherwise 
non-conductive material were to become wet and therefore able to 
conduct electricity, it would no longer qualify as non-conductive under 
this proposed paragraph.
Paragraph 1407(b)(3)
    Under this proposed paragraph the employer would be required to 
choose one of five encroachment prevention measures (Sec.  
1926.1407(b)(3)(i) through (v)) to implement. The Committee concluded 
that the use of any one of these measures, in combination with the 
required measures listed elsewhere in proposed Sec.  1926.1407(b), 
would be feasible and effective in protecting against encroachment. 
Specifically, the employer would be required to choose either: (i) The 
use of a dedicated spotter; (ii) a proximity alarm; (iii) a device that 
automatically warns the operator when to stop (i.e., a range control 
warning device); (iv) a device that automatically limits the range of 
movement of the equipment; or (v) an elevated: Warning line, barricade, 
or line of signs, in view of the operator, equipped with flags or 
similar high-visibility markings. Providing the ability to choose among 
these options would give the employer flexibility so that it could pick 
one that was well suited and efficient in the circumstances.
    A definition of ``dedicated spotter (power lines)'' is included in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions. That definition provides:

    In order to be considered a dedicated spotter, the requirements 
of Sec.  1926.1428 (signal person qualifications) must be met and 
his/her sole responsibility is to watch the separation between the 
power line and: the equipment, load line and load (including rigging 
and lifting accessories), and ensure through communication with the 
operator that the applicable minimum distance is not breached.

    When the employer uses a dedicated spotter to prevent encroachment 
under this section, that person has the critical responsibility of 
ensuring, through communication with the operator, that the equipment 
maintains a specified minimum clearance distance from a power line. 
This definition makes clear that the dedicated spotter cannot have any 
other responsibilities that detract him/her from this task. Also, the

[[Page 59753]]

dedicated spotter must have the qualifications required of a signal 
person under proposed Sec.  1926.1428, discussed below. Those 
qualifications will ensure that the signal person can communicate 
effectively with the operator. They also ensure that the signal person 
is knowledgeable about crane dynamics and therefore is able to 
recognize situations in which the minimum clearance distance may 
inadvertently be breached if, for example, the load is stopped quickly 
while it is being moved near a power line.
    The devices listed in proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1407(b)(3)(ii) and 
(iii) are also defined in Sec.  1401. ``Proximity alarm,'' is defined 
as ``a device that provides a warning of proximity to a power line that 
has been listed, labeled, or accepted by a Nationally Recognized 
Testing Laboratory in accordance with 29 CFR 1910.7.'' \19\ A 
Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory is an organization that has 
been recognized by OSHA pursuant to 29 CFR 1910.7 as competent to 
evaluate equipment for conformance to appropriate safety test standards 
for that type of equipment. Thus, approval of a proximity alarm by a 
nationally recognized testing laboratory provides assurance that the 
device will work as intended. ``Range control warning device,'' is 
defined as ``a device that can be set by an equipment operator to warn 
that the boom or jib tip is at a plane or multiple planes.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \19\ The C-DAC version of this provision defined proximity alarm 
as: ``a device that provides a warning of proximity to a power line 
that has been approved by a Nationally Recognized Testing 
Laboratory.'' OSHA has modified the provision to conform its 
language to that used in 29 CFR 1910.7, the OSHA rule governing 
nationally recognized testing laboratories, and to explicitly refer 
to Sec.  1910.7 to make clear that the listing, labeling, or 
acceptance of a device under this rule must be in accord with Sec.  
1910.7.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In reviewing this proposed provision, OSHA realized that some of 
the devices listed in proposed Sec.  1926.1407(b)(3) would not be 
operational or effective against electrocution during certain phases of 
the assembly or disassembly process of certain types of cranes. For 
example, for lattice boom cranes, proximity alarm devices may not be 
able to be used when the boom is not yet fully assembled; at that point 
the proximity alarm typically cannot be connected and functioning. 
Therefore, during certain phases of assembly/disassembly, one of the 
other options would need to be used (such as a dedicated spotter) in 
order to provide the needed protection.
    However, the regulatory text, as currently drafted, would permit an 
employer to select an option irrespective of whether it would be 
effective under the circumstances. In order to address this concern, 
OSHA requests public comment on whether proposed Sec.  1926.1407(b)(3) 
should be revised to preclude the employer from selecting an option 
that, in the employer's situation, would be ineffective, such as by 
revising the provision to read:

    (3) At least one of the additional measures listed in this 
paragraph must be in place. The measure selected from this list must 
be effective in preventing encroachment. The additional measures 
are: * * *

    In situations where an employer chooses the option of using a 
dedicated spotter, the employer would be required to meet the proposed 
requirements for spotters in proposed Sec.  1926.1407(b)(3)(i). As 
specified in proposed paragraph (b)(3)(i)(A) of this section, the 
spotter would have to be equipped with a visual aid to assist in 
identifying the minimum clearance distance. The Committee concluded 
that a visual aid is needed for the spotter because of the difficulty 
in visualizing the minimum clearance distance boundary in the air (as 
discussed above).
    In the C-DAC version of this paragraph, examples of visual aids 
included a line painted on the ground, a clearly visible line of 
stanchions or a set of line-of-sight landmarks. An example of a clearly 
visible set of line-of-sight landmarks would be a fence post and a 
building corner.
    In reviewing C-DAC's draft of this provision, the Agency noted that 
the stanchions and landmarks would have to be ``clearly visible,'' but 
that this language was not used with respect to the example of a 
painted line on the ground. Since all such visual aids would have to be 
clearly visible to be effective, and that was the evident intent of C-
DAC, the Agency has modified the C-DAC language so that, in the 
proposed provision, all the listed examples would have to be ``clearly 
visible.'' This revision was also made in proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(b)(4)(ii)(A).
    Under proposed paragraphs (b)(3)(i)(B)-(D), the spotter would have 
to be positioned so that he/she can effectively gauge the clearance 
distance from the power line; the spotter, where necessary, would have 
to use equipment that enables him/her to communicate directly with the 
equipment operator; and the spotter would have to give timely 
information to the operator so that the required clearance distance can 
be maintained. C-DAC believed that each criterion is needed for the 
spotter to be able to be effective.
Paragraph 1407(c) Assembly/Disassembly Below Power Lines Prohibited
    This proposed paragraph would preclude employers from assembling or 
disassembling cranes/derricks beneath energized power lines. The 
Committee agreed that assembly/disassembly below energized power lines 
presents an extreme risk and needs to be prohibited. The assembly/
disassembly process necessarily involves moving and hoisting parts of 
the equipment into place. If some of this work took place beneath a 
power line, the risk that a part, load, load line, or other equipment 
would make electrical contact is very high. Also, in both assembly and 
disassembly, maneuvering an assembled crane out from under the power 
lines, or maneuvering a crane that is about to be disassembled under 
them, itself poses a high risk of such contact.
    C-DAC's agreement on this provision indicates a belief by the 
Committee that, in almost all cases, the employer can plan the 
assembly/disassembly so that there will be no need to be beneath power 
lines. The Committee also concluded that, in the very few instances 
where this is not possible, in light of the extreme risk involved, it 
is essential that the lines be deenergized and visibly grounded.
Paragraph 1407(d) Assembly/Disassembly Closer Than Table A Clearance 
Prohibited
    Assembly and disassembly of cranes/derricks closer than the minimum 
clearance distance in proposed Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) to 
an energized power line would be prohibited. If assembly or disassembly 
needed to take place closer than that distance, the employer would be 
required to have the line deenergized and visibly grounded. The 
rationale for this proposed provision is similar to that discussed 
above for assembly/disassembly beneath power lines. Engaging in 
assembly/disassembly activity closer to an energized power line than 
the Table A distance was considered by the Committee to be too 
hazardous to be permitted under any circumstances.
    This reflects certain inherent characteristics of the assembly/
disassembly process that preclude the employer from being able to 
reliably maintain clearance distances closer than Table A (of proposed 
Sec.  1926.1408). For example, when disassembling a lattice boom, pins 
that hold boom sections together are removed. Even when done properly, 
this can release stored kinetic energy and cause the boom section

[[Page 59754]]

being removed, as well as the remaining sections, to move. It is too 
difficult to estimate the amount of such potential movement with the 
precision that would be necessary when working closer than the Table A 
distances.
    Another example is when assembling a boom, an error in the assembly 
process may similarly cause unanticipated movement. Using clearances 
closer than those in Table A would not allow sufficient room in light 
of the difficulty of predicting the amount such movement.\20\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \20\ In this respect this proposed provision differs from 
proposed Sec.  1926.1408. As discussed below, Sec.  1926.1408 would 
allow use of minimum clearance distances closer than Table A in some 
circumstances for crane ``operations.'' In contrast, proposed Sec.  
1926.1407(d) reflects a determination by the Committee that there 
are no circumstances for ``assembly/disassembly'' when it would be 
safe for any part of the crane, load or load line (including rigging 
and lifting accessories) to get closer than the Table A minimum 
clearance distance.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Paragraph 1407(e) Voltage Information
    This proposed section operates in conjunction with proposed Sec.  
1926.1407(a)(3). Under proposed Sec.  1926.1407(a)(3), employers who 
elect to use Option (3) of Sec.  1926.1407(b) must determine the line's 
voltage. Under proposed Sec.  1926.1407(e), where the employer asks the 
utility owner/operator for that voltage information, the utility owner/
operator of the line would be required to provide the voltage 
information within two working days of the request.
    This reflects a belief of the Committee that, in the absence of 
such a time limitation on the utility owner/operator, in many instances 
Option (3) (proposed Sec.  1926.1407(b)) would not be useful because 
the employer would not be able to get the voltage information in 
sufficient time to be able to use it. Many employers would rely on the 
utility owner/operator to get this information. The Committee was 
concerned that an extended delay in getting it would result in 
employers, to some extent, doing the work anyway without the 
information. Therefore, for Option (3) (proposed Sec.  1926.1407(b)) to 
be viable, the Committee believed that a reasonable time limitation for 
the utility owner/operator to respond is needed.\21\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \21\ As noted in the introduction, C-DAC included two members 
from the electric utility industry.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Committee believed that two business days would be a reasonable 
amount of time to allow the utility owners/operator to respond and be 
sufficiently short to be useful to the employer requesting the 
information.
    In reviewing this provision, the Agency noted that the C-DAC 
provision reads:

    Voltage information. Where Option (3) is used, owner/operators 
of power lines must provide the requested voltage information within 
two working days of the employer's request.

    In a different context--determining the timeliness of notices of 
contest to OSHA citations--OSHA defines ``working days'' to mean 
``Mondays through Fridays but shall not include Saturdays, Sundays, or 
Federal holidays.'' 29 CFR 1903.22(c). Since the term is already 
defined in an OSHA regulation, the Agency would apply the same 
definition here unless this rule were to specify a different 
definition. Therefore, OSHA solicits comments on whether the phrase 
``working days'' should be defined differently for purposes of this 
rule than it is in 29 CFR 1903.22(c).
Paragraph 1407(f) Power Lines Presumed Energized
    This proposed paragraph would require that employers always assume 
that all power lines are energized unless the utility owner/operator 
confirms that the power line has been and continues to be deenergized 
and visibly grounded at the worksite. This fundamental precaution is 
essentially the same as currently in Subpart N at Sec.  
1926.550(a)(15)(vi).
Paragraph 1407(g) Posting of Electrocution Warnings
    This proposed paragraph would require the posting of electrocution 
warnings as follows: One inside the cab in view of the operator and 
(except for overhead gantry and tower cranes) at least two on the 
outside of the equipment. The Committee believes that these 
electrocution warnings are necessary to protect the operator as well as 
any employees working in the area around the crane by increasing their 
awareness of the hazard. This provision is similar to section 5-
3.4.5.2(d) of ASME B30.5-2004.

Section 1408 Power Line Safety (Up to 350 kV)--Operations

    As discussed above with respect to power line safety in assembly/
disassembly, the proposed standard would require the implementation of 
a systematic approach to power line safety for crane/derrick 
operations. This approach would consist of two basic steps. First, the 
employer would need to identify the work zone, assess it for power 
lines, and determine how close the crane could get to them. The 
employer would have the option of doing this assessment for the area 
360 degrees around the crane or for a more limited, demarcated area. 
Second, if the assessment showed that the crane could get closer than a 
trigger distance--20 feet for lines rated up to 350 kV (50 feet for 
lines rated over 350 kV)--then requirements for additional action would 
be triggered.
    Specifically, unless the power lines were deenergized and grounded, 
encroachment prevention measures would have to be implemented to 
prevent the crane from breaching a minimum clearance distance. The 
employer would be allowed to choose among three minimum clearance 
distance options. For example, for lines up to 350kV, the minimum 
clearance distance options would be 20 feet, or the distance specified 
in Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) for the line's voltage (Table 
A is the ``10 foot rule''; see discussion of Table A below), or a 
distance closer than what is specified in Table A.
    However, there are limitations to the availability of some of these 
options, and the number of mandatory encroachment prevention (and 
other) measures increases when using a clearance distance closer than 
Table A.\22\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \22\ An employer engaged in subpart V (of 29 CFR part 1926) work 
(power transmission and distribution) would also have to comply with 
most of these provisions. However, when certain prerequisites are 
met, it would be permitted to use the minimum clearance distances in 
Subpart V's Table V-1. In addition, where additional prerequisites 
are met, it would be permitted to work closer than the Table V-1 
distances. These are explained in the discussion of proposed Sec.  
1926.1410.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Paragraph 1408(a) Hazard Assessments and Precautions Inside the Work 
Zone
    Before beginning crane/derrick operations, the employer would be 
required to determine if power lines would pose a hazard. The first 
step in this process would be to identify the work zone for which this 
hazard assessment will be made (proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(1)). The 
employer would have two options for defining the work zone.
    Under the first option (proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(1)(i)), the 
employer would be required to define the work zone by marking 
boundaries and prohibiting the operator from operating the equipment 
past those boundaries. Examples of how to demarcate the boundaries 
include using flags or devices such as a range limit device or range 
control warning device. ``Range control warning device'' is defined in 
Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a device that can be set by an equipment operator 
to warn that the boom or jib tip is at a plane or multiple planes.'' 
See the explanation

[[Page 59755]]

below of ``range limit device'' at the end of the discussion of this 
section.
    Employers would not be permitted to use existing landmarks to 
demarcate boundaries unless they are marked. For example, a line of 
trees would be insufficient. Without anything more the trees would not 
signal a reminder to the operator of there being a boundary that must 
be maintained. However, adding flags to those trees would be sufficient 
because the flags would serve as a reminder that the trees are located 
along a boundary that the operator must not breach.
    The boundaries must mark the limits of all crane movement. For 
example, a work zone could be defined by demarcating boundaries: (1) To 
the left and right of the operator, to limit the lateral movement of 
the boom, and (2) in front of the operator, in a line connecting the 
side boundaries, limiting the boom's radius.
    In identifying the work zone, the employer must consider the entire 
area in which the crane will need to operate. If the crane will need to 
be positioned in more than one spot to accomplish its work, or to 
travel with a load, the employer would be required to consider the 
total area in which it will need to operate and set the boundaries 
accordingly.
    The second option for identifying the work zone (proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(a)(1)(ii)) would be to define the work zone as the area 360 
degrees around the crane, up to the crane's maximum working radius. In 
other words, under this option, the work zone would be the area within 
a circle, with the crane at the center, and the radius defined by the 
maximum working radius of the crane. No boundaries would have to be 
marked under this option since the crane would be permitted to operate 
in the entire area that it could reach.
Paragraph 1408(a)(2)
    Once the employer has identified the work zone according to 
proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(1), it would then be required to make the 
power line hazard assessment. Specifically, it must determine if any 
part of the crane, load or load line (including rigging and lifting 
accessories) could come within a ``trigger'' distance--20 feet of a 
power line. This determination must be made based upon the assumption 
that the crane would be operated up to its maximum working radius (or, 
if a demarcated boundary is closer than the maximum working radius, the 
assessment must be made with the assumption that the crane would be 
operated up to that boundary).
    Even if the employer has no intention of working up to the crane's 
maximum radius in the work zone, the assessment must still be made 
using this assumption. The Committee believed that this is crucial 
since, even if the employer's original intention was not to operate in 
that part of the work zone, unexpected events may occur that may lead 
the operator to operate the equipment there.
    If this 20 foot ``trigger'' determination is positive, then the 
employer would be required to take additional steps. Specifically, the 
employer would be required to meet the proposed requirements under 
either, Option (1), Option (2), or Option (3) of proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(a)(2).\23\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \23\ If any part of the crane, load or load line could not come 
closer than 20 feet to a power line the employer would not be 
required to take any further action under this proposed section. 
However, the employer may encounter a situation where it 
unexpectedly needs to increase the size of the work zone. This may 
occur, for example, as a result of an unanticipated need to change 
the crane's position or to have the crane operate beyond the 
original work zone boundaries. In such a case the employer would be 
required to go back to the first step under proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(a)(1), re-identify a work zone and conduct a new 20 foot 
``trigger'' assessment.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Paragraph 1408(a)(2)(i) Option (1)
    An employer choosing Option (1) would protect against electrocution 
by having the power lines deenergized and visibly grounded at the 
worksite. This option would prevent equipment that contacts the power 
line from becoming energized. The power line must be ``visibly grounded 
at the worksite'' so that the employer can verify, through observation, 
that the protection provided by this option remains in place for as 
long as the employer continues to rely on it.
    Where the employer elects this option, it would not have to 
implement any of the encroachment/electrocution prevention measures 
listed in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b). However, some amount of time is 
needed to arrange for the utility owner/operator to deenergize and 
ground the line. Also, in some instances, especially where the 
construction project is small, the cost of deenergizing and grounding 
may be a substantial portion of the cost of the project. The Committee 
recognized that, in practice, largely because of these factors, 
deenergizing and grounding has not been routinely done.
    Therefore, the committee believed that providing other safe and 
practical options would help to reduce unsafe practices in the 
industry. Those other options (Options 2 and 3 in proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(a)(2)(ii) and (iii), discussed below) combined with proposed 
Sec.  1926.1408(b) are designed to afford effective protection against 
the hazards of electrocution.
Paragraph 1408(a)(2)(ii) Option (2)
    Under Option 2 (proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2)(ii)), the employer 
would be required to maintain a minimum clearance distance of 20 feet. 
To help ensure that this distance is not breached, the employer would 
have to implement the encroachment prevention measures in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1407(b). Under this proposed option, no part of the crane, 
load or load line, including rigging and lifting accessories, would be 
permitted closer than 20 feet to the power line.
    Employers using this proposed option would, in most cases, have to 
stay further away from the power line than under the existing Subpart 
N's 10 foot rule (employers wanting to use the 10 foot rule would have 
to use proposed Option 3 (in Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2)(iii)). However, 
proper application of the 10 foot rule, as a practical matter, 
necessitates determining the exact voltage of the power line.\24\ An 
advantage of this proposed option to many employers is that they would 
not have to determine the exact voltage of the power line (they would 
only have to determine that the line is equal to or less than 350 kV). 
As a practical matter, since many employers rely on the utility owner/
operator to provide voltage information, this option would save them 
that step.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \24\ As discussed above, the 10 foot rule is a scale of voltages 
and distances that begins at 10 feet and increases to 20 feet (for 
line voltages up to 350kV).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Committee believed that, since the minimum clearance distance 
would be 20 feet, there would be no diminution of safety under this 
option since the maximum possible clearance distance under the current 
Subpart N's formula is 20 feet. In fact, in the Committee's experience, 
most power lines encountered by most employers have voltages that, 
under the current Subpart N's formula, require a minimum clearance 
distance of 10 feet. Therefore, use of this option would, in most 
cases, result in a higher margin of safety. Employers who do not need 
to get closer than 20 feet in order to do their work could use this 
option and would be saved the step of obtaining the exact line voltage.
    As noted above, in addition to maintaining a minimum clearance 
distance of 20 feet, employers using this option would be required to 
implement the encroachment prevention and other

[[Page 59756]]

measures specified in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b).
Paragraph 1408(a)(2)(iii) Option (3)
    Under Option 3 (proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2)(iii)), the employer 
would be required to maintain a minimum clearance distance in 
accordance with Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408). Under Table A, 
depending on the voltage of the power line, the minimum approach 
distance ranges from 10 feet to 20 feet.\25\ Under this option the 
employer would be required to determine the line's voltage.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \25\ The range referred to here is the range in the part of the 
table that is applicable up to 350kV.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As a practical matter, in the Committee's experience, the power 
lines most typically encountered by most employers have a minimum 
clearance distance of 10 feet under Table A. As a result, employers 
could usually work closer to the lines under this option than under 
Option 2 (proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2)(ii)). Table A in essence is 
based upon the same formula as is currently used in existing Subpart N. 
Therefore, the minimum clearance distance would be similar under Option 
3 (in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2)(iii)) as under the existing 
requirements.
    The information in Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) of the 
proposed rule is similar to information in Table 1 of ASME B30.5-2004. 
The Committee believed that a table with specified clearance distances 
is more understandable than the formula set out in the existing Subpart 
N requirements. Proposed Table A is intended to be a clear way of 
conveying the minimum clearance distances.
    The enhanced safety that would result under this option would stem 
from the fact that, first, there would be an affirmative obligation on 
the employer to determine the power line voltage so that the correct 
Table A minimum clearance distance could be determined. Second, in 
addition to maintaining the minimum clearance distance specified in the 
Table, employers using this option would be required to implement the 
encroachment prevention and other measures specified in proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(b).
    In reviewing C-DAC's draft of this provision, the Agency realized 
that C-DAC inadvertently failed to explicitly state that the Table A 
minimum clearance distance must not be breached. Therefore, OSHA has 
modified proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2) to correct this error. The last 
sentence of the C-DAC language has been expanded to read as follows:

    If so, then the employer must follow the requirements in 
paragraph (b) to ensure that no part of the crane, load line, or 
load (including rigging and lifting accessories), gets closer to the 
line than the minimum clearance distance.

Paragraph 1408(b) Preventing Encroachment/Electrocution
    Once the employer has determined that some part of the crane, load 
or load line could come within the work zone assessment trigger 
distance of 20 feet of a power line (see proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)), 
if it chooses either Option (2) or (3) (of proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(a)(2)(ii) and (iii)), it would be required to implement 
encroachment prevention measures to help ensure that the applicable 
minimum approach distance (20 feet under Option 2 or the Table A (of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1408) distance under Option 3 is not breached.\26\ 
Most of the measures in this proposed paragraph are designed to help 
the employer maintain the appropriate distance and thereby prevent 
electrical contact while operating the equipment. Some of the measures 
are designed to prevent electrocution in the event of electrical 
contact. The committee believed these proposed requirements would add 
layers of protection to help keep employees safe from energized power 
lines.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \26\ Alternatively, under Option (1) of proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(a)(i), the employer could have the lines deenergized and 
grounded. If Option (1) were selected, no further action under this 
section would be required.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Paragraph 1408(b)(1)
    Under proposed 1408(b)(1) the employer would be required to conduct 
a planning meeting with the operator and other workers who will be in 
the area of the crane or load. This planning meeting must include 
reviewing the location of the power line(s) and the steps that will be 
implemented to prevent encroachment and electrocution.
    As discussed below, under this proposed paragraph, certain 
encroachment/electrocution prevention measures would be required (they 
are listed in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(1) through (3)). In addition, 
the employer would be required to select at least one additional 
measure from the list in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4). In the 
planning meeting, the employer would be required to make that selection 
and review all the measures that will be used to comply with this 
section. The purpose of this proposed requirement is to ensure that the 
operator and other workers who will be in the area understand these 
measures and how they will be implemented. That understanding is 
important to their successful implementation. Because of the critical 
nature of these measures, and the seriousness of the consequences to 
the safety of the employees if they are not implemented correctly, the 
Committee believed that it is necessary for there to be a structured 
process by which the employer communicates this information.
Paragraph 1408(b)(2)
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(2) would require that where tag lines 
are used they must be non-conductive. This provision would provide 
additional protection to those employees who would be exposed to 
electrical hazards in the event that the equipment, load line, tag line 
or load contacts a power line and the tag line they are holding becomes 
energized.
Paragraph 1408(b)(3)
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(3) would require elevated: Warning 
lines, barricades or line of signs, in view of the crane operator 
equipped with flags or similar high-visibility markings, at 20 feet 
from the power line (if using Option (2) (of proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(a)(2)(ii)) or at the minimum approach distance under Table A 
(if using Option (3) (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2)(iii)). This 
provision is designed to serve as a reminder to the operator that there 
are power lines with associated minimum clearance distances that must 
be met. Warning lines, barricades or a line of signs in the operator's 
view equipped with high-visibility markings would also indicate to the 
operator where the minimum approach distance boundary is located. This 
would serve as one of two layers of protection (the second layer would 
consist of an additional means selected by the employer under proposed 
Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4), discussed below).
    C-DAC discussed and ultimately rejected the idea of permitting a 
visual line on the ground which would mark the minimum approach 
distance because an operator would generally not notice or see a line 
on the ground and because, from where the operator sits, it would be 
particularly difficult for the operator to extrapolate from that line 
the location of the boundary in the air. The committee decided that 
these visual reminders need to be elevated, or as the proposed 
definition states, sufficiently elevated from the ground level to 
accurately enable the operator to judge the distance between the load, 
load line (including rigging and lifting

[[Page 59757]]

accessories) or crane and the boundary marked by the elevated warning 
line.
    In reviewing the C-DAC draft of this provision, OSHA realized that 
there may be situations where the employer would not be able to place 
such a line so that it would be visible to the operator. In such a 
case, in order to have two layers of protection, it would be necessary 
to require that a dedicated spotter be used in addition to one of the 
other (non-spotter) methods described below in proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(b)(4). Therefore, OSHA is planning on modifying this proposed 
provision by adding the following after the last sentence in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1408(b)(3):

    If the operator is unable to see the elevated warning line, a 
dedicated spotter must be used as described in Sec.  
1926.1408(b)(4)(ii) in addition to implementing either the measure 
described in Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4)(i), (iii), (iv) or (v).

    The Agency requests public comment on this issue.
Paragraph 1408(b)(4)
    This proposed section sets out a list of five prevention measures, 
from which the employer would be required to select at least one, when 
the employer elects to use either Option (2) or Option (3) under Sec.  
1926.1408(a)(2). In the Committee's experience, the use of any one of 
these measures, in combination with the required measures listed 
elsewhere in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b), would be feasible and 
effective in protecting against encroachment/electrocution. The first 
four measures are methods for encroachment prevention. The fifth 
measure is a method of electrocution prevention in the event of 
electrical contact with a power line. Specifically, the employer would 
be required to choose either: (i) A proximity alarm; (ii) the use of a 
dedicated spotter; (iii) a device that automatically warns the operator 
when to stop (i.e., a range control warning device); (iv) a device that 
automatically limits the range of movement of the equipment; or (v) an 
insulating link/device.
    C-DAC believed that allowing the employer to choose from a variety 
of options for this second layer of protection would allow the employer 
to select a method that it believed would be suitable, would increase 
the likelihood of employer compliance and would be an effective 
approach to reducing power line related injuries and fatalities.
    In situations where an employer chooses the option of using a 
dedicated spotter, the employer would be required to meet the proposed 
requirements for spotters in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4)(ii). As 
specified in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4)(ii)(A), the spotter would 
have to be equipped with a visual aid to assist in identifying the 
minimum clearance distance. The Committee concluded that a visual aid 
is needed for the spotter because of the difficulty in visualizing the 
minimum clearance distance boundary in the air (as discussed above).
    In the C-DAC version of this paragraph, examples of visual aids 
included a line painted on the ground, a clearly visible line of 
stanchions or a set of line-of-sight landmarks. An example of a clearly 
visible set of line-of-sight landmarks would be a fence post positioned 
behind the dedicated spotter and a building corner ahead of the 
spotter.
    In reviewing C-DAC's draft of this provision, the Agency noted that 
that the stanchions and landmarks would have to be ``clearly visible,'' 
but that this language was not used with respect to the example of a 
painted line on the ground. Since all such visual aids would have to be 
clearly visible to be effective, and that was the evident intent of C-
DAC, the Agency has modified the C-DAC language so that, in the 
proposed provision, all the listed examples would have to be ``clearly 
visible.'' This revision was also made in proposed Sec.  
1926.1407(b)(3)(i)(A).
    Under proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4)(ii)(B)-(D), the spotter would 
have to be positioned so that he/she can effectively gauge the 
clearance distance from the power line; the spotter, where necessary, 
must use equipment that enables him/her to communicate directly with 
the equipment operator; and the spotter must give timely information to 
the operator so that the required clearance distance can be maintained. 
C-DAC believed that each criterion is needed for the spotter to be able 
to be effective.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4)(iii) would give the employer the 
option of using a device that automatically warns the operator when to 
stop movement, such as a range control warning device. Such a device 
must be set to give the operator sufficient warning to prevent 
encroachment. ``Range control warning device''defined in Sec.  
1926.1401 as ``a device that can be set by an equipment operator to 
warn that the boom or jib tip is at a plane or multiple planes.'' For 
example: an employer has chosen the option of maintaining a 20 foot 
distance from the power line. Under proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4), it 
has chosen to use a range control warning device to help maintain that 
distance. The device would have to be set to alert the operator in time 
to prevent the boom, load line or load (which ever is closest to the 
line) from breaching that 20 foot distance. As a practical matter, the 
device would have to be set to sound the warning more than 20 feet from 
the line, since the operator will need some time to react and to 
account for the momentum of the equipment, load line and load.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1408 (b)(4)(iv) would give the employer the 
option of using a device that automatically limits the equipment's 
range of motion and is set to prevent encroachment. Such a device could 
be particularly suitable for tower cranes, for which the swing angle 
can be programmed so that the operator cannot move the boom or jib past 
a certain range. The Committee recognized that it may be more 
technically difficult to apply swing limitation devices for use in 
mobile cranes but believed that the technology may develop so that they 
could be used in such cranes.
    As noted above, the insulating link option that would be available 
under proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4)(v) would not protect against 
encroachment but would provide protection to employees handling the 
load against electrocution in the event encroachment did occur. Such a 
device would have to be installed between the end of the load line and 
the load. When so installed, it prevents the load from becoming 
energized in the event the load line or other part of the equipment 
makes electrical contact with a power line. Preventing the load from 
becoming energized helps protect riggers, who often guide crane loads 
manually and who are therefore at high risk of being electrocuted if a 
load becomes energized.
    As stated in proposed Sec.  1926.1401, ``Insulating link/device'' 
would be defined as ``an insulating device that has been listed, 
labeled, or accepted by a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory in 
accordance with 29 CFR 1910.7.'' This proposed definition reflects the 
Committee's concern that there be some assurance that the insulating 
link/device would work as intended. That assurance would be 
accomplished by requiring that such link/device be approved by a 
Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory.
Paragraph 1408(b)(5)
    Employers engaged in construction of electric transmission and 
distribution lines, which is regulated by 29 CFR part 1926 subpart V 
(Sec. Sec.  1926.950 through 960), would also have to meet the 
requirements in proposed Sec.  1926.1408, with several exceptions. 
First, in accordance with proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(5), work 
involving

[[Page 59758]]

cranes/derricks that is covered by Subpart V would not be required to 
comply with the proposed requirements in Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4). Subpart 
V applies to the construction of electric transmission and distribution 
lines and equipment, which includes the alteration, conversion, and 
improvement of existing lines and equipment. Thus, when employees are 
engaged in Subpart V work near energized lines, by the nature of the 
job, their full attention is on the power lines.
    Subpart V contains additional requirements to protect those 
employees against making electrical contact with the lines. These 
include requirements in Sec.  1926.950(c) for guarding the line or 
using insulation (such as insulating gloves) to prevent electrical 
contact. Non-Subpart V workers, by contrast, do not work directly with 
the lines, and their attention is primarily directed elsewhere. In view 
of these differences, the Committee believed that the protective 
measures listed in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4) were not necessary 
for Subpart V work.
    Second, as explained below in the discussion of proposed Sec.  
1926.1410, when certain prerequisites are met, the employer would be 
permitted to use the minimum clearance distances in Subpart V's Table 
V-1. Also explained in that discussion is that where additional 
prerequisites are met, work would be permitted closer than the Table V-
1 distances.
    Third, an employer engaged in Subpart V work would not be subject 
to the restrictions regarding operations below power lines, as 
explained in the discussion below of proposed Sec.  1926.1408(d).
Paragraph 1408(c) Voltage Information
    This proposed section operates in conjunction with proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(a)(2)(iii) (Option 3--Table A clearance). Where an employer 
elects to use Option (3) (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2)(iii)), it 
would be required under proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2)(iii)(A) to 
determine the voltage of the power lines. Under proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(c), utility owners/operators of these lines must provide the 
requested voltage information within two working days of the request.
    The Committee believed that for Option (3) (of proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(a)(2)(iii)) to be viable, a reasonable time limit for the 
utility owner/operator to respond is needed. Employers must generally 
rely on the utility owner/operator to provide the voltage of the power 
line. The Committee was concerned that an extended delay in obtaining 
the information would lead some employers to do the work anyway without 
the information. The committee believed that two business days would be 
a reasonable amount of time to allow the utility owners/operator to 
respond and be sufficiently short to be useful to the employer 
requesting the information.\27\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \27\ As noted in the introduction, C-DAC included a member from 
the electric utility industry.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As discussed above with respect to proposed Sec.  1926.1407(e), the 
Agency would interpret ``working days'' to mean Monday through Friday, 
excluding federal holidays, unless this rule contains a different 
definition, and is asking for comment on whether a different definition 
should be included in the rule.
Paragraph 1408(d) Operations Below Power Lines
    The Committee believed that there is a substantially enhanced 
likelihood of breaching the applicable minimum clearance distance when 
a crane operates below a power line. This is due to several factors, 
including the greater difficulty of judging the distance to the line 
when the line is above the equipment and the fact that in most such 
situations the operator has to purposely look up to see the line (and 
therefore is more likely to forget its location or that it is there).
    This proposed section addresses this problem by prohibiting any 
part of a crane, load or load line (including rigging and lifting 
accessories) from being below a power line unless the employer has 
confirmed with the utility owner/operator that the power line is 
deenergized and visibly grounded at the worksite or unless the employer 
can demonstrate that it meets one of the four exceptions in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1408(d)(2).
    The first exception, Sec.  1926.1408(d)(2)(i), is that the work the 
employer is doing is covered by 29 CFR part 1926 subpart V. Subpart V 
work involves work on the power line itself and commonly requires 
equipment to operate below a power line. As explained above with 
respect to proposed paragraph Sec.  1926.1408(b)(5), Subpart V work 
does not require all of the precautions required of other work because 
the full attention of the workers is directed at the power line. The 
Committee believed that the other precautions required during Subpart V 
work would provide adequate protection when equipment operates below 
power lines during Subpart V work.
    The second exception, Sec.  1926.1408(d)(2)(ii), would be for 
equipment with non-extensible booms and the third exception, Sec.  
1926.1408(d)(2)(iii), would be for equipment with articulating or 
extensible booms. These exceptions would apply when the boom, either at 
its most vertical point (for non-extensible booms) or at its fullest 
extension (for extensible booms), will be more than 20 feet below the 
plane of the power line or more than the Table A (of proposed Sec.  
1926.1408) minimum clearance distance below the plane of the power 
line. Where this criterion is met, it is not possible for the minimum 
clearance distance to be breached.
    The last exception, Sec.  1926.1408(d)(2)(iv), is where the 
employer can demonstrate that it is infeasible to comply with proposed 
Sec.  1926.1408(d)(1), which prohibits any part of a crane, load or 
load line from being below a power line unless the line is deenergized 
and visibly grounded. Under this proposed exception, the employer must 
not only show that compliance with Sec.  1926.1408(d)(1) is infeasible, 
it must also comply with the requirements in proposed Sec.  1926.1410. 
Proposed Sec.  1926.1410 governs equipment operations closer than the 
Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) minimum approach distances. The 
Committee believed that in such instances those additional protective 
measures are needed to prevent the minimum clearance distance 
established under proposed Sec.  1926.1410(c) from being breached and 
to protect the employees in the event of electrical contact with the 
power line.
Paragraph 1408(e) Power Lines Presumed Energized
    This proposed paragraph would require employers to assume that all 
power lines are energized unless the utility owner/operator confirms 
that the power line has been and continues to be deenergized and 
visibly grounded at the worksite. This fundamental precaution is 
essentially the same as currently in Subpart N at Sec.  
1926.550(a)(15)(vi).
Paragraph 1408(f)
    Proposed paragraph (f) addresses the danger that employees could 
receive electrical shock from equipment that is operating near a 
transmission or communication tower. During such operation, the 
equipment could act as an antenna and become energized by the 
electromagnetic signal emitted by the tower. When the equipment is 
close enough for an electrical charge to be induced in the equipment or 
load, proposed Sec.  1926.1408(f) would require the transmitter to be 
deenergized or the following precautions taken: the

[[Page 59759]]

equipment must be grounded, and non-conductive rigging or an insulating 
link/device must be used.
    Currently, Subpart N, at Sec.  1926.550(a)(15)(vii), requires that 
when equipment is close enough to a transmission tower for an 
electrical charge to be induced, the equipment must be grounded and a 
ground jumper cable must connect the load to the equipment. In 
addition, nonconductive poles having large alligator clips or other 
similar protection must be used to connect the ground jumper cable to 
the load. By connecting the load to the grounded equipment, any 
electrical charge induced in the load will be dissipated. In the 
Committee's experience, this precaution is neither necessary nor 
commonly taken. The Committee believed that the proposal's requirement 
for nonconductive rigging or an insulating link reflects current safe 
industry practice.
    OSHA notes that the requirement for nonconductive rigging or an 
insulating link in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(f) is a fundamentally 
different approach than requiring a ground jumper cable to be used as 
specified in current Sec.  1926.550(a)(15)(vii). The latter connects 
the load to the equipment and grounds the load, while proposed 
paragraph (f) would insulate the load from the equipment. It appears 
that only an employee who is contacting the load would be affected by 
this provision. The Agency requests public comment on the following 
questions: (1) Is it necessary to take special precautions to ground 
the equipment to protect an employee who contacts the equipment? (2) 
Are employees best protected by proposed paragraph (f), by current 
Subpart N, or by some other means, such as requiring that they only 
handle the load with an insulated tag line or other means of 
insulation?
Paragraph 1408(g) Training
    During C-DAC discussions, members stressed the importance of 
providing appropriate training to operators and their crew regarding 
power line safety. The Committee believed that training is a necessary 
component in reducing crane related fatalities.
    The training topics listed are designed to ensure that both the 
operator and the other crew members have the information they need to 
protect themselves from power line hazards.
    The Committee believed that training for power line safety should 
not be limited to operators because any crew member who is near the 
equipment is potentially at risk of electrocution.
    The Agency notes that proposed Sec.  1926.1408(g) does not address 
the timing and frequency of this training. OSHA requests public comment 
on whether and, if so, how the standard should address training timing 
and frequency.
    In addition, proposed Sec.  1926.1408(g)(1)(i)(E) would requiring 
training in the need to avoid approaching or touching ``the 
equipment.'' OSHA believes that C-DAC inadvertently failed to add the 
phrase ``and the load'' to this provision, since whenever the equipment 
is in electrical contact with a power line, the load may also be 
energized. OSHA requests public comment on whether this provision 
should be modified to correct this omission.
Paragraph 1408(h)
    This proposed provision would require that where devices originally 
designed by the manufacturer for use as safety devices, operational 
aids, or a means to prevent power line contact or electrocution are 
used to comply with proposed Sec.  1926.1408, they must meet the 
manufacturer's procedures for use and conditions of use. The Committee 
believed that this provision is necessary to ensure that the devices 
will work as intended.
    OSHA notes that Sec.  1926.1408 uses the term ``range limit 
device'' in Sec.  1926.1408(a)(1)(i) but that no definition of this 
term is provided in Sec.  1926.1401. OSHA believes that C-DAC 
understood a range limit device to be a device that physically limits 
how far a crane can boom out and the angle within which the boom can 
swing. OSHA requests public comment on whether a definition of ``range 
limit device'' should be added to Sec.  1926.1401 and, if so, whether 
the definition in this paragraph is appropriate.

Section 1409 Power Line Safety (Over 350 kV)

    Under this proposed section, the requirements in proposed 
Sec. Sec.  1926.1407 and 1926.1408 would apply to power lines rated 
over 350 kV in all respects except one: wherever the regulatory text 
states ``20 feet,'' ``50 feet'' is substituted. Therefore, the 
``trigger'' distance that would be used when assessing the work zone 
would be 50 feet. In addition, an employer engaged in assembly/
disassembly that is using Option 2 of proposed Sec.  1926.1407 (a)(2), 
or an employer engaged in crane operations that is using Option 2 of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2)(ii), would be required to maintain a 
minimum clearance distance of 50 feet. This would apply to all power 
lines rated over 350 kV, including power lines over 1,000 kV.
    For power lines over 1,000 kilovolts, employers electing to use 
Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408 in either assembly/disassembly 
(Option 3 in proposed Sec.  1926.1407(a)(3)) or crane operations 
(Option 3 in proposed Sec.  1926.1408 (a)(2)(iii) would be required, 
pursuant to instructions in the Table, to maintain a minimum clearance 
distance determined by the utility owner/operator or a registered 
professional engineer who is a qualified person with respect to 
electrical power transmission and distribution.
    In reviewing this regulatory language, OSHA recognized that a 
minimum clearance distance of 50 feet may be inadequate for the open-
ended category of ``over 1,000 kV.'' In fact, at some point in that 
range, a utility owner/operator or a registered professional engineer 
may well specify a minimum clearance distance of more than 50 feet. 
However, as currently drafted, employers using Option 2 (in both 
proposed Sec.  1926.1407(a)(2) and Sec.  1926.1408(a)(2)(ii)) would 
only have to maintain a minimum clearance distance of 50 feet. OSHA 
requests public comment on whether Option 2 is insufficiently 
protective for power lines rated over 1,000 kV.

Section 1410 Power Line Safety (All Voltages)--Crane Operations Closer 
Than the Table A Zone

    The existing Subpart N requirements do not permit work closer than 
the 10 foot rule.\28\ The only exceptions to the 10 foot rule are where 
the lines are deenergized and visibly grounded or where insulating 
barriers, separate from the equipment, have been erected. However, the 
Committee recognized that many employers, without meeting the 
exceptions, nonetheless work closer than the 10 foot rule.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \28\ As described earlier, the ``10 foot rule'' is shorthand for 
the formula in existing 29 CFR 1926, Subpart N for minimum clearance 
distances. Under the 10 foot rule, for lines rated 50 kV or less, 
work is not permitted closer than 10 feet to an energized power 
line. For lines rated more than 50 kV, a clearance of 10 feet plus 
.4 inch for each 1 kV over 50 kV is required.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Specifically, the Committee believed that most employers do not use 
the option to deenergize and ground because of the time, expense and 
difficulty in making those arrangements. In addition, the Committee 
concluded that an ``insulating barrier'' of the type that is currently 
available does not, by itself, adequately protect employees because 
these barriers are only effective for ``brush'' contact. If there is 
more than brush contact, they will not protect employees from 
electrocution because the equipment will pierce the device.

[[Page 59760]]

    In order to address the insufficient protections provided to 
employees who work closer than the 10 foot rule, the Committee 
developed a new approach, which is contained in proposed Sec.  
1926.1410. It consists of prerequisites and criteria that would apply 
when work must be conducted closer than the minimum clearance distance 
specified in Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408). The Committee 
believed that these provisions would be both realistic and effective 
for safely working in these circumstances.
    This proposed section starts out by explicitly prohibiting 
equipment from operating closer than the distances specified in Table A 
(of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) of an energized power line except where 
the employer demonstrates compliance with the requirements in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1410.
    Note that, in the discussion below of proposed Sec.  1926.1410, 
references to a ``registered professional engineer'' are, in accordance 
with proposed Sec.  1926.1410(c)(1), references to a registered 
professional engineer who is a qualified person with respect to 
electrical power transmission and distribution.
Paragraphs 1410(a) and (b)
    These proposed paragraphs set forth prerequisites that must be met 
for the employer to be permitted to operate equipment closer to a power 
line than the applicable Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) 
distance. Proposed Sec.  1926.1410(a) would require the employer to 
determine that it is infeasible to do the work without breaching the 
minimum approach distance under Table A. If the employer determines it 
is infeasible to maintain the Table A distance, under proposed Sec.  
1926.1410(b) it would also have to determine, after consulting with the 
utility owner/operator, that deenergizing and grounding the power line, 
as well as relocating the line, are infeasible.
Paragraph 1410(c) Minimum Clearance Distance
    After the employer makes the infeasibility determinations required 
by proposed Sec.  1926.1410(a) and (b), a minimum clearance distance 
would have to be established. Under proposed Sec.  1926.1410(c)(1), the 
employer can establish this distance by either having the utility 
owner/operator determine the minimum clearance distance that must be 
maintained or by having a registered professional engineer who is a 
qualified person with respect to electrical transmission and 
distribution determine the minimum clearance distance that must be 
maintained. The Committee believed that either of these sources of this 
information has sufficient expertise to accurately apply the factors 
discussed below in setting an appropriate minimum clearance distance.
    Under proposed Sec.  1926.1410(c)(1), regardless of whether it is 
the utility owner/operator or a registered professional engineer that 
makes this determination, several factors must be considered when 
establishing the minimum clearance distance. These factors include, but 
are not limited to: Conditions affecting atmospheric conductivity; time 
necessary to bring the equipment, load and load line (including rigging 
and lifting accessories) to a complete stop; wind conditions; degree of 
sway in the power line; lighting conditions, and other conditions 
affecting the ability to prevent electrical contact.
    Under proposed Sec.  1926.1410(c)(2), the proposed requirement in 
Sec.  1926.1410(c)(1) described above would not apply to work covered 
by part 1926 subpart V. Instead, the minimum clearance distance 
specified in Sec.  1926.950 Table V-1 would apply. This proposed 
paragraph, along with the other proposed provisions affecting work 
covered by Subpart V, are discussed below at the end of the portion of 
this preamble addressing proposed Sec.  1926.1410.
Paragraph 1410(d)
    Once a minimum clearance distance has been established, under 
proposed Sec.  1926.1410(b) the employer would be required to have a 
planning meeting with either the owner/operator of the power line or 
the registered professional engineer to determine what procedures will 
be implemented to prevent electrical contact and electrocution. In 
accordance with proposed Sec.  1926.1410(e), these procedures would 
have to be documented and immediately available on-site. In addition, 
in accordance with proposed Sec.  1926.1410(f) and (g), these 
procedures would have to be reviewed with the operator and other 
workers who will be in the area of the equipment and the procedures 
must be implemented (proposed Sec.  1926.1410(e)-(g) are discussed 
below).
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d) sets out the minimum protective 
measures which would have to be included in the procedures set by the 
employer and utility owner/operator (or registered professional 
engineer). The committee believed that these procedures need to include 
more stringent protective measures than those set out in proposed Sec.  
1926.1408, because equipment will be in closer proximity to power lines 
and there would otherwise be a greater risk of contacting a power line 
and causing electrocution. Therefore, these procedures would have to 
include, at the minimum, the following:
Paragraph 1410(d)(1)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(1), for power lines that are equipped 
with a device that automatically reenergizes the circuit in the event 
of a power line contact, the automatic reclosing feature of the circuit 
interrupting device must be made inoperative prior to beginning work. 
This would help ensure that, in the event of a power line contact and 
activation of the automatic reclosing feature, the line would not be 
automatically re-energized.
Paragraph 1410(d)(2)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(2), a dedicated spotter who is in 
continuous contact with the operator would have to be used. In 
addition, the dedicated spotter must be equipped with a visual aid to 
assist in identifying the minimum clearance distance, must be 
positioned to effectively gauge the clearance distance, where necessary 
must use equipment that enables him or her to communicate directly with 
the operator, and the spotter must give timely information to the 
operator so the required clearance distance can be maintained. The need 
for a spotter meeting this criteria is explained above in the 
discussion of proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4)(ii).
Paragraph 1410(d)(3)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(3), an elevated warning line, or 
barricade that is not attached to the equipment, positioned to prevent 
electrical contact, would have to be used. This warning line or 
barricade must be in view of the operator either directly or by use of 
video equipment and must be equipped with flags or similar high-
visibility markings. The need for an elevated warning line or barricade 
is explained above in the discussion of proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(3).
    As discussed above in relation to proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(3), 
there may be situations where the operator is not able to see an 
elevated warning line or barricade. To address such situations, under 
proposed Sec.  1926.1408 or Sec.  1926.1409, OSHA is planning to change 
the regulatory text so that the employer would be required to use both 
a dedicated spotter and one of the other (non-spotter) measures listed 
in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(b)(4). Here, when working closer than the 
Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) clearance

[[Page 59761]]

distance, C-DAC believed it is necessary to provide an additional layer 
of protection by requiring the use of video equipment to enable the 
operator to see the warning line or barricade. Therefore, in all cases 
when working closer than the Table A clearance distance, the operator 
will have ``two sets of eyes'' (in addition to other protection 
required under this proposed section) to ensure that the equipment 
maintains the minimum clearance distance established under proposed 
Sec.  1926.1410(c).
    As explained in, Subpart V-working closer than Table A, that 
follows the discussion of Sec.  1926.1410(k), this provision would not 
apply to subpart V work.
Paragraph 1410(d)(4) Insulating Link/Device
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(4), an insulating link/device would 
have to be installed at a point between the end of the load line (or 
below) and the load. An insulating link is a barrier to the passage of 
electrical current. When used on a crane, it prevents the load from 
becoming energized if the boom or the load line makes electrical 
contact with a power line. In such situations it protects employees who 
make contact with the load or are holding a tag line.
    As explained in, Subpart V-working closer than Table A, that 
follows the discussion of Sec.  1926.1410(k), this requirement to 
install an insulating link/device would only apply when working closer 
than the Sec.  1926.950 Table V-1 clearance distances.
Paragraph 1410(d)(5)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(5), if the rigging may be closer than 
the Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) distance during the 
operation, it would be required to be non-conductive rigging. This 
would provide protection to those employees who would be exposed to 
electrical hazards in the event that the rigging contacts a power line, 
which otherwise could energize the rigging and the load.
Paragraph 1410(d)(6)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(6), if the crane is equipped with a 
device that automatically limits range of movement, it would have to be 
used and set to prevent any part of the crane, load or load line 
(including rigging and lifting accessories) from breaching the minimum 
approach distance established under proposed paragraph (c) of Sec.  
1926.1410.
Paragraph 1410(d)(7)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(7), if a tag line is used it would 
have to be non-conductive. This requirement would provide additional 
protection to those employees who would be exposed to electrical 
hazards in the event that the equipment contacts a power line and the 
tag line they are holding becomes energized, or in the event that the 
tag line makes contact with the power line.
Paragraph 1410(d)(8)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(8), barricades would have to be used 
to form a perimeter at least 10 feet away from the equipment to prevent 
unauthorized personnel from entering the work area. In areas where 
obstacles prevent the barricade from being at least 10 feet away, the 
barricade would be required to be as far from the equipment as 
feasible. This provision, along with proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d)(9) and 
(d)(10), would minimize the likelihood that any more employees than are 
absolutely necessary to the operation would be near the equipment in 
the event the equipment, load or load line makes electrical contact 
with the power line.
Paragraph 1410(d)(9)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(9), employees other than the operator 
would be prohibited from touching the load line above the insulating 
link/device and equipment. It is the Agency's understanding that the 
Committee's rationale for not extending this prohibition to the 
operator is that the operator, by being in the cab, is going to be in 
electrical contact with both the equipment and load line. However, this 
assumes that the operator is in fact standing or sitting on the 
equipment. There may be some situations where this is not the case. For 
example, some equipment may be operated by pendant control or wireless 
control; in such cases the operator need not be on the equipment to 
control it. OSHA requests public comment on this issue.
Paragraph 1410(d)(10)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(10), only personnel essential to the 
operation would be permitted to be in the area of the equipment and the 
load. In conjunction with proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d)(8) and (d)(9), 
this would minimize the likelihood that any more employees than are 
absolutely necessary to the operation would be near the equipment in 
the event the equipment, load or load line makes electrical contact 
with the power line.
Paragraph 1410(d)(11)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(11), the equipment would be required 
to be properly grounded. In the event the equipment inadvertently makes 
electrical contact with the power line, proper grounding would protect 
employees in two ways. First, if the line is equipped with a circuit 
interrupting device, the grounding will result in a current surge that 
will trip the device and deenergize the line. Second, in the event an 
employee on the ground is touching the equipment when it contacts the 
power line, proper grounding will reduce the danger to the employee by 
providing an alternative, low resistance path to ground for the 
electric current.
    In reviewing this proposed paragraph, OSHA has identified what 
appears to be a conflict between this proposed provision and a 
provision in Subpart V's Sec.  1926.952(c)(2)(iii) regarding grounding 
of equipment. This issue is explained under the heading, Subpart V 
work--working closer than Table V-1, that follows the discussion of 
Sec.  1926.1410(k).
Paragraph 1410(d)(12)
    Under proposed paragraph (d)(12), insulating line hoses or cover-
ups would be required to be installed by the utility owner/operator 
except where such devices are unavailable for the line voltages 
involved. The Committee noted that Subpart N, at Sec.  1926.550(a)(15), 
currently allows such insulating barriers to be used as a complete 
alternative to deenergizing and grounding or to maintaining the 
applicable minimum clearance distance from the power line. However, the 
Committee believed that such insulating devices do not provide complete 
protection because they can be pierced if the equipment makes more than 
brushing contact with the device. However, the Committee believed that 
these insulating devices do provide protection if there is brushing 
contact and that such devices are useful to supplement the other 
protective measures provided by the requirements of this proposed Sec.  
1926.1410(d).
Paragraph 1410(e)
    Under proposed paragraph (e), the procedures that are developed to 
comply with proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d) would have to be documented and 
immediately available on-site. This would ensure that these procedures 
are available to be used as a reference while the work is in progress.
Paragraph 1410(f)
    Under proposed paragraph (f), the equipment user and utility owner/
operator would be required to meet with

[[Page 59762]]

the equipment operator and the other employees who will be in the area 
of the equipment or load to review the procedures that are developed 
under proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d) to prevent a breach of the minimum 
clearance distance established under proposed Sec.  1926.1410(c). The 
Committee believed that it is important that this review take place so 
that the operator and other employees understand this critical 
information and have the opportunity to discuss the procedures with the 
utility owner/operator, who has a high level of expertise regarding the 
power lines.
Paragraphs 1410(g) and (h)
    Under proposed paragraphs (g) and (h), the employer would be 
required to implement the procedures developed in accordance with 
proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d). The utility owner/operator and all 
employers of the employees involved in the work would have to identify 
one person who will direct the implementation of the procedures. This 
person would have to direct the implementation of the procedures and 
have the authority to stop work at any time to ensure safety.
    The Committee believed that, in view of the fact that more than one 
employer is typically involved in these situations, coordination among 
the employers of these employees is needed for the protective measures 
to be effectively implemented. Once the operation is underway, safety-
related orders typically need to be given and followed without delay. 
Since an employee of one employer typically would not immediately 
follow an instruction from another employer, it is necessary that, 
before these operations begin, all employees understand that the one 
designated person will have this authority. For these reasons, the 
Committee believed that there needs to be one person who all involved 
in the operation recognize as having this role and authority.
    Paragraph 1410(i). [Reserved.] This paragraph would be reserved 
because it is inconvenient for readers to determine whether ``(i)'' is 
being used as a letter or a roman numeral.
Paragraph 1410(j)
    This proposed provision would require the employer to safely stop 
operations if a problem occurs with implementing the procedures in 
paragraph (d) or if there is an indication that those procedures are 
inadequate to prevent electrocution. In addition, this proposed 
provision would require that the employer either develop new procedures 
which comply with paragraph (d) or contact the utility owner/operator 
and have them deenergize and visibly ground or relocate the power 
line(s) before resuming operations.
Paragraph 1410(k)
    This proposed provision would require that where a device 
originally designed by the manufacturer for use as a safety device, 
operational aid, or a means to prevent power line contact or 
electrocution is used to comply with proposed Sec.  1926.1410 it must 
meet the manufacturer's procedures for use and conditions of use. The 
Committee believed that this provision is necessary to ensure that the 
devices will work as intended.

Subpart V Work--Working Closer Than Table A

    In considering the circumstances under which work closer than the 
Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) distances would be permitted, C-
DAC recognized that it was necessary to address the special 
circumstances of power line work covered by 29 CFR 1926 subpart V. That 
subpart applies to the erection of new electric transmission and 
distribution lines and equipment, and the alteration, conversion, and 
improvement of existing transmission and distribution lines and 
equipment.
    Currently, under subparts V and N of part 1926, employers engaged 
in subpart V work are not required to comply with the ``10 foot rule.'' 
Instead, with some exceptions, they are required to maintain the 
minimum clearance distances specified in subpart V's Table V-1.\29\ 
Table V-1 has minimum clearance distances that are less than the ``10 
foot rule'' (and, therefore, less than the proposed rule's Table A 
distances). As discussed below, under this proposed standard, employers 
engaged in subpart V work would continue to be permitted to use the 
Table V-1 minimum clearance distances. However, C-DAC believed that 
additional protection is needed for these workers. Therefore, this 
proposed rule includes new prerequisites and criteria that must be met 
before the Table V-1 minimum clearance distances could be used.\30\ The 
Committee believed that it is appropriate for employers using equipment 
for subpart V of part 1926 activities to work closer than the Table A 
(of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) distances only where the prerequisites 
and criteria for doing so set out in proposed Sec.  1926.1410, which 
are applicable to all employers, are met. Therefore, for subpart V 
work, the employer would be required to maintain the clearance 
distances in Table A except where the employer demonstrates 
infeasibility.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \29\ Since C-DAC developed its consensus document, OSHA has 
proposed t amend part 1926 subpart V by, among other things, 
replacing Table V-1. 70 FR 34821 (June 15, 2005). If OSHA issues a 
final rule modifying Subpart V before issuing a final rule based on 
this proposal, OSHA will take into account any modifications to 
Subpart V, including Table V-1, in drafting this final rule.
    \30\ The only exceptions to the application of this proposed 
rule to subpart V of part 1926 V of part 1926 work are those 
contained in Sec. Sec.  1926.1407-1411; all other aspects of the 
proposed rule would apply. This is consistent with the current 
Subpart V, for Sec.  1926.952(c) of Subpart V requires equipment 
operating near power lines to comply with the current cranes and 
derricks standard in Subpart N. Therefore, the portion of the 
current Sec.  1926.952(c) that requires equipment operating near 
power lines to comply with the cranes and derricks standard would be 
retained.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In addition, it would be required to implement most of the 
protective measures required by this proposed standard. As discussed 
above, Subpart V work would not be subject to the requirement for an 
additional protective measure from the list in proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(b)(4). The Committee believed that, with certain exceptions 
explained below, such additional measure would not be necessary for 
such work. Also, subpart V work would not be subject to the prohibition 
in proposed Sec.  1926.1408(d)(1) against equipment operating under 
power lines (see discussion above of proposed paragraph 1408(d)(2)(i)).
    However, when, as will often be the case, it is not feasible to 
maintain the Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) distances for 
subpart V work, under proposed Sec.  1926.1410(c)(2), the clearance 
distances in Table V-1 would normally apply. The Committee concluded 
that it was not necessary to require employers engaged in subpart V 
work to undertake the process in proposed Sec.  1926.1410(c)(1) for 
establishing a minimum clearance distance when it is infeasible to 
comply with the Table A (of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) clearances. The 
existing clearance distances for subpart V work found in Table V-1 
recognize that such work often requires that equipment get closer to 
the lines than the clearance distances specified in Table A and were 
specifically drafted to address subpart V work. Therefore, proposed 
Sec.  1926.1410 (c)(2) would exempt subpart V work from proposed Sec.  
1926.1410(c)(1) and would state instead that the minimum clearance 
distances specified in Sec.  1926.950 Table V-1 would apply.
    Furthermore, under proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d)(3), an employer 
engaged in subpart V work closer than the Table A distance would not be 
required to use an elevated warning line or barricade. It is the 
Agency's understanding that the

[[Page 59763]]

Committee's rationale for this exclusion was that when subpart V work 
takes place closer than the Table A distances, a warning line would 
interfere with the tools, cables, and other material used in subpart V 
work. However, it is unclear to the Agency why this would also be the 
case if a barricade were used. The Agency requests public comment on 
this issue.
    The provisions of this proposed standard would necessitate certain 
conforming amendments to the subpart V provisions dealing with lifting 
equipment to eliminate obsolete requirements and promote clarity. 
Currently, Sec.  1926.952(c)(1) reads as follows

    :(c) Derrick trucks, cranes and other lifting equipment. (1) All 
derrick trucks, cranes, and other lifting equipment shall comply 
with subpart N and O of this part except:
    (i) As stated in Sec.  1926.550(a)(15)(i) and (ii) relating to 
clearance (for clearances in this subpart see Table V-1) and
    (ii) Derrick truck (electric line trucks) shall not be required 
to comply with Sec.  1926.550(a)(7)(vi), (a)(17), (b)(2), and (e).

    These subpart V provisions would need to be modified in several 
respects. First, service trucks with mobile lifting devices designed 
specifically for use in the power line and electric service industries, 
such as digger derricks (radial boom derricks), when used in these 
industries for auguring holes to set power and utility poles, or 
handling associated materials to be installed or removed from utility 
poles, are excluded from the scope of this proposed standard. They 
would, however, continue to be covered by subpart V when used in this 
manner. Specifically, subpart V's current requirement that the minimum 
clearance distances of Table V-1 be met when using such equipment would 
be retained when such equipment is used outside the coverage of the new 
cranes and derricks standard.
    Since these trucks, when used in the manner described, would be 
outside the scope of the new cranes and derricks standard, subpart V's 
provision in Sec.  1926.952(c)(1)(ii) stating that derrick trucks need 
not comply with Sec. Sec.  1926.550(a)(7)(vi), (a)(17), (b)(2), and 
(e), which incorporate the requirements of certain industry consensus 
standards, would no longer be necessary.
    Second, the subpart V provisions would be changed to reflect the 
terminology used in the scope section of this proposed standard and its 
new subpart designation (Subpart CC). With respect to ``cranes and 
other lifting equipment,'' Sec.  1926.952(c)(1)(i) would be unnecessary 
since proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1407 through 1926.1411 of this proposed 
standard address the applicable minimum clearance distances, including 
the circumstances under which the clearance distances in Table V-1 
would apply.
    Accordingly, Sec.  1926.952(c)(1) would be amended to read:

    (c) Cranes and other lifting equipment. (1) All equipment 
covered by Subpart CC that is used for work covered by this standard 
[Subpart V], including cranes and other lifting equipment, shall 
comply with subparts CC and O of this part.
    (2) Service trucks with mobile lifting devices designed 
specifically for use in the power line and electric service 
industries, such as digger derricks (radial boom derricks), when 
used in these industries for auguring holes to set power and utility 
poles, or handling associated materials to be installed or removed 
from utility poles, must meet the applicable minimum clearance 
distance in Table V-1.

Subpart V Work--Working Closer Than Table V-1

    Currently, Sec.  1926.952(c)(2) recognizes that there are 
circumstances when the Table V-1 clearance distances cannot be 
maintained during Subpart V work and lists requirements that must be 
met when this is the case. OSHA believes that C-DAC intended to permit 
Subpart V work closer than the Table V-1 clearances when the 
precautions in Sec.  1926.952(c)(2), as well as additional precautions 
contained in proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d), are followed.
    To make this clear, OSHA is proposing to add the following language 
to proposed Sec.  1926.1410(c)(2): ``Employers engaged in Subpart V 
work are permitted to work closer than the distances in Sec.  1926.950 
Table V-1 where both the requirements of this section and Sec.  
1926.950(c)(2)(i) and (ii) are met.'' [Note that subsections (i) and 
(ii) are currently subsections (iii) and (iv) but would be renumbered 
under the proposed amended language of Sec.  1926.950(c)(2) discussed 
below]. OSHA requests public comment on this proposed addition.
    This proposed change would require conforming amendments to Sec.  
1926.952(c)(2), which currently reads as follows:

    (2) With the exception of equipment certified for work on the 
proper voltage, mechanical equipment shall not be operated closer to 
any energized line or equipment than the clearances set forth in 
Sec.  1926.950(c) unless:
    (i) An insulated barrier is installed between the energized part 
and the mechanical equipment, or
    (ii) The mechanical equipment is grounded, or
    (iii) The mechanical equipment is insulated, or
    (iv) The mechanical equipment is considered as energized.

    Under this proposed section, the precautions specified in 
paragraphs Sec.  1926.952(c)(2)(i) and (ii) would be required under 
proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d) when equipment used in Subpart V work is 
operated closer than the Table V-1 clearances. Since these precautions 
would now be required by proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d), OSHA is proposing 
to delete them from Subpart V as redundant. OSHA is therefore proposing 
to amend Sec.  1926.952(c)(2) to read as follows:

    (2) With the exception of equipment certified for work on the 
proper voltage, mechanical equipment shall not be operated closer to 
any energized line or equipment than the clearances set forth in 
Sec.  1926.950(c) unless, in addition to the requirements in Sec.  
1926.1410:
    (i) The mechanical equipment is insulated, or
    (ii) The mechanical equipment is considered as energized.

    OSHA requests public comment on the proposed amendments to Sec.  
1926.950(c)(1) and (2) of Subpart V described above.
    In addition, OSHA notes that, under the current 29 CFR Part 1926 
Subpart V requirement in Sec.  1926.952(c)(2), when doing Subpart V 
work closer than the Table V-1 distances, the equipment must be 
insulated or considered energized.\31\ However, proposed Sec.  
1926.1410 does not have a similar requirement. Therefore, an employer 
engaged in Subpart V work that was closer than the Table V-1 distances 
would continue to be required (under Sec.  1926.952(c)(2)) to insulate 
or consider the equipment energized, but an employer engaged in non-
Subpart V work at the same distance would not. The Agency requests 
public comment on whether such requirements should also apply to non-
Subpart V work when working closer than the Table V-1 distances.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \31\ In Subpart V, when equipment is considered energized, a 
number of Subpart V requirements are triggered. See, for example, 
Sec.  1926.951(c)(1) (restricting use of metal or conductive ladders 
near energized equipment); Sec.  1926.951(f)(3) (hydraulic tools 
used on or around energized equipment shall use nonconducting 
hoses); Sec.  1926.953(c) (materials or equipment shall not be 
stored near energized equipment if it is practical to store them 
elsewhere).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Finally, OSHA notes that in this zone, one of the options that an 
employer engaged in Subpart V currently has under Sec.  
1926.952(c)(2)(iii) is to insulate the equipment. Under proposed Sec.  
1926.1410(d)(11), that employer would also have to ground the 
equipment. The Agency's understanding of how equipment can be 
simultaneously

[[Page 59764]]

insulated and grounded is illustrated by the following example: 
Equipment that has a boom constructed of an insulating material (such 
as fiberglass) is typically mounted on a carrier (the ``truck'' portion 
of the equipment), which is constructed mostly of conductive material 
(i.e., steel). Because the boom (and the linkages, pneumatic and 
hydraulic lines, and other associated parts on the boom) is insulated, 
the equipment is considered insulated under (Sec.  
1926.952(c)(2)(iii)). If the employer were to ground the carrier, the 
parts of the equipment that could form an electrical path to ground 
(the carrier and the conducting parts of the equipment forming an 
electrical path to the carrier, such as the load line and hoist) would 
be grounded. Therefore, the equipment would meet both the insulating 
option in Sec.  1926.952(c)(2)(iii) and the proposed grounding 
requirement in proposed Sec.  1926.1410(d)(11).

Subpart V Work--Summary

    The differences between how the proposed requirements for power 
line safety would apply generally to crane operations and how they 
would apply to an employer engaged in work covered by Subpart V are 
summarized in the following table:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
           Non-Subpart V Work                     Subpart V Work
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                      When Using Table A Distances
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sec.   1926.1408:
    Must pick one additional prevention  Additional measure not required
     measure from list in Sec.            (Sec.   1926.1408(b)(5)).
     1926.1408(b)(4).
    Sec.   1926.1408(d): Operations      Operations below power lines
     below power lines generally          permitted (Sec.
     precluded..                          1926.1408(d)(2)(i)).
 
 (All other requirements in Sec.   1926.1408 would apply equally to both
                    Non-Subpart V work and Subpart V)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  Working Closer Than Table A Distances
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sec.   1926.1410:
    Sec.   1926.1410(c)(1) (utility or   Instead, use Subpart V's Table
     registered professional engineer     V-1 minimum clearance distance
     sets minimum clearance distance).    (Sec.   1926.1410(c)(2)).
    Sec.   1926.1410(d)(3) (warning      Not required.
     line or barricade).
    Sec.   1926.1410(d)(4) (insulating   Only required if working closer
     link).                               than Table V-1 (Sec.
                                          1926.1410(d)(4)(ii)); see
                                          below.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                      Working Closer Than Table V-1
------------------------------------------------------------------------
[The proposed Sec.   1926.1410           (Under both Sec.   1926.1410
 requirements would apply to all          and current Sec.
 distances closer than those specified    1926.952(c)(2)).
 in Table A; there are no additional
 proposed requirements for working
 closer than the Table V-1 distances
 for non-Subpart V work].
(Insulating link required under Sec.     Must use insulating link (Sec.
 1926.1410(d)(4)).                         1926.1410(d)(4)(ii)).
    Not required.......................  Equipment must be insulated or
                                          considered energized (Sec.
                                          1926.952(c)(2)).
 
 (All other requirements in Sec.   1926.1410 would apply equally to both
                 Non-Subpart V work and Subpart V work)
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Section 1411 Power Line Safety -While Traveling

    This proposed section is designed to protect against electrical 
hazards while equipment is traveling with no load under power lines on 
construction sites. These proposed requirements would apply only to 
cranes/derricks while traveling on a construction site under power 
lines; they would not apply to equipment while traveling on roads (or 
in areas) that are not part of a construction site.
    The following scenario is an example of the parameters of the scope 
of this provision: A crane travels on a public road to the entrance of 
a new residential tract development. While traveling on the public road 
it passes under powerlines. No construction is taking place on the 
public road. The tract, including a road that runs through the 
development, is open to construction traffic but is otherwise closed to 
the public. In the development, homes are in various stages of 
construction. The crane enters the development and travels along the 
development road to the area where the crane is going to be operated. 
The crane will pass under power lines as it travels along this 
development road.
    In this scenario, proposed Sec.  1926.1411 would not apply with 
respect to the crane traveling along the public road to the entrance of 
the development, since that road is not part of a construction site. 
However, it would apply with respect to traveling under power lines on 
the development road since the development road is part of a 
construction site.
    It was the intention of the Committee that the requirements of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1411 apply only with respect to such equipment when 
traveling with no load. Power line hazards regarding equipment 
traveling on a construction site with a load would be governed by the 
proposed provisions in Sec. Sec.  1926.1408, 1926.1409 and 1926.1410.
    The C-DAC draft of Sec.  1926.1411(a) stated:

    (a) This section applies to equipment while traveling under a 
power line on the construction site with no load and the boom/mast 
and boom/mast support system lowered sufficiently to meet the 
requirements of paragraph (b).

    In reviewing that draft, the Agency realized that it could be 
misconstrued to mean that the requirements of Sec.  1926.1411 would 
only apply once the crane was traveling under a power line; in other 
words, that no action would be required of an employer prior to the 
equipment being under the power line. To make it clear that there are 
certain proposed provisions in this section that would require the 
employer to make determinations and take action before the equipment is 
actually under the power line, the Agency has revised the Committee's 
original language in Sec.  1926.1411(a) to read:

    (a) This section establishes procedures and criteria that must 
be met for equipment traveling under a power line on the 
construction site with no load.


[[Page 59765]]


    This change clarifies that the employer would be required to make 
determinations and take certain actions prior to the equipment 
traveling under the power line. For example, under proposed Sec.  
1926.1411(b)(4), if any part of the equipment while traveling would get 
closer than 20 feet to the power line, the employer would be required 
to have a dedicated spotter who is in continuous contact with the 
operator. If this requirement were to only apply at the moment the 
equipment was under the power line, it would not serve the purpose of 
providing the operator with someone to assist in gauging the clearance 
distance while the equipment is traveling under the power line.
    In addition, the C-DAC draft of Sec.  1926.1411(a) included a 
reference to the boom/mast and boom/mast support system being lowered 
to meet the criteria specified in proposed Sec.  1926.1411(b). The 
Agency was concerned that inclusion of that reference could be 
misconstrued as meaning that the section is inapplicable where the 
boom/mast and boom/mast support system had not been sufficiently 
lowered. Therefore, the Agency has modified the paragraph by moving 
that reference to proposed 1926.1411(b) to explicitly make it part of 
the required criteria for traveling under powerlines without a load. 
The C-DAC's draft of 1926.1411(b)(1) stated:

    (b) The employer shall ensure that:
    (1) The clearances specified in paragraph (c), Table T, are 
maintained.

    This has been changed so that the proposed Sec.  1926.1411(b)(1) 
and (b)(2) now state:

    (b) The employer shall ensure that:
    (1) The boom/mast and boom/mast support system are lowered 
sufficiently to meet the requirements of this paragraph.
    (2) The clearances specified in Table T of this section are 
maintained.

    Therefore, under these proposed provisions, the employer would be 
required to ensure that equipment traveling with no load on a 
construction site under a power line has the boom/mast and boom/mast 
support system lowered sufficiently so that the clearances specified in 
Table T are maintained.
    In addition to maintaining the Table T minimum clearance distances, 
proposed Sec.  1926. Sec.  1926.1411(b)(3) would require the employer 
to ensure that the effects of speed and terrain are considered so that 
those effects do not cause the minimum clearance distances specified in 
Table T to be breached. OSHA is modifying the C-DAC language as follows 
to clarify this requirement.

    (b)(3) The effects of speed and terrain on equipment movement 
(including movement of the boom/mast) are considered so that those 
effects do not cause the minimum clearance distances specified in 
Table T of this section to be breached.

    Proposed paragraph (b)(4) would require the employer to use a 
dedicated spotter if any part of the equipment while traveling will get 
closer than 20 feet to a power line. This provision would also require 
that the dedicated spotter be in continuous contact with the crane 
operator; be positioned to effectively gauge the clearance distance; 
where necessary, use equipment that enables the spotter to communicate 
directly with the crane operator; and give timely information to the 
crane operator so that the required clearance distance can be 
maintained. The Committee believed that each of these measures is 
necessary for the spotter to be effective.
    In reviewing proposed Sec.  1926.1411(b)(4), OSHA noted that the 
language ``crane operator'' was used rather than ``driver.'' For 
example, proposed Sec.  1926.1411(b)(4) reads:

    (4) Dedicated spotter. If any part of the equipment while 
traveling will get within 20 feet of the power line, the employer 
shall ensure that a dedicated spotter who is in continuous contact 
with the crane operator is used * * *

    Because proposed Sec.  1926.1411 deals with power line safety while 
equipment is traveling without a load, OSHA recognizes that the 
language ``crane operator'' may not be appropriate in all situations. 
In some cases a crane operator may not be the driver of such equipment 
on the construction site. Therefore, OSHA is soliciting comments on 
whether the language ``crane operator'' used in proposed Sec.  
1926.1411(b)(4) should be changed to ``driver'' or ``driver/operator.''
    The Committee members were also concerned about equipment traveling 
underneath power lines in low visibility situations, such as at night, 
in the rain or fog. The electrical hazards posed by power lines are 
exacerbated when the driver's ability to see the power line is reduced. 
The Committee believed that additional precautions are necessary in 
light of this heightened danger. Therefore, proposed Sec.  
1926.1411(b)(5) would require the employer to ensure the power lines 
are either illuminated or another means of identifying them is used and 
a safe path of travel is identified.
    In reviewing the C-DAC draft of this provision, OSHA recognized 
that Sec.  1926.1411(b)(5)(ii) did not clearly state the Committee's 
intentions. The committee intended for employers to both identify a 
safe path of travel and also use the identified safe path of travel. 
However, the C-DAC draft stated only that a safe path be 
``identified,'' which only implicitly means that it be used. Therefore 
OSHA has revised the language in Sec.  1926.1411(b)(5)(ii) from:

    (ii) A safe path of travel is identified.

    to read:

    (ii) A safe path of travel is identified and used.

    The proposed requirements of this section are similar to section 5-
3.4.5.5 of ASME B30.5-2004. The values in proposed Table T of proposed 
Sec.  1926.1411, which provides the minimum clearance distances while 
traveling with no load and a lowered boom, are substantially similar to 
the values used by ASME. The distinction between these proposed 
requirements and those requirements in ASME are that the proposed 
requirements govern equipment while traveling under a power line and 
the ASME provisions govern mobile cranes while in transit. ASME defined 
``transit'' as the moving or transporting of a crane from one jobsite 
to another.
    The Agency notes that ASME B30.5-2004 calls for equipment in 
transit to maintain a specific clearance distance to power lines in 
accordance with Table 1 of ASME B30.5. While proposed Sec.  1926.1411 
governs equipment traveling without a load directly under power lines, 
it does not otherwise address the potential hazards associated with 
equipment traveling without a load near power lines. Further, as stated 
earlier, equipment traveling with a load, whether or not under a power 
line, would be considered ``operations'' and employers would have to 
comply with the proposed requirements in Sec.  1926.1408, 1926.1409, or 
1926.1410 in such instances.
    However, equipment traveling without a load is not covered by 
either proposed Sec.  1926.1410 (operations) or Sec.  1926.1411 
(traveling under power lines). Therefore, OSHA requests public comment 
on whether it is necessary to establish requirements for equipment 
traveling on a construction site without a load near power lines.

Additional Changes to the Regulatory Text In Proposed Sec. Sec.  
1926.1407-1411

    In the C-DAC draft of provisions dealing with the ``trigger'' 
distance for further action, the draft referred to situations in which 
the crane, load or load line could get ``within'' the trigger distance. 
Because of the potential for confusion as to whether ``within'' means 
breaching or not breaching that

[[Page 59766]]

distance, the Agency has changed ``within'' to ``closer than.'' For 
example, the C-DAC draft of 1926.1407(a) read:

    Before assembling or disassembling a crane, the employer must 
determine if any part of the crane, load line or load (including 
rigging and lifting accessories) could get, in the direction or area 
of assembly, within 20 feet of a power line during the assembly/
disassembly process. If so, the employer must meet the requirements 
in Option (1), Option (2), or Option (3) of, as follows: * * *

    This provision now reads:

    Before assembling or disassembling a crane, the employer must 
determine if any part of the crane, load line or load (including 
rigging and lifting accessories) could get, in the direction or area 
of assembly, closer than 20 feet to a power line during the 
assembly/disassembly process. If so, the employer must meet the 
requirements in Option (1), Option (2), or Option (3) of Sec.  
1926.1407(a), as follows:

Section 1412 Inspections

    The purpose of this proposed section is to prevent injuries and 
fatalities caused by equipment failures. A key method of accomplishing 
this goal is through the use of an inspection process that identifies 
and addresses safety concerns.
    Currently, Subpart N requires the employer to designate a competent 
person to inspect all machinery and equipment prior to each use, and 
during use, to make sure it is in safe operating condition. Any 
deficiencies shall be repaired, or defective parts replaced, before 
continued use. 29 CFR 1926.550(a)(5). In addition, Subpart N requires a 
thorough annual inspection of the hoisting machinery by a competent 
person or by a government or private agency recognized by the U.S. 
Department of Labor. 29 CFR 1926.550(a)(6).
    Subpart N also contains inspection requirements for specific types 
of equipment that incorporate national consensus standards or 
manufacturer recommendations by reference. Section 1926.550(b)(2) 
requires crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes to meet the inspection 
requirements of ANSI B30.5-1968, ``Crawler, Locomotive and Truck 
Cranes'' (with a modified version of the ANSI standard's monthly 
inspection documentation requirement). Overhead and gantry cranes, 
under Sec.  1926.550(d)(4), must be inspected pursuant to ANSI B30.2.0-
1967, ``Overhead and Gantry Cranes.'' For derricks, Sec.  1926.550(e) 
requires compliance with the inspection requirements of ANSI B30.6-
1969, ``Derricks.'' Hammerhead tower cranes must be inspected (Sec.  
1926.550(c)(5)) and floating cranes and derricks must be tested (Sec.  
1926.550(f)(2)(iii)) in accordance with manufacturer specifications.
    The Committee believed it would avoid confusion and promote 
compliance to establish, as far as possible, uniform inspection 
schedules and requirements applicable to all types of equipment. At the 
same time, it recognized that the wide variety of equipment covered by 
this proposed standard necessitated some equipment-specific inspection 
provisions. Thus, proposed paragraphs (a) through (j) of this section 
would set inspection requirements for all covered equipment that would 
be supplemented by other sections of this proposed standard relative to 
specific equipment. The proposed section is structured so that the 
inspection requirements would be triggered by activity (e.g., equipment 
modification, repair/adjustment, assembly, severe service or equipment 
not in regular use) and the passage of time (e.g., shift, monthly and 
annual/comprehensive).
    Note that for each of these inspections, as discussed in detail 
below, this proposed standard specifies a requisite level of 
qualification of the person conducting the inspection (for certain 
inspections, a competent person; for others a qualified person). 
However, like Subpart N, the proposed rule does not include a testing/
evaluation requirement for such employees for assessing their ability 
to conduct the inspections.
    Since the C-DAC document was completed, crane accidents have 
occurred that have raised concerns regarding the level of expertise 
needed by those who inspect the equipment covered by this proposed 
standard. In Sec.  1926.1428, this proposed rule specifies a protocol 
for ensuring that signal persons have adequate expertise to perform 
their duties. The Agency requests public comment on whether a similar 
approach is needed for those who inspect equipment as required by this 
proposed standard.
Paragraph 1412(a) Modified Equipment
    Proposed paragraph (a) would require an inspection (that includes 
functional testing) to be performed by a qualified person for equipment 
that has been modified or has additions that affect the safe operation 
of the equipment prior to initial use after that modification/addition. 
In essence, the proposed provision would require assurance that such 
modifications or additions are performed in accordance with the 
approval obtained in proposed Sec.  1926.1434, Equipment modifications. 
Proposed Sec.  1926.1412(a)(2) would prohibit the use of the equipment 
until that requirement was met. The purpose is to prevent modification-
related equipment failure.
    This proposed paragraph is generally similar to consensus and 
government standards, including ANSI B30.5-1968, ASME B30.5-2004, COE 
(Corps of Engineers)--EM 385-1-1 (3-Nov-03), and DOE (Department of 
Energy)--STD-1090-2004 in that each require an inspection and some 
degree of functional testing prior to using equipment that has been 
modified/altered. However, the inspection in the proposed paragraph 
differs from these in that it is limited to equipment that has 
modifications/additions that affect the safe operation of the equipment 
and is limited to confirming compliance with modifications or additions 
that are approved by the manufacturer or a registered professional 
engineer pursuant to Sec.  1434. Further, this proposed paragraph does 
not contain a documentation requirement.
    The Committee was of the view that many changes made to equipment 
do not implicate safe operation, and application of an inspection 
requirement to such changes would be unnecessary and unduly burdensome. 
The proposed paragraph reflects this concern and is tailored to require 
this inspection only when the modification is of the type that could 
affect safety. As such, the inspection would only be required for 
modifications that affect ``safe operation'' as illustrated by a non-
exclusive list of examples (``modifications or additions involving a 
safety device or operator aid, critical part of a control system, power 
plant, braking system, load sustaining structural components, load 
hook, or in-use operating mechanisms'').
    The first criterion to be used in conducting the inspection 
(proposed Sec.  1926.1412(a)(1)(i)) is the modification approval 
obtained under proposed Sec.  1926.1434. This would ensure that the 
modification was accomplished as intended under that approval.
    The second criterion (proposed Sec.  1926.1412(a)(1)(ii)) is 
functional testing. This reflects the Committee's view that functional 
testing is essential to ensuring that the modification was completed 
correctly. Such testing can reveal faults that often would not 
otherwise be apparent.
    As drafted, Sec.  1926.1412(a)(1)(ii) would not limit the 
functional testing requirement to only those components that are or may 
be affected by the modification or addition but would require testing 
of the entire equipment. OSHA requests public comment on

[[Page 59767]]

whether the provision should be modified to limit the functional 
testing requirement to those components that are or may be affected by 
the modification or addition.
    During the SBREFA process, a Small Entity Representative suggested 
adding an exception to proposed Sec.  1926.1412(a) for ``transportation 
systems,'' by which the SER meant any system dispersing the weight of 
the crane for movement on the highways. The Panel recommended that OSHA 
solicit public comment on whether to include such an exception and, if 
so, what the appropriate terminology for such an exception would be. 
OSHA welcomes public comment on whether an explicit exception for such 
transportation systems should be included in Sec.  1926.1412(a).
Paragraph 1412(b) Repaired/Adjusted Equipment
    Proposed paragraph (b) provides that equipment that has had a 
repair or adjustment that affects the safe operation of the equipment 
must be inspected (including functional testing) by a qualified person 
prior to initial use after the repair/adjustment. In summary, the 
qualified person would be required to determine if such repairs and 
adjustments have been performed in accordance with manufacturer 
equipment criteria.
    As defined in Sec.  1926.1401, ``equipment criteria'' include 
``instructions, recommendations, limitations and specifications.'' This 
definition is included to make clear that ``equipment criteria'' is to 
be broadly construed to include the full range of information regarding 
the equipment's functions and operation provided by the manufacturer. 
If those criteria were unavailable or inapplicable, the qualified 
person would be required to determine whether a registered professional 
engineer (RPE) is needed to develop criteria. If an RPE were not 
needed, a qualified person would be required to develop them. Use of 
the equipment would be prohibited until the inspection demonstrates 
that the repairs and adjustments met the criteria. The purpose of this 
provision is to avoid the failure of equipment due to improper repairs 
and adjustments.
    The Committee was of the view that many repairs and adjustments 
made to equipment do not implicate safe operation, and application of 
an inspection requirement to all repairs and adjustments would be 
unnecessary and unduly burdensome. The proposed paragraph reflects this 
concern by limiting this proposed inspection requirement to those 
repairs and adjustments that are of the type that could affect safety. 
A non-exclusive list of examples of repairs and adjustments that would 
trigger the inspection is included in the provision.
    The Committee believed that functional testing is essential to 
ensuring that a repair or adjustment has been completed correctly. Such 
testing can reveal faults that may not otherwise be apparent.
    As discussed above in relation to proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(a)(1)(ii), the functional testing requirement is not limited 
to those components that are or may be affected by the repair or 
adjustment. OSHA requests public comment on whether the provision 
should be modified to add such a limitation.
    The Agency believes that this inspection provision is needed to 
prevent injuries and fatalities from accidents caused by faulty repairs 
and adjustments. As evidenced by similar provisions in other standards 
(see COE--EM 385-1-1 (3-Nov-03), and DOE--STD-1090-2004; see also the 
consensus standard ASME B30.5-2004), the industry has recognized the 
hazards associated with improperly repaired and adjusted equipment and 
the importance of this type of inspection.
Paragraph 1412(c) Post-Assembly
    Proposed paragraph (c) would require a post-assembly inspection of 
equipment by a qualified person prior to its use. In sum, the provision 
would require the qualified person to assure that the equipment is 
configured in accordance with the manufacturer's equipment criteria. 
Where those criteria are unavailable, the equipment would have to meet 
criteria developed by either the qualified person or an RPE familiar 
with the equipment (if the qualified person decides that an RPE is 
needed). Equipment use would be prohibited until the inspection 
demonstrates that the criteria have been met.
    ANSI B30.5-1968, and ASME B30.5-2004 do not call for this type of 
inspection. COE in EM 385-1-1 (3 Nov 03), Appendix H, does include a 
post-assembly inspection.
    The Committee was of the view that a post-assembly inspection is 
needed because of the dangers associated with incorrectly assembled 
equipment. For example, the equipment's load chart may overstate the 
equipment's capacity if the equipment has been incorrectly assembled. 
Also, a component may be stressed beyond its design capacity if 
incorrectly assembled.
    The Committee considered whether to recommend requiring that this 
inspection be conducted by a person who is not only qualified but is 
also a ``competent person,'' i.e., a person with the authority to take 
corrective action. The Committee ultimately decided that this would not 
be necessary because proposed Sec.  1926.1412(c)(3) would prohibit the 
use of equipment until the post-assembly inspection demonstrates that 
the equipment is configured in accordance with the applicable criteria. 
Therefore, if the qualified person were to find that the equipment was 
incorrectly assembled, it could not be used until the error was 
corrected.
    Also discussed was whether a registered professional engineer 
(RPE), as opposed to a qualified person, is needed to develop the 
criteria for the equipment configuration where the manufacturer 
criteria are unavailable. The Committee agreed that an RPE would 
typically not be needed for, as one member stated, ``a basic machine 
that goes together in a basic manner,'' but that an RPE would be needed 
for some of the more complex types of equipment. As a result, the 
Committee found that it would be appropriate to have the qualified 
person determine if an RPE were needed to develop the criteria.
Paragraph 1412(d) Each Shift
    Proposed paragraph (d) would require a shift inspection, the first 
of three regularly scheduled equipment inspections that would be 
required. Specifically, 1926.1412(d)(1) sets forth the frequency of 
this inspection, the degree of scrutiny required and the level of 
expertise required of the person performing this inspection. The 
proposed paragraph lists the items that would be required to be 
included in this inspection and specifies the corrective action that 
would be required. The purpose of this provision is to identify and 
address safety hazards before they cause accidents.
    This inspection (which would begin prior to each shift and be 
completed before or during that shift) is broadly similar to the 
current requirement in 29 CFR 1926.550(a)(5) of Subpart N to conduct an 
inspection ``prior to each use, and during use * * *'' Similarly, 
several other current standards, including 29 CFR part 1926 subpart R 
(Steel Erection) and COE--EM 385-1-1 (3-Nov-03) require some type of 
shift inspection for cranes. In contrast, ANSI B30.5-1968 as well as 
the more current ASME B30.5-2004, call for a ``Frequent Inspection'' at 
``daily to monthly'' intervals. The ``Frequent Inspection'' in the 
ANSI/ASME standards, though, includes a reference to ``observation 
during operation.''

[[Page 59768]]

    The ``each shift'' inspection in the proposed rule is designed to 
ensure that the equipment will be removed from service if there is a 
visually apparent deficiency that constitutes a safety hazard. The 
Committee considered adopting the ``daily to monthly'' inspection 
interval that is in the ANSI/ASME B30.5 consensus standard, but 
determined that that approach was too vague for use as a mandatory OSHA 
requirement. Instead, the Committee found that, in accordance with 
long-standing, common industry practice, an inspection of the items 
listed in the proposed paragraph each shift is an appropriate means of 
ensuring that the equipment's condition will be sufficient for safe 
operation.
    The Committee also discussed whether the shift inspection should be 
required to be completed before a shift's crane operations begin. It 
determined that it is not necessary to complete the inspection in that 
short of a time frame. The Agency believes that this determination is 
reasonable for several reasons. First, this would be an inspection that 
would be done for every shift, and therefore would be done quite 
frequently. This would substantially diminish the likelihood that a 
critical problem would suddenly occur, since symptoms of such a problem 
developing would likely have been detected in prior shift inspections.
    Second, as discussed below, one of the purposes of the annual/
comprehensive inspection is to detect developing deficiencies that, 
while not yet safety hazards, need to be monitored. In such cases the 
employer under the annual/comprehensive requirements in proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(f)(4) would be required to monitor them in the monthly 
inspections. Finally, the competent person that conducts the shift 
inspection would be required to reassess his or her determinations in 
light of observations made during the equipment's operation. The 
Committee designed these proposed requirements to work together, and in 
light of that combined approach, the Agency believes that it would be 
sufficient for the shift inspection to be completed during the shift.
    The Committee also discussed the degree of scrutiny that would be 
required during the shift inspection. Specifically, it considered 
whether the shift inspection should involve any disassembly of the 
equipment. It determined that disassembly should not normally be needed 
for this type of inspection since its purpose is not to duplicate the 
annual/comprehensive inspection (which is where the equipment would be 
subjected to a level of scrutiny that would necessarily involve 
disassembly). Instead, disassembly would only be required where ``the 
results of the visual inspection or trial operation indicate that 
further inspection necessitating disassembly is needed.''
    Finally, a competent person would be required to perform the shift 
inspection. The Committee believed that a person that meets the 
definition of a competent person (see the definition discussion above) 
is needed to perform the shift inspection for two reasons. First, such 
a person would have the capability to identify apparent deficiencies, 
determine if any disassembly was needed, and determine if the 
deficiency constitutes a safety hazard. Second, a competent person 
would have the authority necessary to take corrective action in the 
event a deficiency was such a hazard.
    OSHA anticipates that the equipment operator will often be used by 
the employer as the competent person who conducts the shift inspection. 
The operator will be at the site and, in most cases, by virtue of his 
or her qualification or certification under proposed Sec. Sec.  
1926.1427 and 1926.1430 and experience and familiarity with the 
equipment, would meet the requirements for a competent person. However, 
the employer would have the flexibility to use someone else to conduct 
the shift inspection as long as that person met the definition of 
competent person.
    Proposed paragraphs (d)(1)(i) through (xiv) sets forth the list of 
items that, at a minimum, would be required to be inspected each shift. 
The Committee believes that this is an appropriate list for ensuring 
safety and builds on well established industry practice in terms of 
what needs to be inspected in this type of inspection. For example, the 
list is similar to the one for pre-shift inspections in 29 CFR Part 
1926 subpart R, the list in ASME B30.5-2004 for its Frequent 
Inspection, and with the exception of a few additional items, to the 
list for Frequent Inspections in ANSI B30.5-1968.
    Overall, except as noted below in the discussion of the particular 
items on this list, the concerns of C-DAC members relative to this list 
focused on whether items not listed as ``daily'' inspection items but 
included instead in the ``Frequent Inspection'' list in ASME B30.5a-
2002 (which are identical to those in the more recent ASME B30.5-2004 
standard) should be inspected each shift. A concern was raised in the 
Committee meetings about the nature of the visual inspection and 
whether including all of the listed items in ANSI/ASME would be too 
burdensome. To address this concern, the Committee decided to include 
these items (and a few others) but to also include the language 
discussed above limiting the circumstances in which disassembly would 
be required.
    The following discussion addresses only those items for which the 
Committee recommended inspection descriptions that vary in some 
significant way from past or current consensus standards (apart from 
their being designated for inspection each shift).
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(ii) lists ``[c]ontrol and drive 
mechanisms for apparent excessive wear of components and contamination 
by lubricants, water or other foreign matter.'' Though similar to the 
requirement in ANSI B30.5-1968 and ASME B30.5-2004 (on the ``Frequent'' 
list), and in 29 CFR part 1926 subpart R, this provision reflects some 
differences. For example, unlike the ANSI/ASME standards (but similar 
to Subpart R), it adds ``drive'' mechanisms, which the Committee 
believed more accurately reflects the type of mechanisms that need to 
be inspected. In addition, ``excessive'' was added to account for the 
fact that some wear in these mechanisms is normal and not unsafe. The 
extent of wear needed to trigger further evaluation of the item is that 
which is apparently excessive.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(iii) addresses ``[a]ir, hydraulic, and 
other pressurized lines for deterioration or leakage, particularly 
those which flex in normal operation.'' This paragraph is similar to an 
item listed in ANSI B30.5--1968 and in ASME B30.5-2004, with the 
difference being the reference to ``air'' and ``other pressurized 
lines.'' These additions reflect the Committee's belief that it is 
necessary to check all types of pressurized lines.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(v) lists ``[h]ooks and latches for 
deformation, cracks, excessive wear, or damage such as from chemicals 
or heat.'' This substantially mirrors Subpart R, and is similar to ANSI 
B30.5-1968 and ASME B30.5-2004, but also differs in certain ways. 
First, the Committee believed that latches can be damaged by causes 
other than the examples listed. The proposed paragraph therefore adds 
the words ``such as'' so that the examples listed would be a non-
exclusive list. Second, the Committee believed that ``heat'' should be 
added as another example of a cause of damage to highlight this as an 
area of concern (since, for example, welding is sometimes done near a 
hook or latch). Finally, the proposed

[[Page 59769]]

provision would require the competent person to inspect for ``excessive 
wear,'' as opposed to ``wear.'' This change was made because the 
Committee believed that hooks and latches are designed to withstand a 
degree of wear, and it is only when the wear is excessive that it is of 
concern.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(vii) lists ``[w]ire rope, in accordance 
with Sec.  1926.1413(a).'' This item references the Shift Inspection 
provision of Sec.  1926.1413, Wire rope--inspection, which specifies 
how the wire rope would be required to be inspected in the shift 
inspection. As discussed below in the section of this Preamble on that 
proposed provision, the timing, degree of scrutiny, and level of 
expertise required of the person conducting the wire rope inspection 
essentially mirror those for proposed Sec.  1926.1412(d)(1). This was 
done to ensure consistency with the wire rope inspections and the other 
general items inspected each shift.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(viii) lists ``[e]lectrical apparatus for 
malfunctioning signs of apparent excessive deterioration, dirt or 
moisture accumulation.'' This essentially mirrors provisions in ANSI 
B30.5-1968 and ASME B30.5-2004 (for Frequent Inspection) and Subpart R 
except for the insertion of the word ``apparent.'' That word was added 
to be consistent with proposed Sec.  1926.1412(d)(1)'s reference to 
``apparent deficiencies.''
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(ix) lists ``[t]ires (when in use) for 
proper inflation and condition.'' ASME B30.5-2004 calls for tires be 
checked for ``inflation pressure'' and Subpart R contains a similar 
provision, although it does not contain the ``when in use'' limitation. 
The Committee believed that it is unnecessary to check tires for proper 
inflation on equipment that is not in use. In addition, it decided to 
not include the word ``pressure'' because it believed that checking 
pressure each shift with a gauge is unnecessary and inconsistent with 
the visual nature of the shift inspection.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(x) lists ``[g]round conditions around the 
equipment for proper support, including ground settling under and 
around outriggers and supporting foundations, ground water 
accumulation, or similar conditions.'' This item is new, in that it is 
not included in 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N or the ANSI/ASME standards. 
The Committee believed that ground conditions can change from shift to 
shift, and in light of the critical importance of sufficient ground 
support, included this item in the C-DAC document.
    A nearly identical provision is included in 29 CFR part 1926 
subpart R. However, the C-DAC provision differs from the Subpart R 
provision in that the language ``and supporting foundations'' was added 
by C-DAC to reflect that some cranes (particularly towers cranes) are 
set on surfaces other than ``ground'' (e.g., concrete) and that ground 
settling could occur ``under and around'' those foundations. As such, 
the Agency believes that the C-DAC language is appropriate in the 
proposed rule. It should also be noted that a separate provision, Sec.  
1926.1402, Ground conditions, is included in this proposed rule, which 
more specifically addresses responsibility for and adequacy of ground 
conditions.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(xi) lists ``[t]he equipment for level 
position, both shift and after each move and setup.'' This item is not 
included in the ANSI/ASME standards; however, it mirrors the language 
of the similar pre-shift inspection in Subpart R. The Committee found 
that, as with ground conditions, maintaining the equipment's level 
position is essential for its safe operation. Since factors affecting 
the equipment's angle of inclination can change from shift to shift 
(such as compression of dunnage, ground settling from freeze/thaw 
conditions and ground compression), the Committee believed that it is 
necessary to include this in the shift inspection.
    The SBREFA Panel recommended that OSHA solicit public comment about 
whether it is necessary to clarify the requirement of proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(d)(1)(xi) that the equipment be inspected for ``level 
position'' by clarifying the amount of tolerance that would be allowed 
for the equipment to be considered ``level.'' The Agency requests 
public comment on this issue.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(xii) lists ``[o]perator cab windows for 
significant cracks, breaks, or other deficiencies that would hamper the 
operator's view.'' \32\ The purpose of this proposed provision is to 
ensure adequate visibility. The Committee believed that it is important 
to ensure that the windows' condition does not hamper the operator's 
view. Since a significant crack, break or other defect hampering the 
operator's view may occur during a shift, it believed that this item 
needs to be included in the shift inspection. The inclusion of the 
words ``significant'' and ``hamper the operator's view'' were to 
clarify that minor deficiencies that do not materially impair the 
operator's view are not considered safety hazards.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \32\ Currently, 29 CFR Part 1926 Subpart N contains a 
requirement specifying that the type of glazing in cabs must not 
cause ``a visible distortion.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(xiii) lists ``[r]ails, rail stops, rail 
clamps and supporting surfaces when the equipment has rail traveling.'' 
This item is not specifically listed as an inspection item in the pre-
shift inspections of Subpart R or in the Frequent Inspections of the 
1968 or 2004 ANSI/ASME B30.5 standards. However, they are included 
because of the essential role they play in the holding and emergency 
stopping of rail mounted equipment. Their importance to safe operation 
is similarly recognized by their inclusion in proposed Sec.  1926.1415, 
Safety Devices, as safety devices that must be working properly for 
crane operations to continue.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(xiv) lists ``[s]afety devices and 
operational aids for proper operation.'' Subpart N, through its 
incorporation by reference of ANSI B30.5-1968, includes a daily 
inspection of safety devices for malfunction for the equipment it 
covers, while ASME B30.5-2004 requires a daily inspection of 
operational aids for malfunction. Finally, Subpart R includes a 
nonexclusive list of safety devices in its pre-shift inspection. The 
equipment's safety devices and operational aids would be included 
because of their important role in assisting the operator in the safe 
operation of equipment.
    Concern was raised in Committee about including this item because 
the industry did not have clear, consistent definitions for terms 
``safety devices'' and ``operational aids.'' This concern was addressed 
by referencing the lists of devices for each of these terms in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1415, Safety devices and Sec.  1926.1416, Operational aids.
    The language also reflects the Committee's view that the inspection 
of these devices and aids is more accurately described as an inspection 
for ``proper operation'' rather than for ``malfunction.'' The Committee 
considered this a more accurate description because the person 
conducting the inspection does so by checking the safety device or 
operational aid for proper operation. If it is found to be working 
properly, the inspection is finished.
    Another concern was including both safety devices and operational 
aids in this provision, since many members were of the view that these 
two categories of devices necessitate different levels and types of 
action when a deficiency is found. That concern was addressed by 
specifying in proposed Sec.  1926.1412(d)(3) that if a deficiency is 
found, the action that

[[Page 59770]]

would be required in response would be the actions delineated in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1415, Safety devices and Sec.  1926.1416, 
Operational aids, which address these two categories differently. See 
additional discussions of these procedures in Sec. Sec.  1926.1415 and 
1926.1416 of this explanation of the rule.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(2) would establish the follow-up actions to 
the identification of apparent deficiencies during the shift inspection 
that would be required. Specifically, under proposed 1926.1412(d)(2), 
immediately following the discovery of any deficiency identified 
pursuant to proposed Sec.  1926.1412(d)(1)(i) through (xiii), or 
pursuant to other equipment-specific inspections (e.g., see proposed 
Sec.  1926.1436(p) (inspection of derricks), the competent person must 
determine whether the deficiency is a safety hazard. If so, equipment 
operations must cease until it has been corrected. The correction 
procedure described in proposed Sec.  1926.1412(d)(2) is similar to 
that in ANSI B30.5-1968 and ASME B30.5-2004 for their Frequent 
Inspections.
    This approach reflects the Committee's determination that not all 
deficiencies constitute safety hazards. The proposed language in Sec.  
1926.1412(d)(2) reflects that approach by linking the requirement for 
removing the equipment from service to deficiencies that constitute 
safety hazards. The provision is designed to ensure that this 
determination is made appropriately by requiring that it be made by a 
competent person. The competent person would have the capability 
necessary to make an accurate determination. In addition, requiring a 
competent person to make the determination would ensure that his or her 
findings were implemented; i.e., the competent person would have the 
authority to order the equipment out of service if the deficiency 
constituted a hazard. The Agency believes that this would be an 
appropriate means of protecting employees from equipment with 
deficiencies that constitute safety hazards.
    The SBREFA Panel recommended that OSHA solicit public comment on 
whether, and under what circumstances, booming down should be 
specifically excluded as a part of the shift inspection, and whether 
the removal of non-hinged inspection plates should be required during 
the shift inspection. Proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(1), discussed below, 
explicitly states that booming down is not required as part of the 
shift inspection for wire rope. It is the Agency's understanding that 
C-DAC did not include a similar provision in the general shift 
inspection provision in proposed Sec.  1926.1412(d) because booming 
down would not be required to observe a deficiency in any of the items 
requiring inspection under that paragraph. Similarly, OSHA does not 
believe that inspection for a deficiency in any of those items would 
require removal of non-hinged inspection plates. However, OSHA welcomes 
public comment on these points.
Paragraph 1412(e) Monthly
    Proposed paragraph (e) would require a monthly inspection of the 
equipment, the second of the three regularly scheduled general 
inspections that would be required by this proposed standard. The 
monthly inspection is identical in coverage and manner to the shift 
inspection required by proposed Sec.  1926.1412(d), with one addition 
discussed below. Thus, the monthly inspection would be a visual 
inspection of the items listed in the shift inspection for apparent 
deficiencies, conducted by a competent person. However, unlike a shift 
inspection, a written record of the monthly inspection is proposed to 
be kept and retained for at least 3 months.
    In addition, under the annual/comprehensive inspection in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1412(f)(4), the employer would be required to identify 
developing deficiencies that, while not yet safety hazards, need to be 
monitored. In such cases the employer under proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(f)(4) and (f)(6) would be required to monitor them in the 
monthly inspections.
    This provision differs in some ways from the current requirement in 
29 CFR part 1926 Subpart N that incorporates by reference ANSI B30.5-
1968 and from ASME B30.5-2004. For example, rather than a monthly 
inspection, these industry standards call for a ``Frequent'' inspection 
to be done at ``daily to monthly'' intervals. The Committee believed 
that the proposed approach is an improvement over the ANSI/ASME 
approach by eliminating ambiguity over the frequency of inspections. 
Also, the consensus standards do not call for the monitoring of 
developing deficiencies, a change the Committee believed would lead to 
the elimination of hazards before they develop. However, many of the 
items listed in those consensus standards for frequent inspections are 
similar to those listed in the shift and monthly inspections of the 
proposed rule (See discussion of items inspected under proposed 
paragraphs (d)(1)(i) through (xiv) for comparison).
    Proposed paragraph (e)(3) would establish a documentation 
requirement for this monthly inspection. Specifically, proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(e)(3)(i) would require that the inspection ``be documented by 
the employer that conducts the inspection'' and indicate the items 
checked with results, the name and signature of the person of the 
inspector, and the date. In these respects this proposed requirement is 
similar to that currently in effect under Sec.  1926.550(b)(2) of 29 
CFR part 1926 Subpart N for crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes. 
Proposed Sec.  1926.1412(e)(3)(ii) would establish a minimum three-
month retention period for the monthly inspection documentation.
    These two proposed provisions have several purposes. The Committee 
believed that, on a monthly basis, it is necessary to record the items 
checked and the results of an inspection that for the most part 
parallels a shift inspection. It believed that the documentation of 
this inspection, signed by the person who conducted the inspection and 
retained for three months, would have several effects. First, it would 
increase the likelihood that more employers would implement systems for 
conducting and responding to inspections. The failure to do so would be 
more readily apparent if a record were not made, and the signature of 
the person who conducted the inspection would be an inducement to that 
person to ensure that the inspection was done correctly. Second, it 
would create a record that the employer could use to help track 
developing problems so that they could be corrected in time to assure 
continued safe operation of the equipment.
    The Agency notes that the proposed three month retention period 
also reflects a desire of the Committee to have a retention period that 
is consistent with Department of Transportation (``DOT'') truck 
inspection documentation requirements. Also, proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(e)(3) parallels the monthly inspection for wire rope in 
proposed paragraph 1413(b) in terms of timing, level of scrutiny, 
expertise of the inspector, and documentation.
    The SBREFA Panel recommended that OSHA solicit public comment on 
whether the provision for monthly inspections should, like the 
provision for annual inspections, specify who must keep the 
documentation associated with monthly inspections. (The provision for 
annual inspections states that the documentation must be ``maintained 
by the employer who conducts the inspection.'') OSHA requests public 
comment on the issue raised by the Panel's recommendation.

[[Page 59771]]

    The SBREFA Panel also recommended that OSHA restate the corrective 
action provisions from the shift inspection (proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(d)(2) and (3)) in proposed Sec.  1926.1412(e). Under proposed 
Sec.  1926.1412(e)(1), the monthly inspection must be conducted in 
accordance with proposed Sec.  1926.1412(d) on shift inspections, and 
this means that the corrective action provisions in proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(d)(2) and (3) must also be followed in the monthly 
inspections. OSHA requests comment on whether the language in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1412(d)(2) and (3) should be repeated under proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(e).
Paragraph (f) Annual/Comprehensive
    Proposed paragraph (f) would require an annual (i.e., once every 
twelve months), general inspection of the equipment, the third of the 
three regularly scheduled general inspections that would be required by 
this proposed standard. It would promote safety by ensuring that a 
thorough, comprehensive inspection of the equipment is performed to 
detect and address deficiencies that might not be detected in the 
proposed shift and monthly inspections.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(1) would require that a qualified person 
inspect the equipment, at least every 12 months, in accordance with 
Sec.  1926.1412(d) (shift inspections). The Committee's intent was to 
have the items specified in the shift inspection examined more 
thoroughly, by a qualified person, on an annual basis. This would 
ensure that deficiencies necessitating a greater degree of scrutiny 
than what would be required in the shift inspection (such as a 
deficiency that is not apparent in a visual inspection but is 
detectable through disassembly), and a greater degree of expertise to 
detect, would be discovered.
    The Committee believed that, in light of this need for greater 
scrutiny, a higher level of expertise is needed of the person 
conducting the inspection than is currently required for the annual 
inspection in 29 CFR part 1926 Subpart N (Subpart N, at Sec.  
1926.550(a)(6), requires that it be conducted by a competent person). 
The Committee's view is similar to that reflected in COE-EM 385-1-1 (3 
Nov 03) and ASME B30.5-2004, both of which call for a qualified person 
to perform those standards' ``periodic'' inspections. The Agency 
believes that, to effectuate the purpose of the proposed annual/
comprehensive inspection, a qualified person would be needed to conduct 
this inspection.
    The Agency notes that neither this paragraph nor the subsequent 
paragraphs under proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f) specify the level of 
scrutiny that would be required for the annual/comprehensive 
inspection. As it is the Agency's understanding that it was the 
Committee's belief that this inspection needs to be more thorough than 
a visual inspection for apparent deficiencies, OSHA solicits comments 
from the public as to whether language specifying a higher level of 
scrutiny (for example, ``thorough, including disassembly when 
necessary'') should be added.
    In terms of timing, this proposed annual/comprehensive inspection 
is essentially the same as currently specified in Subpart N, which 
requires an ``annual'' inspection.
    The requirement that the inspection be conducted at least every 12 
months means that an inspection must be conducted on or before the 
anniversary date of the last annual inspection. A situation that may 
arise is where the equipment is not in service on the anniversary date. 
In that situation, since the equipment is not in service, the annual 
inspection would not have to be done at that point. However, the 
equipment could not be put back into service until the annual 
inspection had been done.\33\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \33\ Note that, under proposed Sec.  1926.1412(h), discussed 
below, equipment that has been out of regular service for three 
months or more must receive a monthly inspection before being 
returned to service. However, if the equipment had been out of 
regular service for more than three months but it was due for its 
annual inspection, the annual inspection would have to be done and 
there would therefore be no need to also do the Sec.  1926.1412(h) 
(out of regular service) inspection.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As discussed below, proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f)(4)-(f)(6) contain 
specific proposed responsive actions in the event a deficiency is 
discovered in the annual/comprehensive inspection. C-DAC recommended 
that proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f)(1) state that `` * * * the equipment 
shall be inspected * * * in accordance with paragraph (d) (shift 
inspections).'' Read literally, the C-DAC language would have required 
the employer to comply with the responsive actions specified for the 
shift inspections in proposed Sec.  1926.1412(d). However, the 
specified responsive actions for the proposed shift inspection differ 
from those proposed for the annual/comprehensive inspection. Therefore, 
the Agency modified the C-DAC language for proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(f)(1) to make it clear that the responsive actions that would 
be required if a deficiency were found under Sec.  1926.1412(f)(1) are 
those specified in proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f)(4)-(f)(6). This has been 
done by adding the following language to the C-DAC (f)(1) provision:

    At least every 12 months the equipment shall be inspected by a 
qualified person in accordance with paragraph (d) (shift 
inspections) of this section, except that the corrective action set 
forth in Paragraph (f) Annual/comprehensive, of this section shall 
apply.

    The difference is that while both require that the equipment be 
removed from service if safety hazards are identified, paragraphs 
(f)(4) through (f)(6) also provide that a deficiency that might, but 
has not yet, reached the safety hazard stage must be monitored on a 
monthly basis. (Also, the determinations in Sec.  1926.1412(f)(4) 
through (f)(6) are made by a qualified person, whereas the 
determinations in the shift inspection are made by a competent person.)
    Proposed paragraphs (f)(2)(i) through (xxi) supplement the list of 
inspection items in proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f)(1) that would be 
required to be inspected in the annual/comprehensive inspection. The 
Committee developed this list based on the members' experience and 
current industry practice as reflected in current consensus standards 
for annual/periodic inspections. The Committee believed that each item 
plays an important role in the safe operation of equipment.
    The list in proposed paragraphs (f)(2)(i) through (xxi) differs 
somewhat from those in consensus standards. Among other differences, 
the list in these proposed paragraphs is more user-friendly to the 
employer and qualified person because the item inspected is at the 
beginning of each sentence. Also, some items not in consensus standards 
are included because, as discussed below, in the view of the Committee, 
they also have a significant effect on the safe operation of equipment.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(i) lists ``[e]quipment structure 
(including the boom and, if equipped, the jib),'' including ``(A) 
Structural members: deformed, cracked, or significantly corroded. (B) 
Bolts, rivets and other fasteners: loose, failed or significantly 
corroded. (C) Welds for cracks.'' Differences with similar items listed 
in ANSI B30.5-1968, ASME B30.5-2004 and COE-EM 385-1-1 (3 Nov 03) are 
as follows: ``Welds for cracks'' was added to better ensure that the 
equipment is structurally sound; ``Other fasteners'' was added to 
``bolts and rivets'' (referenced in the ANSI/ASME standards) because 
there are now other types of fasteners which also need to be inspected 
to ensure they are not loose, failed or significantly corroded; and 
``significantly'' was added to describe

[[Page 59772]]

the degree of corrosion on a structural member or fastener needed to 
trigger further examination because some corrosion on those items is 
normal and has no effect on safety.
    Proposed paragraphs (f)(2)(ii) through (iv) list: ``[s]heaves and 
drums for cracks or significant wear;'' ``[p]arts such as pins, 
bearings, shafts, gears, rollers and locking devices for distortion, 
cracks or significant wear;'' and ``[b]rake and clutch system parts, 
linings, pawls and ratchets for excessive wear.'' These items are 
similar to the items currently listed in the Periodic Inspection 
(monthly to twelve month intervals) in ANSI B30.5-1968 and ASME B30.5-
2004. The Committee believed that these items, as reflected in their 
inclusion in current consensus standards, need to be checked in an 
annual inspection to ensure the safe operation of the equipment.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(v) lists ``[s]afety devices and 
operational aids for proper operation (including significant 
inaccuracies).'' The Committee included the term ``significant 
inaccuracies'' in recognition of the fact that such devices normally 
operate within a tolerance range. Corrective action would not be 
required if the inaccuracy is so small as to be irrelevant with regards 
to the safe operation of the equipment. In contrast, significant 
inaccuracies in these devices could mislead the operator and contribute 
to actions that could result in the equipment being inadvertently used 
in an unsafe manner. Consequently, the Committee believed that these 
devices and aids need to be inspected for both proper operation and 
significant inaccuracies.
    This provision is broader than similar provisions in the ANSI and 
ANSI/ASME standards. Specifically, ANSI B30.5-1968 only addresses 
``safety devices for malfunction'' (the Periodic Inspection includes 
the items listed in the Frequent Inspection) while the Periodic 
Inspection for ASME B30.5-2004 only includes operational aids.
    Another significant difference between this paragraph and the ASME 
standard is the follow-up action required subsequent to the discovery 
of a deficiency involving operational aids. Under this paragraph, the 
discovery of such a deficiency that is determined to be a safety hazard 
would require the equipment to be removed from service until the safety 
hazard is corrected. In contrast, under the 2004 ASME standard, 
alternatives to the removal of equipment from service are 
available.\34\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \34\ Section 5-3.2.1.2 of the ASME standard allows the employer 
to follow the recommendations of the manufacturer of the equipment 
or device for continued operation or shutdown of the equipment. The 
same section of the ASME standard also sets forth alternative 
precautions, which may be taken unless the manufacturer specifies 
otherwise, when specific operational aids malfunction.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed Sec.  1926.1416 would permit equipment with operational 
aids that are not functioning properly to continue to be used with 
specified alternative measures in place. Proposed Sec.  1926.1416(d) 
and (e) would set time limits for such use. It is the Agency's 
understanding that the Committee intended that this same approach 
should apply with respect to the follow-up action required when an 
operational aid is found in the annual inspection to be not working 
properly. In other words, the equipment could be returned to service 
but the time limits in proposed Sec.  1926.1416(d) and (e) would apply, 
as would the alternative measures requirements.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f) does not explicitly describe how the 
follow-up measures in proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f)(4)-(f)(6) would apply 
to operational aids. As explained below in the discussion of proposed 
Sec.  1926.1412(f)(4)-(f)(6), the Agency believes that it would be 
appropriate to add language to clarify that the follow-up action 
required when an operational aid is found in the annual inspection to 
be not working properly is the action specified in proposed Sec.  
1926.1416(d) and (e).
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(vi) lists ``[g]asoline, diesel, electric, 
or other power plants for safety-related problems (such as leaking 
exhaust and emergency shut-down feature), conditions and proper 
operation.'' This proposed provision was derived from ANSI B30.5-1968 
and ASME B30.5-2004 and reworded to emphasize and limit its application 
to safety related issues, and to include examples to better communicate 
those concepts. Leaking exhaust was included as an example because it 
could asphyxiate an employee. The emergency shut-down feature was added 
as an example because a failure of this feature could result in an 
employee being struck by a suspended load.
    Proposed paragraphs (f)(2)(vii), (viii) and (ix) list ``[c]hains 
and chain drive sprockets for excessive wear of sprockets and excessive 
chain stretch,'' ``[t]ravel steering, brakes, and locking devices, for 
proper operation,'' and ``[t]ires for damage or excessive wear.'' These 
proposed provisions were derived from ANSI B30.5-1968 and ASME B30.5-
2004. The Committee believed that these items, as their presence in 
these industry standards reflects, play a significant role in the safe 
operation of equipment.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(x) lists ``[h]ydraulic, pneumatic and 
other pressurized hoses, fittings and tubing, as follows: (A) Flexible 
hose or its junction with the fittings for indications of leaks. (B) 
Threaded or clamped joints for leaks. (C) Outer covering of the hose 
for blistering, abnormal deformation or other signs of failure/
impending failure. (D) Outer surface of a hose, rigid tube, or fitting 
for indications of excessive abrasion or scrubbing.'' The purpose of 
this proposed paragraph, as noted during C-DAC meetings, is to ``call 
attention to specific parts of these hoses'' and thus prevent the 
failure of mechanisms, such as the brakes, hoist mechanisms and limit 
switches, that are powered or affected by the movement of fluids or air 
through the equipment's system of hoses.
    Neither the general provisions in 29 CFR part 1926 Subpart N nor 
the provisions in ANSI B30.5-1968 that are incorporated by reference in 
Subpart N contain a specific requirement for an inspection of these 
hoses, fittings and tubing. However, several more recent consensus and 
government standards do contain similar items in their annual/Periodic 
inspections. ASME B30.5-2004, COE-EM 385-1-1 (3 Nov 03) and DOE STD 
1090-2004 all contain some form of this item in their Periodic 
inspection provisions.
    The Committee's discussion of this item focused on whether language 
used in ASME B30.5-2004 should be adopted. For example, the meaning of 
the reference in the ASME standard to ``metal and couplings'' as one of 
the points of concern on a hose for leakage was questioned. The 
Committee sought to be clearer by referencing ``fittings'' instead in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f)(2)(x)(A).
    Also, members questioned the appropriateness of the ASME language 
on inspecting for hose leakage that specifies leakage from threaded or 
clamped joints that is not eliminated by ``recommended procedures.'' 
Since the use of such procedures to correct a leak is in the nature of 
a repair, the concept of limiting the inspection item in this manner 
was rejected.
    Proposed paragraphs (f)(2)(xi)-(xiii) list a series of items that, 
like (f)(2)(x), focus on specific parts of hydraulic and pneumatic 
power systems. They would be included for the same reason--to better 
ensure that those parts of the equipment driven by hydraulic and 
pneumatic power do not fail. These provisions address: ``(xi) 
[h]ydraulic and pneumatic pumps and motors, as follows: (A) Performance 
indicators:

[[Page 59773]]

unusual noises or vibration, low operating speed, excessive heating of 
the fluid, low pressure. (B) Loose bolts or fasteners. (C) Shaft seals 
and joints between pump sections for leaks''; (xii) ``[h]ydraulic and 
pneumatic valves, as follows: (A) Spools: sticking, improper return to 
neutral, and leaks. (B) Leaks. (C) Valve housing cracks. (D) Relief 
valves: failure to reach correct pressure (if there is a manufacturer 
procedure for checking pressure, it must be followed)''; and (xiii) 
``[h]ydraulic and pneumatic cylinders, as follows: (A) Drifting caused 
by fluid leaking across the piston. (B) Rod seals and welded joints for 
leaks. (C) Cylinder rods for scores, nicks or dents. (D) Case (barrel) 
for significant dents. (E) Rod eyes and connecting joints: loose or 
deformed.''
    As with proposed paragraph (f)(2)(x), these items are not 
explicitly mentioned in Subpart N. Neither the Subpart itself nor the 
incorporated ``Periodic'' inspection in ANSI B30.5-1968 specifically 
references these items. However, ASME B30.5-2004, COE-EM 385-1-1 (3 Nov 
03) and DOE STD 1090-2004 each require inspection of these items by 
language with varying degrees of specificity.
    While discussing these items, C-DAC members decided not to include 
the inspection of hydraulic filters that are included in ASME B30.5-
2004 because, as a Committee member who works for a manufacturer noted, 
the condition of these filters is a maintenance rather than a safety 
issue. Other discussion related to several of the items in this list. 
In proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f)(2)(xi)(C), ``pump'' was inserted to 
clarify which joints must be inspected for leaks. Further, 
``significant'' was added to describe the dents subject to inspection 
under proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f)(2)(xiii)(D) because some dents on 
cases do not affect operation.
    The Committee believed that these items, as their presence in these 
government and consensus standards reflects, play a significant role in 
the safe operation of equipment.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(xiv) lists ``[o]utrigger pads/floats'' 
for excessive wear or cracks.'' The purpose of the inspection of 
outrigger pads/floats is to make certain that these pads (which are 
attached to the outrigger and used to distribute the weight of the load 
to the ground) will not fail and leave the outrigger without proper 
support.
    This item is not included in the annual inspection of Subpart N for 
cranes and derricks, the periodic inspections of ANSI B30.5-1968 or 
ASME B30.5-2004. However, the Periodic (yearly) inspection in COE-EM 
385-1-1 (3 Nov 03) may cover ``outrigger pads/floats'' with its general 
provision regarding ``foundation or supports.'' The Committee similarly 
included this item because it believed that it plays a significant role 
in the safe operation of equipment.
    Paragraph (f)(2)(xv) lists ``slider pads for excessive wear or 
cracks.'' Slider pads (which are used to guide sections of equipment 
such as the boom extension on a hydraulic crane) are included because 
excessive wear may cause the equipment to fail. The Committee was aware 
that some disassembly may be required to inspect slider pads.
    This item is not included in the annual inspection of Subpart N for 
cranes and derricks or the periodic inspections of ANSI B30.5-1968 or 
ASME B30.5-2004. However, the Committee included this item because of 
its role in the safe operation of the equipment.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(xvi) lists ``[e]lectrical components and 
wiring for cracked or split insulation and loose or corroded 
terminations.'' Wires are not listed in the annual/Periodic inspection 
in Subpart N, ANSI B30.5-1968, ASME B30.5--2004 or COE-EM 385-1-1 (3 
Nov 03). The purpose of this proposed provision is to prevent hazards 
related to deficiencies in electrical components and wiring. Since such 
deficiencies may cause a fire or the malfunction of safety related 
systems, the Agency believes that the inclusion of electrical 
components as well as wiring in the inspection list is necessary.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(xvii) lists ``[w]arning labels and decals 
originally supplied with the equipment by the manufacturer or otherwise 
required under this standard: missing or unreadable.'' The annual/
Periodic inspection in COE-EM 385-1-1 (3-NovJan 03) contains a similar 
requirement relative to ``safety and function labels for legibility and 
replacement.'' However, this item is not included in the annual/
Periodic inspections included in Subpart N, ANSI B30.5-1968 or ASME 
B30.5-2004.
    The Committee believed that warning decals that would be required 
under this proposed standard (either by virtue of a specific provision 
in this proposed standard, e.g., paragraph 1407(g), or because they 
were originally supplied by the manufacturer with the equipment, see 
Sec.  1926.1433(e)(5), Posted warnings) provide important safety 
reminders and information. As such, it was of the view that they need 
to be maintained in order for them to continue to alert users to those 
safety concerns. The Agency modified the C-DAC language for proposed 
paragraph (f)(2)(xvii) so that it would cover warning labels and decals 
originally supplied by the manufacturer and thus better reflect the 
Committee's intent as indicated by proposed Sec.  1926.1433(e)(5).
    Proposed paragraphs (f)(2)(xviii-xxi) list: ``Originally equipped 
operator seat: missing;'' ``Operator seat: unusable;'' \35\ 
``Originally equipped steps, ladders, handrails, guards: missing;'' and 
``Steps, ladders, handrails, guards: in unusable/unsafe condition.'' 
These are not included in the annual/periodic inspections of ANSI 
B30.5-1968, ASME B30.5-2004, or COE-EM 385-1-1 (3 Nov 03).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \35\ The original C-DAC language provided: ``Operator seat: 
missing or unusable.'' OSHA modified this language to avoid the 
implication that equipment that did not include an operator seat as 
original equipment would, contrary to C-DAC's intent, nevertheless 
need to have a seat installed.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Committee believed that these are safety related items that 
need to be inspected. For example, if the operator seat is unusable, 
the likelihood of the operator manipulating a control in an inadvertent 
manner or being unable to reach a control is increased. The other items 
relate to preventing falls and contact with exposed parts that are 
moving or otherwise dangerous. It should be noted that, among others, 
proposed Sec.  1926.1433, Design, construction and testing, and Sec.  
1926.1426, Fall protection, would include requirements related to 
several of these items.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(3) would require functional testing as part 
of the annual/comprehensive inspection. A general functional testing 
requirement is not included in the annual/periodic inspection in COE-EM 
385-1-1 (3 Nov 03), although it does require functional testing for 
certain items, such as ``crane function operating mechanisms,'' and 
``operator aids (safety devices) and indicating devices.'' Similarly, 
the annual/periodic inspection provisions of ANSI B30.5-1968 
(incorporated by reference into Subpart N) and ASME B30.5-2004, imply a 
functional testing requirement with regard to several specific items 
(e.g., in B30.5-1968 and in B30.5-2004), ``[t]ravel steering, braking, 
and locking devices, for malfunction'').
    The purpose of this testing is to ensure that the equipment as 
configured in the inspection is functioning properly. It was the 
Committee's belief that, without functional testing, the inspection may 
not reveal some safety problems.
    The proposed provision reflects the Committee's belief that 
functional testing should be limited to the equipment ``as configured 
in the

[[Page 59774]]

inspection.'' In its view, functional testing in all possible 
configurations, with all possible attachments, is unnecessary and would 
be unduly burdensome. In light of the comprehensive nature of the 
inspection that would result from compliance with the proposed annual/
comprehensive inspection provision, the Agency believes that this 
limitation would not adversely affect safety.
    Proposed paragraphs (f)(4) through (6) delineate the follow-up 
procedures that would apply when a deficiency is identified during the 
annual/comprehensive inspection. The purpose of these provisions is to 
ensure that a deficiency that is not yet a safety hazard but may 
develop into one is monitored on a monthly basis, and that a deficiency 
that is a safety hazard is corrected before the equipment is returned 
to service.
    Specifically, proposed paragraph (f)(4) provides that immediately 
following the identification of a deficiency, the qualified person must 
determine ``whether the deficiency constitutes a safety hazard, or 
though not yet a safety hazard, needs to be monitored in the monthly 
inspections.'' Proposed paragraph (f)(5) would require that equipment 
with a deficiency identified as a safety hazard by the qualified person 
be removed from service until the deficiency is corrected. Proposed 
paragraph (f)(6) would require the employer to check in the monthly 
inspections the deficiencies that the qualified person had identified 
as needing monitoring.
    The corrective procedures in proposed paragraphs (f)(4) through 
(f)(6) are similar to those in ANSI B30.5-1968 and ASME B30.5-2004 in 
that the ANSI/ASME provisions also call for equipment operation to 
cease upon discovery of a safety hazard. They differ in that the ANSI/
ASME provisions have no procedures for monitoring deficiencies that are 
not yet safety hazards.
    The Committee believed that this would be an effective means of 
ensuring that employers respond appropriately to deficiencies 
identified in the annual/comprehensive inspection. In addition, the 
Committee's addition of a mechanism for monthly monitoring, where 
needed, of deficiencies that have not yet developed into safety hazards 
would ensure that developing hazards are caught before they endanger 
employees.
    Upon reviewing these proposed provisions, OSHA believes that C-DAC 
inadvertently omitted a reference in the proposed provisions for 
annual/comprehensive inspections to special corrective action 
procedures for operational aids. This issue is explained below.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1416, Operational aids, sets out requirements 
that would apply where an operational aid is not working properly. 
Specifically, it would allow equipment with an operational aid that is 
not working to continue to be operated for a limited time as long as 
certain temporary protective measures are used.
    In a shift or monthly inspection, as reflected in proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(d)(3), if a deficiency in an operational aid is identified, 
the corrective action described in proposed Sec.  1926.1416 would 
apply. In contrast, in the proposed paragraph on annual/comprehensive 
inspections (Sec.  1926.1412(f)), C-DAC did not include a similar 
reference.
    If the corrective actions described in proposed Sec.  1926.1416 did 
not apply and an operational aid were found to be not working properly 
in an annual/comprehensive inspection, the qualified person would have 
to determine if that constituted a safety hazard. If he or she 
concluded that it was a safety hazard, the equipment would have to be 
removed from service immediately until the aid was repaired. OSHA 
believes that such a result would be contrary to C-DAC's intent, since 
the issue of the extent to which an operational aid needed to be 
repaired was comprehensively dealt with in proposed Sec.  1926.1416.
    In sum, the Agency believes that proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f) should 
be modified to specifically make the corrective actions in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1416 applicable. OSHA requests public comment on this issue.
    The Committee considered whether the monitoring aspect of this 
proposed requirement would unduly add to the employer's paperwork 
burden. The Committee determined that it would not, since all that 
would be involved would be a notation on the employer's monthly 
inspection form to pay special attention to the item and then note its 
condition.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(7), Documentation of annual/comprehensive 
inspection, would require the employer that conducts the inspection to 
complete and maintain, for a minimum of twelve months, documentation 
that contains ``[t]he items checked and the results of the 
inspection,'' and ``[t]he name and signature of the person who 
conducted the inspection and the date.'' Note that proposed Sec.  
1926.1413(c)(4), which pertains to the annual/comprehensive wire rope 
inspection, contains a similar documentation requirement.
    This proposed documentation requirement differs in several respects 
from Subpart N and other current consensus standards. For example, 
Subpart N at 29 CFR 1926.550(a)(6), has an open-ended retention period 
and does not include a signature requirement or a requirement that the 
inspector be named. It also differs from the periodic inspection in 
ASME B30.5-2004 that only calls for ``dated records'' for specific, 
critical items, does not specify that the inspector's name be listed, 
and does not specify a retention period.
    The Committee believed that the proposed provision would promote 
safety by ensuring that the items checked and the inspection results 
are documented and maintained for at least 12 months. This would ensure 
that past deficiencies and potential hazards associated with the 
equipment can be tracked. In the Committee's view this information 
would help the qualified person assess the equipment in the subsequent 
annual/ comprehensive inspection.
    The Committee believed that the documentation of this inspection, 
signed by the person who conducted the inspection and retained for 12 
months, would have several effects. First, it would increase the 
likelihood that more employers would implement systems for conducting 
and responding to inspections. The failure to do so would be more 
readily apparent if a record was not made, and the signature of the 
person who conducted the inspection would be an inducement to that 
person to ensure that the inspection was done correctly.
    The Committee determined that it would not be necessary for this 
documentation to be available on site. The information in the document 
is not routinely needed at the site to ensure safe operation. Rather, 
it would be sufficient to maintain it in a centralized location (such 
as a corporate office) and made available as necessary.
    During the SBREFA process, several Small Entity Representatives 
objected to the requirement for documentation of monthly and annual 
inspections, stating that such documentation would be unduly burdensome 
and would not, in their opinions, add to worker safety. The Panel 
recommended that OSHA solicit public comment on the extent of 
inspection documentation the rule should require. OSHA requests comment 
on this issue.

[[Page 59775]]

Paragraph 1412(g) Severe Service
    Proposed paragraph (g) would require the employer to inspect the 
equipment when the severity of use/conditions--``such as loading that 
may have exceeded rated capacity, shock loading that may have exceeded 
rated capacity, [or] prolonged exposure to a corrosive atmosphere''--
creates a ``reasonable probability of damage or excessive wear.'' In 
such instances, the employer would be required to stop using the 
equipment and have a qualified person ``inspect the equipment for 
structural damage''; determine whether, in light of the use/conditions 
of the severe service, any items listed in the Annual/comprehensive 
inspection need to be inspected and if so, inspect them; and if a 
deficiency is found, follow the correction/monitoring procedures set 
forth in proposed Sec.  1926.1412(f)(4)-(f)(6).
    Neither ANSI B30.5-1968 nor ASME B30.5-2004 has a specific 
inspection provision for severe service. Rather, those standards 
reference ``severity of service'' as a factor to be considered when 
determining how frequently to conduct a Periodic Inspection. COE-EM 
385-1-1 (1 Jan 03) references severe service under its periodic 
inspection as a basis for requiring that inspection to be performed 
quarterly as opposed to ``Yearly.''
    The Committee believed that there are certain events and 
circumstances that, because they may cause damage (i.e., structural 
damage or significant wear), should trigger a close inspection to check 
for such damage, rather than waiting for the next annual inspection.
    The Committee considered using ``heavy service'' as a trigger for 
such an inspection. In the course of that discussion, the Committee 
considered triggering the inspection based on specific rated load 
capacities (such as 85 to 100% of the rated load capacity) or on a 
particular number of cycles (such as in excess of 10 lift cycles per 
hour). These were rejected because members believed that, as long as 
the use is within the equipment's rated capacity, such use would not be 
expected to necessitate a special inspection.
    Instead, the Committee agreed that a trigger based on use or 
conditions in which there is a reasonable probability of damage or 
excessive wear would be an effective means of ensuring that equipment 
was not operated with such damage/wear. Examples were provided in the 
proposed provision to add clarity to the concept.
Paragraph 1412(h) Equipment Not in Regular Use
    Proposed paragraph (h) would require that equipment that sits idle 
for three months or more be inspected by a qualified person in 
accordance with the monthly inspection provisions of proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(e) before being used.
    This would ensure that deficiencies that may arise as a result of 
the equipment standing idle are checked before its subsequent use. The 
Committee believed that this inspection would need to be done by a 
qualified person because some of the deficiencies that may arise from 
sitting idle require the qualified person's higher level of ability to 
detect and assess. For example, equipment that is idle for a period of 
time is often subject to variations in weather (e.g., temperature and 
humidity) that cause contraction and expansion of parts and fluids, 
which can cause damage. In addition, idle equipment is also more likely 
to have corroded pins and corrosion on the boom. Such conditions need 
to be assessed by a qualified person to determine if there is a 
deficiency that constitutes a hazard.
    This proposed requirement differs from the ANSI/ASME standards in 
several respects, most significantly in terms of the time frame that 
triggers the inspection and the type of inspection required. Both ANSI 
B30.5-1968 and ASME B30.5-2004 subject cranes that are idle for one or 
more months, but less than six months, to a frequent inspection, and 
cranes that are idle for six or more months to a periodic inspection. 
It should be noted that under the proposed provision and the ANSI/ASME 
standards, an inspection of wire rope is included. A qualified person 
would conduct this inspection of wire rope (as well as the rest of the 
items included in this inspection of equipment not in regular use).
    The Committee considered the ANSI/ASME approach to inspecting idle 
equipment. It determined that a one month trigger was too short, 
because problems that may arise from the equipment sitting idle, such 
as drying/hardening seals, take longer than that to occur. It believed 
that a three month trigger was more appropriate to use for this 
purpose.
    Paragraph 1412(i). [Reserved.] This paragraph is reserved because 
it is inconvenient for readers to determine whether ``(i)'' is being 
used as a letter or a roman numeral.
Paragraph 1412(j)
    Proposed paragraph (j) would require that any part of a 
manufacturer's inspection procedures relating to safe operation that is 
more comprehensive or has a more frequent schedule than that required 
by this proposed section must be followed. However, the proposed 
paragraph notes that additional manufacturer documentation requirements 
need not be followed. Examples are provided in the proposed provision 
of the types of items that would be considered to relate to safe 
operation (``a safety device or operator aid, critical part of a 
control system, power plant, braking system, load-sustaining structural 
components, load hook, or in-use operating mechanism'').
    Neither the general provisions of 29 CFR part 1926 Subpart N nor 
ANSI B30.5-1968 contains a similar provision. However, Sec.  
1926.550(c)(5) of Subpart N relative to hammerhead tower cranes and 
Sec.  1926.550(f)(2)(iii) relative to floating cranes and floating 
derricks require that inspections meet the manufacturer's requirements. 
COE-EM 385-1-1-1 (3 Nov 03) states that ``[c]ranes and derricks shall 
be * * * inspected * * * in accordance with the manufacturer's 
operating manual for the crane and the applicable ANSI/ASME codes or 
OSHA requirements, whichever is more stringent.''
    The Committee believed that, to the extent a more comprehensive or 
frequent inspection is specified by the manufacturer, it is necessary 
for that to be done to ensure the safe operation of the equipment. In 
the Committee's view, the expertise of the manufacturer with respect to 
the equipment in this regard needs to be recognized and acted upon.

Summary of Significant Differences From the Current 29 CFR Part 1926 
Subpart N

    This proposed section differs in several respects from Subpart N. 
Unlike Subpart N, the proposed standard does not include an initial 
inspection for new equipment or inspections for standby cranes, nor 
does it include a requirement for preventive maintenance.
    The Committee concluded that manufacturers' quality control and 
inspection practices are generally effective in ensuring that new 
equipment does not have deficiencies that constitute safety hazards. 
The Committee believed that, to the extent those practices do not 
identify and correct all such hazards, the shift inspection would be 
adequate to identify and address them.
    The Committee concluded that a special inspection for ``standby'' 
cranes is not needed since the proposed section includes proposed 
requirements for equipment ``not in regular use'' (see the

[[Page 59776]]

discussion of proposed Sec.  1926.1412(h), above).
    The Committee also concluded that a general requirement for 
preventive maintenance is not needed because the proposed inspection 
requirements are designed to ensure that deficiencies constituting 
safety hazards will be identified quickly and equipment with such a 
safety hazard would be prohibited from being returned to service until 
the hazard is corrected.
    As discussed above, the proposed section would add requirements for 
a post-assembly inspection and a severe service inspection, and varies 
from Subpart N to some extent with respect to some of the items to be 
inspected. In addition, the specific proposed requirements for 
inspecting operational aids and for a qualified person to perform the 
modified equipment and annual inspections would be new requirements. 
Finally, rather than providing for ``daily to monthly'' inspections, 
the proposed standard would require shift inspections and monthly 
inspections.

Section 1413 Wire Rope--Inspection

    Cranes/derricks use wire rope to lift and support their loads and 
parts of the equipment. If the rope is worn or damaged, it can break, 
causing a failure of the equipment and/or a falling load, which can 
kill or injure workers below. Approximately 3% of crane fatalities in 
construction work result from wire ropes snapping. J.E. Beavers et al., 
``Crane-Related Fatalities in the Construction Industry,'' 132 Journal 
of Construction Engineering and Management 901, 903 (Sept. 2006). 
(OSHA-2007-0066-0011).
    Subpart N, in Sec.  1926.550(a), contains several inspection 
requirements applicable to wire ropes. Other requirements are found in 
ANSI B30.5-1968, which is incorporated by reference in Subpart N 
through Sec.  1926.550(b)(2). In addition, the employer currently must 
look to both Sec.  1926.550 and to the ANSI standard to learn the 
content of the required inspections, the qualifications of the 
inspector, and the requirements for addressing deficiencies found in 
ropes. The Committee believed that placing all of the required 
inspections and remedies in this subpart without reference to outside 
resources would make it easier for employers to find and become 
familiar with the steps they are required to take and so facilitate 
compliance. This is particularly true for small businesses, which bear 
a disproportionate cost when they must access outside resources.
    The proposal would require wire rope inspections at the same 
frequency--shift, monthly, and annually--that would apply for other 
crane components. Also, like inspections of other components, the shift 
and monthly inspections must be conducted by a ``competent person,'' 
and the annual inspection by a ``qualified person.''
Paragraph 1413(a) Shift Inspection
    Proposed paragraph (a) would require a shift inspection, the first 
of the three types of wire rope inspections that would be required 
under this subpart. The timing, degree of scrutiny, and the level of 
expertise required of the person conducting this inspection and the 
other two inspections (monthly and annual) essentially mirror those in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1412, Inspections, for general equipment 
inspections.
Paragraph 1413(a)(1)
    Proposed paragraph (a)(1) describes who conducts the shift 
inspection, the timing of the inspection, and the degree of scrutiny 
required.
    The shift inspection would be conducted by a ``competent person,'' 
a defined term in this subpart.\36\ C-DAC believed that a ``competent 
person'' would be the appropriate person to perform the shift 
inspection. OSHA standards typically assign comparable inspection 
duties to ``competent persons.'' See, for example, Sec.  1926.753(c) 
(competent person must conduct pre-shift visual inspection of cranes 
used in steel erection) and Sec.  1926.451(d)(3)(i) (competent person 
must inspect suspension scaffold before use to ensure it is able to 
support intended load). Moreover, a ``competent person'' would conduct 
other aspects of the shift inspections under this proposed standard. 
Some C-DAC members questioned using a ``competent person'' for shift 
and monthly inspections on the basis that the individual most likely to 
perform such an inspection, the operator, may not have the authority to 
take corrective action, as is required of a ``competent person'' by 
definition. In response, OSHA notes that the employer would be required 
to ensure that the person assigned to perform the shift inspections has 
the requisite authority.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \36\ As discussed below under paragraph 1926.1413(a)(4), Removal 
from service, in certain instances tasks relative to alternative 
measures for certain (Category II) deficiencies would be done by a 
``qualified person,'' also a defined term.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    This proposed paragraph also would require that this inspection be 
started before each shift and be completed before or during that shift. 
As with the general shift inspection, the Committee concluded that it 
was appropriate to allow the wire rope inspection to be completed 
during the shift instead of requiring it to be completed before the 
shift begins (see the discussion above of proposed Sec.  
1926.1412(d)(1), which explains the Committee's reasons for allowing 
the general shift inspection to be completed during the shift).
    Accordingly, the competent person would be required to inspect all 
wire rope that is reasonably likely to be used during the shift. In 
cases where some of the rope that is likely to be used is not readily 
visible before the shift begins, as discussed above, that portion may 
be inspected during the shift.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(1) would require the competent person 
to conduct a ``visual inspection * * * for apparent deficiencies.'' As 
discussed below, the purpose of this inspection is to ensure that 
deficiencies are identified and that, depending on the competent 
person's evaluation of those deficiencies, appropriate action is taken. 
The Committee wanted to make clear, however, that the inspection was 
not to be so comprehensive and time-consuming that it would be 
unrealistic to conduct it for each shift. To clarify that the 
inspection was one that was reasonable for a shift inspection, the 
provision states that neither ``untwisting (opening of wire rope)'' nor 
``booming down'' would be required during this inspection. It believed 
that keeping the level of inspection realistic will encourage 
compliance that ultimately will serve to reduce accidents.
Paragraph 1413(a)(2) Apparent Deficiencies
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(1) (discussed above) would require the 
competent person to look for ``apparent deficiencies, including those 
listed in paragraph (a)(2).'' Proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(2) would 
establish three categories (I, II, and III) of apparent wire rope 
deficiencies. The likelihood that a deficiency is hazardous increases 
as the number of the category increases from I to III. As discussed 
further below, the category determines the options or ``next steps'' 
available to or required of the employer under Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4), 
Removal from service.
    C-DAC's goal in this paragraph is to establish clear and 
appropriate requirements setting out the steps employers must take when 
inspections reveal deficiencies.
    Category I: Proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(2)(i) lists ``Category I'' 
apparent deficiencies. These are similar to the types of wire rope 
deterioration noted in the inspection provisions of

[[Page 59777]]

section 5-2.4.1 of ANSI B30.5-1968 and section 5-2.4.2 of ASME B30.5-
2004. As further indicated below in the discussion of Sec.  
1926.1413(a)(4)(i) under Removal from service, these items are grouped 
together because they reflect damage that may or may not be severe 
enough to constitute a hazard. Proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(i) sets 
forth the steps the employer would be required to take once a Category 
I apparent deficiency has been identified.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(2)(i)(A) begins the list with the 
``significant distortion'' of wire rope, such as ``kinking, crushing, 
unstranding, birdcaging, signs of core failure or steel core protrusion 
between the strands.'' These apparent deficiencies were selected 
because, as indicated by their inclusion in consensus standards, such 
as section 5-2.4.2 of ASME B30.5-2004, they may constitute or indicate 
the presence of a hazard. The Committee considered whether the 
reference in this paragraph to core failure should be limited to 
rotation resistant rope. However, the Committee decided not to limit 
``signs of core failure'' to rotation resistant rope.
    The word ``significant'' was included in this and other provisions 
in Sec.  1926.1413(a)(2)(i) to make clear that minimal defects of these 
types do not rise to the level of Category I deficiencies. Only those 
that may pose genuine safety concerns are included.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1413 (a)(2)(i)(B) lists ``significant 
corrosion'' as a Category I apparent deficiency. This type of damage 
was included because severe corrosion can weaken wire rope and cause it 
to break. The Committee used the descriptive term ``significant'' to 
limit further action to situations in which the degree of corrosion 
could realistically suggest a hazard.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(2)(i)(C) lists ``electric arc (from a source 
other than power lines) or heat damage'' as a Category I apparent 
deficiency. These deficiencies were derived from SAE (Society of 
Automotive Engineers) and COE (Army Corps of Engineers) standards and 
are included because such damage can weaken the wire rope. In 
discussing these types of damage, some Committee members expressed 
concern that ``heat damage'' would include instances where the rope had 
been cut to size by flame cutting. However, flame cutting would occur 
at the end of the newly cut rope, not at a load-bearing part of the 
rope. Heat damage is only a concern if it weakens a load-bearing part 
of the rope. Flame cutting done at the end of the rope, not in a load-
bearing part, would not cause a hazard.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(2)(i)(D) lists ``improperly applied end 
connections'' as another apparent deficiency. In the Committee's 
experience, one type of error that occurs is when somebody between 
shifts cuts the cable and puts the end connection back the wrong 
way.\37\ An improper connection is weaker than a proper one and can 
result in the connection failing.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \37\ An example would be when the person installs a U-bolt clip 
with the ``U'' on the live end of the wire rope.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed paragraph (a)(2)(i)(E) lists ``[s]ignificantly corroded, 
cracked, bent, or worn end connections (such as from severe service)'' 
as the last type of Category I apparent deficiency. Each of these may 
constitute a hazard.
    Category II: Proposed paragraph (a)(2)(ii) contains two types of 
Category II apparent deficiencies--visible broken wires (Sec.  
1926.1413(a)(2)(ii)(A)) and wire rope diameter reduction (Sec.  
1926.1413(a)(2)(ii)(B)). In the experience of the Committee, these more 
typically signal the presence of a safety hazard than Category I 
apparent deficiencies. Proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(ii), under 
Removal from service, sets forth the steps the employer would be 
required to take once a Category II apparent deficiency has been 
identified.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(2)(ii)(A) lists separate criteria for 
visible broken wires for running wire ropes (six randomly distributed 
broken wires in one rope lay or three broken wires in one strand in one 
rope lay), rotation resistant ropes (two randomly distributed broken 
wires in six rope diameters or four randomly distributed broken wires 
in 30 rope diameters), and pendant or standing wire ropes (more than 
two broken wires in one rope lay located in rope beyond end connections 
and/or more than one broken wire in a rope lay located at an end 
connection).
    A ``running wire rope'' is a wire rope that moves over sheaves or 
drums. This definition is included in Sec.  1926.1401 of this proposed 
standard to make clear the nature of the wire rope that is subject to 
this inspection provision. These criteria are the same as those 
contained in section 5-2.4.3 of ASME B30.5-2004, and those for running 
wire ropes and pendant or standing wire ropes are also contained in 
section 5-2.4.2 of ANSI B30.5-1968, which is incorporated by reference 
in 29 CFR Part 1926 subpart N. One issue that was left unanswered 
during the Committee discussions is whether these broken wire criteria 
are equally applicable when using plastic sheaves. The Agency requests 
public comment on this issue.
    The reference in proposed paragraph (a)(2)(ii)(B) to ``a diameter 
reduction of more than 5% from nominal diameter'' reflects a change in 
the manner of expressing essentially the same criteria currently set 
forth in fractions in Subpart N (Sec.  1926.550(a)(7)(iv)) and section 
5-2.4.3(b)(6) of ASME B30.5-2004. OSHA notes that the ``reduction in 
diameter'' fractions set forth currently in Sec.  1926.550(a)(7)(iv) 
are in each case equal to or greater than 5%, so the proposed across 
the board 5% criterion is equally or more protective than the current 
standard for each rope diameter. C-DAC used the percentage reduction 
criterion because it is consistent with the criterion now being set by 
rope manufacturers and used in the industry. The industry uses the 
percentage reduction criterion because it is easier to remember than 
the fractional reductions in Subpart N.
    Category III: Proposed paragraph (a)(2)(iii) lists apparent 
Category III deficiencies. The Committee believed that these are of 
such significance that they require the rope's immediate removal from 
service. For some Category III deficiencies, the undamaged part of the 
rope may be returned to service if the damaged part is severed (the 
actions required in response to identifying these deficiencies are 
discussed below with respect to proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(iv)).
    Under proposed paragraph (a)(2)(iii)(A), ``core protrusion or other 
distortion indicating core failure'' in rotation resistant rope would 
be a Category III apparent deficiency. As described by a C-DAC member, 
this visible indicator is present when there is core protrusion between 
the outer strands or, in other words, ``the metal core is coming out.'' 
Core protrusion is a late-stage indicator that the rope has already 
suffered significant damage and, in the Committee's judgment, 
necessitates the rope's immediate removal from service.
    Under proposed paragraph (a)(2)(iii)(B), ``[e]lectrical contact 
with a power line'' would be a Category III apparent deficiency. 
Contact with a power line could cause the rope to carry a high 
electrical current that could result in internal damage that 
significantly reduces the rope's strength. The Committee believed that, 
in view of the difficulty in confirming such internal damage and the 
likelihood that significant damage has occurred in such instances, it 
is imperative that the entire rope be replaced.
    The rope would have to be removed from service under this provision 
if the load, rigging, or the rope itself makes electrical contact with 
a power line. In

[[Page 59778]]

addition, electrical contact under this provision would occur if the 
boom or other part of the crane contacts a power line and the wire rope 
is in contact with the ground through the hook or some other means.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(2)(iii)(C) also lists ``a broken strand'' as 
a Category III apparent deficiency. A strand is a ``group'' of wires. 
In the Committee's view, that degree of damage clearly compromises the 
rope's capacity and continued use would be dangerous.
Paragraph 1413(a)(3) Critical Review Items
    Under proposed paragraph (a)(3), the competent person must give 
particular attention to certain ``Critical Review Items'' during the 
shift inspection (as well as, as discussed below, in the monthly and 
annual inspections).
    Under proposed paragraph (a)(3)(i), rotation resistant wire rope 
that is in use would be a critical review item. As indicated earlier, 
the construction of rotation resistant rope makes it more susceptible 
to damage and more difficult to detect damage to the inner wires and/or 
strands.
    Under proposed paragraph (a)(3)(ii), ``wire rope being used for 
boom hoists and luffing hoists, particularly at reverse bends'' would 
be included in the list because of the critical nature of these ropes 
and, with respect to reverse bends, because these areas are subjected 
to more stress and are more prone to damage.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(3)(iii) lists ``wire rope at flange points, 
crossover points and repetitive pickup points on drums'' because these 
points of the rope are subject to additional wear. These terms are 
defined in Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions, as follows:

    Flange point: A point of contact between rope and drum flange 
where the rope changes layers.
    Crossover points: Locations on a wire rope which is spooled on a 
drum where one layer of rope climbs up and crosses over the previous 
layer. This takes place at each flange of the drum as the rope is 
spooled onto the drum, reaches the flange, and begins to wrap back 
in the opposite direction.
    Repetitive pickup points: When operating on a short cycle 
operation, the rope being used on a single layer and being spooled 
repetitively over a short portion of the drum.

    Proposed paragraph (a)(3)(iv) lists ``wire rope adjacent to end 
connections'' because such rope is prone to corrosion and/or breakage 
due to the localized stresses placed on these areas.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(3)(v) lists ``wire rope at and on equalizer 
sheaves'' because the limited travel of such rope and added stress make 
it more prone to wear.
Paragraph 1413(a)(4) Removal From Service
    Remedial steps upon identification of apparent deficiency: Proposed 
paragraph (a)(4) would set out the required next steps to be taken once 
the competent person performing the inspection has identified an 
apparent deficiency. Those steps depend upon whether, under Sec.  
1926.1413(a)(2), the apparent deficiency falls under Category I, II or 
III. Under this approach, immediate removal from service would be 
required for certain deficiencies, while continued use under prescribed 
circumstances would be allowed for others. This approach was adopted by 
C-DAC because, in the Committee's collective experience, different 
types of deficiencies warrant different responses.
    As described below, this approach differs somewhat from Subpart N, 
with its incorporation by reference of ANSI B30.5-1968, as well as ASME 
B30.5-2004. In addition, certain apparent deficiencies addressed in 
this proposed rule are not addressed by those consensus standards.
    Category I remedial steps: Proposed paragraph (a)(4)(i) sets forth 
the follow-up to the discovery of a Category I apparent deficiency that 
would be required. Immediately upon the discovery of such a deficiency, 
the competent person must determine whether the deficiency is a safety 
hazard. If it is determined to be a hazard, operations involving the 
use of the wire rope would be prohibited until one of two responses is 
taken--the rope is replaced or the deficiency, if localized (and not 
due to power line contact), is removed by severing the rope in two so 
that the undamaged portion can be used. The provision also would 
prohibit joining lengths of rope by splicing.
    The Committee found that the likelihood of significant damage from 
power line contact is so great that, after such contact, it is 
imperative that the rope be removed from service. Also, it determined 
that splicing is not a safe practice and should therefore be 
prohibited.
    The Category I deficiencies, except for damage from significant 
corrosion or an electric arc, are currently addressed by Subpart N 
through incorporation by reference of section 5-2.4 of ASME B30.5-1968. 
That ANSI standard requires the deficiencies to be evaluated (by an 
``appointed or authorized person'') and a determination made as to 
whether continued use of the rope would constitute a safety hazard. A 
similar provision is contained in ASME B30.5-2004. These provisions 
imply, but do not explicitly state, that a rope constituting a safety 
hazard must not be used. The proposed standard would explicitly state 
this prohibition.
    Category II remedial steps: Proposed paragraphs (a)(4)(ii) and 
(iii) establish the procedures to be followed once Category II apparent 
deficiencies have been identified. This category of deficiencies 
includes wire rope that has diameter reduction and/or visible broken 
wires as described in proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(2)(ii). Proposed 
Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(ii) sets forth two alternative options for the 
employer--Option A or B--when such a deficiency is identified.
    Under Option A, an employer must consider the wire rope to be a 
safety hazard where the deficiency meets the wire rope manufacturer's 
established criterion for removal or ``meets a different criterion that 
the wire rope manufacturer has approved in writing for that specific 
wire rope.'' In such instances, operations involving the use of the 
wire rope in question are prohibited until it is replaced or severed as 
provided in Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(i)(B).
    Option B would allow limited continued use of the wire rope with an 
identified Category II apparent deficiency provided the employer 
ensures the procedures specified in Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(iii) are met. 
Under 1926.1413(a)(4)(iii), a qualified person first assesses the 
deficiencies in light of the load and other conditions of use and 
determines that continued use is safe as long as the conditions 
established in this paragraph are met.
    These conditions include (as established by the qualified person) 
the parameters for use of the rope, including a reduced maximum rated 
load, the number of broken wires and/or the diameter reduction that 
will require the rope to be taken out of service (or repaired in 
accordance with proposed 1926.1413(4)(i)(A) or (B)), and a specific 
time limit, not to exceed 30 days from the date the deficiency was 
first identified, to replace the rope or sever the damaged portion in 
accordance with 1926.1413(a)(4)(i)(B).
    The C-DAC draft, at paragraph (a)(4)(iii)(C), would also have 
allowed the qualified person to specify the number of broken strands 
that would require the equipment to be taken out of service. However, 
as discussed above, under 1926.1413(a)(2)(iii)(C), a single broken 
strand is a Category III apparent deficiency that requires the 
equipment to be immediately removed from service until the rope is 
replaced or the deficiency severed, in which case the undamaged part of 
the rope may continue to be used. Because the proposed rule prohibits 
any use of a

[[Page 59779]]

wire rope with a broken strand, OSHA has deleted the words ``broken 
strands'' from 1926.1413(a)(4)(iii)(C).
    Once the qualified person has established the conditions for 
continued use of the rope, the workers who are to conduct the shift 
inspections must be notified of the qualified person's determinations. 
In addition, the qualified person's procedures and findings must be 
documented. The Committee included this documentation provision because 
the person conducting the shift inspections would need to be able to 
refer to the parameters set by the qualified person.
    29 CFR Part 1926 subpart N, in Sec.  1926.550(a)(7), currently 
requires that ropes with the same deficiencies that would fall under 
the proposed rule's Category II (as well as heat damage, which would be 
a Category I deficiency) be removed from service. Section 2.4.3(a) of 
ASME B30.5-2004 allows the rope to be used to the end of the work shift 
based on the judgment of a qualified person.
    The Committee determined that the alternative measures specified in 
Option B are sufficiently comprehensive and specific to ensure that the 
rope's continued use for up to 30 days would be safe.
    OSHA notes that the remedial steps for Category II apparent 
deficiencies do not, unlike those for Category I and III apparent 
deficiencies, state explicitly that splicing of wire rope is 
prohibited. Instead, Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(ii)(A) states that, if a 
Category II apparent deficiency is a safety hazard, continued use of 
the rope is prohibited unless ``the damage is removed in accordance 
with Sec.  1926.1413(4)(i)(B),'' which applies to Category I 
deficiencies. Proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(i)(B) includes a 
prohibition against splicing that C-DAC intended to apply to Category 
II deficiencies, but the language ``damage is removed'' in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(ii)(A) could, in the absence of an explicit 
prohibition against splicing in that paragraph, arguably be read to 
mean that the rope could be severed and the undamaged portions spliced. 
To make clear C-DAC's intent that the anti-splicing provision of Sec.  
1926.1413(a)(4)(i)(B) applies to Category II, OSHA has modified the C-
DAC language for proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(ii)(B) as follows:

    (ii) If a deficiency in Category II is identified, the employer 
shall comply with Option A of this section or Option B of this 
section, as follows:
    (A) Option A. Consider the deficiency to constitute a safety 
hazard where it meets the wire rope manufacturer's established 
criterion for removal from service or meets a different criterion 
that the wire rope manufacturer has approved in writing for that 
specific wire rope. If the deficiency is considered a safety hazard, 
operations involving use of the wire rope in question shall be 
prohibited until the wire rope is replaced, or the damage is removed 
in accordance with all of the requirements and restrictions in 
paragraph (4)(i)(B) of this section.

    OSHA has made similar changes to proposed Sec.  
1926.1413(a)(4)(iii)(C) & (D).
    Category III remedial steps: Proposed paragraph (a)(4)(iv) would 
establish the procedure for dealing with identified apparent 
deficiencies that fall within Category III. These deficiencies include 
a broken strand, electrical contact with a power line, and core 
protrusion or other distortion in rotation resistant rope indicating 
core failure. This proposed paragraph would prohibit operations 
involving the use of the wire rope until either the wire rope is 
replaced or (except where there has been power line contact) severed in 
two, so that the undamaged portion can be used. Joining lengths of wire 
rope by splicing would be prohibited (see discussion above of proposed 
Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(i)(B)).
    Neither Subpart N nor ANSI B30.5-1968 addresses these apparent 
deficiencies. However, the Committee noted that section 5-2.4.2(a) of 
ASME B30.5-2000 lists ``broken or cut strands'' and ``core failure in 
rotation resistant ropes'' as deficiencies that may be an immediate 
hazard. (ASME B30.5-2004 contains the same characterization of these 
deficiencies as the 2000 version). The Committee believed that ropes 
with Category III deficiencies must not be used because of the high 
potential for rope failure.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(4)(v) would require that where a wire rope 
is required to be removed from service under this proposed section, the 
equipment (as a whole) or the hoist with that wire rope shall be 
tagged-out as provided in proposed Sec.  1926.1417(f)(1) until the wire 
rope is replaced or repaired. Neither Subpart N, with its incorporated 
reference to ASME B30.5-1968, nor ASME B30.5-2004 contains a similar 
tag-out provision specific to wire rope. The Committee believed that 
this would be an efficient and effective way of preventing employees 
from activating equipment (or the affected hoist) that has a wire rope 
with an identified hazard.
Paragraph 1413(b) Monthly Inspection
    Proposed paragraph (b) would require a monthly inspection of wire 
rope. The monthly inspection would be, as explained below, a documented 
shift inspection. C-DAC decided to keep the timing of this inspection 
(as well as the level of scrutiny required and the expertise required 
of the inspector) parallel with the general inspection requirements in 
Sec.  1926.1412 to provide for an efficient inspection process and thus 
enhance compliance. A monthly wire rope inspection is currently 
required by Subpart N's incorporation by reference of ASME B30.5-1968.
    Proposed paragraphs (b)(1) and (b)(2) would require the monthly 
inspection to be conducted in the same manner as the shift inspection 
under Sec.  1926.1413(a). Thus, the monthly inspection would be a 
visual inspection conducted by a competent person for the same types of 
apparent deficiencies noted in the wire rope shift inspection.
    It should be noted that the reference in proposed Sec.  
1926.1413(b)(2) of the C-DAC Consensus Document to ``paragraph 
1413(a)(3)'' has been corrected in the proposed rule to refer to Sec.  
1926.1413(a)(4), which contains the relevant provisions governing 
corrective actions.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(3) would require the monthly inspection to 
be documented in the same manner as required by paragraph Sec.  
1926.1412(e)(3) for the monthly general inspection. C-DAC wanted to 
keep this requirement parallel with the monthly general inspection 
provision in order to reduce paperwork and confusion, and facilitate 
compliance.
    Specifically, for the general monthly inspection, Sec.  
1926.1412(e)(3) provides that the ``employer that conducts the 
inspection'' must provide documentation that reflects the items checked 
with results, the name and signature of the inspector, and the date. 
Similar requirements are set forth in ASME B30.5-1968.
    Proposed paragraph 1412(e)(3) also specifies that the documentation 
be retained for not less than three-months. The Committee believed that 
the proposed three-month retention period would provide sufficient 
overlap to avoid gaps in information and thus provide a tracking 
mechanism for developing problem areas.
Paragraph 1413(c) Annual/Comprehensive
    Proposed paragraph 1413(c) would require an annual inspection (at 
least every 12 months) for wire rope, conducted by a qualified person. 
The annual inspection would be considerably more thorough and 
comprehensive than the shift and monthly inspections required by 
proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a) and (b). In

[[Page 59780]]

addition, it would be conducted by a ``qualified person,'' who would 
have greater expertise than the ``competent person'' who must conduct 
the shift and monthly inspections.
    The timing and inspector qualifications for the annual wire rope 
inspection coincide with those for the general equipment annual/
comprehensive inspection. C-DAC believed that the use of corresponding 
timeframes and personnel will allow inspections to be conducted 
efficiently and thereby promote effectiveness and compliance.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(1), all apparent deficiencies and 
critical review items required to be checked in a shift inspection 
would have to be checked in the annual/comprehensive inspection (see 
Sec.  1926.1413(a)(2) and (a)(3)). In addition, under proposed Sec.  
1926.1413(c)(2), a complete and thorough inspection, covering the 
surface of the entire length of the wire ropes, would be required. In 
addition to inspecting in this manner for the types of deficiencies 
listed in Sec.  1926.1413(a)(2), under proposed Sec.  
1926.1413(c)(2)(ii)(A), the qualified person would be required to give 
particular attention to the critical review items listed in Sec.  
1926.1413(a)(3). Note that the C-DAC document's Sec.  
1926.1413(c)(2)(ii)(A) referred to the ``critical review items listed 
in paragraph (a)(2)'' instead of Sec.  1926.1413(a)(3). That reference 
to Sec.  1926.1413(a)(2) was a typographical error, which has been 
corrected in the proposed rule.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(2)(ii)(B), particular attention must 
be given to those sections of wire rope that are normally hidden during 
shift and monthly inspections. For example, such sections would include 
parts of the rope that form the lower wraps on the boom hoist drum and 
which would not be visible unless the drum is in a very low angle 
position. The parts of the rope that are normally inside a cowling or 
covered area would be another example of such sections.
    Similarly, proposed paragraphs (c)(2)(ii)(C) through (F) require 
particular attention to wire rope in contact with saddles, equalizer 
sheaves or other sheaves where rope travel is limited, wire rope 
subject to reverse bends, wire rope passing over sheaves and wire rope 
at or near terminal ends, since these areas are more prone to wear.
    Unlike the shift and monthly inspections, in which booming down 
would not be required, booming down would be necessary in order for the 
inspection to be ``complete and thorough, covering the surface of the 
entire length of the wire rope.''
    OSHA notes that the items listed in Sec.  1926.1413(c)(2)(ii)(C) 
and (F) (``Wire rope in contact with saddles, equalizer sheaves or 
other sheaves where rope travel is limited'' and ``Wire rope at or near 
terminal ends'') are similar to the critical review items listed for 
shift inspections in proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(3)(iv) and 
(a)(3)(v)(``Wire rope adjacent to end connections'' and ``Wire rope at 
and on equalizer sheaves''). Consequently, the Agency is planning to 
revise the language in proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(3)(iv) and (a)(3)(v) 
to match the language in Sec.  1926.1413(c)(2)(ii)(C) and 
(c)(2)(ii)(F). OSHA then could delete proposed Sec.  
1926.1413(c)(2)(ii)(C) and (c)(2)(ii)(F) because proposed Sec.  
1926.1413(c)(2)(ii)(A) incorporates by reference the critical review 
items listed in Sec.  1926.1413(a)(3)(iv) and (a)(3)(v), thereby making 
the items listed in proposed paragraphs Sec.  1926.1413(c)(2)(ii)(C) 
and (c)(2)(ii)(F) redundant and unnecessary. The Agency asks the public 
for comments on this proposed action.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2)(iii) would establish an exception to the 
timing of the annual/ comprehensive inspection where that inspection is 
infeasible due to ``existing set-up and configuration of the equipment 
(such as where an assist crane is needed) or due to site conditions 
(such as a dense urban setting).'' The provision sets a timetable for 
annual/comprehensive inspections in such cases that requires the 
inspection to be performed ``as soon as it becomes feasible, but no 
longer than an additional 6 months for running ropes and, for standing 
ropes, at the time of disassembly.''
    This provision reflects the Committee's concern that, particularly 
in densely developed urban settings, the inability to boom down would 
prevent the employer from completing a comprehensive wire rope 
inspection. The Committee considered requiring employers anticipating 
such situations to provide rope that is new or ``like new'' when the 
crane is set-up at the site. Also considered was requiring that an 
annual inspection be required in such instances before the start of the 
job. The Committee found these proposals to be impractical because it 
is difficult for employers to forecast completion timeframes with 
sufficient accuracy.
    The proposed provision is intended to ensure that, under the 
circumstances where the exception would apply, the required inspection 
would occur within an appropriate period. The Committee considered a 
maximum of an additional 6 months appropriate for running ropes in 
these circumstances. A longer period, up to the time of disassembly, 
was considered appropriate for standing ropes because these ropes, in 
the Committee's experience, are less subject to deterioration and wear.
    These provisions of the annual/comprehensive inspection differ in 
various ways from Subpart N annual inspection provisions at Sec.  
1926.550(a)(6). The current annual inspection in Subpart N is a 
``thorough'' inspection conducted by a ``competent person or by a 
government or private agency recognized by the U.S. Department of 
Labor.'' Under this proposal, the annual/comprehensive inspection would 
be conducted by a qualified person and includes a number of specific 
items the inspection must encompass. The Committee believed that these 
changes are needed to reduce the likelihood of injuries and fatalities 
from wire rope failure.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(3) identifies the next steps that would have 
to be taken once the qualified person performing the annual/
comprehensive inspection discovers a deficiency. The qualified person 
must immediately determine whether the deficiency constitutes a safety 
hazard. If it does, under proposed Sec.  1926.1413(c)(3)(i), the rope 
would either have to be replaced or, if the deficiency is localized, 
the damaged part may be severed and the undamaged portion may continue 
to be used. As discussed with respect to proposed Sec.  
1926.1413(a)(4)(i)(B), joining lengths of wire rope by splicing would 
be prohibited.
    The proposed standard does not include a prohibition in Sec.  
1926.1413(c)(3)(i)(B) against repair of wire rope that contacted an 
energized power line, although such a prohibition is included in the 
context of a shift inspection in proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(i)(B). 
The Agency's understanding is that the Committee decided to not include 
that prohibition in the annual/comprehensive inspection provision 
because, if an energized power line contact had occurred, the rope 
would have been removed from service immediately in accordance with 
proposed Sec.  1926.1413(a)(4)(i)(B).
    If the qualified person determines that the deficiency is not 
currently a safety hazard but needs to be monitored, under proposed 
Sec.  1926.1413(c)(3)(ii) the employer would be required to ensure that 
the deficiency is checked in the monthly inspections. This would ensure 
that, as the deficiency continues to develop, the competent person 
would pay particular attention to it in the monthly inspections. Once 
it became a

[[Page 59781]]

safety hazard, it would be identified promptly and the appropriate 
corrective action would be taken.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(4), the annual/comprehensive 
inspection would be required to be documented according to proposed 
Sec.  1926.1412(f)(7), which is the documentation provision for the 
annual general inspection. As with other parallel requirements in this 
section, the C-DAC intended to ensure consistency with other 
recordkeeping requirements and thus facilitate compliance.
    Proposed paragraph 1412(f)(7), which is incorporated by reference 
here, would require the employer that is conducting the inspection to 
document and retain for 12 months, ``the items checked and the results 
of that inspection'' and ``the name and signature of the person who 
conducted the inspection and the date.'' This documentation requirement 
differs from 29 CFR Part 1926 subpart N's annual inspection in that 
Subpart N does not specify the period of time the documentation must be 
kept and has neither a signature requirement nor a requirement that the 
inspector be named. The Committee believed that a 12 month retention 
period would ensure that the employer would be able to refer to the 
last annual/comprehensive inspection to help track the rate of 
progression of a deficiency that has not yet developed into a safety 
hazard. The Committee also believed that it would increase the 
likelihood of compliance with the annual/comprehensive inspection 
requirements.
    Finally, proposed paragraph 1413(d) would prohibit the use of the 
type of rope lubricants that hinder inspection. For example, rope 
lubricants that are opaque or so dark that they mask the wire rope 
inside them would be of this type. This prohibition is necessary to 
ensure that the rope lubricant does not hide potential deficiencies.

Section 1414 Wire Rope--Selection and Installation Criteria

    This proposed section sets forth requirements for selecting and 
installing wire rope. It addresses safety concerns related to wire rope 
selection and installation. In addition, it would provide greater 
flexibility in the selection process than current requirements under 
Subpart N. This flexibility reflects and takes advantage of new 
developments in wire rope technology.
    Currently, paragraph 1926.550(a)(7)(vi) of Subpart N prescribes 
that wire rope safety factors accord with ANSI B30.5-1968 or SAE J959-
1966. By contrast, this proposed section would not refer to external 
standards for wire rope safety factors or other requirements (with a 
single exception discussed below) and would give greater flexibility in 
selecting wire rope, particularly rotation resistant wire rope. 
Specific differences between this proposal and Subpart N are examined 
in the discussion of the paragraph where the difference arises.
    The Agency notes that, in developing the C-DAC consensus document, 
the Committee appears to have made an inadvertent omission. The wire 
rope safety factors in section 5-1.7.1 of ANSI B30.5-1968 (which, as 
noted above, are incorporated by reference in Subpart N) apply 
irrespective of whether the rope is of the standard type (i.e., rope 
that is not rotation-resistant) or rotation resistant. However, the C-
DAC document contains safety factor (now ``design'' factor) 
requirements only for rotation resistant rope \38\; it has no 
provisions on design factors for standard rope.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \38\ As discussed below under proposed paragraph (c), C-DAC drew 
from the current 2004 ASME document in proposing design factors for 
rotation resistant rope.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Currently, under Subpart N's incorporation of section 5-1.7.1 of 
ANSI B30.5-1968, the factors for standard rope vary from a minimum of 
2.5 to 3.5 depending on how the rope is used. The 2004 version of 
section 5-1.7.1 of ASME B30.5 contains similar provisions and the same 
range of design factors.\39\ Given the importance of design factors in 
the selection of wire rope, OSHA believes that the omission of design 
factors for standard rope from the C-DAC document was an oversight. 
OSHA is unaware of any reason to omit design factors for standard rope 
and plans to include factors for standard rope similar to those in 
section 5-1.7.1 of ASME B30.5-2004. OSHA requests public comment on 
this issue.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \39\ The provisions for standard rope in section 5-1.7.1 of 
B30.5-2004 read as follows:
    5-1.7.1 Rope Design Factors
    (a) For supporting rated loads and for supporting the boom and 
working attachments at recommended travel or transit positions and 
boom lengths,
    (1) the design factor for live or running ropes that wind on 
drums or travel over sheaves shall not be less than 3.5.
    (2) the design factor for boom pendants or standing ropes shall 
not be less than 3.0.
    (b) For supporting the boom under recommended boom erection 
conditions,
    (1) the design factor for live or running ropes shall not be 
less than 3.0.
    (2) the design factor for boom pendants or standing ropes shall 
not be less than 2.5.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Paragraph 1414(a)
    Proposed paragraph (a) would require the selection of replacement 
wire rope to be in accordance with the requirements of this section and 
the recommendations of the wire rope manufacturer, the equipment 
manufacturer, or a qualified person. Currently, Subpart N (through 
section 5-1.7.2e of ANSI B30.5-1968) limits the employer to using 
replacement rope of the same size, grade and construction as the rope 
originally furnished by the crane manufacturer unless otherwise 
approved by the rope manufacturer. The 2004 version of ASME B30.5, in 
section 5-2.4.3(d), specifies that replacement rope shall have a 
strength rating at least as great as the original rope unless a 
deviation is approved by the equipment manufacturer, the rope 
manufacturer, or a qualified person.
    A number of concerns about the current 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N 
provision were raised during the C-DAC negotiations. Some members were 
concerned about delays in obtaining approval from the equipment 
manufacturer. With respect to older equipment, the manufacturer may no 
longer be in business. In such cases the employer is unable to get 
original equipment wire rope information or obtain approval for use of 
a different specification of rope. Even where the original manufacturer 
was purchased by another company, the current company may no longer 
have the original equipment information. Another concern was that the 
wire rope manufacturer may be unduly conservative in recommending a 
replacement rope.
    The Committee concluded that it would be appropriate to allow a 
qualified person to determine the replacement rope specifications. The 
Committee believed that the criteria for being a qualified person are 
sufficiently rigorous to ensure that such a person's recommendation in 
this regard would be authoritative with respect to safety.
    OSHA notes that proposed paragraph (a)'s mention of only 
``replacement rope'' could mislead some readers to conclude that all of 
Sec.  1926.1414 applies only to replacement rope. The Committee clearly 
intended that the remainder of Sec.  1926.1414 apply to both original 
equipment rope and replacement rope. Rewording Sec.  1926.1414(a) to 
read as follows would, OSHA believes, make clear the Committee's 
intent: ``Original equipment wire rope and replacement wire rope shall 
be selected and installed in accordance with the requirements of this 
section. Selection of replacement wire rope shall be in accordance with 
the recommendations of the wire rope manufacturer, the equipment 
manufacturer, or a qualified person.'' OSHA requests public comment on 
such a revision.

[[Page 59782]]

Paragraph 1414(b) Boom Hoist Reeving
    Proposed paragraph (b) sets forth two provisions regarding the use 
of wire rope for boom hoist reeving.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(1) would prohibit using fiber core ropes for 
boom hoist reeving, except for derricks. In the Committee's view, the 
composition of such ropes makes them prone to degradation that is not 
completely detectable by normal inspection techniques. The Committee 
believed that fiber core ropes can be used safely for boom hoist 
reeving on derricks because the sheaves on derricks are smaller than on 
cranes, and because they are more pliable, fiber core ropes can 
accommodate reverse bending. In addition, but less significant, derrick 
booms are typically shorter in length and have less capacity.
    Currently, Subpart N does not contain an express prohibition 
against the use of fiber core wire ropes for boom hoist reeving. ANSI 
B30.5-1968, incorporated by reference into Subpart N, only references 
the effect of temperature on fiber core wire rope.
    The 2004 version of ASME B30.5, in section 5.1.7.2(b), prohibits 
the use of fiber core wire ropes for boom hoist reeving for mobile and 
locomotive cranes. By contrast, the standard in the ASME B30 series 
that applies to derricks, ASME B30.6-2003, does not prohibit the use of 
fiber core wire rope for boom hoist reeving. Thus, the distinction in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1414(b) between cranes and derricks in this regard 
is consistent with current national consensus standards.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(2) would prohibit rotation resistant rope 
from being used for boom hoist reeving except where the requirements of 
Sec.  1926.1414(c) are met. The Committee believed that only where 
these provisions are met would the use of rotation resistant rope for 
this purpose be safe. The particulars of paragraph (c) are discussed 
next.
Paragraph 1414(c) Rotation Resistant Ropes
Paragraph (c)(1)
    Proposed paragraph (c)(1) would classify rotation resistant ropes 
into three ``Types'' (``Type I,'' ``Type II,'' and ``Type III'').\40\ 
Proposed Sec.  1926.1414(c)(2) specifies use limitations and 
requirements for each ``Type'' of wire rope. This approach differs from 
Subpart N, ANSI B30.5-1968 and ASME B30.5-2004, which do not 
distinguish between types of rotation resistant rope.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \40\ ASTM A 1023/A 1023M-02 has a similar classification system, 
although it divides rotation resistant ropes into ``categories.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Technological advances have resulted in different types of what in 
the past had been referred to as ``rotation resistant rope.'' The 
different kinds, which are distinguished in this proposed section as 
Types I, II and III, have different capabilities, which are described 
in the definitions in proposed Sec.  1926.1414(c)(1). This proposed 
section tailors the requirements and limitations to each Type. The 
Committee believed that this approach would enable the industry to take 
advantage of technological advances and improve safety.
Paragraph (c)(2) Requirements
    Proposed paragraphs (c)(2)(i) through (iv) set forth use 
requirements of the three ``Types'' of rotation resistant rope in terms 
of operating design factors (and in some instances activity). The 
purpose of these provisions is to ensure that the selection of the Type 
of rotation resistant rope is suitable, in terms of safety, to its use.
    The specifics of each paragraph are discussed below. This approach 
generally differs from Subpart N. The safety factors in ANSI B30.5-1968 
and SAE J959-1966 that are incorporated by reference in 29 CFR part 
1926 subpart N are applicable to wire rope generally; those industry 
consensus standards do not separately address rotation resistant rope 
with respect to design factors.
    However, sections 5-5-1.7.1(c) and 5-3.2.1.1(d) of ASME B30.5-2004 
generally designate a design factor of 5 for the use of rotation 
resistant rope, reflecting the advances in technology that led the 
Committee to adopt a similar approach. Further, the 2004 ASME standard 
allows for deviation from the design factor of 5, but in no case lower 
than 3.5, when certain specified procedures that are similar to 
procedures in proposed Sec.  1926.1414(c)(2)(iv) and further described 
in Sec.  1926.1414(c)(3) are followed.
    Proposed paragraphs (c)(2)(i)-(iv) use the phrase ``operating 
design factor.'' ``Operating'' has been included in this phrase to show 
that the factors specified in these proposed paragraphs are to reflect 
how the rope is installed on the specific piece of equipment in which 
it is used. In other words, the operating design factor is calculated 
based on numerous considerations associated with both the rope's design 
and how it is installed on the equipment in which it will be used.
    The Committee recognized that limiting the use of a particular Type 
of rotation resistant rope by operating design factors (and, in some 
instances, by activity) is a new approach. However, the technological 
developments that have occurred since Subpart N was promulgated have 
led to a need to tailor use requirements and parameters to the 
different Types of rotation resistant rope.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2)(i) would prohibit Types II and III 
rotation resistant rope with an operating design factor of less than 5 
from being used for duty cycle or repetitive lifts. The Committee 
believed that such ropes are inappropriate for this type of use, which 
subjects the rope to high levels of stress generally and/or 
concentrates wear in particular sections of the rope.\41\
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    \41\ In contrast, where the operating design factor is 5 or 
greater, the Committee believed that core damage (which is difficult 
to detect) would not occur prior to the development of outer core 
damage. Consequently, its use for duty cycle or repetitive lifts 
would be safe.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    While not addressed in the current Subpart N, a similar limitation 
applies to rotation resistant rope (though not limited by Type) in 
section 5-3.2.1.1(d)(3) of ASME B30.5-2004.
    This prohibition would not apply to Type I rotation resistant rope 
because the Committee believed that it is significantly more resistant 
to rotation or torque compared with Types II and III. This reduces Type 
I's potential for internal wear during use and moves degradation from 
the inner wires to the outer wires, where damage is more easily 
detected during wire rope inspections. Accordingly, the Committee 
concluded that Type I rope can safely be used for duty cycle and 
repetitive lifts at an operating design factor below 5 (but no less 
than 3.5), as specified in proposed 1926.1414(c)(2)(ii).
    The Committee's understanding of ``duty cycle'' in this context is 
a continuous operation in which approximately the same type and weight 
of load is handled. For example, dredging with a clamshell is duty 
cycle work. ``Repetitive lifts'' refers to a continuous operation with 
loads that may vary in size and weight. For example, steel erection 
work typically involves repetitive lifts of various size and 
configurations of structural steel members. It is the Agency's 
understanding that these definitions are widely understood in the 
industry. However, OSHA believes it is appropriate to include them in 
Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions, to avoid any misunderstanding as to their 
meaning in this standard. OSHA requests public comment on this issue.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2)(ii) would require that all rotation 
resistant ropes

[[Page 59783]]

have an operating design factor of no less than 3.5. As discussed 
above, some rotation resistant ropes--Types II and III--would have to 
have an operating design factor of no less than 5 when used for duty 
cycle or repetitive lifts. Apart from those uses, under proposed Sec.  
1926.1414(c)(2)(ii), the lowest operating design factor that would be 
allowed for both Types II and III, as well as Type I, would be 3.5.
    This provision recognizes that the use of rotation resistant rope 
at operating design factors below 5 (but in no case below 3.5) is 
permissible, although proposed paragraphs (c)(2)(i) (discussed above), 
(iii) and (iv) would set limitations and conditions. The Committee was 
cognizant of the fact that section 5-3.2.1.1(d) of ASME B30.5-2004 also 
allows rotation resistant rope to be used at a design factor as low as 
3.5 under similarly restricted circumstances.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2)(iii) would require the operating design 
factor for Type I rotation resistant rope to be no less than 5 except 
where the wire rope manufacturer and the equipment manufacturer approve 
a different design factor in writing. (Note that, under proposed 
paragraph (c)(2)(ii), the operating design factor would be prohibited 
from being less than 3.5.) The Committee believed that, in light of the 
design of Type I rope, where there is approval for the operating design 
factor by both the wire rope manufacturer and equipment manufacturer, 
the use of the rope would be safe.
    The Committee considered concerns about the fact that, in the 
future, there may be many new Type I ropes on the market, and the 
manufacturer may not have tested them; this could lead to difficulty in 
obtaining manufacturer approval for an operating design factor less 
than 5. However, in the Committee's judgment, the manufacturer's 
expertise regarding the particular equipment is essential in this 
instance to ensure that use of such rope would be safe.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(2)(iv), Types II and III rotation 
resistant rope would be required to have an operating design factor of 
no less than 5 except when used for non-duty cycle and non-repetitive 
lifts, and where the requirements of Sec.  1926.1414(c)(3)(i)--(iii) 
are met. When these exceptions apply, proposed Sec.  
1926.1414(c)(2)(ii) would prohibit the operating design factor from 
being less than 3.5.
    This proposed paragraph reflects the Committee's belief that there 
is a greater likelihood of internal damage in Type II and Type III 
rotation resistant rope when used with an operating design factor lower 
than 5. However, the Committee's view is that where the additional 
precautions in proposed Sec.  1926.1414(c)(3) are met, its use would be 
safe.
    As stated above, 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N is dissimilar from this 
paragraph in that it does not contain a specific operating design 
factor for rotation resistant rope and does not otherwise differentiate 
between rotation resistant wire ropes. This provision is, however, 
similar to section 5-3.2.1.1(d) in ASME B30.5-2004 which, while not 
differentiating by ``Type,'' does allow the use of rotation resistant 
rope with an operating design factor of less than 5 where conditions 
similar to those included in proposed Sec.  1926.1414(c)(3) are 
instituted.
Paragraph (c)(3)
    This proposed paragraph specifies additional requirements that must 
be met when Types II and III are used with an operating design factor 
of between 3.5 and 5 (for non-duty cycle, non-repetitive lifts). The 
Committee believed that these additional requirements are needed to 
ensure that use of such ropes would be safe.
    Specifically, under proposed Sec.  1926.1414(c)(3)(i), an 
inspection of the rope by a qualified person in accordance with Sec.  
1926.1413(a) would be required, with its use allowed only if that 
person determines there are no deficiencies constituting a hazard (with 
the presence of more than one broken wire in any one rope lay 
considered a hazard). Because of the lower operating design factor of 
these ropes, the Committee believed that the expertise of a qualified 
person is needed to ensure that there are no deficiencies that 
constitute a hazard. Similarly, even one broken wire in any one rope 
lay would be considered a hazard.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(3)(ii), operations would have to be 
conducted in a manner and at speeds that minimize dynamic effects. 
Dynamic effects are the additional forces exerted on the rope due to 
dynamics like acceleration and deceleration. Such effects need to be 
minimized because they increase the stress on the rope.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(3)(iii), each lift would have to be 
documented in the monthly and annual inspection records, with such use 
to be considered by the qualified person in allowing subsequent use of 
the rope. The Committee considered this an important step because the 
more times the rope is used, the greater the likelihood that 
degradation would have occurred. Requiring each such lift to be 
documented in the monthly and annual inspection records would ensure 
that this information is available to the qualified person when that 
person makes his or her inspections and assessments under proposed 
Sec.  1926.1414(c)(3)(i) and (ii).
Paragraph (c)(4) Additional Requirements for Rotation Resistant Rope 
for Boom Hoist Reeving
    Proposed paragraph (c)(4)(i) would prohibit rotation resistant rope 
from being used for boom hoist reeving except where the requirements of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1414(c)(4)(ii) are met. Currently, Subpart N, 
through its incorporation by reference of section 5-1.7.2 of ANSI 
B30.5-1968, prohibits the use of rotation resistant rope for boom hoist 
reeving under all circumstances. This prohibition reflects the fact 
that rotation resistant rope used for boom hoist reeving tends to twist 
and thereby suffer internal damage when it passes over sheaves that are 
close together.
    In reviewing this prohibition, the Committee noted that this 
problem is reduced when load hoists using rotation resistant rope are 
used as boom hoists for attachments such as luffing attachments or boom 
and mast attachment systems because the sheaves are not as close 
together in these applications and the twisting forces are therefore 
lower.
    The Committee concluded that safety would not be compromised in 
such circumstances as long as the conditions in proposed Sec.  
1926.1414(c)(4)(ii) were met. The Committee also believed that the 
exception would serve a practical purpose, especially when using 
attachments such as luffing jibs. The auxiliary hoist is typically used 
as a boom hoist for such attachments, and is normally rigged with 
rotation resistant rope. The exception enables the employer to avoid 
the need to change the rope when using such attachments when safety 
could be assured by meeting the specified conditions for its use. Note 
that section 5-1.7.2 of ASME B30.5-2004 also allows rotation resistant 
rope to be used for boom hoist reeving when conditions similar to those 
in proposed Sec.  1926.1414(c)(4)(ii) are met.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(4)(ii)(A), the drum must have a first 
layer rope pitch diameter of not less than 18 times the nominal 
diameter of the rope used. A first layer rope pitch diameter less than 
that could damage the rope.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(4)(ii)(B), the requirements of Sec.  
1926.1426(a) and (b) would have to be

[[Page 59784]]

met.\42\ Section 1926.1426(a) prohibits boom free fall for equipment 
manufactured prior to October 31, 1984 and restricts the circumstances 
under which a free falling boom may be used for equipment manufactured 
before that date. By saying that paragraph 1426(a) applies 
``irrespective of the date of manufacture,'' proposed Sec.  
1926.1414(c)(4)(ii)(B) makes clear that, when rotation resistant rope 
is used for boom hoist reeving, boom free fall is prohibited for all 
equipment under all circumstances. The reference to Sec.  1926.1426(b) 
requires the boom hoist to have a secondary mechanism to prevent free 
fall in the event the primary system fails. These provisions would 
prevent the rope from being subjected to the shock load forces that 
would occur in a boom free fall when the rope arrests the fall.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \42\ The C-DAC Document referred to Sec.  1926.1426(b) and (c). 
C-DAC's intent clearly was to refer to Sec.  1926.1426(a) and (b), 
and OSHA has corrected the text accordingly.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The C-DAC draft of proposed paragraph (c)(4)(ii)(C) incorporated by 
reference the provisions in ASME B30.5-2004 at sections 5-1.3.2(a), 
(a)(2) through (a)(4), and (b) through (d).\43\ (Note that, at the time 
the C-DAC document was completed, the most current version of ANSI/ASME 
B30.5 was the 2000 version. Since that time the 2004 version has been 
issued. The referenced provisions are identical in both versions).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \43\ The Committee determined that the incorporated provisions 
were sufficiently clear and enforceable for use as OSHA 
requirements.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    These provisions of section 5-1.3.2 (load hoist mechanisms) of the 
ASME standard provide:

* * * * *
    (a) Load Hoist Drums. The load hoist drum assemblies shall have 
power and operational characteristics sufficient to perform all load 
lifting and lowering functions required in crane service when 
operated under recommended conditions.
* * * * *
    (2) Load hoist drums shall have rope capacity with the 
recommended rope size and reeving to perform crane service within 
the range of boom lengths, operating radii, and vertical lifts 
specified by the manufacturer.
    (a) No less than two full wraps of rope shall remain on the drum 
when the hook is in the extreme low position.
    (b) The drum end of the rope shall be anchored to the drum by an 
arrangement specified by the crane or rope manufacturer.
    (c) The drum flange shall extend a minimum of 1/2 inch (13 mm) 
over the top layer of rope at all times.
    (3) The load hoist drums shall provide a first layer rope pitch 
diameter of not less than 18 times the nominal diameter of the rope 
used.
    (4) A means controllable from the operator's station shall be 
provided to hold the drum from rotating in the lowering direction 
and be capable of holding the rated load without further action by 
the operator. Foot-operated brakes having a continuous mechanical 
linkage between the actuating and braking means, capable of 
transmitting full braking force and equipped with a positive 
mechanical means to hold the linkage in the applied position, meet 
this requirement.
* * * * *
    (b) Load Hoist Brakes.
    (1) When power-operated brakes having no continuous mechanical 
linkage between the actuating and braking means are used for 
controlling loads, an automatic means shall be provided to set the 
brake, to prevent the load from falling in the event of loss of 
brake control power.
    (2) Foot-operated brake pedals shall be constructed so that the 
operator's feet, when in proper position, will not slip off, and a 
means shall be provided for holding the brakes in the applied 
position without further action by the operator.
    (c) Power Controlled Lowering. When provided, a power-controlled 
lowering system shall be capable of handling rated loads and speeds 
as specified by the manufacturer. Such a system is recommended to 
assist in precision lowering and to reduce demand on the load brake.
    (d) Cylinders with Rope Reeving. Cranes using a load hoist 
mechanism with hydraulic cylinder(s) and rope reeving shall have 
power and operational characteristics sufficient to perform all load 
lifting and lowering functions required in crane service when 
operated under recommended conditions. Sheaves used in multiple rope 
reeving shall have a pitch diameter not less than 16 times the 
nominal diameter of the rope and shall comply with para. 5-1.7.4.

    Upon reviewing these provisions, OSHA believes that two changes 
need to be made to the incorporation recommended by C-DAC. First, the 
second sentence of section 5-1.3.2(c) is stated as a recommendation 
rather than a mandatory requirement. OSHA believes it would be 
confusing to incorporate a non-mandatory recommendation into this 
standard. Therefore, rather than incorporating that provision by 
reference, OSHA is adding a new paragraph (G) to Sec.  
1926.1414(c)(4)(ii) that incorporates only the mandatory first sentence 
of section 5-1.3.2(c) of ASME B30.5: ``When provided, a power-
controlled lowering system shall be capable of handling rated loads and 
speeds as specified by the manufacturer.''
    The second change pertains to the final sentence of section 5-
1.3.2(d) of ASME B30.5. That sentence's requirement of a minimum pitch 
diameter of 16 times the nominal diameter of the rope varies from the 
requirement of proposed Sec.  1926.1414(c)(4)(ii)(D), discussed next, 
that the minimum pitch diameter be 18 times the rope's nominal 
diameter. The variation is due to the fact that section 1.3.2(d) of 
ASME B30.5 does not apply solely to rotation resistant rope, as does 
this paragraph. Although it is possible to comply with a minimum pitch 
diameter of both 16 and 18 times the nominal diameter of the rope by 
adhering to the value of 18, OSHA believes it would be confusing to 
include requirements giving both values. Accordingly, OSHA is modifying 
the incorporation by reference recommended by C-DAC so that, in this 
proposed rule, Sec.  1926.1414(c)(4)(ii)(C) reads as follows:

    The requirements in ASME B30.5-2004 Section 5-1.3.2 (a), (a)(2)-
(a)(4), (b), and (d), except that the minimum pitch diameter for 
sheaves used in multiple rope reeving is 18 times the nominal 
diameter of the rope used instead of the value of 16 specified in 
section 5-1.3.2(d).

    Proposed paragraph (c)(4)(ii)(D) provides that all sheaves used in 
the boom hoist reeving system shall have a rope pitch diameter of not 
less than 18 times the nominal diameter of the rope used.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(4)(ii)(E) provides that the operating design 
factor of the boom hoist reeving system shall be not less than five. In 
this paragraph and the next one as well, OSHA has changed the C-DAC 
term ``design factor'' to ``operating design factor.'' OSHA made this 
change so that the terminology in these two paragraphs would be 
consistent with that in proposed paragraphs (c)(2) and (3) of this 
section. OSHA requests public comment on whether there is any reason 
for using different terminology in proposed Sec.  
1926.1414(c)(4)(ii)(E) and (F) than in proposed Sec.  1926.1414(c)(2) 
and (3).
    Proposed paragraph (c)(4)(ii)(F) provides that the operating design 
factor for these ropes shall be the total minimum breaking force of all 
parts of rope in the system divided by the load imposed on the rope 
system when supporting the static weights of the structure and the 
crane rated load. The purpose of this provision is to ensure that the 
methodology for computing the operating design factors is clear and the 
operating design factor requirements specified in the proposed standard 
achieve their intended effect.
Paragraph 1414(d)
    Proposed paragraph (d) would require that wire rope clips used with 
wedge sockets be attached to the unloaded dead end of the rope; 
however, the provision also permits the use of

[[Page 59785]]

devices specifically designed for dead-ending rope in a wedge socket. 
The Committee believed that this provision is necessary to ensure 
attachment strength, reliability and prevention of cable damage.
Paragraph 1414(e)
    Proposed paragraph (e) states that socketing shall be done in the 
manner specified by the manufacturer of the wire rope or fitting. This 
is a clearer version of the provision in section 5-1.7.2b of ANSI 
B30.5-1968, which refers to the manner specified by the manufacturer of 
the assembly.
Paragraph 1414(f)
    Proposed paragraph (f) specifies that prior to cutting wire rope, 
seizings must be placed on each side of the point to be cut, with the 
length and number of seizings determined in accordance with the wire 
rope manufacturer's instructions. Seizings are needed to hold the wire 
in the strands and the strands in place during handling while cutting. 
This keeps the rope beyond the area of the cut intact. This provision 
differs from both section 5.2.4.3(c) of ANSI B30.5-1968 (incorporated 
by reference into 29 CFR part 1926 Subpart N) and from section 5-
2.4.4(c) of ASME B30.5-2004, which set forth specific seizing 
requirements based upon whether the rope is preformed and the rope's 
diameter.
    In Committee's experience, the instructions and procedures for 
seizing differ among various wire rope manufacturers. It concluded that 
the most appropriate approach would be to require that, beyond 
specifying that seizings be placed on each side of the point to be cut, 
which is always necessary, the length and number of seizings be in 
accordance with the manufacturer's instructions. The Committee decided 
to require employers to follow the manufacturer's instructions because 
it believed that wire rope manufacturers have the knowledge and 
expertise to best determine the length and number of seizings that are 
needed to maintain the integrity of their wire ropes during cutting.

Section 1415 Safety Devices

    This section sets forth the proposed requirements for equipping 
cranes and derricks with certain safety devices.
    The safety devices addressed by this section are devices that C-DAC 
believed are essential for the safe operation of cranes and derricks 
and therefore, required to be present and in proper working order 
during all equipment operations with no alternative measures permitted. 
Those devices considered less critical to equipment safety are 
designated as operational aids and are governed by proposed Sec.  
1926.1416. That section allows for equipment to continue operating if 
the operational aid fails or malfunctions but requires certain 
temporary alternative protective measures in such cases. Those devices 
designated as safety devices in this section are so essential and 
integral to safe equipment operation that C-DAC determined that there 
is no acceptable alternative to having them in proper working order.
Paragraph 1415(a) Safety Devices
    Proposed paragraph (a) lists the safety devices that would be 
required on all equipment covered by this Subpart and any 
specifications and conditions applicable to those devices (including 
the exemption of certain equipment from the requirements of the listed 
devices).
    Crane Level Indicator: Proposed paragraph (a)(1) would require that 
a crane level indicator be on all equipment covered under this subpart. 
The Agency is proposing this requirement based upon the Committee's 
belief that level equipment is a key factor in ensuring crane and 
derrick safety. Using a crane level indicator is necessary because it 
has the requisite accuracy for leveling the equipment. C-DAC members 
stressed the need to use a crane level indicator because, if the 
equipment is not properly leveled, it will not have all the capacities 
indicated in the load charts. Reliance on the charts in such situations 
could cause the equipment to overturn or otherwise fail.
    C-DAC discussions also raised two significant issues in applying 
the (a)(1) requirement. First, as stated in Sec.  1926.1415(a)(1)(i), 
the proposal specifies that a crane level indicator must either be 
built into the equipment or available on it. The Committee believed 
that either option accomplishes the purpose of enabling the employer to 
determine if the equipment is level. Second, as covered in Sec.  
1926.1415(a)(1)(ii), the Committee believed that tagging out or 
removing deficient built-in crane level indicators is necessary. This 
provision addresses the hazard posed by false readings.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(1)(iii) would exempt portal cranes,\44\ 
derricks, floating cranes/derricks and land cranes/derricks on barges, 
pontoons, vessels, or other means of flotation from the requirements of 
Sec.  1926.1415(a)(1). C-DAC members indicated that these types of 
equipment are leveled upon installation and then fixed in place, 
precluding the need for a crane level indicator.\45\
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    \44\ Proposed Sec.  1926.1401 defines ``portal cranes'' as a 
type of crane consisting of a rotating upperstructure, hoist 
machinery, and boom mounted on top of a structural gantry which may 
be fixed in one location or have travel capability. The gantry legs 
or columns usually have portal openings in between to allow passage 
of traffic beneath the gantry.
    \45\ Note that, under proposed Sec.  1926.1437(e), a pontoon or 
barge/vessel list and trim device would be required for floating 
cranes/derricks and land cranes/derricks.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Boom Stops: Proposed paragraph (a)(2) requires boom stops on all 
equipment except for derricks and hydraulic booms. ``Boom stop'' is 
defined in proposed Sec.  1926.1401 as a device that restricts the boom 
from moving above a certain maximum angle and toppling over backwards. 
This definition is derived from the SC&RF Handbook. The term includes 
all devices that meet the definition, including boom stops, (belly 
straps with struts/standoff), telescoping boom stops, attachment boom 
stops, and backstops. As the definition indicates, a boom stop is 
needed to prevent a boom from tipping backwards past its designed range 
during equipment operations. Several Committee members suggested 
exempting certain older equipment from being retrofitted with boom 
stops. However, C-DAC concluded that the significant safety issue at 
stake and the fact that installing boom stops is not technically 
difficult justify requiring them on older equipment.
    As noted above, the Agency proposes to exempt derricks and 
hydraulic cranes from the requirements of 1926.1415(a)(2). The derrick 
boom overturn issue is covered in proposed 1926.1436(f)(2). Hydraulic 
cranes are exempted because these cranes contain the equivalent 
function of boom stops in that the hydraulic cylinder physically 
prevents the boom from moving backward past its designed range.
    Jib Stops: ``Jib stop'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as the same 
type of device as a boom stop but used for a fixed or luffing jib. The 
definition notes that the device is also referred to as a ``jib 
backstop.'' Proposed Sec.  1926.1415(a)(3) would require jib stops on 
all equipment where a jib is attached, except for derricks. Jib stops 
perform the same function for jibs as boom stops perform for booms, and 
are similarly necessary. The proposal exempts derricks from this 
requirement because jibs are not installed on derricks.
    Foot Pedal Brake Locks: Proposed paragraph (a)(4) would require 
that equipment with foot pedal brakes have

[[Page 59786]]

locks, except for portal cranes and floating cranes. Such locks are 
needed to prevent the unintentional disengagement of a foot pedal 
brake, which could lead to unintended equipment movement and consequent 
injuries and fatalities. Due to the physical effort needed to keep the 
pedal engaged, this is particularly important where the brake is 
applied for long periods of time.
    The rationale for exempting portal cranes and floating cranes from 
this requirement discussed by the Committee was that there are 
instances in which, due to the pitching of a floating crane and the 
pitching of the vessel or object in the water with which a portal crane 
works, the operator may have to immediately release the brake. The 
concern is that, if the foot pedal brake lock had been activated, the 
operator may not be able to release the brake quickly enough in such a 
situation to prevent the equipment from being overloaded or to prevent 
unintended movement of the load.
    Upon review of the exemption in the provision, the Agency has 
realized that C-DAC assumed that the locking device would in all cases 
be of the type that is located on the brake pedal. That type of device 
can be difficult to disengage, thereby delaying the operator's ability 
to release the brake. However, it is OSHA's understanding that there 
are other types of brake locking mechanisms that do not present this 
problem (for example, a brake lock that is hand-actuated). It therefore 
appears that the exemption may not be needed.\46\ The Agency requests 
public comment on changing proposed paragraph Sec.  1926.1415(a)(4) by 
deleting the exemption and requiring a hoist brake locking mechanism 
for all cranes.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \46\ OSHA notes that ASME B30.8-2004, ``Floating Cranes and 
Floating Derricks,'' section 8-1.6.2(l), applies to load hoists and 
reads as follows: ``Foot-operated brake pedals * * * shall be 
equipped with a means for latching in the applied position.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Integral Holding Device/Check Valve: Proposed paragraph (a)(5) 
would require that hydraulic outrigger jacks have an integral holding 
device/check valve. Such a device is necessary to prevent the outrigger 
jack from collapsing in the event of a hydraulic failure.
    Rail Clamps and Rail Stops: Proposed paragraph (a)(6) specifies 
that equipment on rails have rail clamps and rail stops, except for 
portal cranes. A rail clamp restricts the equipment from lifting off 
the rails. The rail stop prevents the equipment from moving further 
than a specific point on the rails. Portal cranes are exempt from the 
requirements of Sec.  1926.1415(a)(6) because these cranes typically 
are equipped with a parking brake that provides the equivalent function 
of preventing the crane from unintentionally moving along the rails.
Paragraph 1415(b) Proper Operation Required
    Proposed paragraph (b) would prohibit the operation of the 
equipment if any of the safety devices listed in this section are not 
in proper working order. This paragraph reflects the Committee's 
belief, discussed above, that proper operation of these devices is 
critical to safe use of the equipment.

Section 1416 Operational Aids

    This section sets forth the proposed requirements for equipping 
cranes and derricks with certain operational aids. ``Operational aids'' 
are defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as ``devices that assist the operator in 
the safe operation of the crane by providing information or 
automatically taking control of a crane function. These include, but 
are not limited to, the devices listed in Sec.  1926.1416 (`listed 
operational aids').'' This definition is similar to that in section 5-
0.2.2 of ASME B30.5-2004.
    As discussed above in regard to proposed Sec.  1926.1415, the 
Committee believed that the devices addressed in Sec.  1926.1416 
enhance safety. However, they are less essential to the safe operation 
of equipment than the safety devices addressed by Sec.  1926.1415 
because of the availability of alternatives that are sufficient on a 
temporary basis. The temporary alternative measures are precautions 
that were historically used prior to the widespread availability and 
use of these operational aids.
Paragraphs 1416(a) and (b)
    Under proposed paragraphs (a) and (b), operational aids would be 
required on all equipment unless otherwise specified, and would have to 
be in proper working order unless the employer uses specified temporary 
alternative protection. Section 1926.1416(b) provides that if the 
crane/derrick manufacturer specifies more protective alternative 
measures than those listed in the standard, the employer would be 
required to follow them.
    Committee discussions of these provisions primarily focused on the 
use of manufacturer procedures as temporary alternative measures. The 
Committee considered recommending that the Agency require employers to 
follow any temporary alternative measures specified by the equipment 
manufacturer in addition to those required by this proposal. However, 
instead of requiring additional measures, the Committee decided that 
employers should be required to rely solely on measures specified by 
the manufacturer but only if those measures are more protective than 
those specified in the standard.
Paragraph 1416(c)
    Proposed paragraph (c) states that if a listed operational aid 
stops working properly during operations, the operator shall safely 
stop operations until the temporary alternative measures are 
implemented or the device is again working properly. It further 
provides that, if a replacement part is no longer available, a 
substitute device that performs the same type of function may be used, 
and the use of such a device is not considered a modification under 
proposed Sec.  1926.1434, Equipment modifications. Section 1926.1434 
applies to modifications or additions which affect the capacity or safe 
operation of the equipment unless certain steps are taken to have the 
modifications or additions approved.
    The Committee believed that it is unnecessary to apply Sec.  
1926.1434 to the use of a substitute operational aid because, as long 
as the substitute device works properly, its use will not affect the 
capacity or safe operation of the equipment.
Paragraph 1416(d) Category I Operational Aids and Alternative Measures
    The proposal splits operational aids into two categories, with 
different amounts of time permitted for temporary alternative measures 
to be used in place of the listed operational aids. Category I 
operational aids, which are addressed by proposed paragraph (d), would 
set a 7-day time limit for repairing the deficient aid, and Category 
II, addressed below under proposed paragraph (e), has a 30-day time 
limit. The allowance of a 30-day time period for Category II 
operational aids reflects the Committee's belief that these aids are 
less critical to equipment safety than those in Category I.
    Both Category I and II would have an exception to the repair time 
limits. For Category I, if the employer documents that it has ordered 
the necessary part within 7 days of the occurrence of the deficiency, 
the repair would have to be completed within 7 days of receipt of the 
part. For Category II, if the employer documents that it has ordered 
the necessary part within 7 days of the occurrence of the deficiency 
and the part is not received in time to complete the repair in 30 days, 
the repair shall be completed within 7 days of receipt of

[[Page 59787]]

the part. The Committee believed that these time frames set limitations 
that are both feasible and reflective of the amount of time that it is 
appropriate to rely on the alternative measures in each category.
    During the SBREFA Panel process, one Small Entity Representative 
stated that an extended period of time might be required to determine 
the appropriate part number for older equipment and that it might 
therefore not be possible to order a replacement within 7 days. OSHA 
solicits public comment on the extent to which this is a problem. OSHA 
further seeks comment on how to accommodate a situation in which 
ordering a replacement part is hindered because the part number is not 
readily available. For example, would a parts supplier be able to 
furnish the correct part if the type of device (e.g., boom hoist 
limiting device) and the model of the crane are provided?
    The SBREFA Panel also questioned whether the number of ``days'' for 
ordering parts and completing repairs for operational aids refers to 
calendar days or business days. Absent a different definition in the 
standard, OSHA interprets the word ``days'' to mean ``working days'' 
which, as discussed above in relation to proposed Sec.  1926.1407(e), 
would mean Mondays through Fridays, excluding federal holidays. OSHA 
solicits public comment on whether a different definition of ``days'' 
should apply under this section.
    Proposed paragraph (d) lists the required Category I operational 
aids and the acceptable temporary alternative measures for these aids.
    Boom Hoist Limiting Device: Proposed paragraph (d)(1) would require 
that all equipment manufactured after December 16, 1969 have a boom 
hoist limiting device. As defined in Sec.  1926.1401, a boom hoist 
limiting device disengages boom hoist power when the boom reaches a 
predetermined operating angle and also sets brakes or closes valves to 
prevent the boom from lowering after power is disengaged. This 
definition is taken from the SC&RF Handbook. Section 1926.1401 also 
explains that the term ``boom hoist limiting device'' includes boom 
hoist disengaging device, boom hoist shutoff, boom hoist disconnect, 
boom hoist hydraulic relief, boom hoist kick-outs, automatic boom stop 
device, or derricking limiter. A boom hoist limiting device 
automatically prevents the boom hoist from pulling the boom past the 
minimum allowable radius (maximum boom angle). If the boom were to be 
pulled past that point, a failure is likely (for example, the boom 
could buckle from being forced against the boom stop).
    The December 16, 1969 date reflects the effective date of ANSI 
B30.5-1968. This was the first national consensus standard to require a 
boom hoist limiting device, and the Committee regarded that date as a 
reasonable indicator of when the industry began widely manufacturing or 
equipping cranes and derricks with such devices. Although the ANSI 
standard was only applicable to crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes, 
the Committee recommended extending this provision to all equipment 
based on prevailing industry practice.
    The Agency is also proposing three temporary alternative measures 
[Sec.  1926.1416(d)(1)(A)-(C)], of which the employer must use at least 
one upon malfunction of the boom hoist limiting device. These are: Use 
of a boom angle indicator; clearly marking the boom hoist cable at a 
point that will give the operator sufficient time to stop the hoist to 
keep the boom within the minimum allowable radius; and, if a spotter is 
used, clearly marking the boom hoist cable at a point that will give 
the spotter sufficient time to signal the operator and have the 
operator stop the hoist to keep the boom within the minimum allowable 
radius. C-DAC recommended these measures because historically they were 
used by employers prior to the development of the boom hoist limiting 
device. This paragraph further proposes requiring these measures on a 
permanent basis for those employers operating equipment manufactured on 
or before December 16, 1969 and not originally equipped with a boom 
hoist limiting device.
    Luffing Jib Limiting Device: Proposed paragraph (d)(2) would 
require that equipment with a luffing jib have a luffing jib limiting 
device. As defined in Sec.  1926.1401, a luffing jib limiting device is 
similar to a boom hoist limiting device, except that it limits the 
movement of the luffing jib. C-DAC indicated that these two devices 
function similarly and are distinguished only as to the type of crane 
extension each is automatically designed to limit: The jib versus the 
boom. The temporary alternative measures for a luffing jib limiting 
device are the same as those proposed for a boom hoist limiting device 
in Sec.  1926.1416(d)(1)(i)(A)-(C).
    Anti Two-Blocking Device: Proposed paragraph (d)(3) sets forth the 
requirements for anti two-blocking devices. ``Two blocking'' is defined 
in Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a condition in which a component that is 
uppermost on the hoist line such as the load block, hook block, 
overhaul ball, or similar component, comes in contact with the boom 
tip, fixed upper block or similar component. This binds the system and 
continued application of power can cause failure of the hoist rope or 
other component.'' This definition is derived from the SC&RF Handbook. 
As the definition indicates, two-blocking can result in the crane 
dropping the load, the headache ball, or another component, creating an 
extreme hazard to employees below. An anti two-blocking device has been 
required by Sec.  1926.550(g)(3)(ii)(C) when hoisting personnel since 
October 3, 1988 but is not otherwise required under 29 CFR part 1926 
subpart N. The Committee believed that expanding the use of anti two-
blocking devices beyond hoisting personnel is needed to help reduce the 
number of crane-related injuries and fatalities.
    Anti two-block devices are manufactured in two forms: As an 
automatic prevention device or as a warning device. The automatic 
prevention device automatically stops two blocking from occurring. The 
warning device warns the operator when two blocking is about to occur. 
C-DAC members agreed that the automatic prevention anti two-block 
device provides better protection for employees, since it automatically 
stops two-blocking. As discussed below, the proposed standard would 
ultimately require automatic prevention devices on all equipment under 
a phase-in schedule. In drafting the schedule, C-DAC took account of 
the date the national consensus standard, ANSI B30.5, began to require 
such devices for telescopic boom cranes and the fact that B30.5 has 
continued to allow lattice boom cranes to be equipped with either 
prevention devices or warning devices.
    Effective February 28, 1992, ASME B30.5 required automatic 
prevention devices on telescopic boom cranes. At the same time, for 
lattice boom cranes, ASME B30.5 required two-block protection but 
allowed greater flexibility, requiring them to be equipped with either 
automatic prevention devices or warning devices. The additional 
protection required for telescopic boom cranes in the ASME standard 
reflects the fact that such cranes are more likely to two-block because 
telescoping the boom out (an action that does not occur with lattice 
boom cranes) moves the boom's block closer to the load end of the hoist 
cable, which can cause two-blocking.
    Because February 28, 1992, is the date that ASME B30.5 first 
required anti two-block devices on telescopic boom cranes and the 
industry first began widely manufacturing or equipping such cranes

[[Page 59788]]

with such devices, proposed Sec.  1926.1416(d)(3)(i) would require 
automatic prevention devices on all telescopic boom cranes manufactured 
after February 28, 1992. However, because ASME B30.5 has allowed 
lattice boom cranes to have either a warning device or an automatic 
prevention device since February 28, 1992, proposed Sec.  
1926.1416(d)(3)(ii)(A) similarly would give employers the option of 
using either device on lattice boom cranes manufactured between 
February 28, 1992 and one year after the effective date of this 
standard.
    As noted above, C-DAC believed that the automatic prevention device 
offers better protection than the warning device. Therefore, to ensure 
that future cranes are equipped with the preferable automatic 
prevention device, the proposal would require lattice boom cranes 
manufactured more than one year after the effective date of this 
standard to be equipped with an automatic prevention device.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(3)(ii)(C) excludes lattice boom equipment 
used during certain activities from the anti two-block requirements of 
Sec.  1926.1416(d)(3)(A) and (B). The provision would exempt lattice 
boom equipment when used for dragline, clamshell (grapple), magnet, 
drop ball, concrete bucket, and pile driving work because these 
operations involve heavy repetitive motion, and currently manufactured 
anti-two block devices used during these activities consistently 
malfunction (that is, the device ``trips'' even though a two-block has 
not occurred) and are frequently damaged.
    Lattice boom equipment used during marine operations generally 
would be exempt because the constant movement of the barge tends to 
damage the device. Similarly, lattice boom equipment used during 
container handling work in construction would be exempted because this 
activity typically involves hoisting containers to and from ships.\47\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \47\ In most situations hoisting containers would be regulated 
under 29 CFR part 1918; the proposed standard would apply to 
hoisting containers only where that activity is considered 
construction work. For example, hoisting a container of construction 
material from a ship onto a concrete pier that is part of a bridge 
construction project would be a construction activity and covered by 
this proposed standard.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    However, note that proposed paragraph 1437(f)(1) would require anti 
two-block devices on floating cranes/derricks and land cranes/derricks 
on barges when hoisting personnel or hoisting over an occupied coffer 
dam or shaft. In those situations the exemption would not apply. The 
Agency believes that the need for anti two-block devices in such 
situations to prevent employees from being dropped, and to prevent a 
load from striking employees in the confined work environment of a 
coffer dam or shaft, outweighs any propensity for damage to the device 
or unnecessary ``tripping'' during marine operations.
    For lattice boom cranes and derricks, the temporary alternative 
measure required when an anti two-block device malfunctions is to 
clearly mark the cable so that it can easily be seen by the operator at 
a point that will give the operator sufficient time to stop the hoist 
to prevent two-blocking, or use a spotter to warn the operator to stop 
the hoist.
    For telescopic boom cranes, the temporary alternative measure 
required would be to clearly mark the cable so that it can easily be 
seen by the operator at a point that will give the operator sufficient 
time to stop the hoist to prevent two-blocking and use a spotter when 
extending the boom. The Committee believed that the alternative measure 
for telescopic boom cranes needs to have the additional precaution of a 
spotter when extending the boom because in those cranes two-blocking 
can occur even when the cable hoist is not being operated. As noted 
above, telescoping the boom out moves the boom's block closer to the 
load end of the hoist cable, which can cause two-blocking. A mark on 
the hoist cable in such instances would not warn the operator that two-
blocking is about to occur. Therefore, when extending the boom, a 
spotter would also have to be used.
Paragraph 1416(e) Category II Operational Aids and Alternative Measures
    Proposed paragraph (e) lists the required Category II operational 
aids and the acceptable temporary alternative measures for these aids. 
If these aids were to malfunction there would be a 30-day time limit 
for repair. If the employer documents it has ordered the necessary 
parts within 7 days of the occurrence of the deficiency and the part is 
not received in time to complete the repair within 30 days, the repair 
would be required to be completed within 7 days of receipt of the part.
    Boom Angle or Radius Indicator: Proposed paragraph (e)(1) would 
require a boom angle or radius indicator readable from the operator's 
station on all equipment. ``Boom angle indicator'' is defined in Sec.  
1926.1401 as ``a device which measures the angle of the boom relative 
to the horizontal.'' This definition is taken from the SC&RF Handbook. 
Knowing the boom angle is necessary to accurately determine the crane's 
capacity from its load chart. The temporary alternative would be to 
measure the radii or boom angle with a measuring device.
    Jib Angle Indicator: Proposed paragraph (e)(2) would require a jib 
angle indicator on all equipment with a luffing jib. The temporary 
alternative would be to measure the radii or jib angle with a measuring 
device.
    Boom Length Indicator: Proposed paragraph (e)(3) would require a 
boom length indicator on all equipment equipped with a telescopic boom. 
As defined in Sec.  1926.1401, a boom length indicator ``indicates the 
length of the permanent part of the boom (such as ruled markings on the 
boom) or, as in some computerized systems, the length of the boom with 
extensions/attachments.'' The length of the boom must be known because 
it affects the crane's capacity as shown on the load chart. The 
temporary alternative would be one of the following: mark the boom with 
measured marks to calculate boom length; calculate boom length from 
boom angle and radius measurements; or measure the boom with a 
measuring device.
    Load Weighing and Similar Devices: Proposed paragraph (e)(4) would 
require load weighing and similar devices on all equipment with a rated 
capacity over 6,000 pounds and manufactured after March 29, 2003, 
except derricks. (A comparable provision for derricks is in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1436(f)(3), discussed below.) The framework of this proposed 
paragraph is similar to the approach taken in section 5-1.9.9.2 of ASME 
B30.5-2004 with respect to these aids. The framework permits employers 
to choose to outfit its equipment with either a load weighing device; 
load moment or rated capacity indicator; or a load moment or rated 
capacity limiter.
    Load moment (or rated capacity) indicator is defined in Sec.  
1926.1401 as ``a system which aids the equipment operator by sensing 
the overturning moment on the equipment, i.e., load multiplied by 
radius. It compares this lifting condition to the equipment's rated 
capacity, and indicates to the operator the percentage of capacity at 
which the equipment is working. Lights, bells, or buzzers may be 
incorporated as a warning of an approaching overload condition.'' This 
definition is derived from the SC&RF Handbook.
    Load moment (or rated capacity) limiter is defined in Sec.  
1926.1401 as ``a system which aids the equipment operator by sensing 
the overturning moment on the equipment, i.e., load multiplied by 
radius. It compares this lifting condition to the equipment's rated 
capacity, and when the rated

[[Page 59789]]

capacity is reached, it shuts off power to those equipment functions 
which can increase the severity of loading on the equipment, e.g., 
hoisting, telescoping out, or luffing out. Typically, those functions 
which decrease the severity of loading on the equipment remain 
operational, e.g., lowering, telescoping in, or luffing in.'' The 
proposal permits employers flexibility in choosing which device to 
employ because the Committee believed that all three devices will help 
ensure that the equipment does not exceed its capacity and tip over.
    This provision would be limited to equipment (other than derricks) 
manufactured after March 29, 2003. That was the date when ASME B30.5 
first called for all mobile cranes with a rated capacity over 6,000 
pounds to be equipped with load weighing devices. It therefore reflects 
when the industry first began widely manufacturing or equipping cranes 
with load weighing or load moment devices.
    Each of these indicators makes it easier for the operator to ensure 
that the equipment is operated within its capacity. The proposed 
provision would therefore reduce the likelihood of injuries and 
fatalities from tip-over and other incidents resulting from operating 
equipment beyond its capacity.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5) would require two future operational 
aids--an outrigger position sensor/monitor and a hoist drum rotation 
indicator--on all equipment manufactured after January 1, 2008. ``Drum 
rotation indicator'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a device on a 
crane or hoist which indicates in which direction and at what relative 
speed a particular hoist drum is turning.'' This definition is taken 
from the SC&RF Handbook. C-DAC believed that these aids will help 
ensure the safe operation of cranes but found that additional time is 
needed for the industry to develop them.
    The Committee also considered whether a third future operational 
aid--counterweight sensors--should be required on all equipment 
manufactured after January 1, 2008. Several Committee members 
representing crane manufacturers expressed concern as to the difficulty 
in developing a reliable counterweight sensor presently or in the near 
future. In light of these technological problems, the Committee did not 
include these.

Section 1417 Operation

    Proposed Sec.  1926.1417 addresses hazards associated with general 
operation of equipment covered by this standard. Currently, 29 CFR part 
1926 subpart N primarily addresses safe operation by incorporating 
national consensus standards and manufacturer recommendations. For 
example, Sec.  1926.550(b)(2) requires crawler, truck, and locomotive 
cranes to comply with the operation requirements of ANSI B30.5-1968. 
The provisions in this proposed section are designed to update such 
requirements, make them more comprehensive, and state them in a way 
that is clear and enforceable.
Paragraph 1417(a)
    Currently, Subpart N requires employers to comply with 
manufacturers' operational requirements for hammerhead tower cranes 
(Sec.  1926.550(c)(5)) and for floating cranes/derricks (Sec.  
1926.550(f)(2)(iii)) but not for other types of equipment. Proposed 
Sec.  1926.1417(a) would require employers to comply with the 
manufacturer procedures applicable to the operational functions of all 
equipment covered by this proposed standard, including the use of 
equipment with attachments.
    The Committee believed that the manufacturer has a high degree of 
expertise with respect to the capabilities and limitations of the 
equipment it has designed and built. Accidents can therefore be 
prevented by ensuring that the equipment is operated in a manner that 
is consistent with the manufacturer's procedures. As noted in the 
discussion of the proposed definition of ``procedures'' in Sec.  
1926.1401, the phrase ``manufacturer procedures'' is to be interpreted 
broadly to include all recommendations by the manufacturer regardless 
of the format of those recommendations.
Paragraph 1417(b) Unavailable Operation Procedures
    Paragraphs (b)(1) through (b)(3). Currently, Subpart N has no 
provision for developing operational procedures where manufacturer 
procedures are not available. C-DAC believed that setting requirements 
to address these situations would help improve safety with respect to 
the operation of such equipment.
    ``Unavailable procedures'' is defined in proposed Sec.  1926.1401 
as meaning procedures that are no longer available from the 
manufacturer, or have never been available from the manufacturer. C-DAC 
provided this definition so that employers would understand what 
constitutes unavailable procedures. For instance, procedures that are 
in the employer's possession but are not on the job site, would not be 
considered unavailable under proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1417(b) and 
1926.1441(c)(2), where the term is used.
    Under proposed paragraph (b)(1), in the event that the manufacturer 
procedures for operation are not available, the employer would be 
required to develop procedures necessary for the safe operation of the 
equipment and its attachments. The employer would also be required to 
ensure compliance with such procedures.
    For example, the manufacturers of some old equipment are no longer 
in business; procedures for that equipment are typically unavailable. 
Even where the original manufacturer became a part of another company 
that is still in business, in some cases the successor company no 
longer has the original manufacturers' procedures for that equipment. 
In such instances the employer would be required to develop and follow 
substitute procedures.
    Proposed paragraphs (b)(2) and (b)(3) would specify qualifications 
criteria for those who develop two aspects of the substitute 
procedures. Specifically, under proposed Sec.  1926.1417(b)(2), 
procedures for the operational controls would have to be developed by a 
qualified person. As defined in Sec.  1926.1401 of this proposed 
standard, ``operational controls'' are levers, switches, pedals and 
other devices for controlling equipment operation. The Committee 
believed that a high level of expertise is needed to develop such 
procedures in light of both the complexity of the factors that must be 
considered in developing such procedures and the critical nature of the 
operational controls.
    Under proposed paragraph (b)(3), operational procedures related to 
equipment capacity would have to be developed and signed by a 
registered professional engineer familiar with the equipment. The 
Committee believed that the type and complexity of engineering analysis 
that is needed to develop safe procedures related to capacity 
necessitates that this work be done by a registered professional 
engineer (RPE). In addition, because capacity is so critical to safe 
operation, the Committee believed that a signature by the RPE is needed 
to ensure that this work is done with the requisite care.
Paragraph 1417(c) Accessibility of Procedures
    Paragraph (c)(1). This proposed paragraph would require employers 
to provide the operator with ready access in the cab to the procedures 
applicable to the operation of the equipment, including the following: 
Rated capacities (load charts), recommended operating speeds, special 
hazard

[[Page 59790]]

warnings, and the instructions and operator's manual.
    For the purposes of this proposed standard, ``special hazard 
warnings'' are warnings of site-specific hazards (for example, 
proximity of power lines). C-DAC defines this term in proposed Sec.  
1926.1401 to differentiate these site-specific warnings from all other 
general hazard warnings which are common to typical construction 
worksites.
    Currently, Sec.  1926.550(a)(2) of Subpart N requires rated 
capacities, recommended operating speeds, and special hazard warnings 
to be posted on the equipment, and instructions and warnings to be 
visible at the operator's station. Unlike Sec.  1926.1417(c)(1) of this 
proposed standard, it does not require the operator's manual to be 
accessible to the operator.
    The Committee believed that the information in these materials, 
including the operator's manual, is essential for safe crane operation. 
It is needed to help the operator avoid performing operations beyond a 
crane's capacity and recommended operating speed, and by increasing 
operator awareness of special hazards related to a specific piece of 
equipment.
    In addition, the Committee believed that this information needs to 
be available to the equipment operator in the cab so that the operator 
can obtain the information as the need arises. If the information were 
not available in the cab, operations would have to be delayed in order 
for the operator to leave the cab and obtain the information elsewhere 
(or for someone else to obtain them and bring them to the operator). 
The prospect of such a delay would serve as a disincentive to obtaining 
the information and increase the chance that operations would proceed 
without it, which could result in injuries or fatalities.
    Paragraph (c)(2). Subpart N does not address the issue of load 
capacities that are available only in electronic form. With the 
advancement of technology since 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N was 
promulgated, it has become increasingly common for equipment to be 
supplied by manufacturers with load capacities in electronic form. 
Because of the potential for an electronic or other failure to occur 
that would make that information inaccessible, C-DAC determined that it 
is necessary to establish requirements to address that problem. 
Proposed Sec.  1926.1417(c)(2) establishes requirements to address a 
situation in which electronic or other failure makes such information 
unavailable.
    The Committee agreed that having the load capacities accessible to 
the operator in the cab is so important, due to this information's 
direct relationship to preventing overloading, that operations need to 
shut down without them. Therefore, where load capacities are available 
in the cab only in electronic form and a failure makes the load 
capacities inaccessible, this proposed paragraph would require that the 
operator immediately cease operations or follow safe shut-down 
procedures until the load capacities become available again (in 
electronic or other form).
Paragraph 1417(d)
    This proposed paragraph would require that operators refrain from 
engaging in any practice that would divert his or her attention while 
operating the crane. This would include the use of cell phones except 
when cell phones are used for signal communications. Operating a crane 
is a complex task that requires an operator's full attention to be 
performed safely. This proposed paragraph addresses the risk that an 
accident can occur if the operator's full attention is not directed 
toward that task. A similar provision is found in section 5-3.1.2 of 
ANSI B30.5-1968, which is incorporated by reference in Subpart N, 
although it does not specifically reference the use of cell phones.
Paragraph 1417(e) Leaving Equipment Unattended
    Paragraph (e)(1). Currently, under 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N, the 
operator of a crawler, locomotive, or truck crane is prohibited from 
leaving the controls while a load is suspended.\48\ It is important for 
the operator to be at the controls for a variety of safety-related 
reasons. These include making necessary adjustments to keep the load in 
a safe position, moving the load where necessary for reasons of safety 
(such as for the safety of employees working with or near the load), 
and responding to emergencies that may arise during lifting operations.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \48\ Section 5-3.2.4a. of ANSI B 30.5-1968, incorporated by 
reference in 29 CFR part 1926 Subpart N at Sec.  1926.550(b)(2), 
states, ``The operator shall not leave his position at the controls 
while the load is suspended.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In the Committee's experience, this requirement is routinely 
breached when the load is ``held suspended,'' that is, without need for 
adjustment of the load's or the equipment's position--for an extended 
period. In such circumstances, the operator does not manipulate the 
controls.
    In this type of circumstance, the Committee believed that greater 
safety could be achieved by developing criteria that allow the operator 
to leave the controls when it is safe to do so rather than to simply 
continue the existing rule unchanged. (Note that the suspension of 
working gear, such as slings, spreader bars, ladders, and welding 
machines, is addressed separately in proposed Sec.  1926.1417(e)(2)).
    This proposed paragraph would require that the operator not leave 
the controls while the load is suspended except when four conditions, 
outlined in proposed Sec.  1926.1417(e)(1)(i) through (e)(1)(iv), are 
met. The conditions are as follows:
    Paragraph (e)(1)(i). The operator would be required to remain 
adjacent to the equipment and not engage in any other duties. This 
paragraph will not only prevent unauthorized use of the crane by 
persons who are not competent crane operators but also allow the 
operator to quickly access the controls in case the equipment or load 
inadvertently moves.
    Paragraph (e)(1)(ii). The load is to be held suspended for a period 
of time exceeding normal lifting operations. As explained above, these 
are instances when the load is ``held suspended,'' that is, without 
need for adjustment of the load's or the equipment's position--for an 
extended period. These are circumstances in which the operator will not 
need to manipulate the controls. Such circumstances must be for a 
period of time in excess of the periods that occur during normal 
lifting operations.
    For example, during the construction of a structure, a large 
subassembly is being attached to another part of the structure. After 
the subassembly has been initially connected, it is held suspended 
(that is, without need for adjustment of position) for support for a 
protracted period while the final connections are made. This period 
exceeds normal lifting operations. In this example, the criterion of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1417(e)(1)(ii) would be met.
    Another, contrasting example is the following: A steel structure is 
being erected. When installing the steel beams, the operator holds the 
beam suspended (typically for several minutes) while it is initially 
connected. Holding the beam suspended in such instances is a normal 
part of the steel erection process. In this example the criterion in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1417(e)(1)(ii) would not be met and the operator 
can not leave the controls.
    Paragraph (e)(1)(iii). The competent person would have to determine 
that it is safe for the operator to leave the controls and implement 
measures

[[Page 59791]]

necessary to restrain the boom hoist and telescoping, load, swing, and 
outrigger functions. This proposed provision addresses the hazard of 
inadvertent movement while the controls are unattended.
    Paragraph (e)(1)(iv). Barricades or caution lines, and notices 
would have to be erected to prevent all employees from entering the 
fall zone. Furthermore, under this proposed paragraph no employees 
would be permitted in the fall zone, including those listed in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1425(b)(1) through (3), (d), or (e). The Committee concluded 
that this is necessary because the added margin of safety that results 
from the operator being at the controls would not be present in these 
circumstances.
    Paragraph (e)(2). As drafted, proposed Sec.  1926.1417(e)(2) reads:

    The provisions in paragraph (e) of this section do not apply to 
working gear (such as slings, spreader bars, ladders, and welding 
machines) where the load is not suspended over an entrance or exit.

    The Agency notes that the reference to ``Sec.  1926.1417(e)'' is a 
drafting error and that the appropriate reference is to paragraph 
``Sec.  1926.1417(e)(1).'' In addition, the provision currently 
contains two incidences of the word ``not'' which could lead to 
confusion. Therefore, the Agency is considering changing the language 
to read as follows and requests comment on such a change:

    The provisions in Sec.  1926.1417(e)(1) do not apply to working 
gear (such as slings, spreader bars, ladders, and welding machines) 
where the working gear is suspended over an area other than an 
entrance or exit.

    The Committee agreed on this paragraph with the understanding that 
employers frequently leave lightweight items such as slings, ladders, 
spreader bars, and welding machines suspended in the air overnight in 
order to prevent theft. These are items whose weight is negligible 
relative to the capacity of the equipment and whose size is small (the 
small size means that there will not be a significant sail effect and 
the rigging needed to attach the item to the hook is not complex).
    The Committee recognized that this practice is a safe practice as 
long as the working gear items are not suspended over an entrance or 
exit where employees could be exposed to falling object hazards. Thus, 
this paragraph would allow such items to be held suspended, without the 
operator at the controls, and without establishing the four conditions 
set forth in Sec.  1926.1417(e)(1)(i) through (iv), so long as the gear 
is not suspended over an entrance or exit.
Paragraph 1417(f) Tag-Out
    Paragraph 1417(f)(1). Tagging out of service equipment/functions. 
Where the employer has taken the equipment out of service, this 
proposed paragraph would require that the employer place a tag in the 
cab stating that the equipment is out of service and not to be used. 
Where the equipment remains in service but the employer has taken a 
function out of service, this proposed paragraph would require that the 
employer place a tag in a conspicuous position stating that that 
function is out of service and not to be used. This proposed paragraph 
is designed to prevent hazards associated with workers inadvertently 
attempting to use out-of-service equipment or a function that is out of 
service.
    Currently, section 5-2.3.2 of ANSI B30.5-1968, which is 
incorporated by reference in Subpart N, requires ``out of order'' signs 
on crawler, locomotive and truck cranes undergoing maintenance. Unlike 
proposed 1926.1417(f)(1), 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N does not address 
the situation where the equipment itself is in service but a function 
is out of service.
Paragraph 1417(f)(2) Response to ``Do Not Operate''/Tag-Out Signs
    Paragraph 1417(f)(2)(i). If there is a warning sign on the 
equipment or starting control, proposed paragraph (f)(2)(i) would 
prohibit the operator from activating the switch or starting the 
equipment until the sign is removed by someone authorized to remove it 
or until the operator can verify that (A) no one is servicing, working 
on, or otherwise in a dangerous position on the machine, and (B) the 
equipment has been repaired and is working properly. Similarly, under 
proposed Sec.  1926.1417(f)(2)(ii), when there is a warning sign on any 
other switch or control, the operator would be prohibited from 
activating that switch or control until the sign has been removed by an 
individual authorized to remove it, or until the operator meets the two 
requirements of paragraph Sec.  1926.1417(f)(2)(i), described above.
    These provisions would prevent two types of hazards. First, since 
the machine is out of service, there is a risk that an employee 
servicing, working on, or otherwise in a dangerous position on it is 
not expecting it to be activated and would be injured if it were 
activated. Second, if an employee does not know that the equipment is 
malfunctioning or has a function that is not working properly, an 
employee could inadvertently try to operate it with the result that the 
equipment will not work as intended, causing unintended movement or a 
collapse.
    Subpart N addresses this issue through section 5-3.1.3g of ANSI 
B30.5-1968, which states: ``If there is a warning sign on the switch or 
engine starting controls, the operator shall not close the switch or 
start the engine until the warning sign has been removed by the person 
placing it there.'' Instead of requiring that the sign be removed by 
the person who placed it, proposed Sec.  1926.1417(f)(2) would permit 
it to be removed by an authorized person and, as an alternative, permit 
the operator to start the equipment after verifying that no worker is 
in a dangerous area and that the equipment has been repaired and is 
working properly. C-DAC believed that either alternative would achieve 
the safety purpose of the tag-out because it would ensure that a 
knowledgeable and responsible person, either the operator or another 
authorized person, verifies that repairs are complete and all workers 
are in a safe position before the equipment can be started.
    As discussed above, the operator would be permitted to start 
equipment that is tagged out or activate a tagged-out switch if the 
procedures specified in proposed Sec.  1926.1417(f)(2)(i) are met. In 
reviewing this provision, the Agency noted that these procedures are 
not as comprehensive as those in the general industry standard for the 
control of hazardous energy (lockout/tagout), which are listed in Sec.  
1910.147(e)(3)(i) through (iii).\49\ The Agency requests public comment 
on whether procedures similar to those in paragraphs 1910.147(e)(3)(i) 
through (iii) \50\ would be feasible and appropriate for cranes/
derricks used in construction.
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    \49\ Section 1910.147 is not applicable to construction (see 
Sec.  1910.147(a)(ii)(A)).
    \50\ These general industry provisions state:
    (i) Verification by the employer that the authorized employee 
who applied the device is not at the factory;
    (ii) Making all reasonable efforts to contact the authorized 
employee to inform him/her that his/her lockout or tagout device has 
been removed; and
    (iii) Ensuring that the authorized employee has this knowledge 
before he/she resumes work at that facility.
    Section 1910.147(e)(3)(i) through (iii).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Paragraph 1417(g). Before starting the engine, this proposed 
paragraph would require the operator to verify that all controls are in 
the proper starting position and that all personnel are in the clear. 
The Committee agreed that requiring operators to check that all 
controls are in their proper starting positions would prevent 
unintended movement of the equipment when the

[[Page 59792]]

engine is initially started. Similarly, requiring operators to ensure 
that all personnel are in the clear is designed to prevent personnel 
from being injured in the event that some aspect of the equipment moves 
upon start-up. Currently, section 5-3.1.3h of ANSI B30.5-1968, 
incorporated by reference in 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N, contains a 
comparable requirement.
    Paragraph 1417(h). Storm warning. When a local storm warning has 
been issued, this proposed paragraph would require the competent person 
to determine whether it is necessary to implement manufacturer 
recommendations for securing the equipment. This provision was designed 
to prevent hazards that could arise from severe weather including 
inadvertent movement and crane collapse. High-speed winds in particular 
can affect both the crane and the load, reducing the rated capacity of 
the crane and affecting boom strength. Subpart N does not contain a 
corresponding requirement.
    Paragraph 1417(i). [Reserved.] This proposed paragraph is reserved 
because it is inconvenient for readers to determine whether ``(i)'' is 
being used as a letter or a roman numeral.
Paragraph 1417(j)
    This proposed paragraph would require that operators be familiar 
with the equipment and its proper operation. Furthermore, if 
adjustments/repairs are necessary, then the operator would have to 
promptly inform the individual designated by the employer to receive 
such information as well as inform the next operator in cases where 
there are successive shifts.
    This paragraph addresses the need to identify problems that may 
develop with the equipment during operations. Early recognition of such 
problems by the operator would help prevent accidents that could result 
from continued operation of equipment that needs adjustment and/or 
repair. Operators who are familiar with the equipment and its proper 
operation can recognize such equipment anomalies and problems. By 
requiring that information about needed adjustments and/or repairs be 
provided to the individual designated by the employer to receive it, 
this proposed paragraph will facilitate the correction of those 
problems.
    C-DAC did not specify any particular job title for the person to 
whom the operator would be required to provide this information because 
different employers may assign the responsibility of receiving such 
information to different job classifications.
    Providing this information to the next operator in cases where 
there are successive shifts (that is, shifts that have no break between 
them) would ensure that the next operator is aware of this information 
and will be able to take appropriate action.
    This provision is comparable to section 5-3.1.3j of ANSI B30.5-
1968, incorporated by reference in Subpart N, which requires operators 
of crawler, locomotive and truck cranes to familiarize themselves with 
the equipment and its proper care, to report any needed adjustments/
repairs or defects to a responsible person, and to notify the next 
operator of any such problems when changing shifts.
Paragraph 1417(k)
    This proposed paragraph would prohibit safety devices and 
operational aids from being used as a substitute for the exercise of 
professional judgment by the operator. The Committee agreed that such 
devices and aids do not displace the need for operators to apply their 
professional judgment because the devices and aids can malfunction and 
lead to the types of safety hazards they are designed to prevent. 
Subpart N contains no corresponding provision.
    Paragraph (l). [Reserved.] This proposed paragraph is reserved 
because it is inconvenient for readers to distinguish the letter ``l'' 
from the number ``1.''
Paragraph 1417(m)
    If the competent person determines that there is a slack rope 
condition requiring re-spooling of the rope, this proposed paragraph 
would require that before starting the lift, it shall be verified that 
the rope is seated on the drum and in the sheaves as the slack is 
removed. This would prevent a loose coil of rope from becoming cross-
coiled on the drum, a portion of the rope coming off the drum 
altogether, or the rope being pulled alongside (instead of seating in) 
a sheave. Each of these conditions can lead to sudden failure of the 
rope.
    Section 5-3.2.3a.4 of ANSI B30.5-1968, incorporated by reference in 
Subpart N, has a provision stating: ``If there is a slack rope 
condition, it should be determined that the rope is properly seated on 
the drum and in the sheaves.'' The term ``should'' has been interpreted 
by the courts of appeals as meaning that the provision is non-
mandatory. The provision in paragraph (m) of this section uses language 
making clear that the provision is mandatory.
Paragraph 1417(n)
    This proposed paragraph addresses the hazards posed by wind, ice 
and snow on equipment capacity and stability. Wind can reduce capacity 
by imposing loads on the equipment, which can also reduce stability. 
Ice and snow can also reduce capacity and stability when it accumulates 
on the equipment. There are numerous variables involved in determining 
the effects of wind, ice and snow in any particular circumstance, (for 
example, the extent to which the crane is operating below its rated 
capacity, the sail effect presented by the load, the rate at which ice 
or snow is accumulating, and whether the snow is wet or light). C-DAC 
concluded that the most effective approach would be to require the 
competent person to consider their effect on equipment stability and 
rated capacity. 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N currently has no similar 
provision.
Paragraph 1417(o) Compliance With Rated Capacity
    Paragraph 1417(o)(1). This proposed paragraph would require 
employers to ensure that equipment is not operated beyond its rated 
capacity. Overloading a crane or derrick can cause it to collapse, with 
potentially catastrophic consequences. This basic safeguard has long 
been recognized in the industry as crucial and is designed to prevent 
such accidents. A comparable requirement is contained in 29 CFR part 
1926 subpart N through incorporation by reference of section 5-3.2.1a 
of ANSI B30.5-1968.
    Paragraph 1417(o)(2). This proposed paragraph would require 
employers to ensure that operators are not required to operate the 
equipment in a manner that would exceed its rated capacity, in 
violation of proposed Sec.  1926.1417(o)(1) above. This proposed 
provision reinforces the general prohibition of proposed Sec.  
1926.1417(o)(1) by making it a separate violation for an employer to 
expressly require an operator to exceed the equipment's rated capacity. 
29 CFR part 1926 subpart N currently has no provision comparable to 
proposed paragraph (o)(2) of this section.
    In the Committee's experience, a significant problem in the 
construction industry is that some employers pressure operators to 
conduct lifts that exceed the equipment's rated capacity. Such 
employers seek to avoid the time and expense associated with bringing 
in larger capacity equipment.\51\
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    \51\ In some instances the overcapacity problem can be avoided 
by repositioning the crane (for example, by moving the crane so that 
the lift can be performed at a higher boom angle). However, even in 
those instances some time (and associated expense) is involved.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 59793]]

    The Committee believed that in many of these instances the employer 
knows that the load exceeds the crane's rated capacity but acts on the 
belief that the rated capacity is sufficiently conservative to perform 
the lift. In some such cases the exact weight of the load is unknown, 
and the employer pressures the crane operator in the belief that even 
if the operator is right about the weight exceeding the capacity 
rating, the safety factor that the employer assumes is built into the 
capacity rating will enable the crane to perform the lift anyway.
    In the C-DAC discussions of this issue, members explained that 
while equipment capacity ratings are developed with consideration of a 
safety factor, that safety factor is not intended by the manufacturer 
to be treated as excess capacity. There are numerous, complex 
considerations used by manufacturers in setting the capacity rating. 
Employers cannot safely assume that, in any particular situation, they 
will not need the benefits conferred by the safety factor.
    There continue to be a significant number of injuries and 
fatalities resulting from equipment overturning. Although it has long 
been a requirement not to exceed the equipment's rated capacity, in the 
Committee's experience, a significant number of overturning incidents 
are caused by exceeding rated capacity. A study of fatal accidents 
involving cranes in the U.S. construction industry for 1984-1994, based 
on investigations of reported accidents conducted by OSHA and states 
with OSHA-approved safety and health programs, showed that 22 deaths 
resulted from overloaded cranes. A. Suruda, M. Egger, & D. Liu, 
``Crane-Related Deaths in the U.S. Construction Industry, 1984-94,'' p. 
12, Table 9, The Center to Protect Workers' Rights (Oct. 1997). (OSHA-
2007-0066-0013).
    The Committee believed that there are several root causes of this 
problem, including lack of operator qualification/certification 
requirements, insufficient ground conditions, reliance on unreliable 
information regarding load weight, and operators being pressured into 
exceeding rated capacity. The Committee concluded that this additional 
measure is needed to help counteract the persistent problem of 
operators being pressured into exceeding rated capacity.
    Paragraph 1417(o)(3). Load weight. As discussed above, another 
cause of injuries and fatalities from overturning equipment is the use 
of unreliable information on load weight. The Committee concluded that 
one of the ways these incidents can be reduced is to require that load 
weight be verified by a reliable means.
    Under this proposed paragraph, the operator would be required to 
verify that the load is within the rated capacity of the equipment by 
using the procedures in either proposed Sec.  1926.1417(o)(3)(i) or 
(ii). Under Sec.  1926.1417(o)(3)(i), the weight of the load would have 
to be determined in one of three ways: From a reliable source, from a 
reliable calculation method, or by other equally reliable means. An 
example of verifying the load weight from a reliable source would be 
where the load is mechanical equipment and the weight is obtained from 
its manufacturer.
    An example of a reliable calculation method would be the following: 
The load is a steel I-beam. After measuring the thickness of the steel 
and the I-beam's other dimensions, the operator uses an industry table 
that shows weight per linear foot for a beam of these dimensions. The 
operator then calculates the beam's weight using that information. If 
the weight of the load is determined under proposed Sec.  
1926.1417(o)(3)(i), the information about how the load weight was 
determined must be provided to the operator, prior to the lift, upon 
the operator's request. This provision is included to help ensure that 
the operator has the information necessary to verify that the load is 
within the rated capacity of the equipment.
    Under proposed paragraph (o)(3)(ii), the operator would have to 
begin hoisting the load to determine if it exceeds 75 percent of the 
maximum rated capacity at the longest radius that will be used during 
the lift operation, using a load weighing device, load moment 
indicator, rated capacity indicator, or rated capacity limiter. If the 
load does exceed 75 percent of the maximum rated capacity, then the 
operator would be prohibited from proceeding with the lift until he/she 
verifies the weight of the load in accordance with proposed Sec.  
1926.1417(o)(3)(i).
    The Committee concluded that as long as one of these devices shows 
that the load does not exceed 75% of the rated capacity (at the longest 
radius that will be used), it is not necessary to determine the actual 
weight of the load. Its conclusion is based on the belief that this 
verification procedure \52\ incorporates a sufficient margin of error 
and would be adequate to ensure that the crane's rated capacity would 
not be exceeded.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \52\ The operator would still be required to use his or her 
professional judgment in determining whether the load exceeds the 
capacity of the equipment. As discussed above, proposed Sec.  
1926.1417(k) would prohibit sole reliance by the operator on an 
operational aid, such as a load weight device, for ensuring that the 
equipment's capacity will not be exceeded. The procedure in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1417(o)(3)(ii) is a verification procedure--it would 
verify that the operator's estimate is at least correct in terms of 
not exceeding 75% of the equipment's rated capacity (at the longest 
radius that will be used). If, for example, the load weight device 
yields a figure that is significantly below what the operator 
estimates to be the true weight, the operator would need to reliably 
determine the weight of the load before proceeding with the lift.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In contrast, the Committee believed that if the device shows that 
the load exceeds 75%, there is an insufficient margin of error to 
proceed without a more accurate determination. In such instances a 
verified determination of the actual weight, in accordance with 
proposed Sec.  1926.1417(o)(3)(i), is needed to ensure safety.
    Currently, the only Subpart N requirement for determining or 
verifying the weight of the load is found in section 5-3.2.1b of ANSI 
B30.5-1968, which states: ``When loads which are limited by structural 
competence rather than by stability are to be handled, the person 
responsible for the job shall ascertain that the weight of the load has 
been determined within plus or minus 10 percent before it is lifted.'' 
The Committee believed that the more detailed procedures in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1417(o)(3) and the greater margin of safety provided by the 
75% limit are needed to prevent the crane's capacity from being 
exceeded.
Paragraph 1417(p)
    This proposed paragraph would require that the boom or other parts 
of the equipment not contact any obstruction. The Committee agreed on 
this provision because of its understanding that boom contact with an 
obstruction can deform, misalign or otherwise damage the equipment. 
Such damage can cause unintended movement, prevent intended movement, 
or a collapse. 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N currently has no similar 
provision.
Paragraph 1417(q)
    This proposed paragraph would require that the equipment not be 
used to drag or pull loads sideways. The Committee intended this 
provision to prevent the sideloading that occurs when a load is dragged 
or pulled sideways. Sideloading can buckle the boom, damage the swing 
mechanism, or overturn the crane (such as when the boom is at a high 
angle). Currently, section 5-3.2.3c.2 of ANSI B30.5-1968 contains a 
similar requirement, providing: ``Side loading of booms shall

[[Page 59794]]

be limited to freely suspended loads. Cranes shall not be used for 
dragging loads sideways.'' (As discussed below, proposed paragraph (v) 
addresses sideloading of freely suspended loads by restricting the 
speed of rotation).
Paragraph 1417(r)
    On wheel-mounted equipment, this proposed provision would require 
that no loads be lifted over the front area, except as permitted by the 
manufacturer. The Committee agreed on this provision because wheel-
mounted equipment typically is not designed to lift loads over the 
front area without tipping over unless it is specifically designed to 
do so (such as where equipped with a front outrigger for support and 
stabilization for this purpose). Equipment that is not so designed will 
likely tip over or otherwise fail when lifting loads over the front 
area. This proposed paragraph continues the requirement of section 5-
3.2.3g of ANSI B30.5-1968, which is incorporated by reference in 
Subpart N.
Paragraph 1417(s)
    In many circumstances an operator may use equipment that has not 
recently been used to handle a load that is 90% or more of the maximum 
line pull. The condition and adjustment of the brakes may be sufficient 
to handle lesser loads, but insufficient to handle loads closer to 
their design capacity. Consequently, the operator may not know that the 
brakes are insufficient until after the load is hoisted. In such a case 
the load could be dropped, posing a struck-by hazard.
    This proposed paragraph would address that hazard by requiring that 
the operator test the brakes each time a load that is 90% or more of 
the maximum line pull is handled by lifting the load a few inches and 
applying the brakes. In duty cycle and repetitive lifts where each lift 
is 90% or more of the maximum line pull, this requirement would apply 
to the first but not to successive lifts, since the operator would have 
already determined from the initial test that the brakes are 
sufficient.
    Currently, 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N contains a similar 
requirement through section 5-3.2.3h of ANSI B30.5-1968, which states: 
``The operator shall test the brakes each time a load approaching the 
rated load is handled by raising it a few inches and applying the 
brakes.'' C-DAC believed that additional clarity than that found in the 
ANSI provision is needed to give employers notice of when a brake test 
was required and therefore proposed in Sec.  1926.1417(s) to require 
testing when the load is 90% or more of the maximum line pull.
Paragraph 1417(t)
    This proposed paragraph would require that neither the load nor the 
boom be lowered below the point where less than two full wraps of rope 
remain on their respective drums. This provision is designed to ensure 
that the rope is not unspooled to the point where the rope would become 
disconnected from the drum. It continues the current Subpart N 
requirement found in section 5-3.2.3j of ANSI B30.5-1968.
Paragraph 1417(u) Traveling With a Load
    Paragraph 1417(u)(1). This proposed paragraph would prohibit 
traveling with a load if the practice is prohibited by the 
manufacturer. If the manufacturer does not prohibit this practice, the 
equipment may travel with a load, but only if the requirements of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1417(u)(2) are met. 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N does 
not prohibit traveling with a load if the practice is prohibited by the 
manufacturer but, through incorporation of section 5-3.2.3n of ANSI 
B30.5-1968, permits traveling with a load whenever conditions similar 
to those in proposed Sec.  1926.1417(u)(2)(i) are satisfied.
    The dynamic effects of traveling with a load impose additional and/
or increased forces on crane components. Unless the crane has been 
designed to handle these types of forces and force levels, they can 
cause component failure, collapse, instability or overturning. The 
Committee believed that the manufacturer has the expertise to ascertain 
its equipment's capabilities. Therefore, the Committee believed that 
where the manufacturer has prohibited traveling with the load, such a 
determination needs to be complied with to ensure safety.
    Paragraph 1417(u)(2). If the manufacturer does not prohibit 
traveling with a load, the equipment may travel with a load if the 
requirements of proposed Sec.  1926.1417(u)(2) are met. This proposed 
paragraph sets forth three procedures that employers would have to 
follow when traveling with a load.
    Paragraph 1417(u)(2)(i). Pursuant to this proposed paragraph, a 
competent person would have to supervise the operation, determine if it 
is necessary to reduce crane ratings, and make determinations regarding 
load position, boom location, ground support, travel route, overhead 
obstructions, and speed of movement necessary to ensure safety. Under 
proposed Sec.  1926.1417(u)(2)(ii), the determinations of the competent 
person must be implemented. These provisions are similar to section 5-
3.2.3n of ANSI B30.5-1968, which is incorporated in 29 CFR part 1926 
subpart N.
    As discussed above, traveling with a load imposes types and levels 
of forces on the equipment that are not present when the equipment is 
stationary, and conditions such as load position and boom location can 
affect the magnitude of those forces. Some of the criteria in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1417(u)(2)(i) address this type of effect. Other criteria in 
this paragraph are intended to ensure that other hazards--those posed 
by the crane being in changing locations (such as ground support, 
travel route and overhead obstructions)--are addressed by the competent 
person. When traveling with a load, a crane may encounter hazards such 
as power lines, insufficient ground support, uneven or slippery ground 
conditions, and obstructions that the equipment could strike.
    A competent person must address these issues before the equipment 
begins to travel with a load. The competent person must also supervise 
the operation as it proceeds so that problems that arise that were not 
foreseen at the outset can be properly addressed. In sum, the Committee 
designed these provisions to ensure that the employer plans and 
implements a travel operation so that the various effects and 
changeable conditions associated with travel are properly identified, 
assessed and addressed.
    Paragraph 1417(u)(2)(iii). For equipment with pressurized tires, 
this proposed paragraph would require that tire pressure specified by 
the manufacturer be maintained. Subpart N currently has no 
corresponding provision.
    The Committee agreed on this provision to address the hazards posed 
by improper tire pressure when traveling with a load. Where pressure 
varies among the tires, the equipment may be out of level, reducing 
capacity and causing instability. Uniform but improper pressure can 
reduce capacity or lead to tire failure. Each of these circumstances 
can lead to unintended movement, loss of the load, overturning and/or 
collapse.
Paragraph 1417(v)
    This proposed paragraph would require that rotational speed of the 
equipment be such that the load does not swing out beyond the radius at 
which it can be controlled. As noted above in relation to proposed 
Sec.  1926.1417(q), 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N currently permits 
sideloading

[[Page 59795]]

of freely suspended loads with no restriction comparable to that in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1417(v).
    The Committee intended this provision to prevent the hazard of 
sideloading, which occurs when the load swings to either side of the 
boom tip, rather than its appropriate position directly beneath the 
boom tip. When the load is not directly under the boom tip, sideloading 
occurs and decreases capacity. This hazard can lead to tip-over or boom 
failure.
Paragraph 1417(w)
    This proposed paragraph would require that a tag or restraint line 
be used if necessary to prevent rotation of the load that would be 
hazardous. The Committee agreed on this provision in order to prevent 
the hazard of an unstable or uncontrolled load which could in turn 
destabilize other parts of the crane or the crane itself. This 
condition can also result in the load posing a struck-by hazard. 
Section 5-3.2.3p of ANSI B30.5-1968 contains a comparable requirement.
Paragraph 1417(x)
    This proposed paragraph would require that the brakes be adjusted 
in accordance with manufacturer procedures to prevent unintended 
movement. This requirement would apply to all brakes on equipment 
covered by this standard, including brakes used to control the lowering 
of the load and those used to stop the equipment while it is traveling. 
Improper adjustment can cause a delay in the onset of braking after the 
operator attempts to activate the brake and can also diminish the 
brake's capacity. Brakes are critical to the safe operation of the 
equipment and must be properly adjusted to serve their safety function.
    Currently, 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N does not specifically address 
brake adjustment. However, section 5-2.3.1a of ANSI B30.5-1968 requires 
a preventive maintenance program based on the manufacturer's 
recommendations, and section 5-2.3.3b requires that all components and 
operating mechanisms be adjusted to ensure their correct functioning. 
In light of the critical role that brakes play in ensuring equipment 
safety, these provisions of ANSI B30.5-1968 can be read to include 
brake adjustments. The Committee concluded that the more explicit 
approach to this issue taken in proposed Sec.  1926.1417(x) requirement 
would help enhance employee safety.
Paragraph 1417(y)
    This proposed paragraph would require that the operator obey a stop 
or emergency stop signal, regardless of who gives the signal. Any 
person on a worksite may observe a hazardous condition that is not 
visible to or recognized by the crane operator and that can only be 
avoided if the equipment stops immediately. Therefore, the operator 
must obey a stop signal given by anybody on the worksite. Section 5-
3.1.3c of ANSI B30.5-1968 contains a comparable requirement.
Paragraph 1417(z) Swinging Locomotive Cranes
    Pursuant to this proposed paragraph, a locomotive crane shall not 
be swung into a position where it is reasonably foreseeable that 
railway cars on an adjacent track could strike it, until it is 
determined that cars are not being moved on the adjacent track and that 
proper flag protection has been established. A comparable requirement 
is contained in section 5-3.4.4 of ANSI B30.5-1968.
Paragraph 1417(aa) Counterweight/Ballast
    Paragraph 1417(aa)(1). This proposed paragraph contains 
counterweight/ballast requirements that would apply to equipment other 
than tower cranes. Pursuant to proposed Sec.  1926.1417(aa)(2), 
requirements regarding counterweight/ballast for tower cranes are found 
in proposed Sec.  1926.1435(b)(7).
    Paragraph 1417(aa)(1)(i). This proposed paragraph would require 
that equipment not be operated without the counterweight or ballast in 
place as specified by the manufacturer. Failure to follow the 
manufacturer's specifications for use of counterweights and ballast 
could result in a tipover or collapse.
    Paragraph 1417(aa)(1)(ii). Under this proposed provision, the 
employer would be prohibited from exceeding the maximum counterweight 
or ballast specified by the manufacturer for the equipment. Exceeding 
that maximum could result in component failure, which could cause 
unintended movement, tipover or collapse.
    Requirements similar to those in Sec.  1926.1417(aa)(1)(i) and (ii) 
are currently contained in Subpart N through incorporation by reference 
of section 5-3.4.2 of ANSI B30.5-1968.
    The C-DAC draft of this provision stated that the maximum 
counterweight or ballast ``approved'' by the manufacturer shall not be 
exceeded. Upon reviewing the draft, OSHA determined that a term that 
more accurately reflects the Committee's intent in this regard is 
``specified.'' Therefore, the Agency has modified the C-DAC language so 
that proposed Sec.  1926.1417(aa)(1)(ii) reads:

    The maximum counterweight or ballast specified by the 
manufacturer for the equipment shall not be exceeded.

    Paragraph 1417(aa)(2). This proposed paragraph complements proposed 
Sec.  1926.1417(aa)(1) by noting that the counterweight and ballast 
requirements for tower cranes are found in proposed Sec.  
1926.1435(b)(8).

Section 1418 Authority To Stop Operation

    This proposed section provides: ``Whenever there is a concern as to 
safety, the operator shall have the authority to stop and refuse to 
handle loads until a qualified person has determined that safety has 
been assured.'' Subpart N incorporates pre-1971 industry consensus 
standards that require operators to have comparable authority, and 
current industry consensus standards contain similar provisions. An 
appropriately capable equipment operator is highly knowledgeable in 
matters affecting equipment safety and is well qualified to determine 
whether an operation presents a safety concern. C-DAC believed that it 
continues to be necessary for the employer to provide this authority to 
the operator.
    Current consensus standards specify that an operator with a safety 
concern must raise that concern with a supervisor before proceeding 
with a lift. For example, section 5-3.1.3(d) of ANSI B30.5-2004, 
``Mobile and Locomotive Cranes,'' provides: ``Whenever there is any 
doubt as to safety, the operator shall consult with the supervisor 
before handling the loads.'' Similar provisions are included in section 
2-3.1.7 of ASME B30.2-2001, ``Overhead and Gantry Cranes,'' section 3-
3.1.3(d) of ASME B30.3-1996, ``Construction Tower Cranes,'' section 6-
3.2.3 of ASME B30.6-2003, ``Derricks,'' and other standards in the ASME 
B30 series.
    The proposed section reflects C-DAC's belief that it is necessary 
to clearly delineate the circumstances under which it would be 
permissible to resume operations after the operator has exercised this 
authority. Under the proposed provision, operations would be prohibited 
from resuming ``until a qualified person had determined that safety has 
been assured.''
    In accordance with the proposed definition of a qualified person 
(see the discussion above of this term in proposed Sec.  1926.1401), 
that person would, ``by possession of a recognized degree, certificate, 
or professional

[[Page 59796]]

standing, or who by extensive knowledge, training and experience, 
successfully demonstrated the ability to solve/resolve problems 
relating to the subject matter, the work or the project.'' For example, 
operations could resume only after the qualified person either: (1) 
Assesses the factors that led the operator to stop and refuse to handle 
the load and determines that there is not, in fact, a safety hazard, or 
(2) after corrective action has been taken, determines that there is no 
longer a safety hazard.
    An illustrative example of this is the following: A large steel 
cylinder, which is lying lengthwise on the ground, is to be lifted into 
the vertical position and then up to the top of a structure. As the 
crane operator prepares to lift the cylinder into the vertical 
position, the operator sees that the rigging is attached at a point 
that is more than halfway down from the top of the cylinder. This 
indicates to the operator that the rigging has been attached below the 
cylinder's center of gravity. Rigging such a load below the center of 
gravity could cause it to flip over when it is lifted. As a result of 
this concern, the operator exercises his/her authority to stop and 
refuse to handle the load.
    After the operator explains his/her concern to the employer, the 
employer consults with an individual who is a qualified person with 
respect to the rigging of the load. The qualified person finds that the 
wall of the steel cylinder is much thicker near its base than at the 
top. After calculating the cylinder's center of gravity, the qualified 
person determines that it is well below the midpoint of the cylinder. 
The qualified person then determines that the rigging is, in fact, 
attached above the cylinder's center of gravity, and that safety is 
assured. The lifting operation is then resumed.
    In this example the operator appropriately exercised his/her 
authority to stop and refuse to handle the load, since there were 
indications of an unsafe condition. A qualified person then 
appropriately found that safety was assured after examining those 
indications, assessing the relevant factors, and determining that the 
load was in fact rigged in a safe manner.

Signals

    Proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1419 through 1926.1422 address the 
circumstances under which a signal person must be provided, the type of 
signals that may be used, criteria for how signals are transmitted, and 
other criteria associated with the use of signals.

Section 1419 Signals--General Requirements

    This proposed section would set requirements regarding signals when 
using equipment covered by this proposed standard.
    Currently, Sec.  1926.550(a)(4) provides: ``Hand signals to crane 
and derrick operators shall be those prescribed by the applicable ANSI 
standard for the type of crane in use. An illustration of the signals 
shall be posted at the job site.'' C-DAC believed that the current rule 
is insufficient in several respects. First, the current rule does not 
establish the circumstances in which there is a need to have a signal 
person. Second, the current standard refers only to hand signals. C-DAC 
believed that other means of signaling need to be addressed as well to 
provide necessary flexibility and reduce the potential for 
miscommunication (requirements regarding other signaling methods are 
addressed in proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1420 and 1926.1421).
    Finally, C-DAC found that hazardous situations arise as a result of 
signal persons not understanding safety-related aspects of crane 
operations and dynamics and not knowing how to give appropriate 
signals. Consequently, it determined that there is a need to establish 
requirements regarding the qualifications of the signal person; these 
are addressed in proposed Sec.  1926.1428. In short, C-DAC believed 
that addressing these issues is one of the means by which the number of 
injuries and fatalities caused by ``struck-by'' incidents, in which the 
equipment or load strikes an employee, can be reduced.
Paragraph 1419(a)
    Proposed paragraphs (a)(1) through (a)(3) address the circumstances 
that would require the provision of a signal person: When the point of 
operation, meaning the load travel or the area near or at load 
placement, is not in full view of the operator (Sec.  1926.1419(a)(1)); 
when the equipment is traveling and the operator's view in the 
direction of travel is obstructed (Sec.  1926.1419(a)(2)); and when, 
due to site specific safety concerns, either the operator or the person 
handling the load determines it is necessary (Sec.  1926.1419(a)(3)). 
The first two of these circumstances involve an obvious hazard--limited 
operator visibility.
    With respect to the third circumstance, C-DAC believed that other 
situations arise that, from a safety standpoint, necessitate the use of 
a signal person. For example, the operator may recognize that the load 
at one point will move alongside and very close to a structure. Even 
though the load in this example will remain in view of the operator as 
it travels, because of the tight tolerances involved, the operator 
determines that a signal person is needed to help ensure that the load 
does not come in contact with the structure (which could cause the load 
to fall).
    Another example is where a heavy load, such as a large HVAC unit, 
has to be placed very precisely on a concrete pad. In this example, as 
in the previous one, the load remains within the view of the operator 
at all times. However, the employee handling the load determines that 
signals need to be given to the operator so that the load handler's 
work and the operator's movement of the load are properly coordinated. 
Because of the weight of the load, the employee handling it will have 
to use both hands to help position it as it is placed on the pad and 
will not be able to give signals. In such an instance the person 
handling the load could determine that a signal person is necessary.
Paragraph 1419(b) Types of Signals
    Under proposed paragraph (b), signals to crane operators would have 
to be by hand, voice, audible, or ``new'' signals. As used in this 
proposed standard, these terms refer to the type of signal, not the 
means by which the signal is transmitted. For example, signaling by 
voice refers to oral communication, not whether the oral communication 
is done with or without amplification or with or without electronic 
transmission. The manner of transmission of the signal is addressed 
separately.
    ``Audible signal'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a signal made 
by a distinct sound or series of sounds. Examples include, but are not 
limited to, sounds made by a bell, horn, or whistle.'' Under some 
circumstances, audible signals are effective means of communicating 
with an operator, and C-DAC defined the term to make clear the types of 
sounds that would be permissible.
    The criteria for the use of these signal types are set out in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1419(c)-(m) (additional voice signal requirements 
are in proposed Sec.  1926.1421, Signals--voice signals--additional 
requirements). The Committee's intent was to reduce the potential for 
miscommunication, which can lead to injuries and fatalities, 
particularly from ``struck-by'' and ``crushed-by'' incidents. In 
setting parameters for the use of the various types of existing signal 
methods, and for signal methods that may be developed in the future, 
the Committee sought to

[[Page 59797]]

promote a degree of standardization while still allowing appropriate 
flexibility. In addition, the proposed provisions are designed to 
ensure that the selection of signal type and means of sending the 
signals are appropriate under the circumstances and reliable.
Paragraph 1419(c) Hand Signals
    Proposed paragraph (c) addresses the use of hand signals. The 
industry has long recognized the need for consistent, universal hand 
signals to minimize the potential for miscommunication between signal 
persons and operators. ANSI B30.5-1968, ``Crawler, Locomotive and Truck 
Cranes,'' contains illustrations of hand signals that are the same as 
the current 2004 edition of ASME B30.5 and that are consistent with 
hand signals for other types of cranes in ASME B30 standards. Subpart N 
currently requires that hand signals to crane and derrick operators 
``be those prescribed by the applicable ANSI standard for the type of 
crane in use'' and that ``an illustration of the signals shall be 
posted at the job site'' (Sec.  1926.550(a)(4)).
    Because of the industry's long familiarity with these standard hand 
signals, C-DAC determined that, when using hand signals, the 
standardized version of the signals should continue to be required. 
These signals are referred to as the ``Standard Method,'' which is 
defined in proposed Sec.  1926.1401 as ``the protocol in Appendix A for 
hand signals.'' The ``Standard Method'' signals are located in Appendix 
A. However, the Committee recognized that there are instances when use 
of the Standard Method is either infeasible or where there is no 
Standard Method signal applicable to the work being done.
    For example, the Standard Method signal for raising the boom is: 
arm extended, thumb pointing upward and other fingers closed. The 
signal for lowering the boom is the same except the thumb points down. 
There are circumstances where back-lighting conditions make it 
difficult for the operator to see the signal person's thumb and 
therefore cannot discern whether it is pointing up or down. In such 
circumstances use of the standard signal would be infeasible.
    In such instances, under this proposed paragraph, non-standard 
signals (examples of which are provided in Appendix B of this proposed 
rule) may be used. To avoid confusion when non-standard signals are 
used, proposed Sec.  1926.1419(c)(2) would require that the signal 
person, crane operator, and lift supervisor (where there is one) meet 
prior to the operation to agree upon the signals that will be used.
Paragraph 1419(d) New Signals
    Proposed paragraph (d) would allow signals other than hand, voice, 
or audible signals to be used if certain criteria are met. As discussed 
above under proposed Sec.  1926.1419(b), C-DAC include Sec.  
1926.1419(d) to allow for the development of new signals in the future. 
To ensure that any new signals are as effective as hand, voice, or 
audible signals, proposed 1926.1419(d)(1) and (d)(2) would require the 
employer to demonstrate either that the new signals are as effective as 
existing signals for communicating, or that there is a national 
consensus standard for the new signals.\53\ C-DAC believed it was 
appropriate to allow reliance on signals in a national consensus 
standard because their inclusion in such a standard shows a high degree 
of standardization and widespread acceptance by persons who are 
affected by the signals, thereby ensuring that the signals can be used 
safely to control equipment operations.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \53\ The C-DAC draft refers to an ``industry consensus 
standard.'' OSHA hasd changed this to ``national consensus 
standard'' to conform to the terminology used in the OSH Act.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Paragraph 1419(e) Suitability
    Under proposed paragraph (e), the type of signal (hand, voice, 
audible, or new) and the transmission method used would have to be 
suitable for the site conditions. For example, hand signals would not 
be suitable if site conditions do not allow for the signal person to be 
within the operator's line of sight. Radio signals would not be 
suitable if electronic interference on the site prohibits the signals 
from being readily understood.
Paragraph 1419(f)
    Proposed paragraph (f) would require the ability to transmit 
signals between the operator and signal person to be maintained. If 
that ability is interrupted, the operator would be required to safely 
stop operations until signal transmission is reestablished and a proper 
signal is given and understood.
Paragraph 1419(g)
    Proposed paragraph (g) would require the operator to stop 
operations if the operator becomes aware of a safety problem and needs 
to communicate with the signal person. Operations may only be resumed 
after the operator and signal person agree that the problem has been 
resolved.
    Most signal systems permit only one-way communication, from the 
signal person to the operator. In addition, most two-way systems, such 
as a typical two-way radio system, only permit one person to speak at a 
time. When using such systems, circumstances may arise in which the 
operator, while receiving signals, becomes aware of a safety problem 
that is of a nature that necessitates that the operator communicate 
with the signal person. For example, the signal person signals to the 
operator to lower the load. However, the operator sees that an employee 
has moved under the load in an area that is out of the view of the 
signal person. Under this proposed provision the operator would have to 
safely stop lowering the load and communicate the problem to the signal 
person.
    Another example is where the signal person gives a hand signal but 
it appears to the operator that the signal person is using the wrong 
signal. The operator would be required to safely stop operations and 
communicate with the signal person to resolve the problem.
Paragraph 1419(h) and (j)
    Proposed paragraph (h) would require that only one person at a time 
signal the operator. C-DAC believed this provision was needed to 
prevent confusion with respect to which signals the operator is 
supposed to follow. An exception is provided when, as provided in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1419(j), somebody becomes aware of a safety problem 
and gives an emergency stop signal. Under proposed Sec.  1926.1417(y), 
the operator would be required to obey such a signal.
    Paragraph 1419(i) [Reserved.] Paragraph (i) is reserved because it 
is inconvenient for readers to determine whether ``(i)'' is being used 
as a letter or a roman numeral.
Paragraph 1419(k)
    Proposed paragraph (k) would require that all directions given to 
the operator by the signal person be given from the operator's 
direction perspective. In the Committee's experience, the operator will 
tend to react to a directional signal, such as ``forward,'' by acting 
on the signal from the operator's perspective. This provision would 
ensure that the signal that is given will be consistent with that 
natural tendency.
    Paragraph 1419(l) [Reserved.] Paragraph (l) is reserved because it 
is inconvenient for readers to whether ``l'' is being used as a letter 
or a number.

[[Page 59798]]

Paragraph 1419(m) Communication With Multiple Cranes/Derricks
    Proposed paragraph (m) addresses a situation where the signal 
person is in communication with more than one crane or derrick. It 
would require the signal person to use an effective means of 
identifying the crane or derrick the signal is for before giving the 
signal. Proposed Sec.  1926.1419(m)(i) and (ii) set out alternate means 
of complying with this requirement. Under proposed Sec.  
1926.1419(m)(i), for each signal, prior to giving the function/
direction, the signal person must identify the crane/derrick for which 
the signal is intended. Alternatively, under proposed Sec.  
1926.1419(m)(ii), the employer could implement a method of identifying 
which crane/derrick for which the signal is intended that is as 
effective as the system in proposed Sec.  1926.1419(m)(i). Because of 
the potential for confusion, it is essential that an alternative system 
under proposed Sec.  1926.1419(m)(ii) be equally effective as Sec.  
1926.1419(m)(i) in clearly conveying, on a consistent basis, the crane/
derrick to which each signal is directed.

Section 1420 Signals--Radio, Telephone, or Other Electronic 
Transmission of Signals

    C-DAC concluded that certain criteria are needed to ensure the 
reliability and clarity of electronically transmitted signals; these 
criteria are listed in proposed paragraphs Sec.  1926.1420(a) through 
(c). Proposed paragraph (a) would require the testing of the 
transmission devices prior to the start of operations to ensure that 
the signals are clear and that the devices are reliable. This will help 
ensure that the operator receives and can understand the signals that 
are given and will prevent accidents caused by miscommunication.
    Proposed paragraph (b) would require that such signals be 
transmitted through a dedicated channel. As defined in Sec.  1926.1401, 
a ``dedicated channel'' is ``a line of communication assigned by the 
employer who controls the communication system to only one signal 
person and crane/derrick or to a coordinated group of cranes/derricks/
signal person(s).'' Use of a dedicated channel would ensure that the 
operator and signal person are not interrupted by users performing 
other tasks or confused by instructions not intended for them.
    An exception to Sec.  1926.1419(b) would allow more than one signal 
person and more than one crane/derrick operator to share a dedicated 
channel in multiple crane/derrick situations for coordinating 
operations. The Committee believed that this exception is needed 
because, in those situations, it may be advantageous to share a single 
dedicated channel. For example, in some situations several cranes may 
be operating in an area in which their booms, loads or load lines could 
come in contact with each other. In such cases it is crucial that the 
movements of each crane be properly coordinated. By sharing a single 
channel, each operator can hear what each crane is being asked to do, 
which can facilitate that coordination.
    Proposed paragraph (c) would require that the operator's reception 
be by a hands-free system. In other words, the operator must not have 
to depress a button, manipulate a switch, or take any action in order 
for the incoming signal to be received. C-DAC believed that this 
provision is needed because the operator must have both hands free to 
manipulate the equipment's controls.

Paragraph 1421 Signals--Voice Signals--Additional Requirements

    C-DAC considered whether the proposed rule should include a 
standardized set of voice signals. Unlike hand signals, which have 
become standardized to a large extent within the industry, in the 
Committee members' experience there is significant variation in the 
phrases used to convey the same instructions. Consequently, words or 
phrases that the Committee might choose to propose to be required as 
voice signals could be unfamiliar to many employees in the industry or 
contrary to common usage in some parts of the country. In light of 
this, the Committee determined that it would be better to use a 
different approach to address the problem of miscommunication when 
using voice signals. This approach, which establishes criteria for 
whatever voice signals are used, is set out in proposed Sec.  
1926.1421(a)-(c).
    Under proposed paragraph (a), prior to beginning operations, the 
personnel involved with signals--the crane operator, signal person and 
lift supervisor (if there is one)--would be required to meet and agree 
on the voice signals that will be used. Because of the lack of 
standardization and the variety of languages that are in use in the 
construction industry, the Committee concluded that it is essential 
that the persons who give and/or receive voice signals agree in advance 
on the signals that will be used in order to avoid miscommunication. 
Once the parties have met and agreed on the voice signals, another 
meeting is not required to discuss them unless another worker is 
substituted, there is some confusion about the signals, or a signal 
needs to be changed.
    In reviewing the C-DAC draft of this provision, the Agency realized 
that the adjective ``voice'' was inadvertently left out when referring 
to signals. To avoid ambiguity, the Agency has added the term ``voice'' 
to clarify that this proposed provision applies to the use of voice 
signals.
    Proposed paragraph (b) would require that each voice signal contain 
the following three elements, given in the following order: function 
(such as hoist, boom, etc.), direction; distance and/or speed; 
Function, stop command. For example: hoist up; 10 feet; hoist stop. As 
discussed above, the Committee considered it impractical to attempt to 
standardize the voice signals themselves (that is, to require the use 
of particular words to represent particular functions, directions or 
other instructions). However, the Committee concluded that the chance 
of miscommunication could nonetheless be reduced if certain parameters 
were established for the type of information and order of information 
that would be given.
    Proposed paragraph (c) would require the crane operator, signal 
person, and lift supervisor (if there is one) to be able to effectively 
communicate in the language used. Voice signals will not serve their 
intended purpose if they cannot be understood, or can be 
misinterpreted. The inability of these workers to understand each other 
could lead to accidents caused, for example, by the crane operator 
moving a load in a different direction than the signal person intends.

Section 1422 Signals--Hand Signal Chart

    This proposed paragraph would require that hand signal charts be 
either posted on the equipment or be readily available at the site. The 
purpose of this proposed provision is to serve as a reference for 
operators and signal persons of the mandatory hand signals and thereby 
help avoid miscommunication.

Section 1423 Fall Protection

    This proposed section contains provisions designed to protect 
workers on equipment covered by this Subpart from fall hazards. (See 
proposed Sec.  1926.1431, Hoisting Personnel, for fall protection 
provisions that would apply when equipment is used to hoist personnel). 
Currently, 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N contains certain fall protection 
requirements but does not address fall protection for cranes and 
derricks comprehensively. Where Subpart N does not specifically address

[[Page 59799]]

a fall protection issue, the general fall protection provisions of 29 
CFR part 1926 subpart M apply. As OSHA explained when it issued subpart 
M, ``while Subpart N contains requirements for fall protection when 
certain cranes are used, it does not address other equipment or working 
conditions otherwise covered by subpart N which may also expose 
employees to a fall hazard.''59 FR 40672, 40675 (Aug. 9, 1994).\54\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \54\ In Subpart M, Sec.  1926.500(a)(2) states: ``Section 
1926.501 sets forth those workplaces, conditions, operations, and 
circumstances for which fall protection shall be provided except as 
follows: * * * (ii) Requirements relating to fall protection for 
employees working on certain cranes and derricks are provided in 
Subpart N of this part.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The fall protection requirements in Subpart M apply where an 
employee is on a ``walking/working surface.'' 29 CFR 1926.501. In Sec.  
1926.500(b), the definition of walking/working surface excludes 
``vehicles.'' That definition effectively excludes many cranes (for 
example, mobile cranes would be considered ``vehicles'').
    The Committee believed that safety would be enhanced by addressing 
the problem of fall hazards associated with cranes and derricks 
comprehensively. In addition, it believed that putting all such 
requirements under the cranes and derricks standard would make it 
easier for employers to readily determine the applicable fall 
protection requirements. Accordingly, under this proposed standard, 
Subpart M would not apply to equipment covered by this proposed subpart 
except where it incorporates requirements of Subpart M by reference. In 
this regard, note that the Agency is proposing to amend Subpart M at 
Sec.  1926.500(a)(2)(ii) to remove the word ``certain.''

Definition of Fall Protection Equipment

    ``Fall protection equipment'' is defined in proposed Sec.  
1926.1401 as ``guardrail systems, safety net systems, personal fall 
arrest systems, positioning device systems, or fall restraint 
systems.'' The first four listed systems are described, and their 
specifications listed, in 29 CFR Part 1926. Subpart M of this part, 
OSHA's general fall protection standard for construction work. See 
Sec.  1926.502(b) (guardrail systems); Sec.  1926.502(c) (safety net 
systems); Sec.  1926.502(d) (personal fall arrest systems); and Sec.  
1926.502(e) (positioning device systems).
    The fifth category of fall protection equipment, ``fall restraint 
system,'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a fall protection system 
that prevents the user from falling any distance. The system is 
comprised of either a body belt or body harness, along with an 
anchorage, connectors and other necessary equipment. The other 
components typically include a lanyard, and may also include a lifeline 
and other devices.'' This definition is found in 29 CFR part 1926. 
Subpart R of this part, OSHA's steel erection standard.
    By defining ``fall protection equipment'' to include the same types 
of fall protection equipment required under other OSHA standards, C-DAC 
sought to ensure that employers would be familiar with the types of 
fall protection required under this standard and thereby promote 
compliance.
Paragraph 1423(a) Application
    Falls have traditionally been the leading cause of deaths among 
construction workers. BLS data for 2004 and 2005, the latest years for 
which complete figures are available, shows 445 fatalities from falls 
in 2004 (OSHA-2007-0066-0023), and 394 in 2005 (OSHA-2007-0066-0024). 
In 2004, 20 fatalities resulted from falls from nonmoving vehicles and 
in 2005, such falls caused 18 deaths. A recent study of crane-related 
fatalities in the U.S. construction industry found that 2% resulted 
from falls. J.E. Beavers, J.R. Moore, R. Rinehart, and W.R. Schriver, 
``Crane-Related Fatalities in the Construction Industry,'' 132 Journal 
of Construction Engineering and Management 901 (Sept. 2006) (OSHA-2007-
0066-0012). Falls from cranes, particularly when the operator is 
entering or leaving the crane, also cause numerous non-fatal injuries 
to construction workers. (OSHA-S030-2006-0663-0422).
    Under proposed paragraph (a), certain proposed provisions in this 
section (proposed Sec.  1926.1423(c)(1), (f) and (h)) would apply to 
all equipment, including tower cranes; certain provisions (proposed 
Sec.  1926.1423(b), (c)(2), (d) and (e)) would apply to all equipment 
except tower cranes; and certain provisions (proposed paragraph (g) 
would apply only to tower cranes).
Paragraph 1423(b) Boom Walkways
    Proposed paragraph (b) would establish when walkways must be 
incorporated into lattice booms and the criteria for such walkways. 
Boom walkways are not currently required by subpart N of this part.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(1) would require that equipment manufactured 
more than one year after the effective date of this standard with a 
lattice boom be equipped with walkways on the boom if the vertical 
profile of the boom (from cord centerline to cord centerline) is 6 or 
more feet. C-DAC believed that the installation of walkways on booms 
would decrease the number of falls which occur during assembly/
disassembly, inspection, and maintenance of booms and attached devices. 
Without a walkway, employees walking the boom must step from lattice to 
lattice. C-DAC believed it is safer to walk the boom if the boom is 
equipped with a walkway.
    C-DAC considered the technical difficulty of equipping a boom with 
a vertical profile of less than 6 feet. Such booms would not 
accommodate the addition of a walkway into their design because the 
added weight of the walkway would significantly compromise their 
hoisting capacity. For that reason, C-DAC limited the requirement for 
boom walkways to equipment with lattice booms where the vertical 
profile of the boom is 6 feet or more.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(2), Boom walkway criteria, would establish a 
minimum width for boom walkways and address safety issues associated 
with guardrails, railings and other attachments.\55\ Proposed Sec.  
1926.1423(b)(2)(i) would require that walkways on booms be at least 12 
inches wide. C-DAC considered requiring boom walkways to be at least 18 
inches wide to remain consistent with Sec.  1926.451(b)(2) of the 
scaffold standard (Subpart L). However, C-DAC determined that there are 
engineering limitations applicable to booms that are not applicable to 
scaffolds. Specifically, the Committee found that an 18 inch 
requirement would present feasibility problems, especially on smaller 
booms. In such cases an 18 inch walkway's added weight would unduly 
impinge upon the equipment's capacity.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \55\ These criteria would apply to all boom walkways, not just 
those on lattice booms.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    C-DAC believed that a walkway with a 12 inch width, while not as 
easy to use as an 18 inch walkway, would provide enough space for an 
employee to maintain his/her balance while walking from point to point 
on the boom when the boom is positioned horizontally. This would be a 
significant improvement over having to step across the open space 
between the boom's lattice-work and onto the lattice. In sum, the 
Committee concluded that the benefits obtained by providing a walkway 
on booms outweigh any drawbacks associated with a minimum width of 12 
inches. Note that, in many circumstances, the safety benefits afforded 
by this walkway would be supplemented by fall protection equipment (see 
the discussion below of proposed paragraphs (d) and (e)).

[[Page 59800]]

    Proposed paragraph (b)(2)(ii) would address the use of guardrails, 
railings and other permanent fall protection attachments along 
walkways. The general fall protection standard for construction work at 
Sec.  1926.501(b)(6) requires that walkways be equipped with guardrail 
systems to protect workers against falling 6 feet or more. This 
proposed section would retain the general requirement for fall 
protection at or above 6 feet for certain work (see discussion below of 
Sec.  1926.1423(d)), but C-DAC believed that guardrails should not be a 
required form of fall protection on boom walkways because of the 
feasibility constraints discussed below.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(2)(ii)(A) states that guardrails, railings 
and other permanent fall protection attachments along boom walkways 
would not be required. For some equipment, the added weight of fixed 
railings, combined with the walkway's weight, would unduly impinge upon 
the lift capacity of the boom. In addition, as discussed in relation to 
Sec.  1926.1423(b)(2)(ii)(B) below, in some boom designs pendant ropes 
and bars (where present) could become snagged on such railings.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(2)(ii)(B) would prohibit guardrails, 
railings and other permanent fall protection attachments along walkways 
on booms supported by pendant ropes or bars if the guardrails, railings 
or attachments could be snagged by the ropes or bars. Such snagging 
could cause instability or a collapse. Whether the potential for 
snagging is present on a boom supported by pendant ropes or bars would 
depend on the design of the equipment.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(2)(ii)(C) would prohibit removable-type 
guardrails, railings, and other permanent fall protection along 
walkways. For purposes of this paragraph, ``removable-type'' means 
designed to be installed and removed each time the boom is assembled/
disassembled. One of the Committee's concerns was that such devices may 
be left installed by mistake, which could damage the equipment and 
cause unexpected movement or a failure during its operation.
    Under proposed paragraph (b)(2)(ii)(D), where guardrails or 
railings are not prohibited, they would be permitted to be of any 
height up to, but not more than, 45 inches. C-DAC believed that 
requiring all guardrails and handrails to comply with the height 
criteria in Subpart M of this part, which generally requires them to be 
39 to 45 inches high, could deter manufacturers from equipping their 
products with guardrails and handrails. That is because meeting Subpart 
M's height criteria could make the device incompatible with the design 
and operation of the boom. For boom walkway applications, C-DAC 
concluded that using guardrails lower than 39 inches when higher 
guardrails are infeasible was preferable to not having any guardrails 
at all.
Paragraph 1423(c) Steps, Handholds, Grabrails, Guardrails and Railings
    Proposed paragraph (c) would specify criteria for the use and 
maintenance of steps, handholds, grabrails, guardrails and railings.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(1) would require that the employer maintain 
originally-equipped steps, handholds, ladders and guardrails/railings/
grabrails in good condition. The failure to properly maintain such 
devices could pose dangers to the employees who use them. For example, 
a grabrail that has become weakened from rust could fail when an 
employee uses it, which could cause the employee to fall. Another 
example is a missing railing. A manufacturer that integrated a railing 
into its design may have provided a walking surface that would 
otherwise be too narrow to be safe.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2) would require that equipment manufactured 
more than one year after the effective date of this standard be 
equipped to provide safe access and egress between the ground and the 
operator work station(s), including the forward and rear operator 
positions, by the provision of devices such as steps, handholds, 
ladders, and guardrails/railings/grabrails. As discussed below, 
proposed Sec.  1926.1423(c)(2)(i) would require these devices to meet 
updated design criteria.
    Currently, Sec.  1926.550(a)(13)(i) in Subpart N requires that 
guardrails, handholds, and steps be provided on cranes for easy access 
to the car and cab and specifies that these devices conform to ANSI 
B30.5. The 1968 version of ANSI B30.5, which was in effect at the time 
Subpart N was issued, specifies that the construction of these devices 
must conform to the 1946 U.S. Safety Appliance Standard. C-DAC 
recognized that many pieces of equipment now in use would have been 
manufactured with handholds and steps but was concerned that the 
handholds and steps may have been designed to meet outdated criteria.
    The Committee believed that it would be unduly burdensome to 
require all equipment to be retrofitted with new steps, handholds, and 
railings simply because the existing design may vary from what would be 
required under this proposal. Accordingly, the proposal would allow one 
year from the date of the published final rule for equipment to be 
manufactured with devices that conform to proposed 1926.1423(c)(2)(i), 
discussed next. This would give equipment manufacturers adequate time 
to incorporate the requirements of Sec.  1926.1423(c)(2)(i) into their 
products.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2)(i) would require that steps, ladders and 
guardrails/railings/ grabrails meet the requirements of SAE J185 (May 
2003) or ISO 11660-2 (1994). OSHA's construction standards contain 
specifications for stairways and ladders in 29 CFR Part 1926 subpart X, 
but C-DAC believed that the Subpart X requirements do not take into 
account the characteristics of the equipment covered by this proposed 
standard. The specifications in SAE J185 are referenced in industry 
consensus standards, such as ASME B30.5-2004, ``Mobile and Locomotive 
Cranes,'' and crane manufacturers are familiar with those requirements. 
C-DAC recommended alternatively allowing compliance with ISO 11660-2 
since employers also use equipment built by foreign manufacturers who 
have been following that standard.
    Under proposed paragraph (a) of this section, the requirements in 
proposed paragraph Sec.  1926.1423(c)(2) do not apply to tower cranes. 
It is the Agency's understanding that C-DAC excluded tower cranes from 
these requirements because the SAE and ISO standards referenced in 
Sec.  1926.1423(c)(2)(i) are designed for, and only address, mobile 
cranes. The Agency also believes that the lack of a similar provision 
in the C-DAC document designed for tower cranes was an oversight; tower 
cranes also need to be equipped with safe stairways and ladders to 
enable the operator to ascend to the cab and descend safely.\56\ 
Accordingly, OSHA plans to include a requirement similar to Sec.  
1926.1423(c)(2) that would be applicable to, and designed for, tower 
cranes, and requests public comment on this issue.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \56\ Note that section 3-1.17.2 of both the 1996 and 2004 
versions of ASME B30.3, ``Construction Tower Cranes,'' calls for 
access ladders to the cab, machinery platform, and tower to conform 
to ANSI A14.3 or to SAE J185.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed paragraph (c)(2)(ii) would require that walking/stepping 
surfaces, except for crawler treads, have slip-resistant features/
properties (such as diamond plate metal, strategically placed grip 
tape, expanded metal, or slip-resistant paint). Section 
1926.550(a)(13)(iii) of Subpart N of this part requires platforms and 
walkways to have anti-skid surfaces. C-DAC

[[Page 59801]]

recommended that OSHA retain this requirement as a complement to the 
use of guardrails, handholds, grabrails, ladders and other engineered 
safety features that would be required by this proposed section. OSHA 
continues to believe that compliance with this provision would minimize 
the number of slips and falls for employees who must travel point to 
point to access the operator workstations on equipment covered by this 
proposed section.
Paragraph 1423(d) Fall Protection Requirements for Non-Assembly/
Disassembly Work
    Proposed paragraph (d) addresses fall protection requirements for 
employees engaged in work other than assembly/disassembly work (``non-
A/D'' work). For such work, in certain circumstances, employers would 
be required to provide and ensure the use of fall protection equipment 
for employees who are on a walking/working surface with an unprotected 
side or edge more than 6 feet above a lower level.
    C-DAC discussed different trigger heights for fall protection 
requirements for particular types of cranes and derricks. Ultimately, 
C-DAC concluded that the requirements for fall protection should remain 
consistent with 29 CFR Part subpart M, which generally requires fall 
protection at heights at and above 6 feet, as much as possible. (As 
discussed below, for A/D work, the Committee recommended fall 
protection beginning at 15 feet). C-DAC also believed that, in its 
view, operators do not need to be tied off while moving to and from 
their cabs, and the proposal would make this clear by requiring fall 
protection equipment only when employees are moving point-to-point on 
booms or while at a work station (with certain exceptions). The 
Committee believed that the steps, handholds, and railings required 
under proposed Sec.  1926.1423(c) would protect operators moving to and 
from their workstations and eliminate the need for additional fall 
protection equipment.
Paragraph 1423(d)(1) Non-Assembly/Disassembly: Moving Point to Point
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(i) would require employers to provide and 
ensure the use of fall protection equipment at 6 feet and above when an 
employee is moving point to point on non-lattice booms (whether 
horizontal or not horizontal). As defined in Sec.  1926.1401, ``moving 
point to point'' means ``the times during which an employee is in the 
process of going to or from a work station.''
    C-DAC believed that non-lattice booms generally present more 
hazards to workers who must walk them to reach other work areas, 
devices, and equipment attached to it than lattice booms. Non-lattice 
booms are typically of the extensible type. As a result, as members 
noted, the walking/working surfaces on these types of booms are often 
oily (from the hydraulic mechanisms). Also, since the boom sections 
extend and retract, it is typically infeasible to provide boom walkways 
and other safety features. Because they tend to be slippery from oil, 
the Committee concluded that they are especially hazardous to move 
across even when horizontal. Therefore, where an employee is required 
to move point to point on a non-lattice boom, the proposal would 
require fall protection above 6 feet in height.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1)(ii) would require employers to provide 
and ensure the use of fall protection, beginning at 6 feet, when 
employees must move point to point on lattice booms that are not in a 
horizontal position. In non-A/D work, an employee may, for example, 
need to move point-to-point on a lattice boom to inspect a part that is 
suspected to need repair, or to make a repair (such as replacing a 
broken or missing cotter pin). In many of these situations, the boom 
will not be horizontal, since space limitations often make it difficult 
to lower the boom to do this work.
    The Committee believed that it is both necessary and feasible for 
fall protection to be used in such instances. Typically, the fall 
protection that would be used would consist of a double-lanyard or 
similar personal fall arrest system. Since the boom in these instances 
would be elevated, there would usually be a point on the boom above the 
level of the employee's feet to which the lanyard could be attached.
    It is the Agency's understanding that, in contrast, it is uncommon 
for an employee to need to move point-to-point on a horizontal lattice 
boom for non-A/D work. If work does need to be done, such as making an 
inspection or repair as discussed above, the employee would usually get 
access to their work station with a ladder. In those instances when the 
employee must traverse the boom itself, the Committee concluded that it 
would be inappropriate to require fall protection for the reasons 
discussed below.
    The key difficulty in providing fall protection in such instances 
stems from the lack of a tie-off point above the level of the 
employee's feet. Most lattice booms when horizontal would be less than 
15 feet above the next lower level. At heights below 15 feet, a 
personal fall arrest system tied off at the level of the employee's 
feet, with a lanyard long enough to afford the employee the range of 
movement necessary for this work, might not prevent the employee from 
falling to the next lower level. In construction work the problem of 
providing personal fall protection in this height range, when there is 
no higher tie-off point, is usually solved in one of three ways (apart 
from the use of ladders, scaffolds, aerial lifts, and similar devices). 
One way is to use a restraint system, which is anchored at a point that 
prevents the employee from moving past an edge. This type of system 
could not be used while on a boom because the boom is too narrow.
    Another method is to set up a personal fall arrest system that 
would arrest the employee's fall before hitting the next lower level by 
using stanchions to support an elevated, horizontal life-line. However, 
such stanchions must be securely fastened and whatever they are 
fastened to must be able to withstand considerable forces in an 
arrested fall. On a crane's lattice boom, the stanchions would have to 
be attached either to the chords or the lacings.
    The chords and lacings are engineered to be as light as possible, 
and an engineering analysis would be needed in each case to determine 
if the attachment point was sufficiently strong to withstand those 
forces. Also, the Agency believes that manufacturers would be unlikely 
to approve clamp-on type systems because of the likelihood of the 
clamping forces damaging these critical structural components. 
Similarly, the Agency believes that manufacturers would not approve the 
repeated weld/removal/re-weld cycles that would be involved in 
attaching and removing stanchions because this could adversely affect 
the boom's structural components.
    The third method commonly used in construction work is a temporary 
guardrail system, but that also would require attaching stanchions to 
the boom, which would be infeasible for these same reasons.
    The Committee concluded that, in light of such factors, it would 
not be appropriate to require fall protection when an employee moves 
point-to-point on horizontal lattice booms. However, the Agency notes 
that, although it may rarely be necessary for an employee moving point-
to-point on a horizontal lattice boom to be 15 feet or more above the 
next lower level, there is the possibility of such an occurrence, such 
as where a horizontal boom spans a large gap in the ground surface. At 
such heights a personal fall arrest system tied off at the level of the 
employee's feet would allow sufficient room for the arrest system to 
operate without

[[Page 59802]]

allowing the employee to strike the next lower level. Therefore, the 
Agency requests public comment on whether proposed Sec.  
1926.1423(d)(1)(ii) should be expanded to require fall protection when 
an employee, engaged in non-A/D work, is moving point-to-point on a 
boom that is horizontal and the fall distance is 15 feet or more.
Paragraph 1423(d)(2) Non-Assembly/Disassembly: While at a Work Station
    Proposed paragraph (d)(2) would require employers to provide and 
ensure the use of fall protection while an employee is at a work 
station on any part of the equipment (including the boom, of any type), 
except when the employee is at or near draw-works (when the equipment 
is running), in the cab, or on the deck. An example of being at a work 
station is the following: An employee is assigned to replace a cotter 
pin for a sheave at the end of a boom. The employee's ``work station'' 
on the boom for this task will be the point where, after the employee 
has traversed the boom or climbed on from a ladder, the employee 
performs that task. Because the employee is using one or both hands to 
perform the task, there is a heightened risk of falling.
    Since the work is typically done while the employee is sitting or 
lying on or inside the boom and is stationary while doing the task, 
there is normally no difficulty in setting up the personal fall 
protection system so that it would prevent the worker from contacting 
the next lower level. Therefore, this proposed provision does not 
distinguish between work stations based on boom type or whether the 
boom is horizontal or elevated. For work stations on other parts of the 
equipment, the Committee concluded that there is normally some suitable 
point available to which a personal fall arrest system can be anchored.
    Fall protection would not be required near draw-works when the 
equipment is running because of the danger that moving parts could 
catch a safety lanyard and pull the worker into moving machinery. This 
danger is present when parts in the draw works are moving. It is also 
present when the equipment is running and the draw works parts are not 
moving because of the potential that someone will activate those parts.
    Fall protection would not be required when the employee is in a cab 
because the employee is not exposed to a fall hazard in that instance. 
Fall protection would also not be required for employees on decks, 
since the Committee believed that equipment is typically designed so 
that employees on the deck are not exposed to a fall hazard.
    As discussed earlier, C-DAC was convinced that the steps and 
railings required by this proposed standard would provide adequate fall 
protection to operators going to and from their workstations. 
Therefore, fall protection (apart from those devices) would not be 
required for operators while moving point-to-point between the ground 
and the operator work station(s).
Paragraph 1423(e) Assembly/Disassembly
    Proposed paragraph (e) would require the employer to provide and 
ensure the use of fall protection equipment during A/D work for 
employees who are on a walking/working surface with an unprotected side 
or edge more than 15 feet above a lower level, except when the employee 
is at or near draw-works (when the equipment is running), in the cab, 
or on the deck.
    The principal problem with the use of fall protection during 
assembly/disassembly below 15 feet is the difficulty in setting up a 
personal fall protection system that allows a significant degree of 
movement on a boom in this height range (which is usually of the 
lattice type) and also prevents the employee from contacting the next 
lower level. Unlike employees who work at a stationary work station, 
employees engaged in assembly/disassembly work typically have to move a 
significant amount to accomplish the work.
    Consequently, the degree of movement that the protection system 
needs to provide to the employee is more similar to what is needed when 
moving point-to-point on a boom than working at a work station. As 
discussed above, the characteristics of lattice booms make it more 
difficult to set up such systems than in other situations.
    The exception to the requirement for fall protection when the 
employee is at or near draw-works (when the equipment is running), in 
the cab, or on the deck is based on the same considerations discussed 
above with respect to proposed Sec.  1926.1423(d)(2).
Paragraph 1423(f) Anchorage Criteria
    Proposed paragraph (f) would specify criteria for anchorage points 
used in personal fall protection systems.\57\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \57\ ``Personal fall arrest system'' is defined in Sec.  
1926.1401 of this proposed standard as ``a system used to arrest an 
employee in a fall from a working level. It consists of an 
anchorage, connectors, a body harness and may include a lanyard, 
deceleration device, lifeline, or suitable combination of these.'' 
This definition is taken from Sec.  1926.500(b) of Subpart M. As 
with other definitions applicable to this section, C-DAC used 
terminology that is familiar to the industry to provide clear notice 
of the standard's requirements and promote compliance.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed paragraph (f)(1), Anchorages for fall arrest and 
positioning device systems, contains requirements for anchorage points 
used in fall arrest and positioning device systems. Proposed Sec.  
1926.1423(f)(1)(i) would permit personal fall arrest systems and 
positioning systems to be anchored to any apparently substantial part 
of the equipment unless a competent person, from a visual inspection, 
without an engineering analysis, would conclude that the applicable 
criteria in Sec.  1926.502 of Subpart M of this part would not be met. 
The Subpart M criteria include, for personal fall arrest systems, 5,000 
pounds per employee or twice the potential impact load of an employee's 
fall (in addition to other requirements) (Sec.  1926.502(d)(15)); for a 
positioning device, 3,000 pounds or twice the potential impact load of 
an employee's fall, whichever is greater (in addition to other 
requirements) (Sec.  1926.502(e)(2)).
    Most of the equipment covered by the proposed standard are designed 
to lift and support weights much heavier than these. Apparently 
substantial parts of the equipment are, therefore, typically capable of 
meeting the Subpart M capacities. Consequently, C-DAC believed that the 
proposed Sec.  1926.1423(f)(1)(i) criteria was appropriate and would 
avoid burdening employers with what it considered to be the unnecessary 
expense of obtaining engineering analyses for each part that would 
serve as an anchor.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(1)(ii) would require that attachable anchor 
devices (portable anchor devices that are attached to the equipment) 
meet the applicable anchorage criteria in Sec.  1926.502. These 
criteria are the same as those discussed in the previous paragraph for 
fall arrest and fall positioning systems.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2), Anchorages for restraint systems, would 
require restraint systems to be anchored to any part of the equipment 
that is capable of withstanding twice the maximum load that a worker 
may impose on it during reasonably anticipated conditions of use. Since 
restraint systems do not arrest a worker's fall (instead they prevent a 
fall from occurring), the anchorage does not need to be able to support 
the significantly greater force generated during an arrested fall. C-
DAC believed that having the anchorage support twice the maximum 
anticipated load will provide an adequate margin of safety when a 
restraint system is used.

[[Page 59803]]

Paragraph 1423(g) Tower Cranes
    Proposed paragraph (g) would specify fall protection requirements 
specific to tower cranes. Note that the terminology ``erecting'' and 
``dismantling'' is used with regard to tower cranes rather than 
``assembly'' and ``disassembly''; this terminology reflects the 
industry's use of these terms.
Paragraph 1423(g)(1) Non-Erecting/Dismantling
    Proposed paragraph (g)(1) addresses fall protection requirements 
for non-erecting/dismantling work. The employer would be required to 
provide and ensure the use of fall protection equipment for employees 
who are on a walking/working surface with an unprotected side or edge 
more than 6 feet above a lower level. The exceptions to this 
requirement would be when the employee is at or near draw-works (when 
the equipment is running), in the cab, or on the deck.
    As discussed above, for equipment other than tower cranes, there 
were various factors that prompted C-DAC to agree on different 
requirements for moving point-to-point than when working at a work 
station. Those factors, however, are not present in tower cranes.
    For example, when moving point-to-point on the jib (or boom) or on 
the tower, there are no feasibility constraints to being protected. 
There are numerous areas on the jib to which an employee can anchor 
personal fall arrest equipment as the employee walks out and back on 
the jib (or boom) on a tower crane. Also, by standard industry 
practice, the counter-jib \58\ is usually equipped with a walkway and 
railings. If the employee needs to traverse in an area that is off the 
walkway, other fall protection can be used, such as a personal fall 
arrest system. Since the jib (or boom) once erected is much higher than 
6 feet from the next lower level, there is plenty of room for the 
arrest system to operate without allowing the employee to strike the 
next lower level.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \58\ At the top of the tower, there is a long horizontal 
structure that supports the load (the ``jib'' or, if the luffing 
type, the ``boom''), and a shorter horizontal structure that 
supports the counterweights, which is referred to as the ``counter-
jib.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Moving point-to-point on the tower is typically done either using 
the ladder or stair system provided within the tower, or (in some 
situations) moving on a tower section. When moving on a tower section, 
because the sections are vertical, there is always a point above the 
employee's feet to which the arrest system can be anchored. There is 
therefore no need for stanchions or other equipment to set up the 
system to prevent the employee from striking the next lower level.
    The exception to the proposed provision for fall protection when 
the employee is at or near draw-works (when the equipment is running), 
in the cab, or on the deck is based on the same considerations 
discussed above with respect to proposed Sec.  1926.1423(d)(2). The 
Agency notes that its understanding of the location of ``the deck'' on 
a tower crane is the walking/working area on the counter-jib.
Paragraph 1423(g)(2) Erecting/Dismantling
    This proposed paragraph specifies that, for erecting/dismantling 
work, employers must provide, and ensure use of, fall protection 
equipment for employees who are on a walking/working surface with an 
unprotected side or edge more than 15 feet above a lower level.
    On tower cranes, almost all of the erecting/dismantling work that 
takes place below 15 feet occurs in connection with erecting or 
dismantling the sections of the jib (or boom), which is usually done on 
the ground. In this respect the erecting/dismantling process is similar 
to the assembly/disassembly of other types of cranes. Therefore, the 
same reasons for setting a 15-foot threshold for requiring fall 
protection for assembling/disassembling non-tower cranes (see 
discussion of proposed paragraph (e) above) are also the basis for 
proposing to require fall protection beginning at 15 feet for erecting 
and dismantling tower cranes.
    The Agency notes that C-DAC did not include the exceptions that 
were included in proposed Sec.  1926.1423(g)(1) for when the employee 
is at or near draw-works (when the equipment is running), in the cab, 
or on the deck. OSHA is unaware of any reason why these exceptions 
would not be equally applicable here, and asks for public comment on 
whether they should be added to proposed Sec.  1926.1423(g)(2).
Paragraph 1423(h) Anchoring to the Load Line
    Proposed paragraph (h) would permit an employer, under prescribed 
conditions, to anchor a fall arrest system to the hook or other part of 
a load line of a crane or derrick. Currently, in Subpart M of this 
part, Sec.  1926.502(d)(23) prohibits personal fall arrest systems to 
be attached to ``hoists except as specified in other subparts of this 
part.'' Subpart N does not contain any provisions specifically 
addressing this issue. Therefore, since the hook or other part of a 
load line is connected to a hoist in the crane or for the derrick, 
attaching a personal fall arrest system in this manner is currently 
prohibited by Subpart M.
    OSHA has received a number of inquiries asking whether a crane's 
hook or load line may be used as an anchorage point for fall 
protection. Using a crane for such purpose would be particularly useful 
in many situations, especially where establishing a suitable anchor 
point would be otherwise very difficult. OSHA asked C-DAC to consider 
whether there is any reason to prohibit using a crane or derrick for 
such purpose. C-DAC believed that the hook or load line of a crane 
could be used safely as an anchor point under the conditions proposed 
in the rest of this paragraph.
    Proposed paragraph (h)(1) would allow the hook or load line to be 
used as an anchorage point when a qualified person has determined that 
the set-up and rated capacity of the crane/derrick (including the hook, 
load line and rigging) meets or exceeds the requirements in Sec.  
1926.502(d)(15). C-DAC concluded that, as long as the crane or derrick 
had sufficient capacity to meet those criteria, there is no reason to 
prohibit its use for this purpose.
    The criteria in Sec.  1926.502(d)(15) were developed to ensure that 
fall protection anchorages provide adequate employee protection. A 
number of factors related to the crane's capacity in the particular 
configuration and set-up involved would need to be considered, 
including, in some cases, the angle of the fall arrest lanyard to the 
boom if a fall were to occur. In C-DAC's view, determining whether 
those criteria are met when anchoring to the hook or load line requires 
the expertise of a qualified person.
    Proposed paragraph (h)(2) would require that the equipment operator 
be at the work site and informed that the equipment is being used to 
anchor a fall arrest system. This would ensure that the operator is 
available to make any necessary adjustments, such as moving the boom or 
load lines. Further, in the event of an emergency that results in a 
tied-off employee being suspended from the hook or load line, the 
operator would be available to bring the worker to the ground safely.

Section 1424 Work Area Control

    Proposed paragraph (a) addresses the hazard of employees being 
struck, pinched-between or crushed when within the swing radius of the 
equipment's rotating superstructure. Proposed 1926.1424(a)(1) states 
that the precautions in Sec.  1926.1424(a)(2) must be

[[Page 59804]]

taken when there are accessible areas in which the equipment's rotating 
superstructure (whether permanently or temporarily mounted) poses a 
reasonably foreseeable risk of either: (i) Striking and injuring an 
employee; or (ii) pinching/crushing an employee against another part of 
the equipment or another object.
    Currently, Sec.  1926.550(a)(9) provides: ``Accessible areas within 
the swing radius of the rear of the rotating superstructure of the 
crane, either permanently or temporarily mounted, shall be barricaded 
in such a manner as to prevent an employee from being struck or crushed 
by the crane.'' In proposed Sec.  1926.1401, ``superstructure'' is 
defined as a synonym for ``upperworks'' and ``upperstructure.'' Under 
this definition, all three terms mean the following: ``the revolving 
frame of equipment on which the engine and operating machinery are 
mounted along with the operator's cab. The counterweight is typically 
supported on the rear of the upperstructure and the boom or other front 
end attachment is mounted on the front.''
    The Committee agreed that barriers around danger areas are a 
viable, safe option, but they also agreed that such barriers are not 
always feasible and that, in such cases, there needs to be alternative 
means of protecting the employees. In addition, C-DAC was concerned 
that the language ``accessible areas within the swing radius . * * *'' 
would require that all areas accessible to an employee within the swing 
radius would have to be protected, irrespective of whether an employee 
could be injured while in such an area. C-DAC viewed such a requirement 
as overly broad and unnecessary.
    The Committee drafted the proposed requirement so that protective 
measures would be required for accessible areas that pose a 
``reasonably foreseeable risk'' that an employee would be struck or 
pinched/crushed. The principle of reasonably foreseeable risk is one 
that is well established in Occupational Safety and Health Review 
Commission caselaw and in the courts of appeals. For example, in Pete 
Miller Inc., 19 O.S.H.C. (BNA) 1257, 1258 (Rev. Comm'n 2000), the 
Review Commission stated that a violation occurs when ``it is 
reasonably predictable either by operational necessity or otherwise 
(including inadvertence), that employees have been, are, or will be in 
the zone of danger.'' \59\ The following are two illustrative examples 
of the application of this principle to the swing radius provision:

    \59\ See also, Daniel Int'l Corp. v. Donovan, 705 F.2d 382, 388 
(10th Cir. 1983); Mineral Indus. & Heavy Constr. Group v. OSHRC, 639 
F.2d 1289, 1294 (5th Cir. 1981).

    Illustrative example #1: The bottom of the rear of the rotating 
superstructure of crane A is 12 feet above the ground. An employee 
standing on the ground within that swing radius could not be struck 
by the rotating superstructure since the rotating superstructure 
would swing well above him/her. There is nothing within that area on 
which the employee could stand. In this example the area does not 
pose a reasonably foreseeable risk of the employee being struck or 
pinched/crushed.
    Illustrative example #2: Same scenario as example 1 
above, except that a truck with material that is to be unloaded from 
its bed is within the swing radius. If an employee were to stand on 
the truck bed the employee would be within the swing radius. In this 
example there is a reasonably foreseeable risk of an employee being 
struck or pinched/crushed.

    Under proposed paragraph (a)(2), the employer would be required to 
institute two types of measures to prevent employees from entering 
these hazard areas. Specifically, under proposed Sec.  
1926.1424(a)(2)(i), the employer would have to train employees assigned 
to work on or near the equipment in how to recognize these areas. The 
Committee believed that employees need to understand and appreciate the 
risk posed by the rotating superstructure for the other precautions 
required by Sec.  1926.1424(a)(2)(ii) to be effective.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(2)(ii) would require the employer to erect 
and maintain control lines, warning lines, railings, or similar 
barriers to mark the boundaries of the hazard areas, but contains an 
exception when such a precaution is infeasible. If it is neither 
feasible to erect such barriers on the ground nor on the equipment, the 
employer would be required to mark the danger zone with a combination 
of warning signs and high visibility markings on the equipment that 
identify the hazard areas. In addition, the employer would have to 
train employees to understand what those markings signify.
    To help prevent struck-by and crushed-by injuries and fatalities, 
C-DAC concluded that it is necessary to address the protection of 
employees who must sometimes enter the hazard area to perform work. 
Proposed Sec.  1926.1424(a)(3) is designed to help protect such 
employees by ensuring that there is adequate communication and 
coordination between the operator and the employee in the danger area.
    Under proposed paragraph (a)(3)(i), if an employee is going to go 
to a location in a hazard area that is out of view of the operator, 
before that employee goes in that area the employee (or someone 
instructed by the employee) would have to ensure that the operator is 
informed that the employee is going to that location. Since the 
operator will typically be under the assumption that no one is in that 
area, informing the operator that an employee is going to enter the 
hazard area is an essential first step in preventing the operator from 
moving the superstructure and causing injury to that employee.
    Under proposed paragraph (a)(3)(ii), once informed that an employee 
is going to enter a hazard area out of the operator's view, the 
operator would be prohibited from rotating the superstructure unless 
and until he/she gives a warning that the employee understands is a 
signal that the superstructure is about to be rotated and gives the 
employee time to get clear.
    Alternatively, the operator may rotate the superstructure if 
informed in accordance with a pre-arranged system of communication that 
the employee is in a safe position. An example of such a system would 
be the use of a signal person who gives an all-clear signal to the 
operator once the signal person sees that the employee has exited the 
hazard area. Another example would be where the employee in the hazard 
area is equipped with a portable air horn and, in accordance with a 
pre-arranged horn signal system, sounds an appropriate signal to the 
operator that the employee has exited the hazard area. To be effective, 
the pre-arranged signal system would need to be designed so that this 
all-clear signal could not be confused with a horn signal from some 
other employee for another purpose.
    Proposed paragraph (b) addresses situations where multiple pieces 
of equipment are located in such proximity that their working radii 
overlap. Such situations pose the danger of employees being pinched/
crushed between the equipment and being injured as a result of 
unintended movement or collapse when pieces of equipment collide. To 
prevent such accidents, the controlling entity would be required to 
coordinate the operations of these pieces of equipment. In the event 
that there is no controlling entity, the employer or employers 
operating the equipment would be required to institute a coordination 
system.
    C-DAC's language for proposed paragraph (b) refers to ``employers 
operating the equipment'' but does not address a situation in which 
only one employer is operating the multiple pieces of equipment. It 
appears to the Agency that a coordination system is also needed in that 
situation. OSHA is considering revising the C-DAC

[[Page 59805]]

language to make clear that such an employer would be required to 
institute a coordination system. Proposed Sec.  1926.1424(b) could be 
revised in this regard as follows:

    (b) Multiple equipment coordination. Where any part of a crane/
derrick is within the working radius of another crane/derrick, the 
controlling entity shall institute a system to coordinate 
operations. If there is no controlling entity, the employer (if 
there is only one employer operating the multiple pieces of 
equipment), or employers, shall institute such a system.

    OSHA requests public comment on whether such a revision should be 
made.

Section 1425 Keeping Clear of the Load

    Currently, 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N at Sec.  1926.550(a)(19) 
states: ``All employees shall be kept clear of loads about to be lifted 
and of suspended loads.'' C-DAC believed that compliance with this 
provision is infeasible in certain circumstances. For example, many 
urban construction sites have a relatively small footprint with 
numerous construction employees throughout the site. These sites are 
typically bounded on all sides by roads and sidewalks with high 
concentrations of pedestrian and vehicular traffic. In such 
circumstances it is not always possible to route a suspended load in 
such a way that all employees will be clear of the load at all times. 
In addition, meeting that objective may sometimes conflict with meeting 
local requirements regarding public safety.
    C-DAC also believed that employers have a greater ability to avoid 
having static suspended loads over employees than moving loads, since a 
static suspended load usually affects a much smaller area. Furthermore, 
in a static situation, it is possible to limit the number of employees 
in the fall zone to only those whose jobs involve the handling of the 
load and therefore require them to be in that area at that time. 
Accordingly, this proposed section is designed to account for these 
considerations and protect employees to the extent feasible.
Paragraph 1425(a)
    Proposed paragraph (a) would require the employer to use hoisting 
routes that minimize employee exposure to hoisted loads to the extent 
consistent with public safety. This provision addresses the fact that 
in many situations, especially urban construction sites with high 
concentrations of employees throughout the site, it is not feasible to 
prevent all employees from being exposed to hoisted loads that are 
moving at all times (see discussion above).
    Also, C-DAC recognized that there could be situations where 
minimizing employee exposure to hoisted loads would be in conflict with 
local requirements regarding public safety, as when an alternative 
route would take the load over a street with public traffic. The 
Committee wanted to make clear that choosing a route that would 
endanger the public was not required.
Paragraph 1425(b)
    Proposed paragraph (b) addresses those situations where the 
equipment operator is not actually engaging the controls to move the 
load. In such situations, the load affects a more limited area then 
when it is moved up or horizontally. Consequently, C-DAC determined 
that, in these static situations, it is feasible to preclude most 
employee exposure to the load's fall zone. The only exceptions are 
employees engaged in the types of activities specified in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1425(b)(1) through (3).
    ``Fall zone'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as ``the area 
(including but not limited to the area directly beneath the load) in 
which it is reasonably foreseeable that partially or completely 
suspended materials could fall in the event of an accident.'' The 
``fall zone'' thus includes both the area directly under the load as 
well as other areas into which it is ``reasonably foreseeable'' that 
suspended materials could fall. For example, if wind is causing the 
load to swing, the employer would need to consider the extent to which 
the load is or may swing in determining the extent of the fall zone. 
Another example is where a bundle of materials is suspended, and some 
loose materials at the top of the bundle may slide off sideways. In 
such a case those materials would foreseeably fall outside the area 
directly beneath the load. As discussed above in relation to Sec.  
1926.1424, Work area control, the concept of ``reasonably foreseeable'' 
risk is well established in OSHA law.
    Proposed paragraph 1425(b)(1) would permit employees engaged in 
hooking, unhooking or guiding a load to be within the fall zone while 
engaged in these activities. Hooking or unhooking a load sometimes 
requires an employee to be within the fall zone of a load. For example, 
where a lifting accessory is used, the employee will typically be under 
the fall zone of the lifting accessory when attaching or unhooking the 
load. Also, guiding a load, even with a tag line, sometimes 
necessitates that the employee be positioned within the fall zone, 
especially when the work area below is restricted in size.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(2) would permit employees engaged in the 
initial attachment of the load to a component or structure to be within 
the fall zone. One example is the following scenario: A subassembly of 
steel members is hoisted for attachment to a structure. When initially 
attaching the lower portion of that subassembly, an employee is within 
the fall zone of the load. In this example, the employee engaged in the 
initial attachment of the subassembly to the structure would be 
permitted to be within the fall zone; that work cannot be done 
otherwise.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(3) would allow workers to be present in the 
fall zone when operating a concrete hopper or concrete bucket. The 
employee operating the hopper or bucket is necessarily in the fall zone 
since the hopper or bucket is suspended while the employee operates the 
releasing mechanism.
Paragraph 1425(c)
    Proposed paragraph (c) deals with the situations addressed in 
paragraphs 1425(b)(1) and (b)(2). The Committee felt that additional 
requirements were necessary to ensure employee safety in these 
situations, given the additional risks posed while loads are being 
connected to equipment or structures.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(1) would require that the load be rigged to 
prevent unintentional displacement, so that workers in the fall zone 
are less likely to be struck by shifting materials.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2) would require the use of hooks with self-
closing latches or their equivalent be used, to prevent accidental 
failure of the hooks. However, ``J'' type hooks would be permitted for 
setting wooden trusses. This exception is designed to enable the truss 
to be unhooked without the need for an employee to go out on the truss. 
This avoids the additional exposure to fall hazards that would 
otherwise occur from going out on the truss to release a latched hook.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(3) would require the use of a qualified 
rigger in the rigging of materials in the situations addressed by 
proposed Sec.  1926.1425(c). By ensuring that the load is rigged in as 
safe a manner as possible, this requirement serves to reduce the risk 
of injury to workers who cannot perform their duties outside of the 
fall zone, and reduces the potential size of the fall zone.
    Section 1401 of this proposed standard defines a ``qualified 
rigger'' as a rigger who meets the criteria for a qualified person. The 
same definition is

[[Page 59806]]

found in subpart R of 29 CFR Part 1926, Steel Erection at Sec.  
1926.753(c)(2).
Paragraph 1425(d) Receiving a Load
    Proposed paragraph (d) would prohibit all employees except those 
needed to receive a load from being in the fall zone when it is being 
landed. An employee receiving a load will typically need to be within 
the fall zone when it is being landed because that is the time when the 
load needs to be guided to a specific landing point.
Paragraph 1425(e)
    Proposed paragraph (e) concerns tilt-up and tilt-down operations. 
In these operations, one end of a component, such as a precast panel, 
is either raised, tilting the component up, usually from a horizontal 
position (often on the ground) to a vertical position; or lowered, 
tilting the component down, usually from a vertical position to a 
horizontal position on the ground or other surface.\60\ Note that the 
requirements in this proposed paragraph would not apply when receiving 
a load.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \60\ Proposed Sec.  1926.1401 defines ``tilt up or tilt down 
operation'' as ``raising/lowering a load from the horizontal to 
vertical or vertical to horizontal.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As with any other suspended load, it is dangerous to be directly 
beneath the load because of the possibility of a failure or error that 
would cause the load to fall or be accidentally lowered onto an 
employee. To minimize the risk of such accidents, proposed Sec.  
1926.1425(e)(1) provides that no employee shall be directly under the 
load during a tilt-up or tilt-down operation. Section 1926.1401 defines 
``directly under the load'' to mean ``a part or all of an employee is 
directly beneath the load.'' This provision will avoid having employees 
in the area that presents the greatest danger in the event of a loss of 
control of the load.
    While C-DAC determined that tilt-up and tilt-down operations can be 
accomplished without anyone being directly under the load, it also 
found that the operation is at times infeasible unless one or more 
employees ``essential to the operation'' needs to be elsewhere within 
the fall zone. Proposed Sec.  1926.1425(e)(2) therefore provides that 
employees ``essential to the operation'' may be in the fall zone (but 
not directly under the load) during a tilt up or tilt down operation.
    The C-DAC document does not contain a definition of ``essential to 
the operation.'' Consequently, the proposed provision does not specify 
what job functions would be permitted to be performed from within the 
fall zone. OSHA believes that examples of an employee ``essential to 
the operation'' is an employee who must be within the fall zone because 
it is infeasible to conduct the following operations from outside the 
fall zone: (1) Physically guide the load; (2) closely monitor and give 
instructions regarding the load's movement; and/or (3) either detach it 
from or initially attach it to another component or structure. OSHA 
requests public comment on whether there are other activities that are 
essential to this operation and are infeasible to be done from outside 
the fall zone, and whether it would be appropriate to add a definition 
of ``essential to the operation'' to the standard.
    A note to paragraph (e) refers to Sec.  1926.1426, which addresses 
free fall of the boom and the load. As discussed below, it specifies 
that employees may not be anywhere in the fall zone of a boom that is 
designed to free fall, and that employees are never to be directly 
under the load during free fall of the load line hoist.

Section 1426 Free Fall and Controlled Load Lowering

    This proposed section addresses the hazards that can arise from 
free fall of the boom (live boom) during lifts. Live booms are those in 
which the rate of lowering can be controlled only by a brake; a failure 
of the brake will result in a free fall (i.e., unrestricted lowering) 
of the boom. In contrast, in equipment that has a boom that is not 
``live,'' there is a mechanism or device other than the brake which 
slows the boom's lowering speed.
    The uncontrolled lowering of a boom could result in an accident 
which could injure or kill workers in proximity of the load or hoisting 
equipment. This proposed section would prohibit use of live booms in 
most circumstances. An exception is provided for older equipment 
manufactured before the ANSI B30.5 series prohibited free fall of the 
boom for all hoisting operations, but only under limited conditions 
that do not create hazards to employees. A limited exception is also 
provided for floating cranes/derricks. This proposed section includes 
many of the modern protective methods and mechanisms included in ASME 
B30.5-2004.
    This section also, in Sec.  1926.1426(d), would specify the 
circumstances under which free fall of the load line would be 
prohibited.
Paragraph 1426(a) Boom Free Fall Prohibitions
    Under proposed paragraph (a)(1), the use of equipment in which the 
boom is designed to free fall would be prohibited under six specified 
conditions. C-DAC concluded that, in these six circumstances, free fall 
of the boom needs to be prohibited regardless of what type of equipment 
is used and when that equipment was manufactured.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(1)(i) would prohibit the use of a live boom 
when an employee is in the fall zone of the boom or load (see the 
explanation of ``fall zone'' in the discussion above of proposed Sec.  
1926.1425(b). Section 1926.1425, Keeping clear of the load, of this 
proposed standard recognizes that there are some situations in which 
certain employees need to be positioned in the fall zone in order to 
perform their assigned duties. However, the likelihood that an employee 
would sustain a serious injury or be killed in the event of a falling 
boom is very high when an employee is in the fall zone of the boom or 
load.
    Because the likelihood of a falling boom is higher when a live boom 
is in use, C-DAC believed it was necessary to prohibit employees from 
being in the fall zone whenever a live boom is being used, without 
exception. Therefore, the exceptions listed in proposed Sec.  1926.1425 
that would permit employees to be in the fall zone in certain 
circumstances apply only where a non-live boom is being used.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(1)(ii) would prohibit use of a live boom 
when an employee is being hoisted. This continues the current 
prohibition in Sec.  1926.550(g)(3)(i)(F) of subpart N of this part, 
which is designed to prevent hoisted employees from being seriously 
injured or killed if the boom were to fall.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(1)(iii) would prohibit the use of a live 
boom where the load or boom is directly over a power line, or over any 
part of the area extending the Table A ( of proposed Sec.  1926.1408) 
clearance distance to each side of the power line. The diagram below 
illustrates a situation in which a load on a live boom is over the area 
extending the Table A clearance distance to each side of the power 
line:

[[Page 59807]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP09OC08.000

    As discussed above in relation to proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1407 
through 1926.1411, equipment making electrical contact with power lines 
is one of the primary causes of equipment-related deaths on 
construction sites and, to prevent such contact, those sections would 
require equipment to maintain minimum distances from power lines.
    C-DAC recognized that a live boom that is over a power line, or 
that is suspending a load that is over any part of the area extending 
the Table A clearance distance to each side of the power line, could 
fall or cause the load to fall into electrical contact with a power 
line.
    The C-DAC draft of this provision stated: ``The load or boom is 
directly over a power line, or over the area extending the Table A 
clearance distance to each side of the power line.'' Since C-DAC's 
intent was to prohibit the boom or load from being over any part of the 
area extending the Table A clearance distance to each side of the line, 
OSHA has changed this language to make clear that the prohibition 
applies with respect to the boom or load being above ``any part of'' 
that area.
    In reviewing this provision, OSHA realized that there appears to be 
another circumstance when a fall of the boom could cause the load or 
boom to breach the Table A clearance distance. This would occur as 
follows: Neither the boom nor load is over the power line or over the 
Table A clearance area. However, the Table A clearance distance is 
within the radius of vertical travel of the boom or load. This 
circumstance is depicted in the following illustrations:
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP09OC08.001


[[Page 59808]]


[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP09OC08.002

    In Illustration A, neither the boom nor the load is above the power 
line or any part of the Table A zone. However, if the boom were to 
fall, the boom would cross into the Table A zone. In Illustration B, 
neither the boom nor load is above the power line or any part of the 
Table A zone. However, if the boom were to fall, the load would cross 
into the Table A zone.
    The Agency therefore requests public comment on whether proposed 
Sec.  1926.1426(a)(1)(iii) should be modified to also prohibit the 
equipment from being positioned such that the fall path of the boom or 
load would breach the Table A clearance distance.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(1)(iv) would prohibit use of a live boom 
where the load is over a shaft. As discussed in relation to Sec.  
1926.1426(a)(1)(i) of this proposed section, C-DAC recognized that 
there are situations where employees must be in the fall zone of a 
suspended load. One particular scenario is when employees must receive 
a load that is lowered into a shaft. Such employees would be at a 
particularly high risk of being killed or injured by a free falling 
boom because the shaft severely limits or eliminates any ability to get 
out of the way.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(1)(v) would prohibit free fall of a boom 
when the load is over a cofferdam, except where there are no employees 
\61\ in the fall zone. Much like employees who must receive a suspended 
load in a shaft, employees have limited ability to escape a free 
falling boom or load in a cofferdam. However, because cofferdams are 
typically much larger work spaces than shafts, the fall zone of a 
falling boom or load may only affect one part of the cofferdam. 
Therefore, this provision contains an exception for situations where 
there are no employees in the fall zone.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \61\ The C-DAC draft of this provision used the term 
``workers;'' this has been changed to ``employees,'' which is the 
more appropriate term in light of the language in the Occupational 
Safety and Health Act.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed paragraph (a)(1)(vi) would prohibit use of a live boom for 
lifting operations in a refinery or tank farm. C-DAC was concerned that 
a free falling boom could strike pipes or a tank in a refinery or tank 
farm. Such accidental impact could cause a release of toxic materials 
or conflagration.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(2) is an exclusive list of conditions under 
which the use of cranes with live booms would be permitted. C-DAC 
believed that cranes with live booms could be used safely under some 
circumstances and did not believe that the cost of replacing or 
retrofitting all existing such equipment was justified as long as the 
use of live boom equipment was limited to those circumstances.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(2)(i) would allow the use of equipment with 
a live boom if that equipment was manufactured prior to October 31, 
1984 and none of the circumstances listed in proposed Sec.  
1926.1426(a)(1) are present. C-DAC noted that ANSI B30.5 first 
prohibited live booms in its 1972 version and reiterated the 
prohibition in the 1982 edition, which was published on October 31, 
1983 and became effective on October 31, 1984.
    C-DAC concluded that manufacturers would have begun to phase out 
live-boom equipment when ANSI first prohibited its use in 1972 and that 
little, if any, live boom equipment would have been manufactured after 
October 31, 1984. Moreover, during this period, hydraulic hoisting 
equipment, the design of which typically precluded boom free fall even 
in its early designs, became more prevalent.
    In light of these factors, C-DAC concluded that most equipment 
manufactured after October 31, 1984 would not have live booms. Proposed 
Sec.  1926.1426(a)(2) thus allows the older live boom equipment to be 
phased out safely by restricting its use to situations in which none of 
the circumstances listed in Sec.  1926.1426(a)(1) are present.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(2)(ii) would allow use of a live boom if the 
equipment is a floating crane/derrick or is a land crane/derrick on a 
vessel/flotation device and none of the circumstances listed in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1426(a)(1) are present.\62\ C-DAC noted that 
equipment used on the water commonly has a live boom. This is because 
the dynamics of load transfer while on water (from side to side), as 
well as unexpected wave action, which can cause rapid changes in list 
and trim, sometimes necessitates that the operator have a free fall 
boom system to compensate for these effects. Non-live systems are not 
fast enough for this purpose. As a result, C-DAC concluded that there 
is no need to alter current industry practice in this regard as long as 
none of the circumstances listed in Sec.  1926.1426(a)(1) are present.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \62\ OSHA has modified the language used in the C-DAC version of 
this provision to conform to the terminology used in proposed Sec.  
1926.1437, Floating cranes and land cranes on barges.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 59809]]

Paragraph (b) Preventing Boom Free Fall
    Proposed paragraph (b) sets criteria for preventing boom free fall. 
A boom that meets this criteria is considered to be designed to not 
free fall. The criteria consist of requirements for a secondary system 
for controlling the boom's descent in addition to the equipment's 
primary system. The Committee believed that the hazard posed by a 
failure of the primary system for holding or regulating the boom is so 
significant that the availability of a secondary mechanism needs to be 
required.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(1)(i) specifies that a friction drum must 
have both a friction clutch and a braking device, to allow for 
controlled boom lowering. These provisions are similar to those in 
section 5-1.3.2(a)(1) and (a)(4) of ANSI B30.5-1968 and ASME B30.5-
2004. Proposed Sec.  1926.1426(b)(1)(ii) would require friction drums 
to also have a secondary braking or locking device, which is manually 
or automatically engaged, to back-up the primary brake while the boom 
is held (such as a secondary friction brake or a ratchet and pawl 
device). In the view of the Committee these have been well established 
as effective for this purpose.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(2) would require hydraulic drums to have an 
integrally mounted holding device or internal static brake to prevent 
boom hoist movement in the event of hydraulic failure. The requirements 
of this proposed paragraph are similar to those in section 5-1.3.1(d) 
of ASME B30.5-2004. The hazard presented by this type of hoisting 
system is that once the hydraulic system fails, the boom hoist drum 
could free spin and allow the boom to free fall.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(3) states that clutches or hydraulic motors 
do not qualify as brakes or locking devices for purposes of this 
subpart. C-DAC believed the use of clutches or hydraulic motors for 
such purposes would accelerate the wear of these systems and increase 
the risk they will fail when they are needed to control the lowering of 
the boom.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(4) would require hydraulic boom cylinders to 
have an integrally mounted holding device. An integrally mounted 
holding device would secure the boom from pivoting down in the event 
that hydraulic pressure is lost. This requirement is similar to section 
5-1.3.1(d) of ASME B30.5-2004.
Paragraph 1426(c) Preventing Uncontrolled Retraction
    Proposed paragraph (c) would require hydraulic telescoping booms 
(which are also referred to as hydraulic extensible booms) to have an 
integrally mounted holding device to prevent the boom from retracting 
in the event of hydraulic failure. This proposed provision is similar 
to section 5-1.3.3(c) of ASME B30.5-2004.
    The C-DAC draft of this provision stated that the purpose of this 
device was ``to prevent boom movement in the event of hydraulic 
failure.'' OSHA believes that this language was unintentionally broad 
in that it refers to any ``boom movement.'' The purpose of proposed 
Sec.  1926.1426(b)(4) is, as discussed above, to prevent the boom from 
pivoting down in the event of hydraulic failure. Therefore, there is no 
need for proposed Sec.  1926.1426(c) to also require a device to 
prevent that type of boom movement.
    The Agency's understanding is that the purpose of proposed Sec.  
1926.1426(c) is, as reflected in C-DAC's heading (``Preventing 
uncontrolled retraction''), to prevent a telescoping hydraulic boom 
from retracting in the event of hydraulic failure. Therefore, OSHA has 
modified the language to state that the purpose of the integrally 
mounted holding device is ``to prevent the boom from retracting'' in 
the event of hydraulic failure. OSHA requests public comment on the 
appropriateness of this change.
Paragraph1426(d) Load Line Free Fall
    Proposed paragraph (d) lists circumstances under which free fall of 
the load line hoist is prohibited and controlled load lowering is 
required. ``Free fall (of the load line)'' is defined in Sec.  
1926.1401 to mean ``where only the brake is used to regulate the 
descent of the load line (the drive mechanism is not used to drive the 
load down faster or retard its lowering).'' ``Free fall'' is contrasted 
with ``controlled load lowering,'' which Sec.  1926.1401 defines as 
``lowering a load by means of a mechanical hoist drum device that 
allows a hoisted load to be lowered with maximum control using the gear 
train or hydraulic components of the hoist mechanism. Controlled load 
lowering requires the use of the hoist drive motor, rather than the 
load hoist brake, to lower the load.''
    As with free fall of the boom, free fall of the load line hoist 
presents a struck-by hazard to employees. One difference with boom free 
fall, however, is that free fall of the load line endangers a smaller 
area. When a boom free falls, its tip (and any attached load) moves 
both downward and outward. Because the load will moving in at least two 
directions simultaneously, the area that will be affected by the fall 
is comparatively large.
    In contrast, if a load line free falls, the load will tend to fall 
in a relatively straight path downward (as long as the boom is not 
being moved and the load is not significantly affected by winds). Thus 
the area affected will typically be smaller. C-DAC therefore concluded 
that it would be appropriate to have a more limited prohibition 
compared with use of a live boom. This is reflected in the prohibition 
in proposed Sec.  1926.1426(d)(1) against an employee being directly 
under the load. That provision is more limited than proposed Sec.  
1926.1426(a)(1)(i), which would prohibit an employee from being in the 
fall zone of the boom or load.
    Similarly, unlike the live boom provisions, proposed Sec.  
1926.1426(d) does not include a prohibition against use of load line 
hoist free fall in a refinery or tank farm. Because of the more limited 
affected area, the operator can more readily set up the equipment so 
that, in the event of a load line free fall, the affected area will not 
include safety critical refinery or tank equipment.
    However, paragraphs (d)(2), (3), and (4) are similar to the boom 
free fall prohibitions in that they prohibit free fall of the load line 
when (1) an employee is being hoisted; (2) the load is directly over a 
power line or over any part of the area extending the Table A (of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1408) clearance distance to each side of the power 
line; and (3) the load is over a shaft or cofferdam.
    The C-DAC draft of proposed paragraph (d)(3) stated: ``The load is 
directly over a power line, or over the area extending the Table A 
clearance distance to each side of the power line.'' As discussed 
above, C-DAC's intent was to prohibit the load from being over any part 
of the area extending the Table A clearance distance to each side of 
the line, and OSHA has therefore changed this language to make clear 
that the prohibition applies with respect to the load being above ``any 
part of'' that area.
    In reviewing proposed paragraph (d)(4), OSHA noted that it would 
prohibit load line free fall over a shaft or cofferdam, but contains no 
exception regarding cofferdams in which there is no employee in the 
fall zone. In this respect this provision is broader than the live boom 
provision in proposed Sec.  1926.1426(a)(1)(v), which does contain such 
an exception. OSHA requests public comment on whether proposed Sec.  
1926.1426(d)(4) should be modified to include such an exception.

[[Page 59810]]

Section 1427 Operator Qualification and Certification

    Proposed Sec.  1926.1427 addresses the safety concerns created by 
under-qualified crane operators. In the Committee's experience, human 
error resulting from insufficient operator knowledge and capability is 
a significant cause of fatal crane/derrick accidents. It concluded that 
a verified testing process is essential for ensuring sufficient 
knowledge and capability of crane/derrick operators and would be an 
effective and efficient way to reduce these accidents.
    The Committee's view was based on the extensive collective 
experience of the Committee members. Members expressed the belief that 
crane/derrick safety depends heavily on the operator having the 
knowledge and ability to implement safe operation practices. For 
example, an operator who does not know how to properly use load charts 
could miscalculate the capacity of the crane and inadvertently overload 
the equipment. An operator who lacks the knowledge and skill to control 
and manipulate a load could lose control of it, causing other employees 
to be struck by the load or the equipment.
    In addition, knowledge and skill are needed to prevent electrical 
contact with power lines (see the discussion above regarding proposed 
Sec. Sec.  1926.1407-1926.1411). For example, an operator who does not 
understand an operational/performance characteristic such as dynamic 
loading may inadvertently allow the boom to get too close to a power 
line. This could occur where the operator failed to account for the 
fact that, under certain conditions, the boom would flex and so 
continue to move towards the line after the operator had stopped the 
superstructure's rotation.
    Similarly, understanding and being able to minimize such effects is 
important in situations such as blind picks, where the operator will be 
relying on information relayed to him/her by a signal person.
    The Committee considered whether it would be sufficient to set 
testing criteria without a third-party (that is, independent) 
verification mechanism, and determined that such an approach was not 
likely to be effective in ensuring sufficient operator qualifications. 
During the Committee's deliberations, members expressed a concern that 
testing conducted without a check on the quality of the test, with 
respect to both its content and administration, has been ineffective in 
ensuring that crane operators are qualified to operate the equipment 
safely. Members noted that operator ``certification'' cards are easily 
obtained from various Internet sites without having to pass a credible 
test. They also noted that the current OSHA standards, which require 
employers to instruct employees on the hazards involved with crane 
operation, and require the employer to permit only those employees 
qualified by training or experience to operate equipment,\63\ but do 
not require testing verified by a third party, have been generally 
ineffective in ensuring an adequate degree of consistency with respect 
to crane operator knowledge and ability. The Committee concluded that 
significant advances in crane/derrick safety would not be achieved 
unless such testing was required.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \63\ Section 1926.20(b)(4) states that ``the employer shall 
permit only those employees qualified by training or experience to 
operate equipment and machinery''; Sec.  1926.21(b)(2) states that 
``the employer shall instruct each employee in the recognition and 
avoidance of unsafe conditions.* * *''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Committee was aware that testing of equipment operators by an 
impartial party has been used in the past to prevent fatal and other 
serious accidents that result when operators lack the knowledge and 
skills needed to operate safely. An example is the Department of 
Transportation's requirements for over-the-road commercial drivers' 
licenses (``CDL''). These are designed to reduce the incidence of 
serious accidents caused by unqualified drivers of vehicles such as 
trucks and buses. These requirements, codified at 40 CFR part 383, 
require drivers of commercial motor vehicles to have state licenses 
that are issued in accordance with federal standards for qualification, 
training, and testing. To receive a license, the driver must pass 
knowledge and skills tests administered either by the state or by a 
third party whose examiners meet the same qualification and training 
standards as state examiners. 40 CFR 383.75(a).
    The Committee's view of the importance of independent testing is 
further buttressed by a study conducted over a 34-year period (1969-
2002), by the Construction Safety Association of Ontario. (OSHA-2007-
0066-0009). The study showed a substantial decrease in crane and 
rigging fatalities in Ontario beginning in 1979, when mandatory 
training and certification requirements for Ontario crane operators 
went into effect.
    The Ontario system requires prospective or current crane operators 
(referred to in Ontario as ``hoisting engineers'') to either 
successfully complete an apprenticeship program or demonstrate 
sufficient previous experience before seeking certification as a 
hoisting engineer. The apprenticeship program includes in-school 
training in a number of topics determined by the Ministry of Education, 
a practical examination administered at Ministry-designated sites, and 
a written examination administered by the Ministry. Upon passing this 
examination and proving completion of the requisite work hours, an 
apprentice receives a certificate of qualification as one of three 
types of hoisting engineer from the Ministry. (OSHA-2007-0066-0010).
    Hoisting engineers already qualified elsewhere must also obtain a 
certification from the Ministry to operate cranes in the province. 
These candidates must sit for the written examination and complete the 
practical skills assessment required for qualification of apprentices, 
but may demonstrate sufficient previous experience instead of 
completing the number of work/training hours required by the 
apprenticeship program, to receive a certificate of qualification from 
the Ministry in one of the three hoisting engineer categories. (OSHA-
2007-0066-0011).
    In the ten year period from 1969 through 1978, before Ontario's 
requirements went into effect, 85 Ontario construction workers suffered 
crane and rigging fatalities, amounting to 8.5 per year, or 19.8% of 
all construction fatalities in Ontario. In the 24 year period from 1979 
through 2002, there were 51 crane and rigging fatalities, or slightly 
more than two per year. For this period, crane and rigging fatalities 
equaled 9.6% of all Ontario construction fatalities. In the 12-year 
period from 1991 through 2002, the total number of crane and rigging 
fatalities was 9, or fewer than one per year. During this period, crane 
and rigging fatalities amounted to 4.1% of total construction 
fatalities. (OSHA-2007-0066-0009).
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1427 would afford employers several options for 
ensuring that operators have obtained sufficient knowledge and ability. 
These options are designed to provide employers flexibility for meeting 
the proposed requirement and to accommodate the needs of the U.S. 
military.
Paragraph 1427(a)
    As drafted by C-DAC, proposed paragraph (a) would have required the 
employer to ensure that the operator of any equipment covered under 
Sec.  1926.1400 is either qualified or certified to operate the 
equipment in accordance with the provisions of this section or is 
operating the equipment

[[Page 59811]]

during a training period. OSHA notes, however, that C-DAC provided for 
exceptions to the general rule for operator qualification/certification 
in proposed Sec. Sec.  1436, Derricks; 1926.1440, Sideboom cranes; and 
1926.1441, Equipment with a rated hoisting/lifting capacity of 2,000 
pounds or less. To make proposed Sec.  1926.1427(a) reflect the 
exceptions provided in these sections, OSHA has added the following 
language to proposed Sec.  1926.1427(a):

    Exceptions: Operator qualification or certification under this 
section is not required for operators of derricks (see Sec.  
1926.1436), sideboom cranes (see Sec.  1926.1440), and equipment 
with a rated hoisting/lifting capacity of 2,000 pounds or less (see 
Sec.  1926.1441).
Paragraph 1427(b) Option 1: Certification by an Accredited Crane/
Derrick Operator Testing Organization
    Proposed paragraph (b) sets out Option 1, in which the employee 
becomes certified to operate equipment of a certain type and capacity 
by passing an examination administered by an accredited testing 
organization. Certification under this option would be ``portable,'' 
which means that any employer covered by the proposed standard could 
meet the requirements of proposed Sec.  1926.1427 by using an operator 
who had this certification. These certifications would be valid for 
five years.
    Proposed section Sec.  1926.1427(b) incorporates a number of 
safeguards to ensure that the Option 1 certification could be relied 
upon by any employer to meet the requirements of Sec.  1926.1427, and 
adequately establishes the employee's ability to operate the types and 
capacities of crane for which he/she is certified. The first of these 
safeguards is proposed Sec.  1926.1427(b)(1)(i), which would require 
that the testing organization be accredited by a nationally recognized 
accrediting agency.
    As defined in Sec.  1926.1401, a ``nationally recognized 
accrediting agency'' is ``an organization that, due to its independence 
and expertise, is widely recognized as competent to accredit testing 
organizations.'' The Agency notes that, under this definition, new 
accrediting organizations would meet this definition upon establishing 
a national reputation based on independence, use of widely recognized 
criteria, and demonstrated competence in applying those criteria.
    For a testing organization to be accredited, the accrediting agency 
would have to determine that the testing organization meets industry 
recognized criteria for written testing materials, practical 
examinations, test administration, grading, facilities/equipment and 
personnel.
    In its deliberations, the Committee expressed concern about the 
need for independent evaluation of certification programs. It believed 
such evaluation is necessary to ensure that the certification programs 
are adequately and consistently applying the requisite criteria for 
safe crane operation when testing operators. This accreditation would 
ensure that the testing procedures would accurately measure whether the 
operator has met the knowledge and skill criteria specified in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1427(j) (discussed below).
    Under proposed Sec.  1926.1427(b)(1)(v), the accreditation would be 
required to be reviewed every three years, to ensure continuing quality 
of testing materials and administration. The Committee believed that an 
entity that meets the proposed definition for a nationally recognized 
accrediting agency (``an organization that, due to its independence and 
expertise, is widely recognized as competent to accredit testing 
organizations''), would have both the expertise and independence needed 
to provide reliable assurance that a testing organization meets the 
proposed standard's criteria.
    The use of a nationally recognized accrediting agency to provide an 
independent, authoritative assurance of a testing organization's 
competence is a well-established practice. For example, for a number of 
years, the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA), the 
accreditation body of the National Organization for Competency 
Assurance (NOCA), has accredited testing organizations in a wide 
variety of fields, including those that provide crane operator 
certification. (OSHA-2007-0066-0021). Also, in 2003, the American 
National Standards Institute began accrediting personnel certification 
entities. (OSHA-2007-0066-0022).
    Another safeguard is in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(b)(1)(ii)(A), 
under which a testing organization would be required to administer both 
written and practical tests addressing the criteria set forth in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1427(j). The Committee believed that operator 
ability cannot be assessed reliably unless both written and practical 
tests are used. In its view, operator ability depends both on knowledge 
of a variety of subjects, which the written test would address, and the 
ability to apply that knowledge, which would be addressed by the 
practical test.
    Proposed paragraph 1427(b)(1)(ii)(B) would require that different 
levels of certification be provided, based on varying equipment 
capacities and types. This proposed requirement is designed to ensure 
that the extent of knowledge and skill required is commensurate with 
the type and capacity of equipment the employee operates. For example, 
an employee who only operates a hydraulic truck crane would not need to 
also have the additional knowledge and skills necessary to operate a 
lattice boom crawler crane. Similarly, an employee who operates only a 
22 ton capacity hydraulic truck crane would not need to also have the 
additional knowledge and skills necessary to operate a 300 ton 
hydraulic truck crane.\64\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \64\ Note that certification on a more complex and/or higher 
capacity piece of equipment would typically qualify an operator to 
operate less complex/lower capacity equipment of the same type. For 
example, an operator certified for a 300 ton hydraulic truck crane 
would not need a separate certification to operate a 22 ton 
hydraulic truck crane.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In its deliberations, the Committee determined that requiring the 
certification to be model-specific would be unnecessarily restrictive, 
and instead agreed on the term ``type.'' In the SBREFA Panel Report, 
the Panel recommended that OSHA solicit public comment on whether the 
term ``type'' is sufficiently clear for this purpose. OSHA requests 
public comment on whether this term is appropriate, whether it needs to 
be defined (and if so, what that definition should be),\65\ and 
suggestions as to what other terms may be better.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \65\ One possible approach, referred to by the SBREFA Panel, 
would define ``type'' by using the categories of equipment 
represented in Figures 1-10 of the ASME B30.5-2004 standard.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    During the SBREFA process, several SERs described situations in 
which an operator is very knowledgeable and skillful with respect to 
one particular model of crane, but has very limited knowledge and 
ability regarding other models and types of cranes. These SERs were 
concerned that such operators would be unable to obtain a certification 
based on equipment capacity and type. They believe that, since these 
operators are well qualified to operate a particular crane model, there 
should be a mechanism for them to become certified to operate that 
model. The Panel recommended that OSHA consider and solicit public 
comment on expanding the levels of certification so as to allow an 
operator to be certified on a specific brand's model of crane. 
Consistent with the Panel's recommendation, OSHA seeks public comment 
on this issue.
    The SBREFA Panel also received comments from some SERs suggesting 
that the standard should accommodate crane operators who were fully 
capable

[[Page 59812]]

of operating particular equipment in a limited set of circumstances but 
who would be unable to pass certification tests that required knowledge 
and abilities beyond those circumstances. The Panel recommended that 
OSHA consider and solicit public comment on expanding the levels of 
operator qualification/certification to allow such operators to be 
certified for a specific, limited type of circumstance defined by a set 
of parameters that, taken together, would describe an operation 
characterized by simplicity and relatively low risk. In response to the 
Panel's recommendation, OSHA requests public comment on whether such 
parameters could be identified in a way that would result in a clear, 
easily understood provision that could be effectively enforced.
    Proposed paragraph 1427(b)(1)(iii) would require that the testing 
organization have procedures for operators to re-apply and be re-tested 
in the event an applicant fails a test. This would help ensure that if 
the employee initially failed to pass the test, the employee would be 
able to retake the test and still have the opportunity to obtain the 
certification.
    Proposed paragraph 1427(b)(1)(iii) would also require that the 
testing organization have procedures for operators to re-apply and be 
re-tested in the event an operator was decertified. This would 
similarly help protect an employer's expenditures for training and 
certification testing.
    Proposed paragraph 1427(b)(1)(iv) would require that the testing 
organization have procedures for re-certifying operators designed to 
ensure that the operator continues to meet the requirements of proposed 
Sec.  1926.1427(j). The Committee believed that testing for 
recertification would not need to be as rigorous as for initial 
certification. This proposed provision was therefore included so that 
recertification procedures appropriate for those who have already been 
certified would be available.
    Under proposed paragraph (b)(2), the certification would be 
``portable,'' which means that any employer of an operator certified 
under Option 1 would meet the requirements of proposed Sec.  1926.1427 
with respect to that operator.\66\ The Committee believed that 
accredited testing organizations could be relied upon to consistently 
adhere to the criteria in Sec.  1926.1427, since they would be fully 
independent and their business interest would depend on their continued 
accreditation. Therefore, it would be appropriate for all employers to 
be able to rely on their certifications.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \66\ See the explanation of the proposed definition of 
``portable'' below in the discussion of proposed Sec.  1926.1427(m).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Under proposed Sec.  1926.1427(b)(3), the certification would be 
valid for five years. The Committee believed that this is an 
appropriate length of time to assume that, absent a specific indication 
to the contrary, an employee would retain the knowledge and proficiency 
demonstrated through the testing process.
    In the SBREFA Panel Report, the Panel indicated that some Small 
Entity Representatives were concerned that there would be an 
insufficient number of accredited crane operator testing organizations 
and that many employers would not be able to set up and maintain an 
audited employer program under Option 2 (see discussion of Option 2 
below). At present, there are two testing organizations that have been 
accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting organization to 
certify crane operators.\67\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \67\ These organizations are the National Commission for the 
Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO), which is accredited by the 
National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) (OSHA-2007-0066-
0021) and by ANSI (OSHA-2007-0066-0025), and the Southern California 
Crane & Hoisting Certification Program (SCCHCP), which is accredited 
by NCCA.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    C-DAC considered this issue and was of the view that, with a four-
year phase-in period, there would be sufficient time for the market to 
respond to an increased demand for certification services. Some SERs 
expressed a similar expectation. Nonetheless, the Panel recommended 
that OSHA solicit public comment on whether it would be appropriate to 
expand Option 1 so that an accredited educational institution could be 
used to ``administer'' tests. In other words, under this concept, 
Option 1 would be expanded so that an accredited educational 
institution could administer written and practical tests that were 
developed or approved by an accredited crane/derrick testing 
organization. Many educational institutions currently have an 
accreditation through a national or regional accrediting agency that is 
listed by the U.S. Secretary of Education (SOE) or have an 
accreditation by a State agency that has been recognized by the SOE for 
approval of public post-secondary vocational education. Such an 
expansion could broaden the availability of certification services.
    C-DAC considered a related concept in which an educational 
institution or program accredited in this manner could both develop and 
administer tests. However, it rejected that concept because the SOE-
related type of accreditation would be more broadly based on the 
institution as a whole, rather than on its operator certification 
program in particular.
    It is the Agency's understanding that much of the Committee's 
concern in this regard was related to the development of the tests 
rather than their administration. In other words, while considerable 
subject-specific expertise is needed to develop accurate and reliable 
crane operator tests, the expertise needed to administer such tests may 
be similar to the expertise needed to administer tests in general. 
However, there is a question as to whether this is equally true for 
written and practical tests.
    Therefore, OSHA solicits public comment on these issues. 
Specifically, the Agency seeks comment on whether Option 1 should be 
expanded so that an accredited educational institution could administer 
written and practical tests that were developed or approved by an 
accredited crane/derrick testing organization.
Paragraph 1427(c) Option 2: Qualification by an Audited Employer 
Program
    Proposed paragraph (c) sets out Option 2, in which the employer 
would determine, through its own audited testing program, that its 
employee is qualified to operate the equipment. The Committee 
recognized that some employers, including those that have already 
established in-house testing programs, may want to do their own testing 
to meet the proposed Sec.  1926.1427 requirements. The Committee also 
recognized that, for there to be a significant improvement in the 
industry with respect to operator qualifications, it is essential that 
there be a mechanism to ensure that such testing is accurate and 
reliable. Therefore, under Option 2, the tests would be required to be 
either developed by an accredited crane operator testing organization, 
or approved by an auditor who is certified by an accredited crane 
operator testing organization. In addition, the administration of the 
tests would be audited.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(1) sets forth the requirements that would 
apply to the contents and design of the tests (requirements for the 
administration of the tests is dealt with separately in proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(c)(2), discussed below) used in an audited employer program. 
To ensure that the tests meet the industry standards for written and 
practical examinations, they would have to be developed by an 
accredited testing organization (as described in proposed

[[Page 59813]]

Sec.  1926.1427(b)), or approved by an auditor in accordance with the 
requirements of proposed Sec.  1926.1427(c)(1)(ii).
    An employer choosing to use tests other than those developed by an 
accredited testing organization under proposed Sec.  1926.1427(c)(1)(i) 
would be required to have the tests approved by an auditor in 
accordance with the criteria in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(c)(1)(ii). The 
auditor would have to be certified as a test evaluator by an accredited 
testing organization. To ensure that the auditor's evaluation is 
independent and impartial, the auditor would be prohibited from being 
employed by the employer seeking evaluation of its qualification 
program. Also, the audit would need to determine that the program meets 
nationally recognized test development criteria and adequately assesses 
the criteria in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(j).
    The Committee believed that these requirements are necessary to 
ensure that the contents and design of the tests meet the criteria in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1427(j) and generate valid and reliable results.
    The requirements for test administration that would apply under 
Option 2 of this section are set forth in proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(c)(2). Proposed Sec.  1926.1427(c)(2)(i) would require that 
the auditor find that the administration procedures meet nationally 
recognized test administration standards. The Committee believed that 
this proposed provision is needed to ensure that the test results would 
be valid and reliable.
    Under proposed paragraphs (c)(2)(ii) and (c)(2)(iii), the auditor 
would have to be certified by an accredited certifying organization as 
described in Sec.  1926.1427(b), and would be prohibited from being 
employed by the employer seeking the auditor's approval for its 
operator qualification program. Finally, proposed paragraph Sec.  
1926.1427(c)(2)(iv) would require that the audit be conducted in 
accordance with nationally recognized auditing standards. The Committee 
believed that, to avoid a conflict of interest and assure the integrity 
of the audit, it is necessary to have the auditor be independent of the 
employer and apply well recognized procedures for conducting the audit.
    The Agency notes that the proposed requirement that the audit be 
conducted in accordance with nationally recognized auditing standards 
would apply only to the audit of the administration of the tests, and 
not to the audit of the contents of the written and practical tests. It 
appears to the Agency that this was a drafting error, and that the 
Committee intended that the entire audit be conducted in accordance 
with nationally recognized auditing standards. Therefore, the Agency 
solicits public comment on whether a new Sec.  1926.1427(c)(1)(ii)(D), 
reading as follows, should be added:

    (D) The audit shall be conducted in accordance with nationally 
recognized auditing standards.

    Proposed paragraph (c)(3) addresses the need for an audit of an 
employer's operator qualification program shortly after its inception, 
as well as periodically thereafter. This would ensure regular and 
independent oversight of employer-run qualification programs to verify 
that operators are being tested according to nationally recognized 
standards, on at least those qualifications set forth in proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(j).
    Proposed paragraph (c)(4) would require an employer's program to 
include re-qualification procedures, which would have to be audited as 
described in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(c)(1) and (c)(2). The Committee 
believed that this is necessary to ensure the operators' continued 
proficiency with, at a minimum, the criteria set forth in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1427(j).
    In the event an auditor discovers a deficiency in an employer's 
operator qualification program, the employer would have to meet the 
requirements set forth in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(c)(5). Proposed 
Sec.  1926.1427(c)(5)(i) requires that no additional operators be 
qualified until the auditor determines that the deficiency has been 
corrected. Under Sec.  1926.1427(c)(5)(ii), the program would also have 
to be re-audited within 180 days of the deficiency's correction to 
ensure that the minimum qualifications in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(j) 
were being adequately and consistently tested.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(5)(iii) would require the auditor to file a 
report of any such deficiency with the appropriate OSHA Regional Office 
within 15 days of discovery. In addition, records of the employer's 
qualification program audits would be required to be maintained by the 
auditor for three years and, under Sec.  1926.1427(c)(5)(iv), would 
have to be made available at the request of the Secretary of Labor or a 
designated representative. The Committee believed that these provisions 
are necessary to facilitate enforcement of the Option 2 requirements.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(6)(i), a qualification by an 
employer's operator qualification program (Option 2) of this section 
would not be portable. It was the Committee's view that the degree of 
consistency in adhering to the proposed requirements of Sec.  1926.1427 
is likely to be highest among accredited crane operator testing 
organizations, since they would be fully independent and their business 
interest would depend on their continued accreditation. That view is 
reflected in full portability being restricted to certification under 
Option 1 of this section.
    Under proposed paragraph (c)(6)(ii), a qualification by an 
employer's operator qualification program would be valid for five 
years. The Committee believed that this is an appropriate length of 
time to assume that, absent a specific indication to the contrary, an 
employee would retain the knowledge and proficiency demonstrated 
through the testing process.
Paragraph 1926.1427(d) Option 3: Qualification by the U.S. Military
    Proposed paragraph (d) provides that an operator would be deemed 
qualified if he/she had a current qualification issued by the United 
States military. Under proposed Sec.  1926.1427(d)(2), such a 
qualification would be considered valid for the length of time 
stipulated by the United States military, and would not be portable.
    At the C-DAC meetings a representative of the United States Navy 
explained that, because of a variety of potential exigencies associated 
with the mission of the United States military, i.e., national defense, 
the military needs to be able to use its own qualification program, the 
criteria for which may have to vary based on the circumstances. 
Consequently, the criteria for qualification under Option 3 would be 
left to the military to determine, including the length of time for 
which such a qualification would be valid.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1427(d) must be read in light of Executive 
Order (E.O.) 12196 (Feb. 26, 1980) and 29 CFR Part 1960, which exclude 
military personnel (uniformed members of the Armed Forces) and uniquely 
military equipment, systems, and operations from OSHA coverage. 
Consequently, uniformed military personnel would not be covered by any 
of this proposed standard and there would be no obligation under this 
standard or E.O. 12196 for uniformed military personnel operating 
cranes to be certified. Civilian employees of the Defense Department 
and Armed Forces engaged in work encompassed by ``uniquely military 
equipment, systems and operations'' similarly would not be covered by 
any of the provisions of this proposed standard, including the 
certification provisions. Therefore, even in the absence of Option 3, 
the Department of Defense is free to impose whatever

[[Page 59814]]

qualifications it requires for crane operators who are military 
personnel or civilian employees engaged in such work.
    Under E.O. 12196, OSHA standards apply with respect to a civilian 
employee of the Department of Defense and Armed Forces who is engaged 
in work that falls beyond ``uniquely military equipment, systems and 
operations.'' Under that executive order, proposed Sec.  1926.1427 
would be applicable to those employees. Therefore, the U.S. military 
could use Option 3 by qualifying its own civilian employee operators 
engaged in work that falls beyond ``uniquely military equipment, 
systems and operations.''
    In reviewing this part of the C-DAC consensus document, the Agency 
has determined that there is an ambiguity in the text of Option 3 in 
that it does not clearly indicate whether it would also cover employees 
of private contractors of the Armed Forces or Defense Department. With 
respect to such private contractor employees, E.O. 12196 is 
inapplicable and OSHA has the authority to promulgate qualification/
certification requirements regarding them.
    The Agency believes that C-DAC's intent was to have Option 3 be 
applicable only with respect to civilian employees of the U.S. 
military; it was not intended to include private contractor employees. 
This intent is reflected in C-DAC's use of the term ``Not portable'' in 
Option 3 and that term's definition. Proposed Sec.  1926.1427(d)(2)(i) 
specifies that an operator's U.S. military-issued qualification is not 
portable. Under the definition of that term in Sec.  1926.1427(m)(2), 
such a qualification is valid ``only where the operator is employed by 
(and operating the equipment for) the employer that issued the 
qualification.'' Since private contractor employees are not ``employed 
by'' the U.S. military, this indicates that Option 3 was not intended 
to apply to them. Instead, Option 3 was intended to apply only with 
respect to the U.S. military's own employees.
    Accordingly, OSHA is planning on changing the regulatory language 
in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(d) to more clearly reflect this intent. 
Specifically, the Agency is considering making the following changes to 
proposed Sec.  1926.1427(d)(1):

    (1) For purposes of this section, an operator who is an employee 
of the U.S. military is considered qualified if he/she has a current 
operator qualification issued by the U.S. military for operation of 
the equipment.

    In addition, in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(m)(Definitions), the 
following definition would be added:

    (3) An ``employee of the U.S. military'' is a federal employee 
of the Department of Defense or Armed Forces and does not include 
employees of private contractors.

    OSHA requests public comment on this issue.
Paragraph 1427(e) Option 4: Licensing by a Government Entity
    This option would allow a government licensing department/office to 
qualify crane operators. The Committee included this option because it 
believed that some States have effective, reliable licensing 
procedures, and that making use of them for purposes of proposed Sec.  
1926.1427 would provide additional flexibility to employers. However, 
in the experience of Committee members, there is significant 
variability in criteria and administrative practices among government 
licensing entities. Therefore, under this option, the license could be 
used to meet the requirements of proposed Sec.  1926.1427 only if the 
government entity meets the licensing criteria in proposed 
1926.1427(e)(2).
    Proposed paragraph (e)(2)(i) would require that the criteria used 
by the licensing department/office address the knowledge and skill 
requirements listed in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(j). Proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(e)(2)(ii) would require that the government entity follow the 
same test content, test administration and related criteria as required 
under Option 1. Proposed Sec.  1926.1427(e)(2)(iii) would require that 
the office with authority over the licensing department/office assess 
the tests and procedures used by the licensing office/department and 
determine that the requirements of proposed Sec.  1926.1427(e)(2)(ii) 
and (e)(2)(iii) have been met. Also, the government licensing office 
would have to have re-certification procedures in place as discussed in 
proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1427(b)(1)(iv) and 1926.1427(c)(4). The 
Committee believed that these provisions are necessary to ensure that 
the government licensing criteria and procedures yield valid and 
reliable results.
    Under proposed paragraph (e)(3)(i), this qualification would be 
valid only within the geographic jurisdiction of the licensing entity. 
For reasons of federal-local government comity, the Committee decided 
not to include a provision requiring the government entity to be 
accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency for purposes 
of Option 4. In the absence of such accreditation, there is an 
increased potential for variability in the degree to which the criteria 
in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(e)(2) will be met. Consequently, the 
Committee believed that, for purposes of meeting the requirements in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1427, the validity of the qualification under 
Option 4 should not extend beyond the geographical jurisdiction of the 
government entity.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(3)(ii) provides that the licensing entity 
may determine the time period for which the qualification is valid, but 
cannot issue a qualification intended to be valid for more than five 
years. The five year maximum was included in the provision because the 
Committee believed that this is an appropriate length of time to assume 
that, absent a specific indication to the contrary, an employee would 
retain the knowledge and proficiency demonstrated through the testing 
process.
Paragraph 1427(f) Pre-Qualification/Certification Training Period
    This proposed paragraph addresses the requirements that would have 
to be met for a trainee to operate a crane on the job while preparing 
for qualification/certification assessment. Proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(f)(1) would allow for the operation of cranes by employees 
who are not qualified or certified, provided that they meet the 
requirements in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(f)(2). Proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(f)(2) would allow those undergoing training in preparation 
for qualification/certification tests to operate equipment under the 
conditions outlined in Sec.  1926.1427(f)(2)(i) through (f)(2)(v). The 
Committee believed that it is necessary for there to be a process by 
which operators who are not certified or qualified can get experience 
working with the equipment to help prepare for obtaining a 
certification/qualification. This proposed paragraph would require 
appropriate oversight of such trainees to ensure worksite safety.
    In the C-DAC consensus document, Sec.  1926.1427(f)(2) states that,

    An employee who has passed neither the written nor practical 
tests required under this section is permitted to operate equipment 
as part of his/her training where the following requirements are 
met. * * *

    It is the Agency's understanding that the intent of the Committee 
was to allow trainees who had not yet obtained a certification or 
qualification to operate equipment on the job as part of the training 
process as long as the criteria in Sec.  1926.1427(f)(2) were met. 
However, the C-DAC language would allow such an operator to do this 
only if the

[[Page 59815]]

operator had passed not yet passed both the written and practical 
tests.
    The anomalous result of that language would have been that an 
operator who had passed one of those tests but not both would have been 
prohibited from operating the crane as a trainee under this provision. 
Since that would have been contrary to the Committee's intent, the 
Agency has modified that language for the proposed rule, which now 
reads:

    An employee who has not passed both the written and practical 
tests required under this section is permitted to operate equipment 
as part of his/her training where the following requirements are 
met. * * *

    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(i) would require that the trainee/
apprentice be provided with sufficient training prior to operating the 
equipment to enable him/her to operate it safely under the limitations 
listed in this proposed section and any additional limitations 
established by the employer. This would ensure that, before beginning 
to operate the equipment at the site, the trainee/apprentice would have 
attained sufficient knowledge and skills to operate the equipment 
safely as a trainee/apprentice.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(ii) would restrict the trainee/
apprentice's operation of the equipment to those tasks currently within 
his/her ability. The Committee believed that this is necessary to 
ensure that, throughout the training period, the tasks the trainee/
apprentice performs are always commensurate with his/her ability. This 
provision would also allow the trainee/apprentice to perform 
progressively more complex tasks as the trainee/apprentice develops the 
necessary ability.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(iii) sets forth the requirements that an 
employee would have to meet to be permitted to supervise the trainee/
apprentice's operation of the crane. The Committee believed that 
setting the criteria for such supervision is necessary to ensure that 
the equipment is operated safely during the training/apprenticeship 
period.
    Under proposed paragraph (f)(2)(iii)(A), the trainee/apprentice's 
supervisor would have to be an employee or agent of the trainee's/
apprentice's employer. The Committee believed that this is necessary to 
ensure that the supervisor would have the authority to direct the 
actions of the trainee/apprentice.
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(iii)(B) would require that the trainee/
apprentice's supervisor be either a certified operator (in accordance 
with proposed Sec.  1926.1427), or have passed the written portion of a 
certification test under one of the Options in proposed Sec.  
1926.1427. In addition, whether the supervisor is a certified operator 
or has passed the written test, the supervisor would have to be 
familiar with the proper use of the equipment's controls.
    The SBREFA panel recommended that OSHA consider whether the 
trainee/apprentice's supervisor should have additional training beyond 
the qualifications required under proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(f)(2)(iii)(B). This recommendation is addressed below in the 
discussion of Sec.  1926.1430, Training.
    The Committee believed that this provision is necessary to ensure 
that the supervisor has sufficient knowledge about the equipment to 
enable him/her to effectively oversee the safe operation of the crane. 
The Committee determined that a supervisor who had passed the written 
portion of a certification test would not need to be sufficiently 
proficient to pass the practical portion in order to effectively 
supervise a trainee/apprentice. However, both in the instance where the 
supervisor is certified and in the instance where he/she is not 
certified but has passed the written portion of the certification test, 
the Committee believed that it is necessary that he/she be familiar 
with the proper use of the equipment's controls, since such knowledge 
is essential to being able to effectively supervise a trainee/
apprentice.
    The C-DAC consensus document language refers to ``certified 
operator'' and the written portion of a ``certification'' test. 
However, under proposed Sec.  1926.1427, an operator may be either 
``certified,'' which would be obtained under Option 1, or 
``qualified,'' which would be obtained under any one of the other 
options. The Agency believes that the Committee intended that as long 
as the supervisor meets the qualification/certification criteria under 
any of these options, or has passed the written portion of a test used 
to obtain a qualification/certification under any of these options, and 
all other aspects of proposed Sec.  1926.1427(f)(2)(iii) have been met, 
the employer should be permitted to use that supervisor to supervise 
the trainee/apprentice.
    In addition, the C-DAC consensus document language regarding this 
provision states that a supervisor who is a ``certified operator'' may, 
if the other criteria listed in the provision are met, supervise the 
trainee/apprentice. Alternatively, the supervisor must have ``passed 
the written portion of a certification test * * *.'' The Agency 
believes that it was the Committee's intent that the certification or 
written test that was passed be valid for the equipment that the 
trainee/apprentice is operating. However, the C-DAC language, read 
literally, would permit a supervisor with a certification or passing 
score on a written test that was valid only for equipment other than 
what the trainee/apprentice was operating to supervise that trainee/
apprentice.
    To conform proposed paragraph (f)(2)(iii)(B) to C-DAC's intent, 
OSHA is planning to modify that provision as follows and requests 
public comment on this change.

    (B) The operator's supervisor is either a qualified/certified 
operator under this section for the equipment the trainee/apprentice 
is operating, or has passed the written portion of a qualification/
certification test for such equipment under one of the Options in 
paragraphs (b) through (e), and is familiar with the proper use of 
the equipment's controls.

    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(iii)(C) would require that the operator's 
supervisor perform no tasks that would detract from his/her ability to 
supervise the trainee/apprentice. The Committee believed that 
permitting the operator's supervisor to engage in tasks that would 
impinge on his/her ability to supervise the trainee/apprentice would 
endanger the trainee/apprentice and other employees in the vicinity of 
the crane.
    Under proposed paragraph (f)(2)(iii)(D), for equipment other than 
tower cranes, the operator's supervisor and the trainee/apprentice 
would be required to be in direct line of sight of each other, and 
would be required to communicate either verbally or by hand signals. 
The Committee believed that this would ensure that the operator's 
supervisor could rapidly and effectively give instructions to the 
trainee/apprentice, especially for purposes of correcting the trainee/
apprentice.
    With respect to tower cranes, it was the Committee's view that the 
height of the operator's station would typically make it infeasible to 
maintain direct line of sight between the operator's supervisor and the 
trainee/apprentice. For the same reason, use of hand signals is also 
often not feasible. Therefore, the proposed provision would instead 
require that they be in direct communication with each other. For 
example, direct communication could be achieved by radio or other 
instant electronic voice communication system.
    The Committee believed that it would be infeasible for the 
operator's supervisor to supervise the trainee/apprentice 100 percent 
of the time. Proposed Sec.  1926.1427(f)(2)(iv) is designed to set 
criteria that would permit the trainee/apprentice to continue operating 
the crane in the absence of the operator's supervisor for

[[Page 59816]]

short breaks under circumstances that would result in safe operation. 
Those criteria would be as follows:
    Under proposed paragraph (f)(2)(iv)(A), the break would be 
restricted to no more than 15 minutes, and no more than one break per 
hour. The Committee believed that this restriction is needed because 
otherwise there would be a significant likelihood that the other 
criteria (discussed below) would not be followed, and that the trainee/
apprentice would not receive the amount of supervision that is needed 
to ensure safe operation.
    Under proposed paragraph (f)(2)(iv)(B), immediately prior to the 
break, the operator's supervisor would have to inform the trainee/
apprentice of the specific tasks that the trainee/apprentice would be 
authorized to perform and the limitations that he/she must adhere to 
during the break. Under proposed Sec.  1926.1427(f)(2)(iv)(C), the 
specific tasks that the trainee/apprentice would perform during the 
break would have to be within the trainee/apprentice's ability. The 
Committee believed that these provisions are necessary to prevent 
injuries and fatalities that could be caused by a trainee/apprentice 
operating a crane under circumstances that are beyond his/her ability.
    The Committee believed that there are certain circumstances in 
which it is inappropriate for a trainee/apprentice to operate a crane 
because of the complexity and/or heightened risks involved. Therefore, 
for the circumstances listed in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(f)(2)(v)(A)-
(D), the trainee/apprentice would be prohibited from operating the 
equipment in all cases, even if the operator's supervisor believed the 
trainee/apprentice had attained the necessary knowledge and skill.
    With respect to operations involving multiple-lift rigging, the 
Committee believed that the difficulty and/or risk involved is not at 
the same level as those listed in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(f)(2)(v)(A)-
(D). Consequently, as reflected in proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(f)(2)(v)(E), while there would be a general prohibition 
against a trainee/apprentice operating the equipment when multiple-lift 
rigging is involved, an exception would apply where the operator's 
supervisor determined that the trainee/apprentice's skills are 
sufficient for this high-skill work.
Paragraph 1427(g)
    Proposed paragraph (g) would permit a testing entity to provide 
training as well as testing services as long as the criteria of the 
applicable accrediting agency (in the Option selected) for an 
organization providing both services are met. The Committee was aware 
of an impression among some people in the industry that a testing 
entity could not get accredited if it also provided training. However, 
after some research, the Committee determined that this was not a bar 
to accreditation if certain procedures were instituted. Specifically, 
an industry consensus standard, the International Organization for 
Standardization (``ISO'') 17024, addresses entities that offer 
certifications to individuals. It requires that no such entity offer 
training unless the entity can demonstrate that the training is 
independent of both evaluation and certification. This is intended to 
preserve both confidentiality and impartiality in the testing/
certification process.
    Therefore, at least with respect to those accrediting agencies that 
apply the ISO standard, a testing entity may also conduct training as 
long as an adequate ``firewall'' exists between the two functions. 
Proposed Sec.  1926.1427(g) reflects the Committee's intent to make 
clear that a testing entity is not be prohibited from providing 
training, as long as the applicable criteria have been met.
Paragraph 1427(h)
    The Committee deliberated about the need for operators to be able 
to read to operate a crane safely and how some operators, even though 
they can read, nonetheless have difficulty taking written tests. The 
Committee believed that it is crucial for operators to be able to read 
the load chart and other manufacturer procedures for the equipment they 
operate. In its view, the failure to be able to read that information 
could result in injuries and fatalities through a wide variety of 
errors (for example, by overloading the crane as a result of exceeding 
the crane's working radius, failing to deploy outriggers in accordance 
with the manufacturer's instructions, or failing to apply a footnote in 
a load chart that explains that the capacity is lower when a particular 
configuration of the crane is used).
    However, the Committee recognized that some employees, while they 
have sufficient literacy to be able to read this type of material, for 
other reasons are unable to take written tests effectively. Therefore, 
under proposed Sec.  1926.1427(h), the written qualification/
certification test could be administered verbally, with the answers 
given verbally, if two prerequisites are met.
    The first is that the qualification/certification candidate pass a 
written demonstration of literacy relevant to the work (proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(h)(1)). The second is that the candidate demonstrate the 
ability to use the type of written manufacturer procedures applicable 
to the class/type of equipment for which the candidate is seeking 
qualification/certification (proposed Sec.  1926.1427(h)(2)). These 
would typically include, for example, the load chart and operator's 
manual for the crane the candidate would be operating.
    As reflected in the SBREFA Panel Report, some SERs expressed a 
concern that operators who are not proficient in English would not be 
able to meet either requirement. The Panel recommended that OSHA 
solicit comment on whether employers should be permitted to use manuals 
that have been re-written to accommodate the level of English 
proficiency (that is, lower level or lack of proficiency) of the 
operator.
    C-DAC considered this same concern in designing Sec.  1926.1427(h). 
Neither the demonstration in Sec.  1926.1427(h)(1) nor (h)(2) would 
necessarily have to be made in English as those provisions are 
currently drafted. As an example, under these proposed provisions, an 
employer could obtain a Spanish-language version of the load charts and 
operator's manual from the manufacturer, and arrange to have the 
literacy test administered in Spanish. An operator able to meet the 
requirements of proposed Sec.  1926.1427(h) using these Spanish 
language materials would have demonstrated adequate literacy under the 
proposed rule.
    However, it may be necessary to modify proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(b)(1), (c) and (e) so that, in such instances, the 
qualification/certification is limited to the use of equipment that is 
equipped with such translated materials. In addition, there is an issue 
with respect to whether the rule needs to incorporate safeguards to 
ensure that a translation of manufacturer-supplied materials conveys 
the same information as in the original. OSHA requests comment on these 
issues.
    Some SERs also expressed a concern that many operators are not 
sufficiently literate in any language to meet the proposed requirements 
in Sec.  1926.1427(h)(1) and (h)(2). As discussed above, C-DAC 
determined that it is essential for ensuring safe crane operation that 
operators have sufficient literacy to read and comprehend written 
materials that relate to critical aspects of operation, such as load 
charts and manufacturer's manuals. However, the Panel

[[Page 59817]]

recommended that OSHA solicit comment on whether employers should be 
permitted to use manuals that have been re-written to accommodate the 
literacy level of operators.
    The concept underlying this recommendation is that a lower level of 
literacy may be sufficient as long as that level still enables the 
operator to read and understand the simplified language (and perhaps 
greater use of illustrations) in the re-written manual. If this were to 
be allowed, it would be necessary to modify proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(b)(1), (c) and (e) so that the certification is limited to 
the use of equipment that is equipped with a suitably re-written 
manual. Another issue that such a change would raise is whether the 
rule would need to incorporate safeguards to ensure that the modified 
materials conveyed the same information as in the original, 
manufacturer-supplied materials. OSHA requests comment on the Panel's 
recommendation and these related issues.
Paragraph 1427(i) [Reserved.]
    Proposed paragraph (i) would be reserved because it is inconvenient 
for readers to determine whether ``i'' is being used as a letter or a 
roman numeral.
Paragraph 1427(j) Certification Criteria
    Proposed paragraph (j) sets out the qualification and certification 
criteria applicable to the options described in proposed Sec. Sec.  
1926.1427(b)(1)(ii)(A), 1926.1427(c)(1)(ii)(C), and 
1926.1427(e)(2)(iv). The Committee determined that these are the 
criteria needed to address the knowledge and skills that are 
fundamental to safe crane operation. As stated in the introductory 
language in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(j), these would constitute 
``minimum'' criteria; the accredited certifying entities, employers, or 
local or state licensing offices would not be precluded from adding 
additional requirements to their certification or qualification 
programs.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(1) describes the criteria that would have to 
be covered by the written examination portion of a qualification/
certification program. As stated above in the discussion of examination 
administration, the written portion of the examination may be 
administered orally, so long as the candidate has demonstrated 
sufficient literacy relevant to the work (e.g., load charts and 
equipment manual).
    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(i) states that the individual seeking 
qualification or certification must know ``the information necessary 
for safe operation of the specific type of equipment the individual 
will operate * * *'' As discussed above with respect to proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(b)(1)(ii)(B) (requirement that different levels of 
certification be provided, based on varying equipment capacities and 
types), during the SBREFA process, several SERs described situations in 
which an operator is very knowledgeable and skillful with respect to 
one particular model of crane, but has very limited knowledge and 
ability regarding other models and types of cranes. These SERs were 
concerned that such operators would be unable to obtain a certification 
based on equipment capacity and type. They believe that, since these 
operators are well qualified to operate a particular crane model, there 
should be a mechanism for them to become certified to operate that 
model. The Panel recommended that OSHA consider and solicit public 
comment on expanding the levels of certification so as to allow an 
operator to be certified on a specific brand's model of crane. 
Consistent with the Panel's recommendation, OSHA seeks public comment 
on this issue.
    Also, as discussed above with respect to proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(b)(1)(ii)(B), the SBREFA Panel received comments from some 
SERs suggesting that the standard should accommodate crane operators 
who were fully capable of operating particular equipment in a limited 
set of circumstances but who would be unable to pass certification 
tests that required knowledge and abilities beyond those circumstances. 
The Panel recommended that OSHA consider and solicit public comment on 
expanding the levels of operator qualification/certification to allow 
such operators to be certified for a specific, limited type of 
circumstance defined by a set of parameters that, taken together, would 
describe an operation characterized by simplicity and relatively low 
risk. In response to the Panel's recommendation, OSHA requests public 
comment on whether such parameters could be identified in a way that 
would result in a clear, easily understood provision that could be 
effectively enforced.\68\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \68\ The SBREFA Panel also recommended that OSHA ask for public 
comment on whether the standard should state more clearly that more 
limited training is required for operators of smaller capacity 
equipment than for more complex equipment. This recommendation is 
addressed below in the discussion of Sec.  1926.1430, Training.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(i)(A) would require that the written 
examination address the candidate's knowledge of the equipment controls 
and operational/performance characteristics of the specific type of 
equipment. Operational/performance characteristics would include, for 
example, the deflection characteristics of the boom, including how 
deflection affects the positioning of the load and the extent to which 
deflection varies with boom angle and length as well as load weight. 
Also, equipment with lattice/cable supported booms has different 
deflection characteristics than equipment with non-lattice booms (that 
is, hydraulic ram supported booms). Meeting these criteria would ensure 
that the person controlling the equipment would be able to make 
necessary judgments and adjustments for safe crane operation.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(i)(B) was included to ensure that 
operators would be able to use load capacity information on a variety 
of configurations of the capacity and type of equipment. Such 
information is typically contained in load charts and manuals. This 
would ensure that the operator would be able to accurately determine, 
independently, the capacity of the equipment in each situation that he/
she might encounter. The Committee believed that this ability is 
critical to helping prevent injuries and fatalities caused by 
overloading the equipment.
    The Committee considered whether it is also necessary for the 
operator to be able to use the load information without the aid of a 
calculator. It determined that calculators are now so commonly 
available and used that it is not necessary for the operator to be able 
to use the load information without one.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(i)(C) addresses the need for crane 
operators to know how to prevent power line contact. In the Committee's 
experience, electrocutions and electrical injuries are typically caused 
when the operator unintentionally brings the boom, load line or load in 
electrical contact with a power line. Operator knowledge of the 
procedures that are necessary for preventing such contact (see the 
discussions of proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1407 through 1926.1411 above) 
is essential for preventing these injuries and fatalities.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(i)(C) also addresses the need for crane 
operators to know how to respond to a power line contact if one occurs. 
For example, the Committee determined that some electrocutions of 
operators occur while an operator attempts to exit the equipment. After 
realizing that the equipment is in electrical contact with a power 
line, the operator is electrocuted when he/she creates a grounding path 
by touching the

[[Page 59818]]

equipment while stepping on the ground.\69\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \69\ Note that, as provided in proposed Sec.  
1926.1408(g)(1)(i)(A) on power line safety, operators must be aware 
of the danger of electrocution if they simultaneously touch 
energized equipment and the ground. They must also, pursuant to 
proposed Sec.  1926.1408(g)(1)(i)(B), be trained to understand that 
when the equipment makes electrical contact with a power line, the 
operator's safety requires him or her to remain inside the cab 
except where there is an imminent danger of fire, explosion, or 
other emergency that necessitates their leaving the cab.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(i)(D) addresses the need for crane 
operators to have technical knowledge on a range of subjects that, if 
not sufficiently understood, could cause injuries and fatalities. The 
list of subjects in proposed Non-Mandatory Appendix E of this subpart 
serves as an example of that set of knowledge. The Committee believed 
that a degree of flexibility should be accorded in terms of what 
specific subjects need to be included. For example, a subject relevant 
only to an extensible boom crane would not need to be covered for a 
certification for a traditional lattice boom crane. Therefore, the 
proposed provision states that the testing criteria must include 
technical knowledge ``similar'' to the subject matter criteria listed 
in Appendix E of this subpart. To accommodate those who have less of a 
need for such flexibility and more of a need for specificity in this 
regard, the proposed provision also makes clear that, when the subjects 
listed in Appendix E are used, the requirements of the provision would 
be met.
    In addition to the technical knowledge that would be required under 
proposed Sec.  1926.1427(j)(1)(i)(D), technical knowledge applicable to 
three specific subjects would also be required under proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(j)(1)(i)(E).
    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(i)(E)(1) would require that an operator 
be able to demonstrate sufficient knowledge of how to assess ground 
conditions to identify potential hazards. The operator would therefore 
be able to assess ground conditions through inspection, and would also 
be aware of the potential for unseen hazards such as sewers, water 
mains, and other underground installations or conditions that might 
affect the ability of the ground to support the equipment and expected 
load.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(i)(E)(2) would require operators to 
demonstrate sufficient knowledge of site hazards so that the operator 
would be able to identify them and understand their significance to 
safe operation of the equipment. Examples of typical site hazards 
include electrical hazards posed by underground electrical or cable 
lines and aboveground telephone poles and power lines, and ground-
support hazards posed by manholes, drains and trenches, which can lead 
to tip-overs.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(i)(E)(3) would require operators to 
demonstrate sufficient technical knowledge to ensure that conditions at 
the entrance to the site are sufficient to enable the equipment to 
travel safely onto the site. For example, where equipment must descend 
or ascend a dirt ramp, the operator needs to be able to assess the 
effect of the ramp's steepness and to detect signs of instability.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(i)(F) would require operators to 
demonstrate a thorough knowledge of this subpart, including 
incorporated materials. The Committee believed that operators play a 
key role in the application of these requirements and it is therefore 
essential that they understand them.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(1)(ii) is intended to ensure that operators 
have the ability, at a minimum, to demonstrate sufficient literacy to 
locate and understand information both in the equipment manual as well 
as in other sources which address the information discussed in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1427(j)(1)(i)(A) through (j)(1)(i)(F). Since the Committee 
determined that safe crane operation depends on applying that 
information, the operator needs to be able to locate and understand it.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(2) would require a practical test and sets 
criteria for such a test. Safe crane operation depends on an operator 
having sufficient skill to operate the equipment safely. The Committee 
felt that a successful demonstration of ability to perform the 
operations discussed below is essential to ensuring that the operator 
will be able to apply the requisite knowledge in the field. The 
practical test under this proposed paragraph would be conducted using 
equipment of the capacity and type for which the candidate seeks 
certification.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(2)(i) would require an operator to 
demonstrate the ability to recognize, from visual and audible 
observation, the items listed in proposed paragraph Sec.  
1926.1412(d)(shift inspection). Irrespective of whether the operator or 
someone else conducts the shift inspection, the operator needs to be 
able to recognize apparent deficiencies associated with these parts and 
mechanisms. First, the operator needs to be able to identify 
indications of safety problems that may arise after the shift 
inspection has been completed. In addition, this ability is important 
since the operator needs to be able to effectively exercise his/her 
authority under proposed Sec.  1926.1418, Authority to stop operation 
to stop lifting operations (see discussion of that proposed section 
above).
    Proposed paragraph (j)(2)(ii) addresses the need for operators to 
have demonstrated proficiency with operational and maneuvering skills. 
Lack of such proficiency could result in a wide range of accidents that 
could cause injuries or fatalities. For example, without this level of 
skill, the operator could unintentionally exceed the crane's capacity 
(such as by booming out too far) and overturn the equipment, make 
electrical contact with power lines, or cause struck-by injuries and 
fatalities (such as by losing a load or losing control of the load).
    Proposed paragraph (j)(2)(iii) requires that the operator 
demonstrate the ability to apply load chart information. The Committee 
believed that if an operator is unable to apply load chart information, 
there is a significantly heightened risk of the crane overturning. This 
is because an operator without this ability may fail to keep the crane 
within the required operational parameters called for by the load chart 
(for example, by failing to recognize that proceeding with the lift 
will result in exceeding the maximum allowable boom radius as specified 
in the load chart).
    As with proposed paragraph (j)(2)(i) (ability to recognize 
inspection items), this ability is also important since the operator 
needs to be able to effectively exercise his/her authority under 
proposed Sec.  1926.1418 (Authority to stop operation) to stop lifting 
operations (see discussion of that proposed section above). For 
example, if the only way to land the load with the crane in its current 
position would be to exceed the allowable radius specified in the 
chart, the operator would need to be able to recognize that this would 
happen and stop the lift.
    Proposed paragraph (j)(2)(iv) would require that an operator be 
able to shut down and secure equipment safely. This ability is 
necessary to ensure that the shut down procedure is done safely and the 
equipment is properly secured to prevent unintended movement of the 
equipment after shut down.
Paragraph 1427(k) Phase-In
    Under proposed paragraph (k), the qualification/certification 
requirements in proposed Sec.  1926.1427 would not become effective 
until four years after the effective date of the final rule. The 
Committee believed that this four year period would provide time for 
operators to get additional training (where

[[Page 59819]]

needed) to prepare them for the testing, for additional testing 
organizations to become accredited for purposes of Option 1 (proposed 
Sec.  1926.1427(b)), for additional organizations to become nationally 
recognized accrediting agencies, for employers (who so choose) to 
develop audited programs for use under Option 2 (proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(c)), for accredited testing organizations to develop programs 
to certify auditors as described under Option 2, and for state and 
local government entities (who so choose) to make preparations to meet 
the criteria under Option 4 (proposed Sec.  1926.1427(e)). It would 
also give employers time to plan which of the qualification/
certification options would be most suitable for them.
    Under proposed paragraph (k)(1), during this four year period, 
proposed paragraphs Sec.  1926.1427(k)(1)(i) and (ii) would address 
operator qualifications and training. Specifically, proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(k)(1)(i) would require that operators be competent for the 
purposes of operating the equipment safely. This would require that the 
operator have the requisite knowledge and skill to identify, 
anticipate, and avoid actions which could result in hazardous 
conditions related to the equipment and job site.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(1)(ii) would require employers to ensure 
that operators who do not already have sufficient knowledge or skill to 
operate the equipment safely undergo training prior to engaging in 
operations. In addition, the employer would be required to ensure that 
the operator is evaluated to confirm that he/she understands the 
information provided in the training. These interim measures are not 
significantly different from current requirements under Subpart N of 
this part, Sec.  1926.20(b)(4) (``the employer shall permit only those 
employees qualified by training or experience to operate equipment and 
machinery'') and Sec.  1926.21(b)(2) (``the employer shall instruct 
each employee in the recognition and avoidance of unsafe conditions * * 
* ''). However, they would ensure that there would not be a gap with 
respect to this issue between the termination of the requirements under 
Subpart N of this part and the effective date of proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(a) through (j) and (m). The four-year phase-in period 
discussed above is set out in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(k)(2).
Paragraph 1427(l) [Reserved.]
    Proposed paragraph (l) would be reserved because of the 
inconvenience that would result from the use of ``l'' both as a small 
Arabic numeral and as the letter ``l.''
Paragraph 1427(m) Definitions
    Proposed paragraph (m) defines two terms used in the qualification/
certification provisions in Sec.  1926.1427(b) through (e) (addressed 
above). Proposed Sec.  1926.1427(m)(1) explains that, if an operator 
has a ``portable'' certification, any employer may rely on that 
certification. The employer of an operator who carries a portable 
certification (which can be obtained only through the method described 
in proposed Sec.  1926.1427(b)) has ensured that the operator has been 
qualified or certified, and has met the requirements of proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(a).
    Proposed paragraph (m)(2) explains that, if an operator has a 
qualification that is ``not portable,'' only the employer who issued 
that qualification may rely on it for purposes of meeting the 
requirements of proposed Sec.  1926.1427(a). As discussed above, OSHA 
is considering adding a third definition for the term ``employee of the 
U.S. military'' (see the discussion above of proposed Sec.  
1926.1427(d)).

Dissenting View of C-DAC Member Brian H. Murphy

    Under the C-DAC ground rules (OSHA-S030-2006-0663, Ex. 36-1-8), the 
Committee reaches consensus if no more than two non-federal members 
dissent on a particular issue. The ground rules also provide that, upon 
the request of a dissenting member, OSHA will include the member's 
reasons for dissenting in the preamble to the proposed rule. Two 
members of C-DAC, Mr. Brian H. Murphy and Mr. Craig Steel, dissented 
from the Committee's draft of proposed Sec.  1427. Mr. Murphy asked 
that his reasons for dissenting be included in the preamble, and 
provided them in the letter reprinted below (OSHA-2007-0066-0007). Note 
that, pursuant to the ground rules, OSHA has not reprinted comments in 
the letter regarding issues upon which the member did not dissent.

    Dear Deputy Assistant Secretary Snare:
    Thank you for providing an opportunity for the Associated 
General Contractors of America (AGC) to serve on the Occupational 
Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA's) Crane and Derrick 
Advisory Committee (C-DAC). AGC welcomed and appreciated the chance 
to explore OSHA's several options for a new standard on cranes and 
derricks with the other knowledgeable members of that committee. In 
addition, it was a personal privilege for me to represent AGC's 
33,000 members.
    AGC is a nationwide trade association of general contractors, 
specialty contractors, material suppliers, equipment dealers and 
other firms that collectively form the core of the construction 
industry. The association was formed in 1918 at the express request 
of President Woodrow Wilson, and today, AGC maintains a network of 
98 state and local chapters throughout the United States. Its 
members engage in the construction of commercial buildings, 
factories, warehouses, highways, bridges, airports, waterworks 
facilities, waste treatment facilities, dams, water conservation 
projects, defense facilities and multi-family housing projects, and 
on site preparation and utilities installation for housing 
development.
    AGC shares and strongly supports OSHA's mission. While AGC 
occasionally disagrees with OSHA's views on the best and most 
effective means and methods of improving construction safety and 
health, AGC is and will remain equally committed to that goal. 
Indeed, from its very inception, AGC has taken a great interest in 
the safety and health of construction workers. Its bylaws expressly 
provide that ``[t]he members of [AGC] shall work to develop good 
relations with employees * * * and shall make every effort to 
provide safe working conditions on construction projects and to 
promote safe working habits by their employees.
    AGC has long taken a very proactive approach to construction 
safety and health. Over the last 15 years, AGC has produced over 100 
videos and publications on the various practices and procedures that 
may be necessary, on any given jobsite, to protect construction 
workers from occupational injury or illness. Each year, AGC sponsors 
two nationwide safety award programs. Regularly, AGC also offers 
safety management training courses and other safety training 
programs. In 2003, AGC used a Susan Harwood Training Grant to train 
1,800 construction workers on OSHA's new steel erection standard. In 
2004, AGC will use a third grant to train another 600 construction 
workers on fall protection. AGC was proud to receive these grants, 
and today, AGC is even prouder that an overwhelming number of its 
trainees gave these programs excellent reviews. These efforts 
demonstrate AGC's commitment to partnering with OSHA to make 
construction work-sites safer.
    AGC also supports OSHA's very specific effort to set new 
standards for the men and women operating cranes and derricks. AGC 
agrees that systematically increasing the knowledge and improving 
the skill of these construction workers will reduce the number of 
accidents involving cranes and derricks and limit the closely 
related risks of injury. Long before serving on C-DAC, AGC 
collaborated with the St. Paul Companies on an exemplary training 
program on the essentials of crane safety. AGC also signed a 
cooperative agreement with the National Commission for the 
Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO), recognizing the 
``importance of safe crane operations on our nation's construction 
sites'' and ``the CCO written and practical examination is a method 
of documenting the qualifications criteria outlined in ASME B30.5-
3.1-1995, ``Qualifications for and Conduct of Operators and 
Operating Practices.''
    As a member of C-DAC, fully committed to its goals and 
objectives, AGC worked long

[[Page 59820]]

and hard to find common ground with the other members of that group. 
At the end of the day, both AGC and the others did reach agreement 
on a vast majority of the issues that the group had to confront. The 
group wrote forty-two sections and two appendices into the new 
standard that it proposed to OSHA, developing a document that 
totaled one-hundred-nineteen pages in length. During its 
deliberations, the group reached agreement on forty-one of those 
sections and both appendices, which collectively accounted for one-
hundred-twelve of the pages of text. On only one of the sections, 
and only seven pages of the text, did everyone fail to agree. On 
only that one section, and those few pages of text, did AGC find it 
necessary to part company with the others. (Endnote 1).
    AGC would not, however, suggest that the disagreement was a 
trivial one. Quite to the contrary, AGC believes that the 
disagreement was a serious one that OSHA needs to address. C-DAC 
accomplished most but not all of its mission. It is now incumbent 
upon OSHA to correct the one significant error that C-DAC made.
    The disagreement between AGC and the other members of the 
committee was over section 1427 of the committee's proposal. That 
section is entitled ``Operator qualification and certification.'' In 
paragraph (a), it requires an employer to ``ensure'' that its crane 
and derrick operators are either:
     ``Qualified or certified * * * in accordance with'' one 
of four procedures, found in the following paragraphs (b), (c), (d) 
and (e); or
     ``Operating the equipment during a training period in 
accordance with paragraph (f)
    Paragraph (b) of section 1427 provides for ``[c]ertification by 
an accredited crane/derrick operator testing organization.'' 
Paragraph (c) provides for ``[q]ualification by an audited employer 
program.'' Paragraph (d) provides for ``[q]ualification by the U.S. 
military.'' And paragraph (e) provides for ``[l]icensing by a 
government entity.'' (Endnote 2)
    AGC opposes section 1427 primarily because its requirements for 
the qualification and certification of crane and derrick operators 
are too restrictive. For many and perhaps the vast majority of 
construction contractors, none of the four options for operator 
qualification or certification are practical to pursue. At the same 
time, section 1427 omits several requirements that would far more 
directly affect crane and derrick safety. If adopted as currently 
written, section 1427 would disrupt the construction industry and 
might actually hinder the broad effort necessary to ensure that 
crane and derrick operators are knowledgeable, competent and well 
prepared, every day, to perform their work.
    Following are AGC's more specific comments on each of the four 
options that Section 1427 provides, on the risks that this provision 
would create for any employer that chose to implement an operator 
training program, and on several significant omissions from the 
proposed standard.

Certification by an Accredited Crane/Derrick Operator Testing 
Organization

    While less restrictive than paragraph (d), paragraph (b) fails 
to provide an option for many and perhaps most of the small to 
medium-sized firms that dominate the construction industry. 
Paragraph (b) would permit employers to engage third parties to test 
and certify their crane and derrick operators, but in the process, 
paragraph (b) would severely restrict the number of organizations 
qualified to perform those tasks. The proposed standard would permit 
employers to rely on only those organizations ``accredited by a 
nationally recognized accrediting agency.''
    To the best of AGC's knowledge, information and belief, only two 
organizations are ``accrediting'' agencies within the meaning and 
for the purposes of Section 1427, and only one of the two agencies 
has actually accredited any other organization to test and certify 
crane and derrick operators. During the lengthy deliberations among 
the members of C-DAC, the National Commission for Certifying 
Agencies (NCCA) and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) 
were the only two organizations said to be such ``accrediting'' 
agencies. The NCCA was the only one of the two said to have actually 
accredited any other organization to test and certify operators.
    To make matters worse, it was acknowledged and agreed that the 
NCCCO is the only testing organization that the NCCA has accredited. 
If other organizations are also accredited to test and certify crane 
and derrick operators, within the meaning and for the purposes of 
Section 1427, then neither the other members of C-DAC nor OSHA 
identified them, and AGC is unaware of them.
    AGC would emphasize that it holds the NCCCO in high regard. As 
already mentioned, AGC has gone so far as to sign a cooperative 
agreement with the NCCCO. Nevertheless, AGC doubts that the NCCCO 
could meet the enormous demand that section 1427 would generate for 
crane and derrick operator testing and certification. If adopted, 
Section 1427 would take that demand to an entirely new level. It 
should be noted that NCCCO has largely succeeded in meeting the much 
more limited demand for voluntary certification.
    In fairness, AGC believes that other members of C-DAC harbor the 
same doubt. Something had to motivate the authors of section 1427 to 
include paragraph (k), delaying the mandate for operator testing and 
certification for four years. It is certainly possible that the 
other members of C-DAC supported section 1427 in the belief that 
other testing organizations would use this time to seek 
accreditation--in the hope of profiting on a dramatic increase in 
the demand for operator testing and certification. The problem is 
that neither the other members of C-DAC nor OSHA undertook any study 
of the costs that such organizations would have to incur to qualify 
for accreditation, or to provide testing or certification services 
on the massive scale that section 1427 contemplates. Nor did the 
other members identify the sources of capital that these other 
testing organizations would require, or the prices they would have 
to charge for their services, or how they could even begin to 
sustain themselves until testing and certification became mandatory. 
There were no business plans or business models for either the 
committee or OSHA to review. It might be appealing to suppose that 
future demand for testing and certification would call forth the 
necessary supply, but it would remain little more than speculation. 
There is no factual record to support any such conclusions.
    However logical it may be, AGC maintains that OSHA cannot simply 
suppose that the supply of the necessary services would materialize. 
The stakes are much too great. If other testing organizations did 
not enter the market, or they subsequently failed for financial or 
other reasons, or they simply found it necessary to charge more than 
most contractors could bear, the construction industry could quickly 
find itself in gridlock.
    AGC also doubts the wisdom of giving any private organization--
whether the NCCA, ANSI, the NCCCO or any other accrediting agencies 
or testing organization--such a dominant role in the implementation 
of a federal regulation. Section 1427 would set minimal standards 
for accreditation, leaving most of that process in private hands. 
OSHA would not have any direct oversight over (or other relationship 
with) any testing organization. The agency would be two steps 
removed from that process.

Qualification by an Audited Employer Program

    Paragraph (c) also fails to provide an option for many and 
perhaps most construction companies. That provision would permit an 
employer to test and qualify its own employees to operate cranes and 
derricks, but only if inter alia (1) the employer's written and 
practical tests were ``developed by an accredited crane/derrick 
operator testing organization,'' (2) the employer's ``program'' were 
approved by an auditor ``certified,'' in turn, by such an 
organization, and (3) the ``circumstances'' under which the employer 
administered the tests were also approved by such an auditor.
    As noted, the NCCCO appears to be the only ``accredited crane/
derrick operator testing organization'' at this time. AGC doubts 
that small or medium-sized construction contractors would have the 
resources necessary to self-administer the NCCCO's written and 
practical tests, particularly ``under circumstances * * * meeting 
nationally recognized test administration standards.'' In addition, 
it appears that neither the NCCCO nor any other testing 
organizations would have any business incentive to develop a large 
pool of certified auditors. To the contrary, they would have an 
obvious interest in maintaining the demand for their own testing 
services, and their own certifications. Nothing in the proposed 
standard would compel or even encourage the NCCCO or any other 
testing organization to help construction employers develop 
practical alternatives.
    Further eroding paragraph (c) are provisions that would require 
the employer to have its ``program'' re-audited every three

[[Page 59821]]

years, and suspend the employer's ``program'' for any ``significant 
deficiency.'' Though it would expressly forbid the auditor of the 
employer's program to be the employer's employee--and therefore 
subject to the employer's control--paragraph (c) would also render 
the employer liable for the auditor's failure to file a ``documented 
report'' of any ``significant deficiency'' to OSHA within 15 days, 
to maintain records of his or her audits for three years, or to make 
such records available to the U.S. Department of Labor.
    For all of these reasons, AGC believes that paragraph (c) would 
not be a practical and dependable option for any significant number 
of construction employers.

Qualification by the U.S. Military

    As a threshold matter, paragraph (d) is limited to the men and 
women in uniform. By its terms, it is ``[n]ot portable,'' meaning 
that it ``meets the requirements of paragraph (a) only where the 
operator is employed by (and operating the equipment for) the 
employer that issued the qualification.'' See Section 1427(m). To 
any operator to which paragraph (d) might apply, the military would 
be ``the employer that issued the qualification.'' It follows that 
any operator qualified by the military would be qualified to operate 
a crane or derrick only for the military. (Endnote 3).

Licensing by a Government Entity

    Whether paragraph (e) provided any practical option for 
construction contractors would depend entirely on how state and 
local governments responded to it. This provision would permit 
employers to use state or local government agencies to test and 
license their crane and derrick operators. Employers, however, could 
use only the government agencies that had volunteered to perform 
those tasks.
    In some ways, paragraph (e) is superior to paragraphs (b) and 
(c). The state or local agency would have to be the one that 
``issue[d] operator licenses for operating [relevant] equipment,'' 
and it would have to qualify for accreditation as a ``government 
accredited crane/derrick operator testing organization.'' But the 
``government authority that overs[aw]'' the agency, and not any 
private entity, would determine whether the agency met the 
substantive criteria for accreditation. Unlike paragraphs (b) and 
(c), paragraph (e) makes no direct or indirect reference to a 
``nationally recognized accrediting agency.''
    Paragraph (e) does not, however, go far enough to save Section 
1427. It would not--and probably could not--require any state or 
local agency to test or license operators. It would not--and 
probably could not--provide any positive incentives for any such 
agency to perform those tasks. It would not--and probably could 
not--even reimburse any government agency that volunteered to 
perform those tasks.
    Many state and local budgets are already tight, and neither OSHA 
nor other members of C-DAC have given AGC any reason to expect that 
any significant number of state or local agencies would be likely to 
step forward. AGC believes that some would do so but doubts that the 
number would be high enough, or their distribution broad enough, to 
meet what would be a truly nationwide demand for the testing and 
certification of crane and derrick operators. A government license 
issued under paragraph (e) would satisfy section 1427 ``only within 
the jurisdiction'' of the agency that issued it, and at best, AGC 
would expect an irrational patchwork of options for crane and 
derrick operators and their employers across the country.

Operator Training

    AGC also believes that Section 1427 would put employers that 
provided hands-on training for crane or derrick operators at great 
and ultimately uncontrollable risk of liability for any accidents 
that their trainees or apprentices might cause, and could become a 
legal deterrent to such training. The relevant paragraph of the 
proposed standard is paragraph (f), entitled ``Pre-qualification/
certification training period.'' In subparagraph (f)(2)(i), that 
provision states that a trainee or apprentice ``shall be provided 
with sufficient training prior to operating the equipment to enable 
the trainee to operate the equipment safely* * *'' In subparagraph 
(f)(2)(ii), that provision adds that ``[t]he tasks performed by the 
trainee/apprentice while operating the equipment shall be within the 
trainee's ability.'' In subparagraph (f)(2)(iv)(C), that provision 
further provides that ``[t]he specific tasks that the trainee/
apprentice will perform during [any fifteen minute] break'' that his 
or her supervisor may take ``are within the trainee/apprentice's 
abilities.''
    If these were merely statements of principle, AGC would 
wholeheartedly support them. AGC completely agrees that trainees and 
apprentices should have any prior training that they require to 
operate the equipment safely. AGC completely agrees that all tasks 
that a trainee or apprentice actually performs--at any time--should 
be within his or her ability.
    The problem is that these would be legal requirements, and not 
merely goals to which contractors should aspire. As written, they 
would render contractors legally liable not for failing to make 
every reasonable effort--or even every conceivable effort--to 
provide such prior training, or to limit the tasks that a trainee or 
apprentice actually performed. In substance and effect, paragraph 
(f) would render contractors strictly liable for outcomes that 
contractors could not guarantee. If a trainee or apprentice caused 
an accident, it would necessarily follow that the individual did not 
have prior training ``sufficient'' to operate the equipment safely. 
It would also follow that the trainee or apprentice had actually 
performed a task not ``within'' his or her ``ability.''
    Neither construction workers nor their supervisors are any less 
human than anyone else. No one can guarantee that others will not 
make mistakes, or that they will always follow instructions. Nor is 
an individual's prior training, or his or her current abilities, 
something that one can measure with great precision. Of course, all 
construction contractors should make a very strong effort to prevent 
accidents. The human toll of any accident involving a crane or 
derrick can easily exceed anything that anyone would ever want to 
bear. Holding employers strictly liable for any accident that a 
trainee or apprentice may cause would, however, punish the good as 
well as the bad actors, and in the end, AGC fears that it would 
discourage useful training and hinder the effort to protect 
construction workers. One could well expect employers to provide no 
more than the minimum training necessary to satisfy the proposed 
standard, and whenever feasible, to engage third parties to perform 
that function.

Significant Omissions From the Proposed Standard

    AGC also encourages OSHA to reconsider the broader question that 
Section 1427 raises. At the heart of that provision lies the 
assumption that elaborate procedures for testing and certifying 
crane and derrick operators would have benefits commensurate with 
their cost. The proposed requirements for such testing and 
certification are above and beyond the broader training requirements 
that C-DAC embedded--with AGC's concurrence--in Section 1430. In 
many other instances, OSHA requires employers to train their 
employees, and even to ensure that the individuals employed to 
perform certain functions are ``competent persons.'' In these other 
instances, OSHA has not, however, found it necessary to go so far as 
to require sophisticated testing and formal certification.
    Paragraph (k) of Section 1427 contemplates a four-year ``phase-
in'' for the testing and certification procedures, and indeed, for 
that substantial phase-in period, even the authors of Section 1427 
considered it sufficient to require operators ``to be competent,'' 
to ``be provided the necessary training,'' and to be ``evaluated to 
confirm that he/she understands the information provided in the 
training.'' Under these circumstances, AGC would consider it more 
than fair to request that OSHA take a hard look at the actual costs 
and benefits of ever going beyond paragraph (k)--to the point of 
requiring testing and certification by third parties beyond the 
federal government's supervision or direct control. (Endnote 4).
    AGC would simply add that the costs of the proposed testing and 
certification could be social as well as financial. The construction 
workforce is not entire English-speaking. AGC is also concerned that 
Section 1427 could have the unintended but clearly detrimental 
effect of limiting employment opportunities for competent crane 
operators who do not speak English. AGC is unaware of any 
organization that currently provides nationally recognized testing 
for crane or derrick operators in any language other than English.
* * * * *

Conclusion

    In closing, AGC would like to thank you for the opportunity to 
serve on C-DAC. Crane and derrick safety is extremely important to 
AGC's members, and the association greatly appreciated the chance to 
participate in the committee's deliberations.
    In the end, C-DAC succeeded in reaching agreement on all but one 
of the provisions included in the standard that the committee 
proposed to OSHA. AGC could not support

[[Page 59822]]

that one provision because it is too restrictive. AGC supported the 
proposed requirements for the training of crane and derrick 
operators, and AGC could even support a carefully tailored and clear 
requirement that construction contractors employ ``competent'' 
operators for their cranes and derricks. AGC is far less certain 
that the benefits of mandating elaborate procedures for the 
sophisticated testing and formal certification of crane and derrick 
operators would ever outweigh the great cost of doing so.
* * * * *
    AGC supports OSHA's effort to improve crane and derrick safety, 
and believes that C-DAC has greatly contributed to that effort, but 
maintains that Section 1427 of the proposed standard requires 
serious reconsideration.

Sincerely,

/S/

Brian H. Murphy, P.E., C.S.P. AGC C-DAC Representative.

    Endnote 1: On that one section, the National Association of Home 
Builders also parted company with the other members of the 
committee.
    Endnote 2: Presumably, the authors of this provision intended to 
equate ``licensing'' with ``qualification'' or ``certification.''
    Endnote 3: AGC has received reports that some members of C-DAC 
were led to believe that a military certification would be valid for 
a construction contractor working for the military on a military 
installation. The wording of paragraph (d) is, however, clear and 
makes no reference to military projects or installations, or to the 
contractors construction such projects at such locations. By the 
express and unambiguous terms of paragraph (d), a military 
certification is ``[n]ot portable'' and in paragraph (m) by 
definition applies ``only where the operator is employed by (and 
operating the equipment for) the employer that issued the 
certification.''
    Nor is it clear that OSHA could justify such awkwardly limited 
portability for military certifications. If OSHA rewrote paragraph 
(d) to provide for portability then whether a construction 
contractor could use a military certification to satisfy section 
1427 would depend entirely on (1) whether the project owner is a 
branch of the military and (2) whether the project is located on a 
military installation. Those two factors would not, however, have 
any obvious bearing on the merits of the process that the military 
used to certify crane or derrick operators, or the knowledge or 
skills that such operators actually possessed. AGC cannot readily 
identify any rational basis for rendering a military certification 
portable to a contractor working for the military project on one of 
its installations but not portable to even the same contractor when 
working for a different owner, or simply across the street.
    In any event, paragraph (d) could not begin to solve the larger 
problem. Even if it provided for portability to construction 
contractors working for the military on military installations, 
paragraph (d) would remain far too limited to provide an option for 
the overwhelming majority of construction contractors. The military 
and its installations account for only a small fraction of the 
contractors and projects that the new standard would cover.
    Endnote 4: AGC would also encourage OSHA to compare paragraph 
(k) with other standards that require construction contractors to 
employ ``competent persons'' to perform certain functions. AGC 
believes that many if not most of those other provisions define the 
required competence far more precisely. AGC presumes that paragraph 
(k) refers to competence in dealing with the various subjects listed 
in paragraph (j) of section 1427, or perhaps paragraph (c) of 
Section 1430, but paragraph (k) of section 1427 does not cross-
reference either of those other provisions or otherwise define the 
required competence. Nor does it define the ``required training.''

[End of Murphy comments.]

    OSHA notes that Mr. Murphy indicated in his letter that proposed 
Sec.  1926.1427 would apply to derricks. However, under paragraph (q) 
of proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1436 Derricks, Sec.  1926.1427 would not 
apply to derricks. This is explained in more detail below in the 
discussion on proposed Sec.  1926.1436.
    Operator qualification/certification was the only section of the C-
DAC document for which there were dissenting committee members (as 
noted above, two members dissented: Mr. Murphy and Mr. Steele). In his 
letter, Mr. Murphy addressed a number of issues associated with this 
subject, such as questioning the need for, and practicality of, 
limiting an employer's operator qualification/certification options to 
those that require the involvement of independent third parties. There 
was considerable discussion by C-DAC on this subject and its many 
associated issues, including the degree of portability of a 
qualification/certification. The Agency requests public comment on 
these issues.

Physical Qualifications and Substance Abuse Testing

Physical Qualifications

    Section 5-3.1 of ANSI B30.5-1968 contains criteria for operator 
vision and hearing, disqualification for a ``history of epilepsy'' or a 
``disabling heart condition,'' and a general statement that ``when he 
is physically or mentally unfit, an operator shall not engage in the 
operation of his equipment.'' Subpart N at Sec.  1926.550(b)(2) states 
that ``all crawler, truck, or locomotive cranes in use shall meet the 
applicable requirements for design, inspection, construction, testing, 
maintenance and operation as prescribed in the ANSI B30.5-1968 * * *.''
    In a May 8, 1981 letter of interpretation to Mr. A. Bennett Hill 
Jr. (OSHA-2007-0066-0016), OSHA stated that:

    It is the interpretation of OSHA that the physical 
qualifications requirements incorporated by reference in 29 CFR 
1926.550 do not apply to operators of equipment covered by those 
standards.

    In other words, OSHA interpreted the incorporation by reference in 
Sec.  1926.550(b)(2) for ``operation'' as referring to how the crane 
was to be operated, not to who was operating it. The Agency therefore 
has taken the position that the incorporation by reference excludes the 
physical criteria listed above.
    C-DAC considered whether to include in this proposed standard 
provisions that would require equipment operators to meet particular 
physical qualifications. After considering various possible approaches, 
including those in current industry consensus standards, the Committee 
decided that it would be very difficult, and likely unnecessary, to 
identify minimum physical requirements that would be appropriate.
    First, the physical demands of equipment vary significantly 
depending on the type and, in some cases, age of the equipment. For 
example, some equipment is operated largely by electronic controls. In 
contrast, older ``friction cranes'' have pedal controls that can 
require significant strength and stamina to operate. Some equipment is 
air conditioned whereas other equipment is not. A requirement regarding 
physical qualifications would have to account for these types of 
differences.
    Second, establishing physical qualifications that would 
appropriately account for the effect of medical conditions would be a 
complex undertaking. The Committee ultimately determined that, in light 
of its members' experience that accidents caused by problems associated 
with the operator's physical/medical condition are rare, the issue of 
physical qualifications did not need to be addressed by this standard.

Substance Abuse Testing

    The Committee also considered whether to include mandatory 
substance abuse testing for equipment operators and others, such as 
signal persons, whose jobs affect safety. OSHA informed the Committee 
that the case law requires that any substance abuse testing 
requirements included in the proposal would have to meet constitutional 
safeguards.\70\ Because the

[[Page 59823]]

U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) already has substance abuse 
requirements and designed them to meet these safeguards, C-DAC 
considered whether to incorporate DOT regulations on controlled 
substance testing, Title 49 CFR part 382 and Title 49 CFR part 40, into 
the proposed rule.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \70\ See Skinner v. Railway Labor Executives' Ass'n, 109 S. Ct. 
1402 (1989) and International Brotherhood of Teamsters v. Department 
of Transportation, 932 F.2d 1292 (9th Cir. 1991).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The DOT regulations govern commercial drivers and are designed to 
protect public highway safety. Under these requirements an employer is 
required to establish a program for substance abuse testing. This 
program must include an employer's policy statement, supervisory 
education and training, controlled substances and (optional) alcohol 
testing program, evaluation of driver, and recording keeping. Under the 
DOT requirements the controlled substances and alcohol testing program 
must include six different types of testing, which include: Pre-
employment, reasonable suspicion, post-accident, random, return to duty 
and follow up testing.
    After researching the DOT regulations and several discussions with 
DOT representatives, OSHA presented information to C-DAC on the 
procedural and substantive aspects of the DOT regulations, including 
the administrative requirements, the types of testing by employers, and 
optional alcohol testing. Committee members discussed implementation 
and enforcement concerns such as an employer's inability to ``stand 
down'' a crane operator based on an unconfirmed test result, until a 
positive result is verified by a medical review officer. The parallel 
DOT requirement prohibits an employer from:

temporarily removing an employee from the performance of a safety-
sensitive function based only on a report from a laboratory to the 
MRO (medical review officer) of a confirmed positive test for a drug 
or drug metabolite, an adulterated test, or a substituted test, 
before the MRO has completed verification of the test result.

    Committee members were concerned that including a substance testing 
provision in this standard would restrict an employer's ability to 
suspend an operator who tested positive pending confirmation of the 
result. Committee members believed that many employers already have 
voluntarily instituted substance abuse testing programs. They believed 
that employers are able to judge whether an operator who tested 
positive presents a risk to workers on the site and should be able to 
remove an operator immediately if, in the employer's judgment, the 
operator presents such a risk.
    In short, the Committee balanced the potential benefits from a 
requirement for substance abuse testing that would have more 
restrictive procedures against the fact that many employers already 
have their own programs in place that, in C-DAC's view, may be more 
protective than what could be enacted as an OSHA requirement. C-DAC 
concluded that it would be better not to include a substance abuse 
requirement.

Section 1428 Signal Person Qualifications

    As discussed under Sec.  1926.1419, Signals--general requirements, 
the safety of equipment operations depends in many situations on 
signals given to the operator. It is critical that the operator 
understand the signals given, and the signal person must therefore be 
able to give clear, accurate and appropriate signals that unambiguously 
convey the needed information to the operator. The Committee was 
concerned that some signal persons are not able to recognize the 
hazards involved with certain crane operations, do not, in some cases, 
understand what it is that the crane needs to do to accomplish the 
task, and do not know how to give the appropriate signals. This poses 
hazards, such as struck-by and crushed-by hazards, due to either 
miscommunication or the communication of instructions that are 
inappropriate.
    An example of the type of accident that can be caused by 
miscommunication from not knowing the appropriate signals is as 
follows: The signal person intends to indicate to the operator to hoist 
up, since the load needs to be raised straight up. However, the signal 
person uses the standard signal for booming up in the mistaken belief 
that this signal is for hoisting up. A struck-by or crushed-by incident 
could result because, when booming up, the load will move laterally as 
well as vertically.
    A failure to understand what it is that the crane needs to do to 
accomplish a task can also lead to struck-by or crushed-by incidents. 
For example, as a crane booms down, boom deflection tends to increase, 
which has the effect of lowering the load more than if there were no 
boom deflection. If the signal person is unfamiliar with this boom 
characteristic, he or she may fail to signal in time for the load to 
stop at the correct point or may cause the load to descend too quickly.
    The Committee concluded that to prevent such accidents it is 
necessary to establish qualification criteria that would have to be met 
in order for an individual to serve as a signal person (that criteria 
is set out in proposed Sec.  1926.1428(c), discussed below). The 
employer would have the option of using one of two methods for ensuring 
that these criteria were met. Under Option (1) (proposed Sec.  
1926.1428(a)(1)), the signal person would have documentation from a 
third party qualified evaluator showing that the evaluator had 
determined that the signal person meets the requirements of Sec.  
1926.1428(c).
    This qualification would be portable, that is, any employer could 
rely on such documentation to show that a signal person meets the 
criteria. C-DAC believed that such portability would be appropriate 
because of the independence and expertise of the third party evaluator.
    Under Option (2) (proposed Sec.  1926.1428(a)(2)), an employer's 
own qualified evaluator would have determined that a signal person 
meets the qualification requirements. Since such a determination would 
not be done by an independent entity, other employers would not have a 
basis to assume that the assessment had been done correctly. Therefore, 
a qualification under this option would not be portable; other 
employers would not be permitted to rely upon it to show that the 
signal person meets these requirements.
    The term ``qualified evaluator'' used in proposed Sec.  
1926.1428(a)(2) is defined in proposed Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a person 
employed by the signal person's employer who has demonstrated that he/
she is competent in accurately assessing whether individuals meet the 
Qualification Requirements in this Subpart for a signal person.'' In 
reviewing the C-DAC document, the Agency realized that the Committee 
had not provided a definition for the term ``third party qualified 
evaluator,'' which is used in proposed Sec.  1926.1428(a)(1). OSHA has 
therefore added the following definition for this term:

An entity that, due to its independence and expertise, has 
demonstrated that it is competent in accurately assessing whether 
individuals meet the Qualification Requirements in this Subpart for 
a signal person.

    The Agency requests public comment on whether this is an 
appropriate definition for this term.
    Under proposed paragraph (a)(3), the documentation for whichever 
Option is used (that is, Option (1) or (2)) of this section, would have 
to be available while the signal person is employed by the employer. 
With respect to an

[[Page 59824]]

employer using Option (1) of this section, the signal person's 
documentation from the third party qualified evaluator would have to be 
available. The Committee believed that this documentation is essential 
for this to be a viable and effective Option. Under this option the 
employer would be permitted to rely on someone else's assessment of the 
signal person rather than its own. In such a circumstance such 
documentation is essential for this to be a reliable means of assuring 
the signal person has the requisite ability.
    In reviewing these provisions, the Agency noted that C-DAC used the 
term ``available,'' rather than ``available at the site.'' It is OSHA's 
understanding that C-DAC's intent was that the documentation be 
available at the site by, for example, the documentation being 
physically present at the site or through use of an on-site computer. 
For clarity, OSHA is planning on changing the term ``available'' to 
``available at the site.'' OSHA requests public comment on this issue.
    In addition, in reviewing the C-DAC draft of Option (2) of this 
section, the Agency noted that it does not explicitly state that 
documentation of the signal person's qualification by this method is 
required. However, proposed Sec.  1926.1428(a)(3) states that ``the 
documentation for whichever Option is used shall be available * * *.'' 
It is not clear to the Agency if C-DAC intended to require 
documentation under Option (2) as it did for Option (1), or if it only 
intended that any documentation the employer chose to create under 
Option (2) would have to be made available.
    One reason to require documentation under Option (2) is the 
Committee's concern that, at present, the operator's employer has no 
ready means of determining if the signal person (who is typically a 
different employer's employee) has the necessary knowledge and skill 
for signaling until after hoisting operations have begun. In other 
words, a problem with the signal person's ability may not become 
evident to the operator until a hazardous situation has already arisen. 
Requiring documentation, which would have to be available at the site, 
would enable that determination be made before hoisting operations 
begin.
    Requiring documentation under Option (2) of this section would 
address C-DAC's concern. Therefore, the Agency has expanded the first 
sentence of the C-DAC version of proposed Sec.  1926.1428(a)(2) to 
clarify that documentation would be required under Option (2). The 
proposed paragraph now reads, with the added language highlighted:

    (2) Option (2)--Employer's qualified evaluator. The employer has 
its qualified evaluator assess the individual and determine that the 
individual meets the Qualification requirements (see Sec.  
1926.1428(c)) and provides documentation of that determination. An 
assessment by an employer's qualified evaluator under this Option is 
not portable--other employers are not permitted to use it to meet 
the requirements of this section.

    The Agency requests public comment on whether this revision is 
appropriate.
    Proposed paragraph (b) addresses circumstances in which a signal 
person who had been qualified under Sec.  1926.1428(a) subsequently 
acts in a manner that indicates that he or she may not meet the 
qualification requirements. Such an indication would result, for 
example, where the use of Standard Method signals have been agreed to 
but the signal person does not give a Standard Method signal. Another 
example would be where the signal person gives inappropriate signals 
(such as indicating to the operator to boom up when the action that is 
needed is to hoist up).
    In such circumstances the employer would be prohibited from 
allowing the individual to continue working as a signal person until he 
or she is re-trained and has been requalified in accordance with 
proposed Sec.  1926.1428(a).
    Proposed paragraph (c) sets forth the qualification requirements 
for signal persons. Proposed paragraph (c)(1) would require that the 
signal person know and understand whatever signal method will be used 
for that particular job site.
    In addition, if hand signals are used, the signal person must know 
and understand the Standard Method for hand signals. Hand signals are 
widely used in this industry. As discussed above with respect to 
proposed Sec.  1926.1419(c), C-DAC believed that accidents due to 
miscommunication could be reduced if there were more widespread use of 
standardized hand signals. C-DAC concluded that this provision would 
promote greater use of standardized hand signals through the use of the 
Standard Method.\71\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \71\ As discussed above with respect to proposed 1926.1419(c), 
there are circumstances when it would be permissible to use hand 
signals other than the Standard Method signals. Also, under proposed 
Sec.  1926.1419, signals other than hand signals could be used.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed paragraph (c)(2) would help prevent miscommunication 
between the signal person and the crane operator by requiring the 
signal person to be competent in the application of whatever signals 
are used.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(3) would require the signal person to have a 
basic understanding of crane operation and limitations, including crane 
dynamics involved in swinging and stopping loads and boom deflection 
from hoisting loads. As explained above in the beginning of this 
discussion of proposed Sec.  1926.1428, it is critical that a signal 
person understand how the crane and load will move in response to the 
various signals he or she gives so that the signal person will give the 
most appropriate signals and reduce the occurrence of struck-by, 
crushed-by and other hazards.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(4) specifies that signal persons must know 
and understand the relevant requirements in proposed Sec. Sec.  
1926.1419-1926.1422, which address the types of signals that may be 
used and the circumstances surrounding their use, and the requirements 
of proposed Sec.  1926.1428. C-DAC included the phrase ``relevant 
requirements'' to make clear that a signal person's qualification could 
be limited with regards to the use of a particular type of signal and 
associated information.

    For example: A crane operation is going to use Standard Method 
hand signals. The signal person knows and understands all aspects of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1419 that are relevant when using hand signals, 
as well as Sec.  1926.1422, Signals--hand signal chart. In addition, 
the signal person meets the proposed requirements in proposed Sec.  
1926.1428(c)(1) and (2) with respect to the use of Standard Method 
hand signals. The signal person also has the knowledge necessary to 
meet the provision in proposed Sec.  1926.1428(c)(3), and 
demonstrates through a verbal or written test, and through a 
practical test, that he/she has this knowledge and capabilities. 
However, the signal person is unfamiliar with the contents of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1420, Signals--radio, telephone or other 
electronic transmission of signals, or of proposed Sec.  1926.1421, 
Signals--voice signals--additional requirements.
    In this example, it would be appropriate for the signal person 
to be qualified under either Option (1) or Option (2) (see proposed 
1926.1428(a)) so long as that qualification was limited to signaling 
with Standard Method hand signals. Since the signal person would be 
qualified only for Standard Method signaling, there would be no need 
for that person to have the knowledge or capabilities associated 
with other types of signaling. In such a situation employers, 
though, would be precluded from using such a person if other types 
of signals were to be used.

    Proposed paragraph (c)(5) would require that the signal person pass 
knowledge and practical tests to demonstrate that he or she meets the 
qualification requirements. It would allow the knowledge test to be 
either verbal or written. Reading or writing is

[[Page 59825]]

not normally necessary when working as a signal person. Therefore, C-
DAC believed that administering the knowledge test verbally, without a 
separate demonstration of literacy, should be permitted.

Section 1429 Qualifications of Maintenance and Repair Workers

    This proposed section addresses the qualifications that the workers 
who maintain and repair cranes/derricks must possess. Subpart N of this 
part currently contains no provisions concerning the qualifications of 
maintenance and repair workers.
    The Committee had two basic concerns regarding maintenance and 
repair work. First, it was aware of accidents that had occurred when 
the equipment that was being maintained or repaired was operated 
improperly. For example, a maintenance worker who booms down a mobile 
hydraulic crane to one side without following the manufacturer's 
instructions for deploying outriggers may overturn the equipment. C-DAC 
believed that placing restrictions on equipment operations during such 
work would help prevent such accidents.
    Second, the Committee sought to avoid hazards that can result from 
maintenance and repair work that is done improperly by ensuring that 
maintenance and repair workers are sufficiently qualified to perform 
their work. For example, if a load-bearing component is removed for 
maintenance or repair and re-installed incorrectly, unintended movement 
of the load or even a collapse could occur during operations.
Paragraph 1429(a)
    The Committee was aware that maintenance and repair workers 
sometimes need to operate equipment in order to perform maintenance, 
inspect or verify the performance of the equipment. This work typically 
involves operating the equipment to get access to components, diagnose 
problems and check repairs.
    C-DAC did not believe it necessary for maintenance, inspection and 
repair personnel to meet the requirements in proposed Sec.  1926.1427, 
Operator qualification and certification, when operating equipment for 
such purposes. The operations involved for these purposes are almost 
always done without a load on the hook. The only instance when there is 
a load on the hook is if the equipment is load tested. However, even 
when load testing, the operation is very limited, since the load is not 
moved about as it would be during crane operations.
    While such limited operation does not, in C-DAC's view, necessitate 
the maintenance, inspection or repair personnel to meet the proposed 
Sec.  1926.1427 requirements, a failure to operate the equipment 
properly even in these limited circumstances can result in accidents 
from, for example, unintended movement or tip-over. Therefore, this 
proposed paragraph would permit maintenance and repair workers to 
operate equipment during their work only under specific restrictions 
designed to ensure safety.
    Specifically, under proposed paragraph (a)(1), maintenance and 
repair workers would be permitted to operate the equipment only to the 
extent necessary to perform maintenance, inspect or verify the 
performance of the equipment. Under this provision, maintenance and 
repair workers would not be permitted to operate the equipment during 
regular operations.
    Proposed paragraph (a)(2) would require the maintenance and repair 
worker who operates equipment to either (i) do so under the direct 
supervision of an operator who meets the requirements of Sec.  
1926.1427, Operator qualification and certification, or (ii) be 
familiar with the operation, safe limitations, characteristics and 
hazards associated with the type of equipment involved.
Paragraph 1429(b)
    Proposed paragraph (b) provides that maintenance and repair 
personnel must meet the definition of a qualified person with respect 
to the equipment and maintenance/repair tasks they perform. Proposed 
Sec.  1926.1401 defines ``qualified person'' as ``a person who, by 
possession of a recognized degree, certificate, or professional 
standing, or who by extensive knowledge, training, and experience, 
successfully demonstrated the ability to solve/resolve problems 
relating to the work, the subject matter, or the project.'' In light of 
the safety hazards that could result from maintenance and repairs that 
are performed improperly, C-DAC believed that it was necessary for 
maintenance and repair workers to meet the ``qualified person'' 
criteria.
    The Committee believed that many current maintenance and repair 
workers have received comprehensive, in-depth, on-the-job training from 
highly experienced supervisors and/or co-workers and have become highly 
experienced themselves. Because of such extensive training, long 
experience and high level of knowledge, the term ``qualified persons'' 
under this provision would include such workers under the prong for 
``extensive knowledge, training, and experience.''

1430 Training

    This proposed section both references training criteria that would 
be required by other sections of this subpart and sets forth training 
criteria and requirements not otherwise included in the proposed 
standard. Additionally, paragraph Sec.  1926.1430(g) of this section 
would require employers to evaluate employees' understanding of the 
training. The following chart summarizes the location of the training 
requirements in this proposed rule:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 Paragraph                      Training requirement
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sec.   1926.1408(g).......................  Power line safety: The
                                             operator and crew assigned
                                             to work with the equipment,
                                             including spotters, must be
                                             trained in specified topics
                                             relevant to power line
                                             safety.
Sec.   1926.1424(a)(2)....................  Swing radius hazards:
                                             Employees assigned to work
                                             on or near the equipment
                                             must be trained to
                                             recognize struck-by and
                                             pinch/crush hazard areas of
                                             rotating superstructures.
                                             Also, where the employer
                                             protects against swing
                                             radius hazards by using
                                             warning signs and high
                                             visibility markings, the
                                             employer must train
                                             employees to understand
                                             what the markings signify.
Sec.   1926.1437(c)(2)(ii)................  Swing radius hazards
                                             (floating cranes): Where
                                             the employer protects
                                             against swing radius
                                             hazards on floating cranes
                                             by using warning signs and
                                             high visibility markings,
                                             the employer must train
                                             employees to understand
                                             what the markings signify.
Sec.   1926.1430(e).......................  Crush/pinch points:
                                             Employees who work with
                                             equipment must be
                                             instructed to keep clear of
                                             holes, crush/pinch points,
                                             and the hazards addressed
                                             in Sec.   1926.1424.
Sec.   1926.1430(f).......................  Tag-out: Operators and other
                                             employees authorized to
                                             start/energize equipment or
                                             operate equipment controls
                                             (such as maintenance and
                                             repair workers), shall be
                                             trained in the tag-out
                                             procedures in Sec.
                                             1926.1417(f).
Sec.   1926.1430(d).......................  Competent and Qualified
                                             Persons: Competent persons
                                             and qualified persons must
                                             be trained in the
                                             requirements of this
                                             subpart applicable to their
                                             respective roles.

[[Page 59826]]

 
Sec.   1926.1430(g)(2)....................  Refresher training
                                             (general): Refresher
                                             training in relevant topics
                                             shall be provided when the
                                             employee's conduct or an
                                             evaluation of the
                                             employee's knowledge
                                             indicates that retraining
                                             is necessary.
Sec.   1926.1430(b).......................  Signal person training:
                                             Employees who will be
                                             assigned to work as signal
                                             persons who do not meet the
                                             requirements of Sec.
                                             1926.1428(c) shall be
                                             trained in the areas
                                             addressed in that
                                             paragraph.
Sec.   1926.1428(b).......................  Signal person re-training: A
                                             signal person whose actions
                                             indicate that he or she
                                             does not meet the
                                             qualification requirements
                                             of Sec.   1926.1428 must be
                                             retrained before being
                                             allowed to continue to work
                                             as a signal person.
Sec.   1926.1427(f)(2)(i).................  Operator trainee/apprentice:
                                             Before a trainee/apprentice
                                             is assigned to operate
                                             equipment, the employee
                                             must be provided with
                                             sufficient training for
                                             operating the equipment
                                             safely under the
                                             limitations established
                                             under Sec.   1926.1427.
Sec.   1926.1427(k).......................  Operator training during
                                             phase-in period: An
                                             employee assigned to
                                             operate the equipment
                                             during the phase-in period
                                             of Sec.   1926.1427 who
                                             does not have the knowledge
                                             or ability to operate the
                                             equipment safely must be
                                             provided with necessary
                                             training prior to operating
                                             the equipment.
Sec.   1926.1430(c)(1)....................  Operator training for
                                             qualification or
                                             certification: Operators
                                             who have not yet been
                                             qualified or certified
                                             under Sec.   1926.1427 must
                                             be trained in the areas
                                             addressed in Sec.
                                             1926.1427(j). An operator
                                             who does not pass a
                                             qualification or
                                             certification test must be
                                             retrained as necessary.
Sec.   1926.1430(c)(2)(i).................  Operator training--boom
                                             hoist brake test: Operators
                                             must be trained to
                                             determine if the boom hoist
                                             brake needs to be adjusted
                                             or repaired by first
                                             raising the boom a short
                                             distance and testing the
                                             brake.
Sec.   1926.1430(c)(2)(ii)................  Operator training--emergency
                                             procedures (halting
                                             unintended movement): Where
                                             a manufacturer's emergency
                                             procedures for halting
                                             unintended equipment
                                             movement are available,
                                             operators must be trained
                                             in those procedures.
Sec.   1926.1441(e).......................  Operator training (2,000
                                             pound maximum rated
                                             capacity): Operators of
                                             equipment with a rated
                                             hoisting-lifting capacity
                                             of 2,000 pounds or less
                                             must be trained in the safe
                                             operation of the equipment
                                             the operator is using.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Committee believed that both training and testing of certain 
employees are critical to the safety of equipment use on construction 
sites.\72\ With respect to training, the Committee concluded that there 
is a need to improve upon the current general requirement for 
construction industry training established by Sec.  1926.21, Safety 
training and education, which requires the employer to (1) ``establish 
and supervise programs for the education and training of employers and 
employees in the recognition, avoidance and prevention of unsafe 
conditions in employments covered by the [OSH] Act,'' Sec.  1926.21(a), 
and (2) ``instruct each employee in the recognition and avoidance of 
unsafe conditions and the regulations applicable to his work 
environment to control or eliminate any hazards or other exposure to 
illness or injury,'' Sec.  1926.21(b).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \72\ With respect to operator testing, as discussed in 
connection with Sec.  1926.1427, Operator qualification and 
certification, this proposed standard places special emphasis on 
ensuring that equipment operators have acquired the knowledge and 
skills necessary to operate their equipment safely. This proposed 
standard also includes specific assessment requirements for signal 
persons (see proposed Sec.  1926.1428(a)).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    C-DAC found that more specific provisions were needed to ensure 
that employees are able to work safely with and around cranes. First, 
greater specificity would highlight the particular tasks (and the 
hazards associated with them) for which certain types of training are 
necessary. Second, training tailored to the specific hazards faced by 
particular employees would be an efficient and effective means of 
preventing injury.
    Proposed paragraph (a), Overhead powerlines, states that employees 
must be trained as outlined at proposed Sec.  1926.1408(g) (see the 
explanation of hazards and training requirements in the discussion of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1408(g)).
    Under proposed paragraph (b), Signal persons, employees who will be 
assigned to work as signal persons who need training in order to meet 
the requirements of Sec.  1926.1428(c) must be trained in the areas 
addressed in that paragraph. As discussed in relation to proposed Sec.  
1926.1428(c), each employee who will serve as a signal person must pass 
a verbal or written test and a practical test demonstrating the 
required knowledge and skills. Any such employee who does not pass 
those tests must receive additional training in the areas of 
deficiency.
    Proposed paragraph (c), Operators, provides, at proposed paragraph 
(c)(1), that an equipment operator who is neither qualified nor 
certified under Sec.  1926.1427, Operator qualification and 
certification, would be required to be trained in the areas addressed 
in Sec.  1926.1427(j).
    This proposed paragraph applies to operators who will need to be 
qualified or certified under Sec.  1926.1427 but who are not yet 
qualified or certified or who have lost their qualification or 
certification. Operators in this category would include those who, 
during the four-year phase-in period of Sec.  1926.1427, would not yet 
be required to be qualified or certified. Also in this category would 
be employees who the employer has decided will be assigned to work as 
operators and will need to be qualified or certified under Sec.  
1926.1427, as well as operators who need such training in order to 
become re-qualified or re-certified, or who failed to pass a 
qualification or certification test.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2) would require operators to be trained in 
two practices. Paragraph (c)(2)(i) would require training in the 
testing of the boom hoist brake on friction equipment prior to moving a 
boom off a support to determine whether the brake requires adjustment 
or repair. The purpose of this procedure is to ensure that the brake is 
sufficient before the boom is at too great an angle or height. Using 
this procedure, if the brake is deficient, the boom will fall only a 
very short distance. This provides an additional safety practice 
related to the hazards resulting from an uncontrolled boom. Moving the 
boom when the brake is not working properly can result in uncontrolled 
lowering of the boom, which can endanger workers in the proximity of 
the hoisting equipment.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2)(ii) would require the operator to be 
trained in the manufacturer's emergency procedures, when available, for 
stopping unintended equipment movement. This provides another level of 
protection to minimize employee injury resulting from unintended 
equipment movement. The Committee recognized that manufacturer's 
emergency procedures for halting unintended equipment movement may not 
always be available and therefore this training would be required only 
when the procedures are available.
    The C-DAC version of Sec.  1926.1430(c)(2) began: ``In addition to 
training in the areas addressed in Sec.  1926.1427(j), operators shall 
be trained

[[Page 59827]]

in the following practices.'' This wording implied that all operators 
must be trained in the topics listed in Sec.  1926.1427(j). However, 
Sec.  1926.1427(j) is not a training requirement but sets forth 
criteria that must be addressed in a qualification or certification 
test. Operators who are sufficiently knowledgeable in these topics 
through prior training and/or experience need not receive additional 
training under this proposed standard. To avoid any confusion in this 
regard, OSHA has changed C-DAC's wording to read, in proposed Sec.  
1926.1430(c)(2): ``Operators shall be trained in the following 
practices.''
    The SBREFA Panel recommended that OSHA seek public comment on 
several issues related to operator training. Several Small Entity 
Representatives (SERs) believed that the training requirements in the 
proposed standard are too broad and should instead be keyed to the 
particular operations the operator performs and the particular 
equipment he/she operates. The SBREFA Panel also recommended that OSHA 
consider and ask for public comment on whether a more limited operator 
training program would be appropriate for operations based on the 
capacity and type of equipment and nature of operations.
    The Panel noted that proposed Sec.  1926.1427(j)(1)(i) requires 
operator training in ``the information necessary for safe operation of 
the specific type of equipment the individual will operate'' and 
understood this to address the SERs' concern that operators of smaller 
capacity equipment used in less complex operations should require less 
training than those operators of higher capacity, complex equipment 
used in more complex situations. The Panel recommended that OSHA seek 
public comment on whether this point should be made more clearly, and 
OSHA welcomes such comment.
    The Panel further recommended that OSHA consider and ask for public 
comment as to whether the supervisor responsible for oversight for an 
operator in the pre-qualification period described at Sec.  
1926.1427(f) should have additional training beyond that required at 
Sec.  1926.1427(f)(2)(iii)(B). The discussion was focused on the issue 
of whether the supervisor should be trained to be able to take over the 
controls, if necessary, while supervising the operator in the pre-
qualification period.
    As the proposed rule is written, when the supervisor is not a 
certified operator, he/she must be certified on the written portion of 
the test and be familiar with the proper use of the equipment's 
controls; the supervisor is not required to have passed a practical 
operating test. In accordance with the Panel's recommendation, OSHA 
requests comment on whether the supervisor needs additional training in 
this regard than the proposal would require.
    Paragraph (d), Competent persons and qualified persons, would 
require that competent persons and qualified persons be trained 
regarding the requirements of this Subpart applicable to their 
respective roles. See Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions, for a description 
of what is necessary to be a competent person or a qualified person.
    A person assigned by an employer to be a ``competent person'' or 
``qualified person'' under this proposed rule must already have had a 
certain level of training (or, in the case of a competent person, 
training or experience) in order to meet the criteria applicable to 
such a designation. This paragraph does not address such training--it 
would not require the employer to provide the training needed for an 
employee to meet those criteria in order to become a competent or 
qualified person. The sole purpose of this paragraph is to require the 
employer to ensure that both competent persons and qualified persons 
are trained on the requirements of this Subpart that are applicable to 
the person's role and responsibility. For example, a ``competent 
person'' assigned to conduct shift inspections under Sec.  1926.1412(d) 
must be trained under proposed Sec.  1926.1430(d) in the required 
elements of a shift inspection. This training is necessary to ensure 
the competent person or qualified person is aware of his/her 
responsibility under this subpart for finding/correcting hazardous 
conditions.
    Proposed paragraph (e), Crush/pinch points, provides that employees 
who work with equipment covered by this Subpart must be instructed to 
stay clear of holes, crush/pinch points and the hazards that are 
addressed in Sec.  1926.1424, Work area control. See the discussion of 
hazards and requirements in the discussion of proposed Sec.  1926.1424.
    Proposed paragraph (f), Tag-out, states that operators and other 
employees authorized to start or energize equipment or operate 
equipment controls (such as maintenance and repair workers) must be 
trained according to the tag-out procedures in Sec.  1926.1417(f). See 
the discussion of tag-out procedures discussed in proposed Sec.  
1926.1417(f).
    Proposed paragraph (g), Training administration, would require that 
employers ensure employees understand required training and provide 
refresher training when necessary. Specifically, proposed Sec.  
1926.1430(g)(1) would require that the employee be evaluated to verify 
that he/she understands the information provided in training required 
by this Subpart. The Committee determined that training without any 
follow-up measure to determine understanding or effectiveness would not 
achieve the goal of a safe work environment.
    Proposed paragraph (g)(2) would require the employer to provide 
refresher training of an employee when, based on evaluation or employee 
conduct, it is indicated that retraining is needed.

Section 1431 Hoisting Personnel

    Cranes and derricks are designed to move materials, not personnel. 
However, situations arise when a crane or derrick can be the safest 
means to move employees to their work area and/or to hold them in 
position while they do their work.
    Although there are situations when using a crane or derrick to lift 
personnel to work areas is the safest means of accomplishing the task, 
there are inherent dangers in such an operation because of the heights, 
equipment and environment involved. A number of workers have been 
killed and seriously injured while being lifted by a crane or derrick 
when the equipment's lifting mechanism malfunctioned and they did not 
have adequate fall protection. The height to which the workers are 
lifted means that any instability in their supporting platform creates 
a serious fall hazard. See 53 FR 29116, 29117-18 (Aug. 2, 1988) 
(discussing accidents that occurred when cranes were used to lift 
personnel). Because of that risk, in 1988 OSHA added regulations to 
subpart N of this part to both limit the use of cranes for lifting 
personnel and increase employee protection when it is necessary to use 
cranes for this purpose. See 29 CFR 1926.550(g), Crane or derrick 
suspended personnel platforms.
    Because of the inherent hazards such operations present, OSHA 
currently permits cranes and derricks to be used to lift personnel only 
``when the erection, use, and dismantling of conventional means of 
reaching the worksite, such as a personnel hoist, ladder, stairway, 
aerial lift, elevating work platform or scaffold, would be more 
hazardous, or is not possible because of structural design or worksite 
conditions.'' 29 CFR 1926.550(g)(2). When a crane or derrick is used to 
lift personnel, a personnel platform that complies with requirements in 
Sec.  1926.550(g) must be used.
    The Committee concluded that the current subpart N standards 
governing

[[Page 59828]]

personnel hoisting by equipment have resulted in a reduction of 
accidents and determined that their fundamental substance should be 
maintained in the proposed standard. Accordingly, the Committee 
proposal largely continues the current requirements of subpart N, Sec.  
1926.550(g). Some changes have been made to provide additional safety 
and to eliminate ambiguity. Requirements specific to certain 
activities, such as personnel hoisting in pile-driving operations, 
drill shafts, storage tanks and marine transfer have been added. The 
discussion below focuses on these changes and additions.
    One of the resources the Committee consulted in developing this 
proposed paragraph was ASME B30.23-1998, ``Personnel Lifting Systems.'' 
Since the Committee finished its work, that industry consensus standard 
was superseded by ASME B30.23-2005. OSHA has compared the two versions 
and found no substantive differences in the provisions that correspond 
to paragraphs in this proposal. Where the ASME standard is cited in 
this section, the citations will refer to the 2005 version.
    OSHA stresses that the proposed provisions in this section would be 
additional requirements that must be met when equipment is used to lift 
personnel. During such use, all other applicable requirements of this 
proposed standard would also be required to be met.
Paragraph 1431(a)
    This proposed paragraph states that equipment may be used to hoist 
personnel only when all other means of reaching the work area would 
present a greater hazard or would not be possible because of the 
project's structural design or worksite conditions. The same limitation 
is currently found in Subpart N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(2). It reflects 
OSHA's longstanding recognition that using cranes and derricks to lift 
personnel is inherently hazardous and should only be done when it is 
either the least hazardous means or when, in light of the configuration 
of the worksite, it is the only means of performing required work.
    This proposed paragraph differs from the current Sec.  
1926.550(g)(2) by substituting the word ``equipment'' for ``crane or 
derrick.'' The terms ``crane'' and ``derrick'' do not represent the 
full spectrum of equipment that would be covered by this standard. See 
Sec.  1926.1400, Scope for a description of the equipment covered by 
this Subpart.
    Additionally, this proposed paragraph would not apply to work 
covered by 29 CFR part 1926 subpart R, Steel Erection. Subpart R, at 
Sec.  1926.753(c)(4), allows the use of equipment to hoist personnel in 
a platform that complies with Sec.  1926.550 without the need for a 
showing that other means of reaching the work area would create a 
greater hazard or are impossible. This provision was included in 
Subpart R because steel connectors must often work at high locations 
before there is a solid structure to stand on and where a personnel 
platform suspended from a crane is the safest place for them to work. 
OSHA's reasons for including this exception in Subpart R are discussed 
in detail in the preamble to the steel erection standard, 66 FR 5196, 
5209 (Jan. 18, 2001).
Paragraph 1431(b) Use of Personnel Platform
    This proposed paragraph would generally require the use of a 
personnel platform when hoisting employees and require that criteria 
specified in proposed Sec.  1926.1431(e) be met for such platforms. It 
also provides for exceptions to the use of personnel platforms that are 
not currently allowed by Sec.  1926.550(g)(2).
    For reasons discussed above, proposed Sec.  1926.1431(b)(1) would 
generally require that a personnel platform be used when hoisting 
employees and that the platform meet the requirements of Sec.  
1926.1431(e) of this proposed section. As discussed below, the 
requirements of Sec.  1926.1431(e) are comparable to requirements 
currently found in Sec.  1926.550(g).
    Proposed paragraph (b)(2), Exceptions, sets forth the construction 
activities in which hoisting personnel without using a personnel 
platform would be allowed because, in the Committee's view, use of a 
personnel platform might be infeasible or more hazardous than an 
alternative means of hoisting personnel. These activities are: Hoisting 
employees into and out of drill shafts 8 feet and smaller in diameter, 
pile driving operations, marine worksites, storage tanks (steel or 
concrete), and shaft operations and chimney operations. This proposed 
section contains specific requirements for hoisting personnel during 
these operations at Sec.  1926.1431(o), (p), (r), and (s) that provide 
for alternatives to the use of a personnel platform. For drill shafts, 
pile driving operations, storage tanks, and shaft and chimney 
operations, which present access restrictions, the alternative to a 
personnel platform would be a boatswain's chair. For marine worksites, 
it would be a marine hoisted personnel transfer device, which is 
designed to facilitate exit in the event it enters the water.
    For the purposes of this proposed standard, a ``marine worksite'' 
is a construction worksite that is located in, on or above the water 
(see proposed Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions). The Committee determined 
it was necessary to clearly define this term since marine worksite 
conditions and hazards differ significantly from non-marine worksites. 
In particular, with respect to equipment covered by this section, the 
marine worksite presents unique hazards for equipment stability and 
environmental conditions affecting operations.
    Section 1926.1401 defines a ``marine hoisted personnel transfer 
device'' as a device, such as a ``transfer net'' used to hoist an 
employee to or from a marine worksite that is designed to protect the 
employee during a marine transfer and that allows for rapid entry/exit 
from the device. Such devices do not include a boatswain's chair when 
hoisted by equipment covered by this standard. The Committee determined 
it was necessary to clearly specify the type of device that will or 
will not be considered a marine hoisted personnel transfer device for 
this standard, as marine worksites involve unique conditions and 
hazards with respect to hoisting employees. The Committee determined 
that it was necessary to require a device designed for such conditions 
while allowing flexibility so the employer may select the most 
appropriate device based on the site and working conditions.
    Each of the exceptions is discussed below under the particular 
paragraph that addresses it. Subpart N of this part does not currently 
address these worksite activities (nor does ASME B30.23-2005 address 
these particular topics).
Paragraph 1431(c) Equipment Set-Up
    This paragraph sets forth the basic criteria for equipment set-up 
for personnel hoisting. The requirements continue and refine those 
currently in Subpart N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(3)(i)(D).
    Proposed paragraph (c)(1) would require the equipment to be on 
level, firm and stable footing. It differs from the current standard at 
Sec.  1926.550(g)(3)(i)(D) in that a qualified person must determine if 
the footing is ``sufficiently firm and stable.'' Stable footing is 
essential to minimize the hazard of the equipment tipping while 
hoisting personnel. ASME B30.23-3.2.2(a)(4)-2005 has a similar 
requirement, with the operator of the equipment determining equipment 
to be level within one percent during set-up

[[Page 59829]]

and hoisting operations. The Committee believed that the danger of 
equipment potentially tipping when hoisting personnel justifies the 
need for a qualified person to examine and approve the equipment's 
stability. See Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions for the criteria for a 
qualified person.
    Proposed paragraph (c)(2) specifies that each outrigger be both 
extended and locked. The amount of extension must be the same and also 
be in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications. This is 
similar to the current requirement of Sec.  1926.550(g)(3)(i)(D); 
however, the current requirement that outriggers be ``fully deployed'' 
has been changed to require that outriggers be equally extended and in 
accordance with manufacturer's procedures and load charts. Equal 
extension eliminates the hazard of the operator forgetting that one or 
more outriggers has a shorter extension and swinging into that area 
with a load that exceeds the crane's capacity in that area. The 
Committee determined that a requirement of full extension of all 
outriggers would not be appropriate for all worksite conditions. Nor is 
it necessary, as long as partial extension is within the manufacturer's 
procedures; the critical factor is to have each outrigger extended 
equally, whether it is a full or shorter extension.
    Proper placement and deployment of outriggers is essential to 
prevent the hazard of equipment tipping while hoisting personnel.
Paragraph 1431(d) Equipment Criteria
    This paragraph sets forth requirements for the equipment used to 
hoist personnel. These requirements refine and expand the equipment 
requirements currently in Subpart N.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(1): Capacity: use of suspended personnel 
platform, would continue the requirement at Sec.  1926.550(g)(3)(i)(E) 
to limit the total load to 50 per cent of the equipment's rated 
capacity. It would clarify the current standard by specifying that the 
total load includes the hook, load line, and rigging. The 50 percent 
capacity limit would not apply during equipment proof testing.
    The 50 percent limit reflects that using this equipment to hoist 
personnel requires additional safety precautions than when lifting 
materials. The limit provides for an extra margin of safety to prevent 
overloading the equipment, which could cause tip-over or structural 
collapse.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(2), Capacity: use of boom-attached personnel 
platforms, establishes the load limit at 50 percent of rated capacity 
for platforms that are attached to the boom. It also provides an 
exception to the 50 percent capacity limit during equipment proof 
testing. The same reasons for the 50 percent limit in Sec.  
1926.1431(d)(1) also apply here.
    The Committee considered prohibiting the use of boom attached 
personnel platforms for hoisting personnel. However, the Committee 
concluded that it was unaware of any reason to prohibit their use. As 
discussed above under Sec.  1926.1400, Scope, Committee members were 
concerned that boom-attached platforms may present additional hazards 
not addressed in this proposed standard, and OSHA is requesting comment 
on whether additional requirements should apply when using them.
    In reviewing the C-DAC consensus document, the Agency determined 
that the Committee did not address the issue of capacity when no 
personnel platform is used. Since there are several situations where no 
platform will be used at all (these are listed in proposed Sec.  
1926.1431(b)(2) of this section), the Agency believes that a capacity 
limit similar to those set by the Committee when using a personnel 
platform is needed. Therefore, OSHA has added proposed Sec.  
1926.1431(d)(3), Capacity: hoisting personnel without a personnel 
platform, which establishes the load limit at 50 percent of rated 
capacity. In calculating the load, the weight of the personnel, 
including the hook, load line, rigging and any other equipment that 
imposes a load must be included. The addition of this proposed 
paragraph has resulted in the renumbering of the remaining paragraphs 
in proposed Sec.  1926.1431(d) (as compared to the numbering in the C-
DAC document).
    Proposed paragraph (d)(4) would require engaging all the 
equipment's locking or braking devices when the platform has reached 
its stationary work position. The purpose is to minimize sudden and 
unintended movement or tipping of the platform when employees have 
reached the work area.
    This differs from current provision Sec.  1926.550(g)(3)(i)(C) in 
Subpart N in that the proposed provision adds a requirement to use 
operator actuated secondary braking/locking features, when available, 
in addition to other braking systems. This is similar to sections 
1.2.2(f) and 3.2.2(a)(19) of ASME B30.23-2005 for automatic brake 
systems and setting of brakes before work begins from the platform.
    The subsections of proposed paragraph (d)(5), Devices, would 
require certain safety devices for equipment addressed by this proposed 
section.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(5)(i) would address the requirements for 
equipment with a variable angle boom. Such equipment would be required 
to be equipped with both a boom angle indicator and boom hoist limiting 
device (except for derricks). Use of these devices minimizes the 
potential for hoisting personnel at an unsafe angle, which could result 
in the platform or equipment tipping.
    A boom angle indicator is currently required in Sec.  
1926.550(g)(3)(ii)(A). Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(d)(4)(i) would add a 
requirement for a boom hoist limiting device. The Committee believed 
that both a boom angle indicator and a boom hoist limiting device are 
necessary to prevent the boom from being moved to unsafe angles. A boom 
hoist limiting device would be required when hoisting personnel, even 
though it would not otherwise be required for equipment manufactured 
before December 17, 1969 under proposed Sec.  1926.1416(d)(1) (see 
discussion of proposed Sec.  1926.1416(d)--Operational aids). This 
reflects the need for equipment used to hoist personnel to have 
additional safety features.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(5)(i) would not apply to derricks. This is 
consistent with C-DAC's recommendation that boom hoist limiting devices 
and boom angle indicators not be required on derricks. See proposed 
Sec.  1926.1436(f), which addresses operational aids for derricks. As 
discussed below, the Committee believed that these devices were not 
needed on derricks because the current practice in the industry of 
marking the boom hoist cable of derricks with visible caution and stop 
marks corresponding to maximum and minimum allowable boom angles is a 
safe work practice. Accordingly, paragraph Sec.  1926.1436(f) permits 
employers to use this practice. Alternatively, it permits employers to 
use an electronic or other device that either signals the operator in 
time to prevent the boom from moving past its minimum and maximum 
angles or automatically prevents such movement.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(5)(ii) would address the requirements for 
equipment, including derricks, when a luffing jib is used for personnel 
hoisting. This paragraph would require all equipment to have both a jib 
angle indicator and jib hoist limiting device. Use of these devices 
minimizes the likelihood of platform tipping and equipment failure.
    Neither the current Subpart N nor ASME B30.23-2005 addresses the 
use of luffing jibs for personnel hoisting. The Committee believed that 
this proposed requirement is needed to help improve

[[Page 59830]]

the safety of crane and derrick operations.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(5)(iii) would require a telescoping boom to 
either have a device indicating the boom's extended length or measuring 
marks that are clear and visible to the equipment operator. This would 
allow the operator to easily ascertain the extension length in order to 
stay within safe operating parameters. This requirement would address 
the hazard of equipment or platform tipping or equipment failure that 
can result when a telescoping boom is extended beyond appropriate 
operating parameters. Currently, Sec.  1926.550(g)(3)(ii)(B) permits, 
as an alternative to equipping the boom with a device to indicate the 
boom's extended length, an ``accurate determination'' to be made of the 
load radius to be used prior to hoisting personnel. Proposed Sec.  
1926.1431(d)(5)(iii)'s provision for measuring marks on the boom would 
enable this determination to be made accurately if the boom is not 
equipped with a device indicating its extended length.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(5)(iv), Anti-two-block, would require a 
device that automatically prevents contact between a component on the 
hoist line (load block, overhaul block, etc.) with the boom tip, which 
can damage or sever the load line or cause other forms of equipment 
failure. This contact between the hoist line component and the boom tip 
is referred to as two-blocking. The purpose of the anti-two-blocking 
device is to prevent this condition, which can result in a sudden drop 
of the personnel platform. See the discussion of two-blocking in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1416, Operational aids.
    Paragraph (d)(5)(iv) is similar to current Sec.  
1926.550(g)(3)(ii)(C) and adds an exception for pile driving 
operations. The proposed requirement would not apply when hoisting 
personnel in pile driving operations due to the fact the vibration of 
the pile driving activity makes use of an anti-two-block device 
ineffective.
    In reviewing this portion of the C-DAC document, the Agency has 
noted that the use of alternative measures for preventing two-blocking 
during pile driving operations would be required under proposed Sec.  
1926.1431(p)(2). However, the C-DAC language for proposed provision 
Sec.  1926.1431(d)(5)(iv) did not refer to the requirement for 
alternative measures. Therefore, OSHA has added a reference to the 
exception in Sec.  1926.1431(d)(5)(iv) advising the reader that 
alternative measures are required under Sec.  1926.1431(p)(2).
    Proposed paragraph (d)(5)(v), Controlled load lowering, would 
require a system or device on the load line hoist drum that positively 
regulates the lowering speed. It would require this system to be used 
when hoisting personnel, in addition to a load line hoist brake. The 
purpose is to minimize the likelihood of free fall of the personnel 
that could lead to hitting the ground from a sudden fast descent. 
Additionally, the proposed paragraph would note that free fall of the 
load line hoist is prohibited and use of equipment in which the boom 
hoist mechanism can free fall is prohibited. Refer to proposed Sec.  
1926.1426, Free fall/controlled load lowering, for additional 
information.
    Currently, 1926.550(g)(3)(ii)(D) similarly requires a system or 
device that positively regulates the lowering speed. Proposed Sec.  
1926.1431(d)(5)(v) would explicitly specify that the system must be 
used when hoisting personnel.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(5)(vi), Proper operation required, specifies 
that personnel hoisting would only occur when and if all the devices 
required in Sec.  1926.1431(d)(5)(i) through (v) are in proper working 
order. It would also mandate that if a required device stops working 
while personnel are being hoisted, all personnel hoisting operations 
must be stopped and not resumed until all devices are working properly. 
Alternative measures would not be allowed.
    The purpose of this paragraph is to clearly establish that 
personnel hoisting may only be done when all necessary safety devices 
are working properly. The hazards addressed by this requirement 
include: structural failure, equipment tipping, dropping personnel, and 
platform tipping. These are severe hazards, so safeguards to prevent 
them are clearly needed.
    This paragraph does not have a specific corollary in the current 
Subpart N, although the Subpart N provisions that require safety 
devices implies that they be working properly. Sections 3.2.2(a)(23) 
and 1.2.2 of ASME B30.23-2005 are comparable to this requirement.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(6) would prohibit the use of a personnel 
platform directly attached to a luffing jib. Thus, only a suspended 
type of personnel platform may be used on a luffing jib. The Committee 
determined that it would be dangerous to use a boom-attached personnel 
platform if attached to a luffing jib and that a complete prohibition 
of use of a boom-attached personnel platform to a luffing jib is 
appropriate.
Paragraph 1431(e) Personnel Platform Criteria
    This proposed paragraph would establish the minimum criteria for a 
personnel platform. The criteria are similar to those currently in 29 
CFR part 1926 subpart N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(i) and (ii). However, 
Sec.  1926.1431(e)(2) would add the requirement that the connection 
system keep the platform within 10 degrees of level and Sec.  
1926.1431(e)(10) would add a visibility requirement for the overhead 
protective cover to the personnel platform.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(1) would require that both the platform and 
its attachment/suspension system be designed by a qualified person who 
understands structural design and be designed for the particular 
function of personnel hoisting. The purpose of this paragraph is to 
clearly stipulate that the platform must be designed for employee 
safety. This would address the hazards of structural failure of the 
platform, failure of the attachment/suspension system, and preclude the 
use of designs that would be inappropriate for hoisting people. This is 
similar to the current 29 CFR part 1926 subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(4)(i)(A), which states that either a ``qualified engineer 
or a qualified person competent in structural design'' shall design the 
platform, but clarifies that even if the platform is designed by a 
qualified engineer, that engineer must understand structural design. 
See Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions, for the definition of ``qualified 
person.''
    Proposed paragraph (e)(2) would require the system used to connect 
the personnel platform to the equipment to be within 10 degrees of 
level. This would address the hazard of platform tipping by maintaining 
the platform close to level. This requirement is not currently in 
subpart N.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(3) would require the platform designer to 
consider the movement of employees on the platform and design the 
suspension system to minimize platform tipping from such movement. The 
purpose is to design the platform in such a way as to limit the 
likelihood of platform tipping while employees are working from the 
platform. This continues the requirement of subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(4)(i)(B).
    Proposed paragraph (e)(4) would require the platform to support its 
own weight plus a minimum of five times the maximum intended load 
without failure. This limit would provide an adequate margin of safety 
for employee protection from structural failure of the platform. The 
guardrail system and personal fall arrest system anchorages

[[Page 59831]]

would not be subject to this requirement but instead would be subject 
to proposed Sec.  1926.1431(e)(6). This continues a requirement in 
proposed Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(i)(C).
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5) would require that welding of any part of 
the platform or its component parts be performed by a welder who is 
certified and familiar with the weld grades, types and material 
specified in the particular platform's design. This requirement is 
designed to prevent structural failure of the platform due to improper 
welding.
    ``Certified welder'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a welder 
that meets the nationally recognized certification requirements that 
are applicable to the task being performed.'' The requirement for a 
``certified'' welder modifies the current requirement of Subpart N's 
Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(ii)(H), which requires a ``qualified'' welder. It 
is similar to section 1.2.1(b)(2) of ASME B30.23-2005 welding standards 
for personnel platforms. The Committee believed that because proper 
platform welding is so critical to employee safety, it is necessary for 
the welding to be done by a certified welder.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(6) would detail the requirements of the 
platform for guardrails, fall arrest anchorage points and enclosure of 
the platform between the toeboard and mid-rail. Proper guardrails and 
fall arrest anchorage points are critical fall protection devices, and 
the required platform enclosure is needed to protect employees below 
from falling objects.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(6) adds to the current requirements of 29 
CFR part 1926 subpart N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(ii)(A) in specifying 
that ``points to which personal fall arrest systems are attached must 
meet the anchorage requirements in 29 CFR part 1926 subpart M.'' This 
is similar to the guardrail and anchorage specifications in sections 
1.1.1(b)(2) and (3) of ASME B30.23-2005. This would update the 
requirements for the anchorage so that the same degree of protection 
currently required under Subpart M would be required under this 
standard.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(7) would require the placement of a grab 
rail within the entire perimeter of the personnel platform except for 
access gates/doors, where a grab rail would be impractical. The grab 
rail provides a place for the employee to hold onto while in the 
platform instead of using a guardrail as a hand hold. Use of the 
guardrail for this purpose exposes the employee's hand to being smashed 
by external objects. This would modify the current requirement of 
Subpart N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(ii)(B) by clarifying that grab rails 
are not required on the access gates/door. It is similar to ASME 
B30.23-1.1.1(b)(4)-2005.
    Proposed paragraphs (e)(8)(i) and (ii), Access gates/doors, would 
specify that access gates/doors be designed to not swing outward and 
must also have a mechanism that will keep the gate/door from being 
opened unintentionally. A door that swings outward or opens 
unexpectedly puts the employee at risk of fall from the platform. This 
modifies the current requirements of Subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(4)(ii)(C) and (D) by requiring that access doors not swing 
outward at any time and expands the list of types of gates/doors to 
include ``swinging, sliding, folding, or other types.'' Section 
1.1.1(b)(8) of ASME B30.23-2005 has similar requirements for access 
gates.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(9) would require adequate headroom to allow 
employees to stand upright in the personnel platform. This would 
provide adequate space for the employee to work from the platform while 
keeping his/her entire body within the platform, and would also 
contribute to greater stability during platform movement. This 
continues the current requirement at Sec.  1925.550(g)(4)(ii)(E).
    Proposed paragraph (e)(10) would require an overhead protective 
cover attached to the platform when an employee is exposed to falling 
objects. It would mandate that the overhead cover of the platform be of 
such material and design to provide visibility for both the operator 
and the employees on the platform, while maintaining adequate 
protection from falling objects. The reference to a wire mesh with \1/
2\ inch openings is an example of a type of material and design that 
could be used for the platform cover. The nature of the worksite 
conditions and foreseeable falling objects would determine the type of 
material and design to provide the necessary protection for the 
platform occupants. Full overhead protection (i.e., no visibility 
through the protective cover) would be allowed when conditions are such 
that a full protective cover is necessary to protect employees from 
falling objects. The visibility requirement is similar to section 
1.1.1(b)(11) of ASME B30.23-2005. This proposed paragraph would change 
current Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(ii)(F) by clarifying the type of overhead 
protection that is required.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(10) explicitly states that the protection 
provided by the cover would be supplemental to the protection provided 
by hard hats--the use of hard hats would not obviate the requirement 
for the cover. While a hard hat provides some protection to an 
employee's head from overhead hazards, it does not protect the rest of 
an employee's body from such hazards.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(11) would require that all edges of the 
platform be smooth enough to prevent injury. The purpose is to protect 
the employee from injuries such as lacerations and puncture wounds. A 
similar requirement is found in Subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(4)(ii)(G).
    Proposed paragraph (e)(12) would require conspicuously posting a 
plate or other permanent written notice on the personnel platform 
listing the weight of the platform itself and the platform's rated load 
capacity. The purpose is to make employees aware of the platform's 
limits to prevent overloading, which could result in structural failure 
of the platform or equipment, and to facilitate compliance with Sec.  
1926.1431(f)(1), which prohibits loading the platform in excess of its 
rated capacity.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(12) would modify the current requirement of 
Subpart N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(ii)(I) by deleting the phrase ``or 
maximum intended load.'' That phrase was included in Subpart N because 
platforms made on the worksite did not have a manufacturer's rated 
capacity. However, under proposed Sec.  1926.1431(e)(1), all personnel 
platforms would be required to be designed by a qualified person 
familiar with structural design, and such a person will be able to 
determine the rated capacity for the platform.
Paragraph 1431(f) Personnel Platform Loading
    Proposed paragraph (f)(1) would prohibit loading the platform in 
excess of its rated load capacity. Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(f)(1) 
differs from current Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(ii)(A) by deleting a 
provision stating that if a personnel platform does not have a rated 
load capacity it shall not be loaded in excess of its maximum intended 
load. The ``maximum intended load'' provision was deleted for the same 
reason previously discussed under Sec.  1926.4131(e)(12).
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(i) would require that the platform be 
used exclusively for personnel hoisting and not for hoisting materials. 
However, it would allow the necessary materials and tools for the work 
activity to be hoisted along with the employees. Using a personnel 
platform to hoist materials can lead to damage of the platform due to 
materials shifting or excessive loading. This can subject the platform 
to structural stresses that may not be visible and contribute to 
platform structural failure. This would continue

[[Page 59832]]

the current requirement of Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(iii)(C).
    Proposed paragraph (f)(2)(ii) would provide an exception to 
(f)(2)(i) to allow materials and tools on the personnel platform during 
the trial lift as long as the materials/tools are properly secured and 
distributed as specified in Sec.  1926.1431(f)(3). Since the materials 
and tools would be secured, they would not damage the platform. Subpart 
N, at Sec.  1926.550(g)(5)(i), currently allows materials/tools to be 
on the platform during the trial lift but does not specify that they 
need to be properly secured and distributed.
    Proposed paragraphs (f)(3)(i) and (ii) would require that any 
materials and tools that are on the platform during the hoist be 
secured, and evenly distributed within the platform itself while the 
platform is suspended. These precautions are designed to prevent 
platform tipping and injury to employees due to movement of materials 
or tools during the hoist. These requirements would continue those in 
Subpart N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(iii)(D) & (E).
    Proposed paragraph (f)(4) would limit the number of employees on a 
personnel platform to the lesser of either the number needed to perform 
the work or the maximum number for which the platform was designed. The 
purpose is to expose the fewest possible number of employees to the 
hazards presented when hoisting personnel and to minimize the load on 
the platform to the extent possible. This would provide greater clarity 
than the current requirement of Subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(4)(iii)(B) by noting that the number of platform occupants 
is limited not only by work requirements but also the platform's 
design.
Paragraph 1431(g) Attachment and Rigging
    Proposed paragraph (g)(1) would establish the requirements for the 
device used to connect the personnel platform to the hoist line. It 
would expand and clarify the requirements of Subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(4)(iv)(B).
    The nature and type of connector used is critical to the overall 
safety of the suspended personnel platform. Under the proposed 
paragraph, a hook used to connect the hoist line and personnel platform 
must be the type that can be closed/locked and must be closed/locked 
when attached to the platform. When a shackle is used in lieu of a 
hook, it must be of the alloy anchor type with either: a bolt, nut and 
retaining pin in place; or: the screw type with the screw pin secured 
against accidental removal. Any detachable device other than a shackle 
or hook that is used must be closable and lockable to the same extent a 
hook or shackle would be when in compliance with this proposed section. 
When used to connect the personnel platform, such a device must be 
closed and locked to ensure that the platform is secured to the hoist 
line.
    Proposed paragraph (g)(2) would require that each bridle leg in a 
rope bridle be connected to the master link/shackle in a manner that 
would allow the platform's load to be equally distributed among each 
bridle leg. The purpose of this type of attachment is to avoid platform 
tipping. The proposed requirement differs from current Subpart N at 
Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(iv)(A) by changing the phrase ``wire rope'' to 
``rope.'' Currently, the only type of rope that Subpart N permits to be 
used for bridles is wire rope, and it is C-DAC's and OSHA's 
understanding that no other type of rope suitable for this purpose is 
currently available. However, the Committee believed that synthetic 
ropes now under development could someday meet the safety factor 
requirement in Sec.  1926.1431(g)(3) and it did not want to preclude 
the potential use of sufficiently strong synthetic rope.
    Proposed paragraph (g)(3) would continue the current requirement of 
the first sentence of Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(iv)(C) that all hardware 
used for rigging must be able to support five times the maximum 
intended load applied to or transmitted to that component. However, the 
C-DAC consensus document omitted the second sentence in current Sec.  
1926.550(g)(4)(iv)(C), which requires slings using rotation resistant 
rope to be able to support at least ten times the maximum intended 
load. In promulgating Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(iv)(C), OSHA arrived at the 
safety factor of ten for rotation resistant rope by doubling the normal 
design factor of five for such rope (see discussion of the design 
factor for rotation resistant rope above under Sec.  1926.1414, Wire 
rope--selection and installation criteria) to add an extra margin of 
safety when hoisting personnel. 53 FR 29116, 29122, 29132 (Aug. 2, 
1988). OSHA believes that C-DAC did not intend to lower the safety 
factor for rotation resistant rope used for personnel hoisting and 
inadvertently omitted the requirement that slings using rotation 
resistant rope to have a safety factor of ten. OSHA has therefore 
restored that requirement to proposed 1926.1431(g)(3). As modified, 
1926.1431(g)(3) reads:

    (3) Rigging hardware (including wire rope, shackles, rings, 
master links, and other rigging hardware) and hooks must be capable 
of supporting, without failure, at least five times the maximum 
intended load applied or transmitted to that component. Where 
rotation resistant rope is used, the slings shall be capable of 
supporting without failure at least ten times the maximum intended 
load.

    Proposed paragraph (g)(4) would require the eyes in wire rope 
slings to be fabricated with thimbles, continuing the current Subpart 
N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(4)(iv)(D) requirement. The purpose of this 
requirement is to prevent excessive wear to the eyes and possible 
failure of the platform's rigging.
    Proposed paragraph (g)(5) would require that bridles and rigging 
used to suspend the personnel platform be used exclusively for hoisting 
personnel operations, continuing the current requirement of Sec.  
1926.550(g)(4)(iv)(E). Rigging components must be dedicated for the 
sole use of personnel hoisting to provide maximum safety. Materials 
hoisting can lead to damage of the rigging components due to material 
shifting or excessive loading. This can make the rigging components 
susceptible to structural stress that may not be visible, yet 
contribute to structural failure.
Paragraph 1431(h) Trial Lift and Inspection
    The proposed requirements of paragraphs (h)(1) through (5) 
generally continue the current requirements of Subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(5)(i) through (v). The proposed requirements have been 
reorganized and reworded for clarity. Requirements for removal of the 
test weight, checking for wire rope deficiencies, and use of a 
competent person for trial lifts are not currently in 29 CFR part 1926 
subpart N.
    Proposed paragraph (h)(1) continues the requirement of Sec.  
1926.550(g)(5)(i) for a trial lift without occupants with the platform 
loaded to at least the anticipated liftweight. The purpose of the trial 
lift is to confirm that: the lift set-up works properly; the lift route 
is free of obstacles; the accessibility of the work location; no work 
locations will place the crane or derrick in such a configuration where 
the intended load would exceed 50 percent of the equipment's rated 
capacity; the soil or other supporting surface is stable; and that the 
lift route is suitable for the intended lift.
    The path of the trial lift would be required to begin at the point 
the employees enter the platform and end at the ultimate location the 
platform is being hoisted to and positioned (end point). When there are 
multiple destination locations from a single set-up point, the trial 
lift would be required to be conducted in one of two ways.

[[Page 59833]]

    First, individual lifts may be conducted in which the platform is 
moved to one of the end points from the starting point, returned to the 
starting point, moved to a second end point, again returned to the 
starting point, and the process repeated until each end point has been 
reached. Second, a single lift may be conducted from the starting point 
to all of the end points in sequence, without returning to the starting 
point until after the last end point has been reached.
    Upon reviewing Sec.  1926.1431(h)(1) in the C-DAC document, OSHA 
believes that the phrase ``a single trial lift for all locations,'' 
which was taken from current Sec.  1926.550(g)(5)(i), may not be 
sufficiently clear to describe the intended meaning. In addition, OSHA 
is concerned that allowing the trial lift to be conducted in either of 
these two ways, irrespective of how the personnel will actually be 
hoisted, may result in the trial lift failing to reveal problems that 
would be encountered in the actual lift. OSHA believes that the 
following language would more clearly reflect the intent of the 
provision and requests public comment on whether the language should be 
clarified in this manner:

    (h) Trial lift and inspection.
    (1) A trial lift with the unoccupied personnel platform loaded 
at least to the anticipated liftweight shall be made from ground 
level, or any other location where employees will enter the 
platform, to each location at which the platform is to be hoisted 
and positioned. Where there is more than one location to be reached 
from a single set-up position, either individual trial lifts for 
each location, or a single trial lift, in which the platform is 
moved sequentially to each location, shall be performed; the method 
selected must be the same as the method that will be used to hoist 
the personnel.

    Proposed paragraph (h)(2) would require that the trial lift take 
place immediately prior to each shift when hoisting personnel, and each 
time the equipment is moved and set up in a new location or a 
previously used location. Additionally, a trial lift must be done when 
the lift route is changed, unless a competent person determines the new 
lift route does not present new factors affecting safety. Similar 
requirements are found in Subpart N's Sec.  926.550(g)(5)(i) and (ii).
    Proposed paragraph (h)(3) would require a competent person to 
ensure that all required safety devices and operational aids required 
by this proposed section are activated and properly functioning, that 
nothing interferes with the equipment or personnel platform during the 
trial lift, that the lift load does not exceed 50 percent of the 
equipment's rated capacity, and that the load radius used is accurately 
determined. These requirements would ensure that necessary safety 
measures are in place and validated by a competent person for the trial 
lift. The proposed paragraph differs from the current requirements at 
Sec.  1926.550(g)(5)(i) as it would require a competent person to make 
the determination rather than the operator. Under sections 3.2.2(a)(9) 
and (a)(10) of ASME B30.23-2005, the operator is also required to 
determine that the trial lift has been conducted properly. It is 
important for this to be the responsibility of a competent person 
because such a person not only has the knowledge necessary to make the 
determinations, but also has the authority to take any necessary 
corrective action.
    Proposed paragraph (h)(4) would establish the duties of the 
competent person immediately after the trial lift. It would require the 
competent person to conduct a visual inspection of the personnel 
platform and equipment to determine if there is any problem or defect 
resulting from the trial lift or if it produced any adverse effect. In 
addition, the competent person must ensure that the test weight used 
during the trial lift has been removed prior to personnel loading.
    The purpose of these requirements is to ensure that any defects in 
the equipment, base support or ground and personnel platform revealed 
by the trial lift are seen by a competent person prior to hoisting 
personnel (note that, under proposed Sec.  1926.1431(h)(6), any 
condition found during the trial lift that fails to meet a requirement 
of this proposed standard or otherwise constitutes a safety hazard must 
be corrected before hoisting personnel). Proposed paragraph (h)(4) 
would continue the current requirements of Sec.  1926.550(g)(5)(iv) 
while adding the requirement that the competent person ensure that the 
test weight is removed. This has been added because the Committee was 
aware of incidents in which overloading of the personnel platform 
occurred due to use of the platform to hoist personnel with the test 
weights still on board.
    Under proposed paragraph (h)(5)(i), immediately prior to each 
personnel lift, the competent person must inspect the platform while it 
is lifted a few inches to ensure that the platform is secure and 
properly balanced.
    It is the understanding of the Agency that the purpose of this 
procedure is to ensure that, with the occupants and materials/tools to 
be hoisted on the platform immediately before the hoist is to take 
place, the platform is secure and properly balanced. The purpose of 
having the occupants and materials/tools on board during this check is 
twofold. First, it ensures that the check takes place just before the 
personnel lift, which minimizes the chance that damage or other 
problems affecting the platform's security will occur after the check. 
In addition, it would be difficult to ensure that the platform will be 
properly balanced when in actual use without having the employees and 
materials/tools on board.
    However, while the text of this proposed provision implies that the 
check is to be done with the personnel and materials/tools on board, it 
does not specifically so state. The Agency plans to add language to 
that effect so that proposed Sec.  1926.1431(h)(5)(i) would read as 
follows:

    (i) The platform shall be hoisted a few inches with the 
personnel and materials/tools on board and inspected by a competent 
person to ensure that it is secure and properly balanced.

    The Agency requests public comment on such a change.
    Proposed paragraph (h)(5)(ii) would require a competent person to 
determine that hoist ropes are free of defects, that multiple part 
lines are not twisted around each other, and that the primary 
attachment is centered over the platform. If the load rope is slack, 
the competent person must inspect the hoisting system to ensure the 
rope lines are properly seated on drums and in sheaves. Proposed 
paragraphs (i) and (ii) continue the current requirements of Sec.  
1926.550(g)(5)(iii), with the additional clarification that hoist ropes 
must be free of deficiencies (that is, not just free of ``kinks,'' as 
required by existing Sec.  1926.550(g)(5)(iii)(A)). The purpose of 
these requirements is to mandate an additional final review by a 
competent person to evaluate the personnel platform, the balance of the 
load, and the lifting devices to ensure that necessary safety 
requirements are met.
    Proposed paragraph (h)(6) would establish that any condition that 
fails to meet any requirements of this standard or otherwise creates a 
safety hazard must be corrected before personnel are hoisted. This 
includes such conditions found during the trial lift or in any 
inspection or subsequent review of the equipment, platform or rigging. 
This is similar to the requirement of Subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(5)(v).
Paragraph 1431(i) [Reserved.]
    This proposed paragraph is reserved because it is inconvenient for 
readers to determine whether ``(i)'' is being used as a letter or a 
roman numeral.

[[Page 59834]]

Paragraph 1431(j) Proof Testing
    This proposed paragraph would delineate the requirement of and 
method for proof testing the personnel platform and rigging. It would 
require the proof test to be done at each jobsite prior to hoisting 
personnel and after any repair or modification of the platform. The 
proof test would be at 125 percent of the platform's rated capacity, 
with an evenly distributed test load. The platform must be lowered by 
controlled load lowering, braked, and held in a suspended position for 
at least five minutes. After this proof test, the competent person must 
inspect the platform and rigging to determine if it has passed the 
proof test. If not, all deficiencies that pose a safety hazard must be 
corrected and another proof test performed. The competent person must 
determine that the platform and rigging have successfully passed the 
proof test before any personnel hoisting begins.
    The purpose of this proposed paragraph is to determine if the 
structural integrity of the personnel platform is intact or if it has 
been affected by any condition, damage, repair or modification which 
could result in structural failure or other safety hazards of the 
platform or rigging. Proposed paragraph Sec.  1926.1431(j) contains 
requirements similar to those in Subpart N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(5)(vi). 
It adds the requirement in proposed Sec.  1926.1431(j)(2) that the 
platform be lowered by controlled load lowering and braked before being 
held in position for five minutes. This provision was added to ensure 
that the load lowering and braking mechanisms are functioning properly 
before personnel are lifted. In addition, proposed Sec.  
1926.1431(j)(3) clarifies that only deficiencies that present a safety 
hazard need be corrected to avoid any implication that minor 
deficiencies bearing no relation to safety need to be corrected.
    The Committee discussed requiring the employer to document the 
proof test but determined that documentation of the proof test would 
not add to employee safety.
Paragraph 1431(k) Work Practices
    Proposed paragraph (k)(1) would require hoisting of the personnel 
platform in a slow, controlled, cautious manner, with no sudden 
movements of the equipment or platform. This precaution would minimize 
the likelihood of platform tipping, loss of footing, and loss of 
control of the platform by the operator during hoisting. A comparable 
requirement is now contained in Subpart N at Sec.  
1926.550(g)(3)(i)(A).
    Proposed paragraph (k)(2)(i) would require that all occupants of 
the personnel platform keep all parts of the body inside the platform 
while it is being raised, lowered or moved horizontally. This would not 
apply when a platform occupant must position the platform. 
Additionally, this does not apply while performing the duties of a 
signal person. The purpose of this requirement is to prevent an 
employee from having a body part struck or caught in between the 
personnel platform and another object. This differs from the current 
requirement of Subpart N at Sec.  1926.550(g)(6)(i) by providing an 
exception for a platform occupant positioning the platform. The 
Committee believed that such positioning can be important to safety, 
and therefore an exception in this regard would be appropriate.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(2)(ii) would add a new provision by 
prohibiting platform occupants from standing on, sitting on, or working 
from any surface other than the floor of the personnel platform during 
hoisting or when working from the platform. It would prohibit working 
from a railing or toeboard or the use of any means or device to raise 
the employee's working height. The purpose is to ensure that the 
occupants receive the protections of the guardrail system and do not 
destabilize the platform.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(2)(iii) would add a new provision by 
prohibiting platform occupants from pulling the platform out of plumb 
in relation to the hoisting equipment. The purpose is to prevent 
tipping of the platform with employees on board, which could exacerbate 
the fall hazard.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(3) would require a personnel platform that 
is not landed to be secured to the structure before employees enter or 
exit the platform. It would allow an exception when a greater hazard 
would be created by securing the platform to the structure. The purpose 
is to provide a stable surface to prevent loss of footing when entering 
or exiting the platform. This provision is similar to Subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(6)(ii) but replaces the words ``unsafe condition'' with 
``greater hazard'' to clarify that the exception only comes into play 
when the hazard that would be created by securing the platform to the 
structure is greater than would exist if it were not secured.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(4) would add a new requirement that the 
operator receive confirmation that the platform is no longer tied to 
the structure and is freely suspended before the operator moves the 
platform. This requirement would prevent structural damage to the 
platform and/or rigging and prevent the fall hazard that could result 
from pulling the platform out of plumb if there is an attempt to move 
it while it is still attached.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(5) would require the use of tag lines when 
necessary to control the personnel platform. The purpose is to provide 
an additional way to control platform stability to decrease the risk of 
injury from loss of footing or from the platform striking an object. 
This would modify the current requirement of Subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(6)(iii), which requires the use of tag lines unless their 
use would create an unsafe condition. The Committee believed it is not 
always necessary to use tag lines even when their use would not create 
an unsafe condition and was of the view that this change would not 
decrease safety.
    Under proposed paragraph (k)(6), where the platform is not equipped 
with controls, the equipment operator would be required to remain at 
the equipment controls at all times while the personnel platform is 
occupied. Since there are no controls in the personnel platform, the 
equipment operator must be available to make any necessary adjustments 
to protect the employees from injury from any condition arising after 
the platform is placed at the working location. Subpart N at Sec.  
1926.550(g)(6)(iv) currently contains a similar requirement but 
requires the operator to remain at the controls ``when the crane engine 
is running and the platform is occupied.'' Proposed Sec.  
1926.1431(k)(6) specifies that the operator must stay at the controls 
at all times the platform is occupied, whether or not the crane engine 
is running.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(7), Platforms with controls, and its 
subsections apply when a personnel platform has controls. At present, 
platforms being manufactured with controls are boom-tip mounted 
platforms. Controls on certain personnel platforms enable a platform 
occupant to articulate both the platform and the boom. Other platform 
designs enable an occupant to control only the platform/basket itself, 
for example to level the basket as it is boomed up or down. Currently, 
Subpart N of this part does not distinguish between platforms with 
controls and platforms without controls, so the requirement of Sec.  
1926.550(g)(6)(iv) that the operator remain at the equipment controls 
when the engine is running and the platform is occupied applies to both 
types of platform.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(7)(i) would require the platform occupant 
using the

[[Page 59835]]

platform's controls to be a qualified person with respect to their use, 
including the safe limitations of the equipment and hazards associated 
with its operation. Such knowledge and skill is essential for the 
safety of the platform occupants and employees in the surrounding area.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(7)(ii) would require the equipment operator 
to be either at the equipment controls, in the personnel platform, or 
onsite in view of the equipment. It is OSHA's understanding that the 
purpose of this proposed provision is to require the equipment operator 
to be available to take action if necessary, such as where there is 
unexpected or inadvertent platform or equipment movement, a sudden 
change in wind conditions, or an injury to a platform occupant.
    It is also OSHA's understanding that C-DAC intended this provision 
to give employers the flexibility to position the operator where he or 
she is needed in certain common situations. For example, if the 
controls on the platform are designed to control both the platform and 
the boom, the operator could be the qualified person on the platform 
who operates the controls. If the controls allow only limited control 
of the platform itself, the operator will be needed at the equipment 
controls, as under proposed Sec.  1926.1431(k)(6). The Agency also 
believes that C-DAC intended the option of having the operator onsite 
and in view of the equipment to accommodate radio-controlled 
operations, in which the operator controls the equipment from a 
position off the equipment but within its line of sight.
    Upon reviewing proposed paragraph (k)(7)(ii), OSHA is concerned 
that the proposed provision would not operate in this manner. 
Specifically, it would not limit the employer's choices to situations 
where they are suitable. For example, under the provision as written, 
the operator could be on the platform even if the controls on the 
platform allow only limited control of the platform, and the operator 
would therefore not be available at the equipment controls to move the 
boom when it is necessary to do so. OSHA requests public comment on 
whether it is necessary to reword proposed Sec.  1926.1431(k)(7)(ii) to 
clarify the circumstances under which employers can use the three 
options for positioning the equipment operator and, if so, how the 
provision should be worded to achieve that goal.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(7)(iii) would require the platform operating 
manual to be on the platform or on the equipment while the platform is 
occupied. The purpose is to have ready access to manufacturer's 
operating information when employees are on the platform.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(8)(i), Environmental conditions--Wind, would 
require a qualified person to determine if it is unsafe to hoist 
personnel when the wind speed (gust or sustained) exceeds 20 mph. High 
winds increase the likelihood of platform tipping, sudden unexpected 
movement of the platform, or structural failure of the equipment. If 
the qualified person determines that hoisting personnel is unsafe, 
hoisting operations must not begin or, if already in progress, must be 
terminated.
    Subpart N at Sec.  1926.550(g)(6)(v) currently requires personnel 
hoisting operations to stop when there is indication of any dangerous 
weather conditions or other impending danger. The Committee believed 
that it was necessary to establish a clearer guideline with respect to 
hoisting personnel under windy conditions. C-DAC discussed setting a 
particular wind speed at which hoisting personnel would be prohibited 
(it considered, for example, that section 3.2.1(e) of ASME B30.23-2005 
prohibits personnel hoisting operations when wind speed exceeds 20 
mph). It determined that the number of variables involved at each site 
precludes establishing a single wind speed threshold at which, in each 
instance, it could be said that hoisting personnel is not safe. It did, 
however, determine that 20 mph is an appropriate point at which a 
determination, in all cases, needs to be made. Therefore, it found that 
it was appropriate to have the qualified person evaluate all relevant 
factors in order to determine if conditions are such that hoisting 
personnel with wind speed over 20 mph is unsafe.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(8)(ii), Environmental conditions--Other 
weather and environmental conditions, would require a qualified person 
to determine if it is not safe to hoist personnel when there are 
indications of dangerous weather or any other impending/existing 
dangerous environmental condition. Upon determination that it is 
unsafe, personnel hoisting operations must not be started or must be 
terminated if already in progress.
    The purpose of this paragraph is to require evaluation of all 
environmental conditions, including weather, by a qualified person, to 
determine if the conditions make it unsafe to hoist personnel. 
Dangerous conditions, such as those presented by severe weather, may 
contribute to the hazards of platform tipping, unexpected platform 
movement, dropping the platform, or structural failure of the platform 
or equipment. Examples of non-weather environmental dangers would be a 
neighboring fire that threatens the area of the crane operations or a 
chemical release from a neighboring manufacturing facility that 
threatens to drift into the area. Section 3.2.1(c) of ASME B30.23-2005 
lists electric storms, snow, ice, sleet, or other adverse weather 
conditions that could affect the safety of personnel as reasons for 
suspending operations. Rather than listing specific dangers or events, 
C-DAC believed that the determination of whether conditions were 
dangerous was best left to the assessment of the qualified person.
    As noted above, Sec.  1926.550(g)(6)(v) requires personnel hoisting 
operations to stop when there is indication of any dangerous weather 
conditions or other impending danger. The proposed paragraph continues 
that requirement; however, it adds the requirement that a qualified 
person must make the determination.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(9) would require employees being hoisted to 
remain in direct communication with either the signal person (where 
used) or equipment operator at all times. In some instances the 
platform occupants are in a better position to see potential problems 
developing than the operator, or to recognize that there is some other 
safety-related need for the operator to take action. In addition, there 
are instances when the operator becomes aware of a developing problem 
and needs to communicate that to the employees being hoisted. This 
provision would ensure that such information can be communicated 
quickly between the hoisted employees and operator.
    Currently, Subpart N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(6)(vi) requires hoisted 
employees to remain in continuous sight of and in direct communication 
with the operator or signal person. Reliance on direct communication 
alone (such as by radio) is only permitted when visual contact with the 
operator is not possible and the use of a signal person (to relay 
information by hand signals) would create a greater hazard. The 
Committee believed that direct communication, either with a signal 
person (when used) or with the operator, is an effective way for the 
hoisted employees to communicate with the operator and that Sec.  
1926.550(g)(6)(vi)'s preference for visual contact does not add to 
safety. Accordingly, proposed Sec.  1926.1431(k)(9) would allow direct 
communication with

[[Page 59836]]

a signal person or the operator in all instances.
    Proposed paragraphs (k)(10)(i) and (ii), Fall protection, would 
require employees on the personnel platform to be provided with and use 
a personal fall arrest system attached to a structural member within 
the personnel platform. The fall arrest system (including the 
attachment point) must comply with Sec.  1926.502, Fall protection 
systems criteria and practices. When hoisting personnel over water, a 
personal fall arrest system would not be required since, in the event 
that an error or failure occurred that resulted in the employees being 
in the water, being tied-off would exacerbate the drowning hazard. 
However, the requirements of Sec.  1926.106, Working over or near 
water, would apply.
    The purpose of this requirement is to protect employees from a fall 
hazard while in the personnel platform in the event of sudden movement, 
tipping, or other circumstance in which a fall would not be prevented 
by the platform's guardrail system. This is similar to the requirements 
of Subpart N's Sec.  1926.550(g)(6)(vii). However, it replaces use of a 
``body belt/harness system with lanyard'' with ``personal fall arrest 
system'' to reflect current technology, terminology and practice for 
personal fall protection and to be consistent with 29 CFR part 1926 
subpart M's personal fall arrest system requirements. Additionally, the 
Committee determined that the requirement in the current standard to 
attach a personal fall arrest system to the ``lower load block or 
overhaul ball'' was no longer considered good industry practice and, 
instead, an employee needs to be tied off to ``a structural member 
within the personnel platform.'' Tying off to the lower load block or 
overhaul ball places the employee at risk of being pulled through the 
top of the personnel platform and into the rigging attached to the 
personnel platform.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(11)(i), Other load lines, would mandate that 
while hoisting personnel no other lifts may be made with any of the 
equipment's other load lines. This proposed provision has several 
purposes. First, it would prevent platform tipping due to entanglement 
with other load lines or loads. Second, it would reduce the chance that 
the equipment would be overloaded. Third, when hoisting personnel, it 
is essential that the operator's full attention be devoted to the 
personnel; use of another load line would necessarily divert his/her 
attention. This is comparable to the requirement of Subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(6)(viii), with the addition of an exception for pile 
driving equipment. In pile driving operations, personnel have to be 
hoisted at times as part of the pile driving operation while the pile 
driving apparatus is being suspended on another load line.
    In reviewing this aspect of the C-DAC document, the Agency noted 
that under the C-DAC language, the provision would have applied only 
when personnel were ``suspended on a platform.'' Since there are 
specified exceptions to the proposed requirement to use a personnel 
platform, there will be specific instances where personnel will be 
hoisted without a platform. The Agency believes that it is equally 
important to safety that the prohibition against using any other load 
lines apply in these instances (with the exception of pile driving 
operations, in which it is not feasible to use only one load line), and 
that this was a textual oversight by the Committee. Therefore, OSHA has 
modified the C-DAC language of this provision so that the prohibition 
would apply ``while personnel are being hoisted. * * *'' OSHA requests 
comment on this change.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(11)(ii), Other load lines, would allow the 
use of a winch line while hoisting personnel when all of the following 
factors are present: the personnel platform is a factory-produced boom-
mounted personnel platform incorporating a winch as original equipment, 
the load on the winch line does not exceed 500 pounds, and the load on 
the winch line itself does not exceed the rated capacity of the winch 
and platform. The Committee believed that, when all of these factors 
are present, there is little chance that the use of the winch line 
would compromise safety.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(12)(i), Traveling--equipment other than 
derricks, would prohibit any traveling by equipment with hoisted 
employees except in two circumstances. The first is where the equipment 
is traveling on fixed rails. The second is where the employer 
demonstrates that there is no less hazardous way to perform the work 
than by traveling. However, this second exception does not apply to 
rubber-tired equipment, for which traveling is always prohibited. 
Traveling with hoisted employees is also always prohibited for 
derricks, as set forth under proposed Sec.  1926.1431(k)(13), discussed 
below.
    Traveling while hoisting personnel is generally prohibited due to 
several additional risks that it presents. The platform will tend to 
swing when the equipment is traveling, which presents an increased 
likelihood of employee injury from platform tipping or loss of footing. 
If the swing is pronounced, the equipment could become unbalanced and 
its capacity exceeded. Also, the chance of an unplanned circumstance or 
event increases when the equipment travels, which heightens the risk to 
the employees being hoisted. Therefore, the exception to this 
prohibition is narrowly drawn.
    Traveling would be permitted with equipment that travels on fixed 
rails, as travel on fixed rails is relatively stable and predictable, 
which reduces the chance of significant uncontrolled movement. 
Traveling may be done with equipment that is not on fixed rails and not 
rubber-tired, but only where the employer can demonstrate that there is 
no less hazardous way to perform the work.
    However, traveling would be prohibited with rubber-tired equipment. 
The Committee was of the view that traveling with such equipment while 
hoisting personnel is inherently dangerous due to the bouncing and 
swaying of the equipment that is inherent in this type of equipment 
because of the tires and suspension.
    The current requirements of Subpart N at Sec.  1926.550(g)(7)(i), 
prohibit hoisting employees while a crane is traveling ``except for 
portal, tower or locomotive cranes, or where the employer demonstrates 
that there is no less hazardous way to perform the work.'' The proposed 
paragraph would have a clearer restriction on equipment traveling by 
establishing a complete prohibition on traveling while hoisting 
employees for any rubber-tired equipment. Instead of referring to 
particular types of cranes, the proposed paragraph allows for hoisting 
personnel by equipment that travels on fixed rails, which more directly 
relates to what makes the use of such equipment acceptable for this 
purpose. The proposed paragraph still allows for hoisting personnel if 
there is no less hazardous means to do the work, but this exception 
does not apply to rubber-tired equipment.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(12)(ii), Traveling--equipment other than 
derricks, would establish certain criteria that would have to be met 
when traveling with employees is allowed. The purpose of this proposed 
paragraph is to establish the conditions necessary to minimize the 
effect of traveling on the stability of the equipment and personnel. In 
order to hoist employees while traveling, the following would be 
required: travel restricted to a fixed track or runway; distance of 
travel limited to the length of the boom, including any attached jib; 
the boom parallel to the direction of travel (unless

[[Page 59837]]

it is safer otherwise); and a complete trial run performed to test the 
travel route before employees occupy the platform.
    In proposed Sec.  1926.1401, a ``runway'' is defined as a firm 
level surface designed, prepared and designated as a path of travel for 
the weight and configuration of the equipment being used to lift and 
travel with the personnel platform, including an existing surface. For 
the purposes of this proposed paragraph, OSHA believes it is necessary 
to clearly define what constitutes a runway since its purpose differs, 
for example, from a runway on a gantry crane. The function of the 
runway required by this proposed paragraph would be to provide a stable 
surface for equipment during travel to minimize unexpected movement. 
This definition is included to remain consistent with the term, without 
change, as it is used in Subpart N of 29 CFR part 1926. The required 
trial run may be done at the same time as the trial lift testing the 
lift route (see proposed paragraph (h)).
    This continues the requirements of Subpart N's Sec.  
1926.550(g)(7)(ii) with three exceptions. Currently, ``the boom must be 
parallel to the direction of travel''; the proposed paragraph allows an 
exception when it is safer to travel with the boom not parallel to the 
direction of travel. For example, if the work was being done to the 
side of the crane, and booming to parallel would take the personnel 
platform closer to a power line, and the manufacturer permits the crane 
to travel with the boom to the side, it would be safer to travel with 
the boom to the side in this instance. Next, the Committee determined 
that the current travel limit of ``the load radius of the boom'' was 
confusing terminology and found that a clearer and equally safe 
restriction would be to limit the distance of travel to the ``boom 
length.'' Finally, as discussed above, the proposed paragraph would 
prohibit all traveling while hoisting personnel with rubber-tired 
equipment. The current standard (Sec.  1926.550(g)(7)(ii)(E)) in effect 
allows use of rubber-tired equipment in limited conditions.
    Proposed paragraph (k)(13), Traveling--derricks, would prohibit a 
derrick from traveling while it is hoisting personnel. The current 
requirements of Subpart N that address traveling refer only to cranes. 
C-DAC believed that the intent of Subpart N was to prohibit derricks 
from traveling with hoisted employees and decided it was necessary to 
note this exclusion to eliminate any ambiguity. Hoisting employees on a 
traveling derrick is dangerous because derricks are not sufficiently 
stable when traveling. This proposed paragraph reflects the current 
industry practice as reflected in section 3.3.4(a)(14) of ASME B30.6-
2003, ``Derricks.''
Paragraph 1431(l) [Reserved.]
    This proposed paragraph is reserved because it is inconvenient for 
readers to distinguish the letter ``l'' from the number ``1.''
Paragraph 1431(m) Pre-Lift Meeting
    This proposed paragraph would require a meeting prior to the trial 
lift at each new work location to review the requirements of this 
section and the procedures to be followed when hoisting personnel. The 
pre-lift meeting would be attended by the equipment operator, signal 
person (when one is used for the lift), employees to be hoisted, and 
the person responsible for the task to be performed.
    Also, this paragraph would require this meeting to be repeated when 
an employee is newly assigned to the operation. The purpose of this 
requirement is to make all employees involved in the personnel hoisting 
operation aware of the requirements of this section and the plan for 
the personnel lift. This would provide an opportunity for all employees 
involved to have a common and complete understanding of the hoisting 
operation and to give uniform information and instructions immediately 
prior to the lift. This would address hazards which could result from 
misunderstanding of the requirements, particular lift conditions or 
procedures.
    The provisions of proposed paragraph (m) are comparable to the 
requirements of Sec.  1926.550(g)(8).
Paragraph 1431(n) Hoisting Personnel Near Power Lines
    This proposed paragraph would prohibit hoisting personnel within 20 
feet of a power line 350 kV and below or within 50 feet of a power line 
over 350 kV, except for work that is covered by 29 CFR part 1926 
Subpart V, Power Transmission and Distribution. 
    The purpose of this requirement is to establish a safe clearance 
distance from power lines to protect employees from an electrocution 
hazard that would result if the personnel, a personnel platform, or 
equipment made electrical contact with a power line. The clearance 
distances are similar to those in proposed Sec.  1926.1407 and Sec.  
1926.1408 for equipment operating near power lines. However, under 
Sec.  1926.1407 and Sec.  1926.1408, clearances less than 20 and 50 
feet are permitted for certain voltage ranges. Here, the Committee 
believed that the extra risk that arises when personnel are hoisted 
near a power line justifies the requirement to maintain the minimum 
distances of 20 feet for lines 350 kV or less and 50 feet for lines 
over 350 kV regardless of whether operations at closer distances 
without hoisting personnel would be permitted.
    Currently, Subpart N at Sec.  1926.550 has no specific requirement 
for hoisting personnel near power lines, and the normal minimum 
distances established by that standard apply.
Paragraph 1431(o) Hoisting Personnel in Drill Shafts
    This proposed paragraph would provide requirements when hoisting 
personnel in drill shafts that are 8 feet and smaller in diameter. C-
DAC noted that drill shafts of this size may be either too small to use 
a personnel platform, or that use of a personnel platform might not 
allow the room needed to perform the necessary work. As a result, the 
Committee determined that, due to the limitations of a drill shaft of 
this size, use of a personnel platform would typically be infeasible 
and a boatswain's chair may be the only practical means of hoisting 
personnel and performing the necessary work.
    ``Boatswain's chair'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a single-
point adjustable suspension scaffold consisting of a seat or sling 
(which may be incorporated into a full body harness) designed to 
support one employee in a sitting position.'' Except for the 
parenthetical, this definition is identical to that in OSHA's 
construction scaffolding standard, Sec.  1926.450(b). The parenthetical 
has been added to clarify that a boatswain's chair in which the seat or 
sling is incorporated into a full body harness complies with the 
standard.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(1) would allow the employer to use 
either a personnel platform or a boatswain's chair; the employer would 
have the option of choosing which one to use.\73\ When the employer 
elects to use a boatswain's chair in lieu of a personnel platform, 
particular supplementary

[[Page 59838]]

requirements in proposed paragraph (o)(3) would have to be met. These 
particular requirements address the heightened danger that the employee 
may fall from the chair or contact the wall of the drill shaft. Subpart 
N does not have requirements that specifically address hoisting 
personnel in drill shafts.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \73\ Note that, under proposed Sec.  1926.1431(a), an employer 
may only use equipment to hoist personnel when other means of 
reaching the work area would present a greater hazard or would not 
be possible because of the project's structural design or worksite 
conditions. C-DAC provided, in paragraphs (o)(2) and (o)(3)(i), that 
paragraph (a) applies to the use of either a personnel platform or a 
boatswain's chair. Therefore, before using either means to hoist 
personnel in drill shafts, the employer would need to determine that 
hoisting personnel in lieu of using other means of access to the 
work area is the least hazardous, or the only, means to gain access 
to the work area.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(1) would require that the employer use 
either a personnel platform or boatswain's chair.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(2) would require the employer to follow 
requirements (a) through (n) of Sec.  1926.1431 when using a personnel 
platform to hoist employees. This would make clear that the provisions 
in proposed paragraph (o) are supplementary requirements.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3) would establish the requirements 
when the employer elects to use a boatswain's chair in lieu of a 
personnel platform for hoisting personnel.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3)(i) would establish which of the 
previous proposed paragraphs in Sec.  1926.1431 would continue to apply 
when using a boatswain's chair. For these applicable paragraphs, the 
reader would substitute the phrase ``boatswain's chair'' for either 
``personnel platform'' or ``platform,'' and the employer must comply 
with these requirements.
    The proposed paragraphs omitted from proposed Sec.  
1926.1431(o)(3)(i) would not apply when a boatswain's chair is used. 
This is because the requirement is either specifically applicable to 
personnel platform design and use, or generally not applicable when 
hoisting personnel in a drill shaft.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3)(ii) would require a signal person to 
be stationed at the opening of the shaft during personnel hoisting. The 
purpose is to have the signal person at the best position to watch the 
employee being hoisted and signal the equipment operator, since the 
employee would be out of visual range of the operator.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3)(iii) would require the employee to 
be hoisted in a slow, controlled descent and ascent. This is to limit 
swinging or sudden movement of the boatswain's chair to prevent fall 
from the chair or impact with the walls of the drill shaft.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3)(iv) would require the employee in 
the boatswain's chair to use personal fall arrest equipment, including 
a full body harness, that is attached independent of the crane/derrick. 
The purpose of requiring a tie off point independent of the equipment 
is to protect the employee from a sudden drop or fall due to equipment 
failure or other problem associated with the operation of the crane/
derrick and to protect the employee from falls when accessing and 
egressing the boatswain's chair.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3)(v) would require fall protection 
equipment to comply with Sec.  1926.502, Fall Protection Systems 
Criteria and Practices. 
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3)(vi) would require the boatswain's 
chair (excluding the personal fall arrest anchorages) to be capable of 
supporting, without failure, its own weight plus a minimum of five 
times the maximum intended load. This is similar to the requirement for 
personnel platforms at proposed Sec.  1926.1431(e)(4). The strength 
requirement that would be applicable to personal fall arrest anchorages 
is in Sec.  1926.502(d)(15).
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3)(vii) would mandate that only one 
person be hoisted at a time when using a boatswain's chair. The 
Committee believed that hoisting more than one person using a 
boatswain's chair in a drill shaft would present unacceptable 
additional hazards for the employees being hoisted.
Paragraph 1431(p) Hoisting Personnel for Pile Driving Operations
    This proposed paragraph would provide requirements for hoisting 
personnel in pile driving operations. Subpart N does not have 
provisions that specifically address hoisting personnel in pile driving 
operations.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(p)(1) would require that the employer use 
either a personnel platform or boatswain's chair when hoisting 
personnel in pile driving operations. As with drill shafts, C-DAC 
believed that use of a personnel platform would often be infeasible in 
this type of operation, and Sec.  1926.1431(p)(1) therefore gives the 
employer the option of choosing which one to use.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(p)(2) would require the cable being used 
to hoist personnel to be clearly marked at the point on the cable that 
would allow the equipment operator the opportunity to stop the hoist to 
prevent two-blocking. In the C-DAC document an alternative to marking 
the cable would have been permitted: use of a spotter to observe the 
lift and alert the equipment operator in time to prevent two-blocking. 
An anti-two-blocking device would not be required for equipment during 
pile driving operations since the vibration of the pile driver would 
destroy this device. (See Sec.  1926.1431(d)(4)(iv), Anti-two-block).
    In reviewing this portion of the C-DAC document, the Agency has 
noted that the means of preventing two-blocking in the C-DAC language, 
that is, to mark the cable or use a spotter, is consistent with the 
temporary alternative measure for an anti two-block device specified in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1416(d)(3)(ii)(D) for lattice boom cranes. However, 
as indicated in proposed Sec.  1926.1416(d)(3)(i), marking the cable is 
not sufficient for telescopic boom cranes when extending the boom. As 
discussed above in the context of that proposed provision, when 
extending a telescopic boom, a spotter is needed to warn against two-
blocking.
    The Agency believes that the Committee developed its language for 
preventing two-blocking when pile driving with only lattice boom cranes 
in mind, since that is the type of equipment that is commonly used for 
this work. However, as technology and construction practices evolve, 
telescopic boom cranes may be used for this work as well. Therefore, 
the Agency has modified the C-DAC language so that proposed Sec.  
1926.1431(p)(2) would require that, when using a telescopic boom crane 
for pile driving operations, a spotter must be used in addition to 
marking the cable. The Agency requests public comment on this issue.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(p)(3) would require the employer to follow 
requirements (b) through (n) of Sec.  1926.1431 when using a personnel 
platform to hoist employees. Section 1926.1431(a) would not apply 
because the Committee determined that the employer should not be 
required to demonstrate that the other means of access listed in Sec.  
1926.1431(a) are infeasible before being able to use a personnel 
platform to hoist personnel during pile driving operations. C-DAC 
believed that demonstrating infeasibility prior to using a personnel 
platform should not be required because, in most instances, it is not 
feasible to use other means of access.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(p)(4) would establish the requirements 
when the employer elects to use a boatswain's chair in lieu of a 
personnel platform for hoisting personnel.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(p)(4)(i) would establish which of the 
previous paragraphs in Sec.  1926.1431 continue to apply when using a 
boatswain's chair in a pile driving operation. For these applicable 
paragraphs, the reader would substitute the phrase ``boatswain's 
chair'' for either ``personnel platform'' or ``platform'' and the 
employer must comply with these requirements.
    The proposed paragraphs omitted from proposed Sec.  
1926.1431(p)(3)(i) do not apply when a boatswain's chair is used 
because the requirement is either specifically applicable to personnel

[[Page 59839]]

platform design and use or generally not applicable for pile driving 
operations.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(p)(4)(ii) would require the employee to be 
hoisted in a slow, controlled descent and ascent. This is to limit 
swinging or sudden movement of the boatswain's chair to prevent a fall 
from the chair or impact with equipment or other structures.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(p)(4)(iii) would require that the employee 
in the boatswain's chair use personal fall arrest equipment, including 
a full body harness. The fall arrest system must be attached to either 
the lower load block or the overhaul ball. The purpose of having the 
fall protection equipment and tie off point independent of the 
boatswain's chair and rigging used to hoist the employee is twofold. It 
would both protect the employee from a sudden drop or fall due to 
failure of that equipment and protect the employee when accessing and 
egressing the boatswain's chair.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(p)(4)(iv) would require fall protection 
equipment to comply with Sec.  1926.502, Fall protection systems 
criteria and practices. This would ensure that the fall equipment is 
sufficient to safely arrest the employee's fall.
    In reviewing this portion of the C-DAC document, the Agency has 
noted that the Committee did not include a provision similar to 
proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3)(vi)(drill shafts) and Sec.  
1926.1431(s)(3)(v)(storage tanks) to require a minimum strength for the 
boatswain's chair. In addition, it did not include a provision similar 
to proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3)(vii)(drill shafts) and Sec.  
1926.1431(s)(3)(vi)(storage tanks) to restrict hoisting to one person 
at a time. Accordingly, the Agency is planning to add the following 
provisions to proposed Sec.  1926.1431(p)(4) and requests public 
comment on these additions.

    (v) The boatswain's chair itself (excluding the personal fall 
arrest system anchorages), shall be capable of supporting, without 
failure, its own weight and at least five times the maximum intended 
load.
    (vi) No more than one person shall be hoisted at a time.
Paragraph 1431(q) [Reserved.]
    This paragraph is reserved because it is inconvenient for the 
reader to distinguish the letter q, when in parentheses, from the 
letter o.
Paragraph 1431(r) Hoisting Personnel for Marine Transfer
    This proposed paragraph would address the particular hazards 
related to hoisting personnel for transfer to or from a marine 
construction worksite. Currently, Subpart N does not address the 
particular hazards and requirements of marine personnel transfer. This 
proposed paragraph would apply only when hoisting employees solely for 
such transfer.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(r)(1) would require the employer to use 
either a traditional personnel platform or a marine hoisted personnel 
transfer device. This proposed paragraph would allow an employer to use 
a marine hoisted personnel transfer device instead of a personnel 
platform for several reasons. Transferring personnel to or from a 
marine construction site poses special problems due to the effects of 
waves and gusting wind. These effects, which can be unpredictable, can 
result in a situation where the equipment operator will not be able to 
adequately control the equipment. In such a situation, the device used 
to transfer the employees may suddenly wind up in the water. Another 
possibility is that the employees may need to jump off into the water 
to avoid a collision with the ship or an object on the construction 
site. A third possibility is that the operator will be unable to 
control the equipment while the employees are attempting to board or 
disembark. The longer it takes to get on or off, the greater this risk 
becomes. In all of these scenarios the employees need to be able to 
either enter or exit the device being used to transfer them quickly and 
easily.
    A personnel platform, which is designed, in part, to keep the 
employees inside, would, in most marine situations, compound the hazard 
faced by the employees, since they can be difficult to enter and exit 
quickly. For example, there is usually a gate that latches shut. Also, 
the gate may prevent more than one employee from entering or exiting at 
a time. In contrast, a marine hoisted personnel transfer device is 
designed specifically to facilitate the employees' rapid entry and 
exit. The Committee believed that the employer should have the option 
of using such a device so that it may be used where, in the judgment of 
the employer, the conditions are such that the risk of being prevented 
from entering or exiting quickly is greater than the risk of 
unintentionally falling off.
    OSHA notes that proposed Sec.  1926.1431(r)(1) would give employers 
an unrestricted choice of whether to use a personnel platform or a 
marine hoisted personnel transfer device despite the fact that the 
personnel platform would often be a less safe choice. OSHA requests 
public comment on whether the employer should be required to select the 
device used for marine transfer on the basis of which is safer under 
the circumstances or should otherwise restrict the use of personnel 
platforms for marine transfer.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(r)(2) would require the employer to follow 
requirements (a) through (n) of Sec.  1926.1431 when using a personnel 
platform to hoist employees. As discussed previously, these provisions 
are designed to ensure that hoisting personnel is the safest means of 
moving the employees and that the personnel platform's design and use 
are adequate from a safety standpoint.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(r)(3) would establish the requirements 
when the employer elects to use a marine hoisted personnel transfer 
device in lieu of a personnel platform for hoisting personnel.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(r)(3)(i) would establish which of the 
previous paragraphs in Sec.  1926.1431 continue to apply when using a 
marine hoisted personnel transfer device. For these applicable 
paragraphs, the reader would substitute the phrase ``marine hoisted 
personnel transfer device'' for either ``personnel platform'' or 
``platform'' and the employer must comply with these requirements.
    The paragraphs omitted from proposed Sec.  1926.1431(r)(3)(i) do 
not apply when a marine hoisted personnel transfer device is used. This 
is because the requirement is either specifically applicable to 
personnel platform design and use or generally not applicable when 
hoisting personnel at a marine worksite.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(r)(3)(ii) would require the marine hoisted 
personnel transfer device to be used exclusively for transferring 
employees. One purpose of this proposed provision is to not allow the 
device to be used as a work platform. The device's design, which 
specifically facilitates easy and rapid entry and exit, is ill-suited 
to providing a safe work platform. In particular, it is not designed to 
prevent falling while an employee uses his or her hands for working 
rather than holding on to the device. Also, it is ill-suited as a 
material transfer device because it is not designed to prevent 
materials from falling from it and could be damaged by such use.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(r)(3)(iii) would limit the number of 
employees on the marine hoisted personnel transfer device to the 
maximum number the device was designed to hold. This would prevent 
overloading, which could result in structural failure of the device. It 
would also prevent overcrowding, which could cause an unintended fall 
or preclude a worker

[[Page 59840]]

from entering or exiting as rapidly as when used properly.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(o)(3)(iv) would require each employee 
being transferred on a marine hoisted personnel transfer device to wear 
a U.S. Coast Guard personal flotation device that is approved for 
industrial use. The purpose is to protect the employee from drowning if 
the device enters the water, or if the employee falls or needs to jump 
into the water.
Paragraph 1431(s) Hoisting Personnel for Storage Tank (Steel or 
Concrete), Shaft and Chimney Operations
    This proposed paragraph would establish requirements when hoisting 
personnel in storage tank (steel or concrete), shaft operations and 
chimney operations. C-DAC determined that use of a personnel platform, 
while usually feasible, is infeasible in some circumstances involving 
these operations due to the nature of the work activity. Consequently, 
the Committee determined that boatswain's chairs should be allowed 
instead of a personnel platform in such instances, but only when the 
employer can demonstrate that use of a personnel platform is 
infeasible.\74\ For these reasons, proposed Sec.  1926.1431(s)(1) would 
allow the employer to use a boatswain's chair only when the employer 
has determined that use of a personnel platform is infeasible.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \74\ There is no current requirement in Subpart N that 
specifically addresses hoisting personnel in storage tanks (steel or 
concrete), shaft operations, or chimney operations.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(s)(2) would require the employer to follow 
requirements (a) through (n) of Sec.  1926.1431 when using a personnel 
platform to hoist employees. Under proposed Sec.  1926.1431(a), an 
employer may only use equipment to hoist personnel when other means of 
reaching the work area would present a greater hazard or would not be 
possible because of the project's structural design or worksite 
conditions. Therefore, before using a personnel platform to hoist 
personnel in storage tank (steel or concrete), shaft operations and 
chimney operations, the employer would need to determine that hoisting 
personnel in lieu of using other means of access to the work area is 
the least hazardous, or the only, means to gain access to the work 
area.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(s)(3) would establish the requirements 
when the employer uses a boatswain's chair in lieu of a personnel 
platform for hoisting personnel.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(s)(3)(i) would establish which of the 
previous paragraphs in Sec.  1926.1431 continue to apply when using a 
boatswain's chair. For these applicable paragraphs, the reader would 
substitute the phrase ``boatswain's chair'' for either ``personnel 
platform'' or ``platform'' and the employer must comply with these 
requirements.
    The paragraphs omitted from proposed Sec.  1926.1431(s)(3)(i) do 
not apply when a boatswain's chair is used. This is because the 
requirement is either specifically applicable to personnel platform use 
and design or generally not applicable when hoisting personnel in 
storage tanks (steel or concrete), shaft operations and chimney 
operations.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(s)(3)(ii) would require the employee to be 
hoisted in a slow, controlled descent and ascent. This is to limit 
swinging or sudden movement of the boatswain's chair to prevent fall 
from the chair or impact with the walls or other areas or structures 
involved in these operations.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(s)(3)(iii) would require the employee in 
the boatswain's chair to use personal fall arrest equipment, including 
a full body harness, that is attached independent of the crane/derrick. 
Having the tie off point independent of the equipment protects the 
employee from a sudden drop or fall due to equipment failure or other 
problem associated with the operation of the crane/derrick and to 
protect the employee from falls when accessing and egressing the 
boatswain's chair.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(s)(3)(iv) would require fall protection 
equipment to comply with Sec.  1926.502, Fall protection systems 
criteria and practices. This would ensure that the fall equipment is 
sufficient to safely arrest the employee's fall.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(s)(3)(v) would require the boatswain's 
chair to be capable of supporting, without failure, its own weight plus 
a minimum of five times the maximum intended load. This is consistent 
with the requirement for personnel platforms at Sec.  1926.1431(e)(4).
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1431(s)(3)(vi) would mandate that only one 
person be hoisted at a time when using a boatswain's chair. The 
Committee believed that hoisting more than one person using a 
boatswain's chair in these operations would present unacceptable 
additional hazards for the employees being hoisted.

Section 1432 Multiple Crane/Derrick Lifts

    This proposed section lists additional requirements for operations 
involving multiple cranes and derricks. It addresses hazards arising 
from operations that use more than one crane/derrick to lift a single 
load. This section evolved from the Committee's concern that such 
operations involve an additional level of risk due to their higher 
degree of complexity. Specifically, the number and type of factors that 
must be accounted for, the difficulties associated with closely 
coordinating the movement of the multiple cranes/derricks, and the 
likelihood that such lifts are typically outside the normal routine for 
most employers, combine to create this higher level of risk. 
Consequently, the Committee agreed that such lifts need an additional 
level of planning and expertise over that required in routine 
operations. This section would require development and implementation 
of a plan by qualified persons, which would result in proactive 
decision-making and greater awareness and caution during multiple-
crane/derrick operations.
    Currently, Subpart N, through incorporation of section 5-3.2.31 of 
ANSI B30.5-1968, addresses multiple lifts as follows: ``When two or 
more cranes are used to lift one load, one designated person shall be 
responsible for the operation. He shall analyze the operation and 
instruct all personnel involved in the proper positioning, rigging of 
the load, and the movements to be made.'' As discussed below, this 
proposed rule also requires supervision of the operation and 
instruction of personnel but, in addition, specifies qualifications 
that the person who supervises the lift must have and contains 
additional provisions to ensure safety.
Paragraph 1432(a) Plan Development
    The purpose of the proposed requirement for a plan is to help 
ensure that the hazards involved with a multiple lift are identified 
and eliminated. These hazards include, but are not limited to, load 
slipping and unintended load shifting. Such hazards can be minimized by 
a plan that addresses elements such as the capacity of the cranes/
derricks relative to load distribution (throughout the lift), load 
rigging, load travel (from start to finish), and communication. The 
Committee discussed several specific methods of addressing these 
hazards, but in view of the wide variety and circumstances of such 
lifts, determined that a plan-based requirement would be most 
appropriate and would be effective in reducing the risks associated 
with these operations.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1432(a)(1) would require that a qualified 
person develop the plan. Because of the inherent complexity of these 
operations,

[[Page 59841]]

Committee members believed that it is necessary for a person with a 
high degree of knowledge and experience to develop the plan; otherwise, 
there is a significant likelihood that the plan would be ineffective in 
addressing the hazards. Therefore, the Committee determined that the 
plan developer would need to be a qualified person.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1432(a)(2) would require that the plan be 
designed to ensure that the requirements of this Subpart are met. This 
provision emphasizes that all applicable requirements in the proposed 
standard must be met when performing multiple crane/derrick lifts, in 
addition to the specific requirements set forth in this section. The 
Committee believed that it was important to emphasize this in the plan 
to help ensure safe multiple-crane/derrick lift operations.
Paragraph 1432(a)(3)
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1432(a)(3) would require engineering expertise 
to be provided by the employer whenever the qualified person determines 
that it is necessary. In the view of the Committee, some, but not all 
multiple-crane/derrick lifts need to be planned with engineering 
expertise so that the lift can be performed safely. The Committee 
believed that it is not practical to set criteria in this proposed rule 
for identifying which lifts need such expertise.
Paragraph 1432(b) Plan Implementation
    Under this proposed paragraph, the employer would be required to 
take specific steps designed to ensure that the decisions and 
precautions built into the plan are effectively implemented.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1432(b)(1) would require supervision of plan 
implementation by competent and qualified persons, or by one person who 
meets the definitions of both. The Committee believed that, especially 
in light of the inherent complexity of these operations, it is 
essential that a person (or team) with sufficient expertise and 
authority oversee the implementation of the plan. Supervision by a 
person or team with the attributes of both a competent and qualified 
person would ensure not only that potential problems are identified, 
but also that the person in charge of oversight will have the authority 
to correct anything that is amiss. For a detailed explanation of 
competent and qualified persons, refer to the preamble discussion of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1404(a), Supervision--competent-qualified person.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1432(b)(2) would mandate that the supervisor 
review the plan with all employees who will be involved with the 
operation before lift operations begin. This would typically involve 
the signal person, rigging crew, crane operator, and sometimes 
laborers, who would all meet to make certain that everyone understands 
the plan and how the operation will be conducted. The Committee 
believed that it is important for employees to know how the plan will 
work, including their responsibilities and the responsibilities of 
others, to help ensure that the diverse aspects of the operation will 
be coordinated.

Section 1433 Design, Construction and Testing

    Currently, Subpart N includes design, construction, and testing 
requirements for specific types of equipment that either incorporate 
pre-1970 consensus standards or that require equipment to conform to 
manufacturer's specifications. The former category includes: Crawler, 
locomotive, and truck cranes (ANSI B30.5-1968, incorporated by 29 CFR 
1926.550(b)(2)); overhead and gantry cranes (ANSI B30.2.0-1967, 
incorporated by 1926.550(d)(4)); and derricks (ANSI B30.6-1969, 
incorporated by Sec.  1926.550(e)). The latter includes hammerhead 
tower cranes (Sec.  1926.550(c)(5)) and floating cranes and derricks 
(Sec.  1926.550(f)(2)(iii)). Except for crawler, locomotive, and truck 
cranes, design, construction and/or testing requirements for each of 
these categories of equipment is addressed in a section of this 
proposed standard that is dedicated to that type of equipment. This 
proposed section contains certain requirements applicable only to 
crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes and, in addition, contains 
requirements that apply to all of the equipment subject to this 
standard.
    The C-DAC draft provides that the requirements of this section 
``apply to equipment that has a manufacturer-rated hoisting/lifting 
capacity of 2,000 pounds or more.'' However, proposed Sec.  1926.1441 
sets forth requirements for equipment with a rated capacity of 2,000 
pounds or less and excludes Sec.  1926.1433 from the requirements for 
such equipment. The two sections conflict with respect to equipment 
rated at 2,000 pounds, which is a common rating. It is OSHA's 
understanding that C-DAC included the 2,000-pound cutoff to parallel 
ANSI B30.5 in this regard. The 1968 and 2004 versions of ANSI B30.5, as 
well as intermediate versions, exclude equipment with a capacity of one 
ton or less. To conform to that intent in the proposed rule, OSHA has 
changed the introductory sentence so that it reads: ``The following 
requirements apply to equipment that has a manufacturer-rated hoisting/
lifting capacity of more than 2,000 pounds.''
Paragraph 1433(a)
    Proposed paragraph (a) would require that crawler, truck and 
locomotive cranes manufactured prior to the effective date of this 
standard meet the applicable requirements for design, construction, and 
testing prescribed in ANSI B30.5-1968, safety code for ``Crawler, 
Locomotive, and Truck Cranes,'' ``PCSA Standard No. 2,'' the 
requirements in paragraph (b), or the applicable DIN (Deutsches 
Institut fur Normung e.V., or German Institute for Standardization) 
standards that were in effect at the time of manufacture.
    This proposed provision would allow employers to continue to use 
equipment that complies with Sec.  1926.550(b)(2) of Subpart N and also 
gives them the flexibility to use equipment that was built to conform 
to applicable DIN standards. The Committee concluded that the equipment 
manufactured during this period that was built to conform to the 
applicable DIN standards has not shown signs of being less safe from 
the standpoint of its design and construction than equipment built 
during this period to meet the applicable ANSI or PCSA standards.
    The C-DAC draft of this paragraph, and of Sec.  1926.1433(c) (see 
discussion below), referred to ``the effective date of 1926.1400'' 
instead of the ``effective date of the standard.'' For consistency 
throughout this proposal, OSHA has changed the references to ``the 
effective date of 1926.1400'' to ``the effective date of the 
standard.''
Paragraph 1433(b)
    Proposed (b) uses the phrase ``mobile and locomotive cranes'' to 
reflect the current terminology used in ASME B30.5-2004. As drafted by 
C-DAC, it would require that mobile (including crawler and truck) and 
locomotive cranes manufactured on or after the effective date of this 
standard meet certain provisions of ASME B30.5-2000 with addenda ASME 
B30.5a-2002, ``Safety Code for Mobile and Locomotive Cranes.'' Here, as 
elsewhere in this proposal, OSHA has updated the provision to refer to 
the 2004 version of ASME B30.5. OSHA has compared the 2004 and earlier 
version and, as discussed below, requests public comment on whether 
certain changes in the 2004 version should be adopted. The provisions 
of ASME B30.5-2004 incorporated in the C-DAC document are as follows:

[[Page 59842]]

    (1) In section 5-1.1.1 (``Load Ratings--Where Stability Governs 
Lifting Performance''), paragraphs (a)-(d) (including subparagraphs);
    (2) In section 5-1.1.2 (``Load Ratings--Where Structural Competence 
Governs Lifting Performance''), paragraph (b);
    (3) Section 5-1.2 (``Stability (Backward and Forward)'');
    (4) In section 5-1.3.1 (``Boom Hoist Mechanism''), paragraphs (a), 
(b)(1) and (b)(2), except that when using rotation resistant rope, 
Sec.  1926.1414(c)(4)(ii)(A) applies;
    (5) In section 5-1.3.2 (``Load Hoist Mechanism''), paragraphs (a), 
(a)(2)--(a)(4) (including subparagraphs), (b)--(d) (including 
subparagraphs);
    (6) Section 5-1.3.3 (``Telescoping Boom'');
    (7) Section 5-1.4 (``Swing Mechanism'');
    (8) In section 5-1.5 (``Crane Travel''), all provisions except 5-
1.5.3(d);
    (9) In section 5-1.6 (``Controls''), all provisions except 5-
1.6.1(c);
    (10) Section 5-1.7.4 (``Sheaves'');
    (11) Section 5-1.7.5 (``Sheave sizes'');
    (12) In section 5-1.9.1 (``Booms''), paragraph (f);
    (13) Section 5-1.9.3 (``Outriggers'');
    (14) Section 5-1.9.4 (``Locomotive Crane Equipment'');
    (15) Section 5-1.9.7 (``Clutch and Brake Protection''); and
    (16) In section 5-1.9.12 (``Miscellaneous equipment''), paragraphs 
(a), (c), (e), and (f).
    C-DAC's intent in this paragraph was to incorporate design and 
construction provisions of ASME B30.5-2004 that would only be 
applicable to mobile and locomotive cranes. Some other provisions of 
ASME B30.5-2004 are not incorporated here because they deal with issues 
addressed elsewhere in this proposal. For example, two-block 
protection, which is required by section 5-1.9.9.1 of the ASME 
standard, is addressed in Sec.  1926.1416 of this proposed standard. In 
addition, the issues addressed in proposed paragraph (e) below are 
addressed in ASME B30.5-2004 but, instead of making those provisions 
applicable solely to mobile and locomotive cranes, C-DAC drafted 
corresponding provisions that would be applied to all of the equipment 
subject to this proposed standard.
    The sections of ASME B30.5 referenced in proposed Sec.  
1926.1433(b)(1) and (b)(13) contain substantive differences between the 
2004 and earlier versions. For Sec.  1926.1433(b)(1), Table 1 of 
section 5-1.1.1 includes new requirements for equipment with outriggers 
partially extended that are not found in the earlier version. For 
paragraph Sec.  1926.1433(b)(13), the 2004 version of section 5-1.9.3 
contains a new paragraph (d) dealing with deploying partially extended 
outriggers. Inasmuch as Sec.  1926.1404(q)(1) of this proposal permits 
partial deployment of outriggers when manufacturer procedures permit, 
OSHA believes it would serve C-DAC's intent to incorporate the 
provisions on partially deployed outriggers in the 2004 version of ASME 
B30.5. OSHA requests public comment on this issue.
    Upon reviewing the C-DAC draft of Sec.  1926.1433(b)(5), OSHA notes 
that two corrections are necessary. First, there is an internal 
inconsistency between the incorporation of paragraph (a) of the ASME 
section and the more limited incorporation of paragraphs (a)(2) through 
(a)(4). To correct this inconsistency, OSHA is deleting the reference 
to paragraph (a). Second, as noted earlier in the discussion of Sec.  
1926.1414, the second sentence of section 5-1.3.2(c) of ASME B30.5-2004 
is stated as a recommendation rather than a mandatory requirement. OSHA 
believes it would be confusing to incorporate a non-mandatory 
recommendation into this standard. Therefore, rather than incorporating 
all of section 5-1.3.2(c) by reference, OSHA is proposing to 
incorporate only the first sentence, which reads: ``When provided, a 
power-controlled lowering system shall be capable of handling rated 
loads and speeds as specified by the manufacturer.'' With these 
changes, proposed Sec.  1926.1433(b)(5) reads as follows:

    (5) In section 5-1.3.2 (``Load Hoist Mechanism''), paragraphs 
(a)(2)-(a)(4) (including subparagraphs), (b) (including 
subparagraphs), (c) (first sentence only), and (d).

    Finally, due to renumbering, section 5-1.9.12 of the older ASME 
standard is section 5-1.9.11 in the 2004 version. The proposed rule 
reflects this change.
Paragraph 1433(c)
    Proposed (c), Prototype testing, would require that prototype 
mobile (including crawler and truck) and locomotive cranes manufactured 
on or after the effective date of this standard meet the prototype 
testing requirements in Sec.  1926.1433(c)(1), Test Option A or Sec.  
1926.1433(c)(2), Test Option B of this proposed section. As discussed 
in greater detail below, Test Option A continues the prototype testing 
methodology that has been required under Subpart N for crawler, 
locomotive, and truck cranes through the incorporation of ANSI B30.5-
1968. Test Option B would permit, as an alternative, the use of 
computer modeling technology for prototype evaluation.
Test Option A--Physical Testing
    Proposed paragraph (c)(1)(i), Test Option A, would state that the 
following applies to equipment with cantilevered booms (such as 
hydraulic boom cranes): all the tests listed in SAE J1063, Table 1, 
shall be performed to load all critical structural elements to their 
respective limits; and all the strength margins listed in SAE J1063, 
Table 2 shall be met. As mentioned in previous paragraphs of this 
proposed standard, C-DAC recognized the abundance of hydraulic cranes 
now in production and believed OSHA needs to ensure that prototypes are 
tested to the most applicable standards. C-DAC identified current SAE 
standards as being most protective and applicable to the majority of 
cantilevered-boom cranes that are manufactured in the United States. In 
addition, they believed that most U.S. manufacturers already adhere to 
the SAE standards.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c)(1)(ii) states that the following 
applies to equipment with pendant supported lattice booms: all the 
tests listed in SAE J987, Table 1, shall be performed to load all 
critical structural elements to their respective limits; and all the 
strength margins listed in SAE J987 Table 2 shall be met. C-DAC 
recommended that OSHA include the minimum testing criteria specified in 
the referenced SAE standard to ensure that prototype cranes with 
pendant supported booms were safe to operate on construction sites.
    The testing involved in the SAE tables under Option A uses 
empirical measurements of the prototype; in other words, ``physical 
testing,'' using equipment such as strain gauges, is done to determine 
if the prototype is within the requisite limits.
Test Option B--Computer Modeling With Methodology Verification
    In contrast to the physical testing required under Test Option A, 
under proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c)(2), Test Option B, the testing and 
verification requirements of CEN's EN 13000 (2004), which permits tests 
to be conducted using computer modeling, would apply. In using the CEN 
(Comite Europe en de Normalisation, or European Committee for 
Standardization) standard, the additional requirements specified in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c)(2)(i) through (iii), which impose 
conditions that must be met if computer modeling is used, would also 
have to be met.
    During the C-DAC meetings, there was considerable discussion about

[[Page 59843]]

whether computer modeling is a sufficient substitute for physical 
testing. A German crane manufacturer gave a presentation to C-DAC in 
which they described successful experience with the use of computer 
modeling, which convinced some members of C-DAC that computer modeling 
should be allowed to be used to comply with this proposed section. 
Other C-DAC members were not convinced that computer modeling was 
sufficient to ensure that prototype cranes were safe for operation 
because the tested areas of those cranes were not strain gauged. Others 
believed that data was available which indicated that, when CEN testing 
standards were met, imported cranes were as safe as those tested using 
the strain gauging methods specified in Sec.  1926.1433(c)(1). 
Ultimately, C-DAC agreed to allow testing under the CEN standard but to 
mandate that the requirements of proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c)(2), 
discussed below, are met to ensure the reliability of the computer 
modeling.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c)(2)(i) would require that the analysis 
methodology (computer modeling) demonstrate that all load cases listed 
in SAE J1063 meet the strength margins listed in SAE J1063 Table 2 for 
equipment with cantilevered booms (such as hydraulic boom cranes). C-
DAC determined that it is necessary that the computer modeling 
demonstrate that the prototype meets the same minimum strength criteria 
used in Test Option A (see proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c)(1)(i), Test 
Option A, above).
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c)(2)(ii) would require that the analysis 
methodology (computer modeling) demonstrate that all load cases listed 
in SAE J987 meet the strength margins listed in SAE J987 Table 2 for 
equipment with pendant supported lattice booms. This proposed provision 
was included for the same reason as explained in the discussion of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c)(2)(i) above.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c)(2)(iii), Analysis verification, is 
designed to ensure that computer modeling would not be used as a 
substitute for physical testing unless its accuracy and reliability is 
verified. Some C-DAC members raised objections to reliance on computer 
modeling because it may not accurately account for some aspects of a 
design, or may not be reliable for other reasons. Their concern was 
that if the analysis methodology did not accurately or reliably account 
for some aspect of the design, such error might not be known until 
there had been a failure of the crane when in use.
    To address this concern, under this proposed provision, computer 
modeling may only be used as a substitute for strain gauge testing if 
the reliability of the computer modeling is verified by a history of 
strain gauge testing, or strain gauge testing combined with other 
physical testing. This does not mean that each computer modeling 
assessment of a particular prototype must be verified with strain gauge 
testing of that prototype. Rather, it means that strain gauge testing, 
or strain gauge testing combined with other physical testing, has been 
used to confirm the results of the computer modeling in enough relevant 
instances, which are documented, to demonstrate that the modeling is 
accurate and reliable.
    Some members of C-DAC were concerned that small employers would not 
have the resources to determine if the computer modeling used to test 
its crane met the specified SAE standards. This concern is addressed by 
proposed paragraph (e), which allows employers to rely on manufacturer 
documentation to show that the testing requirements of this proposed 
standard have been met.
    The C-DAC draft included a Sec.  1926.1433(c) that would have 
required that prototype testing of crawler, locomotive, and truck 
cranes meet the applicable requirements for prototype testing 
prescribed in ANSI B30.5-1968. Upon reviewing that provision, OSHA 
notes that it is included in the requirement of proposed Sec.  
1926.1433(a) that such cranes meet the applicable testing requirements 
of ANSI B30.5-1968. To avoid any confusion that such duplication may 
cause, OSHA is deleting C-DAC's proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c) and has 
redesignated the paragraphs that followed it. However, to make clear 
that this deletion does not alter the substantive requirement for 
prototype testing in the C-DAC document, OSHA is adding a note at the 
end of paragraph (c) that states that prototype testing of crawler, 
locomotive and truck cranes manufactured prior to the effective date of 
the standard must conform to paragraph (a).
    OSHA notes that neither proposed Sec.  1926.1433(c) nor any other 
proposed provisions would apply prototype testing requirements to tower 
cranes. It appears to the Agency that this was an oversight on the part 
of C-DAC. OSHA requests public comment on whether there should be 
prototype testing requirements for tower cranes, and, if so, what 
requirements should apply.
Paragraph 1433(d)
    Proposed paragraph (d) would mandate that all equipment covered by 
this Subpart meet the requirements listed in Sec.  1926.1433(d)(1) 
through (d)(13) of this proposed section. As noted above, the issues 
addressed by paragraph (d) are addressed by ASME B30.5-2004. However, 
instead of making those requirements apply solely to mobile and 
locomotive cranes, C-DAC believed that all equipment covered by this 
proposal presents similar issues and drafted this paragraph to apply to 
all covered equipment.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(1), Load capacity/ratings and related 
information, would require the employer to ensure that the information 
available in the cab (see Sec.  1926.1417(c)) regarding load capacity/
ratings and related information include the data listed in Sec.  
1926.1433(d)(1)(i) through (d)(1)(xvi). This proposed paragraph 
essentially tracks section 5-1.1.3 of ASME B30.5-2004 but uses wording 
that makes the provisions of the ASME standard applicable to all 
equipment subject to this standard. Some of this information is already 
required for mobile and locomotive cranes by Subpart N's incorporation 
of ANSI B30.5-1968. C-DAC believed that these equipment specifications 
need to be made available for the operator to reference in the cab so 
that the operator has immediate access to information needed to ensure 
safe operation.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(2), (3), and (4) are comparable to 
requirements in section 5-1.7.6 of ASME B30.5-2004. Proposed Sec.  
1926.1433(d)(2) would require that load hooks (including latched and 
unlatched types), ball assemblies and load blocks be of sufficient 
weight to overhaul the line from the highest hook position for boom or 
boom and jib lengths and the number of parts of the line in use. C-DAC 
explained that due to the various lengths of booms possible and the 
weight of varying lengths of cable along the entire lengths of those 
booms, selection of sufficiently weighted ball assemblies and load 
blocks is crucial to safe hoisting operations. C-DAC believed that this 
proposed requirement is necessary to prevent any incidents that would 
occur when ball assemblies, load blocks, and load hooks are of 
insufficient weight to keep the load line from being unintentionally 
pulled up the boom due to the weight of the load line itself.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(3) would require that hook and ball 
assemblies and load blocks be marked with their rated capacity and 
weight. C-DAC believed that marking this equipment with their rated 
capacities is needed to help ensure that they are not overloaded, which 
could lead to loss of the load. Marking them with their

[[Page 59844]]

weight is necessary to help enable employers to comply with proposed 
Sec.  1926.1433(d)(2) (discussed above).
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(4), Latching hooks, would require that 
hooks meet the requirements in Sec.  1926.1433(d)(4)(i)-(iii) of this 
proposed section. C-DAC believed that these proposed requirements would 
help employers reduce or eliminate the number of incidents related to 
the unintentional disengaging of loads from their load line hooks.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(4)(i) would require that hooks be 
equipped with latches, except where the requirements of Sec.  
1926.1433(d)(4)(ii) are met. C-DAC believed that the use of hooks with 
latches is an industry recognized practice but also recognized that 
there are some circumstances where the use of a hook with a latch 
presents a greater hazard. For example, if an employee would have to 
climb up or out onto an unsecured, elevated member to unhook the load 
after its placement, the employee would be exposed to a fall hazard.
    To accommodate such greater hazard scenarios, proposed Sec.  
1926.1433(d)(4)(ii) would require that hooks without latches, or with 
latches removed or disabled, not be used unless two criteria are met. 
First, a qualified person must determine that it is safer to hoist and 
place the load without latches (or with the latches removed/tied-back). 
Second, routes for the loads must be pre-planned to ensure that no 
employee is required to work in the fall zone except for employees 
necessary for the hooking or unhooking of the load.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(4)(iii) would require that the latch 
close the throat opening and be designed to retain slings or other 
lifting devices/accessories in the hook when the rigging apparatus is 
slack. This requirement was included to ensure that the rigging will 
not be unintentionally dislodged from the hook when the rigging 
apparatus is slack. C-DAC members described scenarios where loads had 
become caught on structures or objects and created a slack condition. 
This caused the rigging to become dislodged and resulted in the load 
falling.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(5), Posted warnings, states that posted 
warnings required by this subpart as well as those originally supplied 
with the equipment by the manufacturer shall be maintained in legible 
condition. Compliance with this proposed requirement would increase the 
likelihood that employees will recognize the hazard identified on the 
posted warning and avoid or protect themselves from that hazard.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(6) would require that an accessible 
fire extinguisher be on the equipment. This requirement, which is 
similar to one currently at Sec.  1926.550(a)(14)(i), would enable a 
small fire to be extinguished before it can spread.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7), Cabs, states that equipment with 
cabs shall meet the requirements listed in Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)(i) 
through (v) of this proposed section. The majority of Sec.  
1926.1433(d)(7) is currently required for crawler, locomotive, and 
truck cranes by Subpart N, which incorporates the construction 
requirements of ANSI B30.5-1968. These proposed provisions would ensure 
that the crane operator is provided with a safe work station that has 
adequate ventilation, safe means of access and egress, good visibility, 
protection against window breakage, and sufficient roof strength.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)(i) would require that cabs be 
designed with a form of adjustable ventilation and method for clearing 
the windshield for maintaining visibility and air circulation. Examples 
of means for adjustable ventilation include an air conditioner or 
window that can be opened (for ventilation and air circulation); 
examples of means for maintaining visibility include heater (for 
preventing windshield icing), defroster, fan, and windshield wiper. 
This provision would ensure adequate air circulation both for the 
operator's health and for good visibility.
    Under proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)(ii), cab doors (whether 
swinging or sliding) would have to be designed to prevent inadvertent 
opening or closing while traveling or operating the machine. Swinging 
doors adjacent to the operator must open outward. Sliding operator 
doors must open rearward. This proposed provision is currently required 
for crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes by section 5-1.8.1c of ANSI 
B30.5-1968, which is incorporated by reference in Subpart N. 
Standardization of the direction for opening doors helps ensure that an 
operator will be able to exit the cab quickly in an emergency.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)(iii), Windows, would require that 
cabs meet the requirements listed in Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)(iii)(A) 
through (C).
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)(iii)(A) would require that the cab 
have windows in front and on both sides of the operator. Forward 
vertical visibility would have to be sufficient to give the operator a 
view of the boom point at all times. This proposed provision is 
currently required for crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes by section 
5-1.8.1b of ANSI B30.5-1968, which is incorporated by reference in 
Subpart N.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)(iii)(B) would allow windows to have 
sections designed to be opened or readily removed. Windows with 
sections designed to be opened would have to be designed so that they 
can be secured to prevent inadvertent closure. This proposed provision 
is currently required for crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes by 
section 5-1.8.1b of ANSI B30.5-1968, which is incorporated by reference 
in Subpart N. Compliance with this provision would ensure that the 
operator can adequately ventilate the cab should conditions within the 
cab affect the safe operation of the crane. Under such conditions, 
inadvertent closure of the windows during the operation of the crane 
could distract an operator or facilitate reoccurrence of conditions 
within the cab which adversely affect the safe operation of the crane.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)(iii)(C) would specify that windows 
be of safety glass or material with similar optical and safety 
properties, that introduce no visible distortion or otherwise obscure 
visibility that interferes with the safe operation of the crane. This 
provision maintains the protections currently required by Sec.  
1926.550(a)(12).
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)(iv) would require that a clear 
passageway be provided from the operator's station to an exit door on 
the operator's side. This proposed provision is currently required for 
crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes by section 5-1.8.1d of ANSI 
B30.5-1968, which is incorporated by reference in Subpart N. This 
provision will enable the operator to enter and exit the equipment 
safely and will enable the operator to escape from the cab quickly in 
the event of an emergency.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)(v) would state that areas of the cab 
roof that serve as a workstation for rigging, maintenance or other 
crane-related tasks shall be capable of supporting 250 pounds without 
permanent distortion. This proposed provision maintains the protection 
provided by Subpart N for crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes through 
its incorporation by reference of ANSI B30.5-1968 (section 5-1.8.4), 
except that the cab roof strength requirement was increased to 250 
pounds from 200 pounds. This increase was recommended by C-DAC to 
increase the safety factor of the roof in light of heavier employees 
and equipment that must be supported by the cab roof.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(8) would require that belts, gears, 
shafts, pulleys,

[[Page 59845]]

sprockets, spindles, drums, fly wheels, chains, and other parts or 
components that reciprocate, rotate or otherwise move be guarded where 
contact by employees (except for maintenance and repair workers) is 
possible in the performance of normal duties. This proposed provision 
continues the basic requirement of Sec.  1926.550(a)(8) of Subpart N 
but revises the Subpart N provision to include an exception for 
maintenance and repair employees. The exception would permit 
maintenance and repair workers to remove the guards when their work 
requires access to the parts being guarded. C-DAC believed this 
exception was necessary because these employees often cannot perform 
their work with the guards installed.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(9) would require that all exhaust 
pipes, turbochargers, and charge air coolers be insulated or guarded 
where contact by employees is possible in the performance of normal 
duties. As with proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(8), an exception is 
provided when maintenance and repair workers need to remove the guards 
to perform their work. This proposed provision was included to retain 
the employee protection against burn injuries currently provided by 
Sec.  1926.550(a)(10), which requires guarding or insulation of exhaust 
pipes, and to extend it to other components that can get hot enough to 
cause burns if contacted.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(10) would require that hydraulic and 
pneumatic lines be protected from damage to the extent feasible. 
Denting, crushing, puncturing, or nicking a hydraulic or pneumatic line 
could adversely affect the structural integrity of the line and 
compromise the safe operation of the affected systems and the crane as 
a whole. A similar provision is in section 5-1.9.8 of ASME B30.5-2004. 
C-DAC believed that most manufacturers in the industry are already 
providing protection for these lines but believed it was advisable to 
include this proposed provision in light of the increasing numbers of 
pneumatically and hydraulically controlled cranes now being operated in 
the industry.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(11) would require that equipment be 
designed so that exhaust fumes are not discharged in the cab and are 
discharged in a direction away from the operator. This proposed 
provision was included to retain the employee protection provided for 
crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes by section 5-1.9.2 of ANSI B30.5-
1968, incorporated by reference in Subpart N, and to extend it to other 
types of equipment. This proposed requirement ensures that exhaust 
gases which are likely to adversely affect or incapacitate the operator 
will not accumulate in the cab because of the design of the equipment.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(12), Friction mechanisms, states that 
where friction mechanisms (such as brakes and clutches) are used to 
control the boom hoist or load line hoist, they shall be: Of a size and 
thermal capacity sufficient to control all rated loads with the minimum 
recommended reeving; and adjustable to permit compensation for lining 
wear to maintain proper operation. Comparable requirements now apply to 
crawler, locomotive, and truck cranes through incorporation by 
reference in Subpart N of ANSI B30.5-1968 (sections 5-1.3.2a.1 and 5-
1.3.3). C-DAC believed that a similar requirement should apply to all 
equipment using friction mechanisms to control the boom hoist or load 
line. The Committee believed that this engineering technology is 
typical in most modern friction mechanisms.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1433(d)(13), Hydraulic load hoists, would 
specify that hydraulic drums have an integrally mounted holding device 
or internal static brake to prevent load hoist movement in the event of 
hydraulic failure. A comparable requirement is in section 5-1.3.1(d) of 
ASME B30.5-2004. This requirement will protect employees against 
serious injuries and deaths that could result from an unintended 
movement of the load hoist caused by a hydraulic failure.
Paragraph 1433(e)
    As noted above, proposed paragraph (e) would permit employers to 
rely on documentation from manufacturers to show that they are in 
compliance with Sec.  1926.1433(a)-(c) and Sec.  1926.1433(d)(7)-
(d)(13) where the equipment has not changed since it was manufactured, 
except in accordance with Sec.  1926.1434, Equipment modifications. 
Section 1926.1433(d)(1)-(d)(6) are excluded from this provision because 
the employer can easily verify compliance with them without recourse to 
documentation provided by the manufacturer.
    A failure to have such documentation would not, in itself, 
constitute a violation of these provisions. Rather, proposed Sec.  
1926.1433(e) is intended to make it easier for employers to determine 
if their equipment meets these criteria.

Section 1434 Equipment Modifications

    This proposed section addresses the procedures an employer must 
follow if it wants to modify equipment in a way that would affect its 
capacity or safe operation. Its purpose is to safeguard against unsafe 
modifications and to ensure that the equipment's instructions and 
specifications are updated to reflect the modifications so that the 
equipment may be used safely.
    Currently, Sec.  1926.550(a)(16) provides:

    No modifications or additions which affect the capacity or safe 
operation of the equipment shall be made by the employer without the 
manufacturer's written approval. If such modifications or changes 
are made, the capacity, operation, and maintenance instruction 
plates, tags, or decals, shall be changed accordingly. In no case 
shall the original safety factor of the equipment be reduced.

    By requiring the manufacturer's written approval, Sec.  
1926.550(a)(16) seeks to ensure that the proposed modifications or 
additions will be consistent with the design and structural integrity 
of the equipment and will not reduce the original safety factor of the 
equipment. The Committee believed that manufacturer approval was an 
important safeguard and should be retained but was concerned that it 
does not address situations in which the manufacturer does not respond 
to a request to approve a modification or when the manufacturer is no 
longer available to evaluate a proposed modification. Therefore, the 
Committee recommended a new provision that addresses these types of 
scenarios with procedures that it believed would allow for 
modifications to be made safely.
Paragraph 1434(a)
    Proposed paragraph (a) would prohibit modifications or additions 
which affect the capacity or safe operation of the equipment except 
where any of three approval options set out in proposed Sec.  
1926.1434(a)(1), (2), and (3) are met. In the first option, proposed 
Sec.  1926.1434(a)(1)(i), Manufacturer review and approval, the 
employer would be required to obtain written manufacturer approval for 
the modifications/additions.
    OSHA has corrected an inadvertent omission from proposed Sec.  
1926.1434(a)(1) by adding proposed Sec.  1926.1434(a)(1)(ii), which 
requires the employer to modify the load charts, procedures, 
instruction manuals and instruction plates/tags/decals as necessary to 
accord with the modification/addition. Currently, Sec.  1926.550(a)(16) 
contains such a requirement and proposed Sec.  1926.1434(a)(2), which 
requires the modifications or additions to be approved by a registered 
professional engineer if the manufacturer declines to review the 
proposal, does as well (see below). It was clearly C-DAC's intent to

[[Page 59846]]

retain the existing protection in Sec.  1926.550(a)(16) and require the 
employer to modify the load charts, procedures, instruction manuals and 
instruction plates/tags/decals regardless of who approved the 
modification/addition. The crane operator and other employees who work 
with the crane need accurate information about the topics addressed in 
those materials, and having them available, as proposed Sec.  
1926.1434(a)(1)(ii) requires, will help ensure that the equipment is 
operated safely.
    The second option, proposed Sec.  1926.1434(a)(2), Manufacturer 
refusal to review request, would establish a procedure where the 
manufacturer either declines to review a request for a modification 
approval or fails to respond to the request. Under this procedure, the 
employer would be required to provide a detailed description of the 
proposed modification to the manufacturer and ask it to approve the 
modification/addition. If the manufacturer declines to review the 
technical merits of the proposal or fails, within 30 days, to 
acknowledge the request or initiate the review, the employer would be 
permitted to proceed with the modification if the requirements 
specified in proposed Sec.  1926.1434(a)(2)(i) and (ii) are met.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1434(a)(2)(i) would require that a registered 
professional engineer who is a qualified person with respect to the 
equipment involved take two actions. First, under proposed Sec.  
1926.1434(a)(2)(i)(A), the engineer would have to approve the 
modification/addition and specify the equipment configurations to which 
that approval applies. The second action that the approving engineer 
would have to take, which is described under proposed Sec.  
1926.1434(a)(2)(i)(B), would be to modify load charts, procedures, 
instruction manuals and instruction plates/tags/decals as necessary to 
accord with the modification/addition.
    This is essential for safe equipment operation because these are 
the charts, signs and materials that inform the user and operator of 
the capacities, procedures and limitations that apply to the equipment. 
Proposed Sec.  1926.1434(a)(2)(ii) would specify that the modification/
addition not reduce the original safety factor of the equipment, 
retaining the comparable requirement now found in Sec.  
1926.550(a)(16).
    The Committee recommended Sec.  1926.1434(a)(2) because it believed 
that the refusal of a manufacturer to review a request, or a 
manufacturer's failure to act on the request within a reasonable time, 
should not preclude an employer from making a modification if adequate 
precautions are followed. The Committee concluded that 30 days would 
give the manufacturer a reasonable amount of time to decide whether to 
simply decline to review the request or to proceed with evaluating it. 
Also, the Committee concluded that a failure to respond at all in this 
period would fairly reflect an intention not to act on the request in a 
timely manner.
    C-DAC believed that the actions specified in proposed Sec.  
1926.1434(a)(2)(i) would need to be done by a registered professional 
engineer who is a qualified person with respect to the equipment 
involved. The term ``qualified person'' is defined in proposed Sec.  
1926.1401 as ``a person who, by possession of a recognized degree, 
certificate, or professional standing, or who by extensive knowledge, 
training and experience, successfully demonstrated the ability to 
solve/resolve problems related to the subject matter, the work, or the 
project.'' The Committee thought it important to make clear that this 
individual needs to be a qualified person ``with respect to the 
equipment involved,'' since specialized engineering knowledge is needed 
to make the required assessments regarding the particular equipment 
that is being modified.
    The approval of the modification/addition under proposed Sec.  
1926.1434(a)(2)(i) would have to specify the equipment configurations 
to which that approval applies. Cranes typically can be configured in a 
variety of ways. Modifications may have different effects depending on 
the configuration. It is therefore essential for purposes of ensuring 
safe operation that the approval specify the configurations to which 
the approval applies. An example of an approval that met this aspect of 
the proposed provision would be the following: ``This is an approval to 
add an additional boom section of the above-described design for a 
brand K lattice boom crane, model 1. This approval applies only when 
the crane is configured without a jib.''
    This proposed section uses the term ``modification/addition'' to 
refer to ``modification or addition.'' The Committee wanted to make 
clear that an addition to the equipment is a type of modification and 
needs to be subject to the same approval procedures as other types of 
modifications. For example, the addition of a generator to the back of 
the cab of a crane needs to be subject to the approval procedures 
because it will alter the crane's backward stability.
    Proposed Sec.  1926.1434(a)(3), Unavailable manufacturer, would 
address a scenario where an employer wishes to make an equipment 
modification and the manufacturer of the equipment is unavailable to 
review the proposed modifications because, for example, it has gone out 
of business (and has not been taken over by a successor company). Under 
these circumstances, if the employer wishes to modify its equipment in 
such a way that affects its capacity and safe operation, it must meet 
the requirements of proposed Sec.  1926.1434(a)(2)(i) and (a)(2)(ii) 
above.

Paragraph 1434(b)

    Proposed paragraph (b) would prohibit modifications or additions 
which affect the capacity or safe operation of the equipment where the 
manufacturer, after a review of the technical safety merits of the 
proposed modification/addition, rejects the proposal and explains the 
reasons for the rejection in a written response. This requirement is 
the same as in Sec.  1926.550(a)(16), except C-DAC believed that it was 
important to expressly state the need for the manufacturer to explain 
why it rejected the employer's proposed modification. Such an 
explanation would both demonstrate that the manufacturer reviewed the 
technical safety merits of the request and give the employer the 
opportunity to modify the proposal to address the manufacturer's 
objections.
    The C-DAC version of proposed Sec.  1926.1434(b) did not explicitly 
state the effect of a manufacturer rejecting the proposal but failing 
to provide written reasons for the rejection. OSHA believes that C-DAC 
intended that such a situation be treated as a manufacturer refusal to 
review the request under Sec.  1926.1434(a)(2). To effectuate this 
intent, OSHA has added the following sentence to proposed Sec.  
1926.1434(b):

    If the manufacturer rejects the proposal but does not explain 
the reasons for the rejection in writing, the employer may treat 
this as a manufacturer refusal to review the request under paragraph 
(a)(2) of this section.
Paragraph 1434(c)
    Proposed paragraph (c) would state that the provisions in Sec.  
1926.1434(a) and (b) of this proposed section do not apply to 
modifications made or approved by the U.S. military. A representative 
of the U.S. Navy indicated to C-DAC that such an exception is needed in 
the event of military exigencies.

Section 1435 Tower Cranes

    ``Tower crane'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401 as ``a type of 
lifting structure which utilizes a vertical mast

[[Page 59847]]

or tower to support a working boom (jib) in an elevated position. Loads 
are suspended from the working boom. While the working boom may be of 
the fixed type (horizontal or angled) or have luffing capability, it 
can always rotate to swing loads, either by rotating on the top of the 
tower (top slewing) or by the rotation of the tower (bottom slewing). 
The tower base may be fixed in one location or ballasted and moveable 
between locations.'' This definition is based in part on the SC&RF 
Handbook's definition.\75\
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    \75\ This definition is explained in the discussion above of 
proposed Sec.  1926.1401 (Definitions).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Subpart N, at Sec.  1926.550(c), addresses only one type of tower 
crane: those in which the working boom is fixed horizontally 
(hammerhead cranes). Furthermore, Sec.  1926.550(c) addresses such 
tower cranes only to a limited extent. Specifically, it addresses 
adequate clearance for employee passage near moving and rotating parts, 
fall protection, trolley buffers, and limit switches for cranes that 
travel on rails. In addition, Sec.  1926.550(c)(5) requires that 
hammerhead tower cranes meet the applicable requirements for design, 
construction, installation, testing, maintenance, inspection, and 
operation as prescribed by the manufacturer.
    The Committee believed that most of the provisions in the other 
sections of this proposed standard are necessary and appropriate for 
tower cranes but that, in addition, certain unique characteristics of 
tower cranes necessitate certain additional requirements.
Paragraph 1435(a)
    Proposed paragraph (a) states that unless provided otherwise in 
this section, all other sections of this proposed standard apply to 
tower cranes. As discussed below, sections Sec.  1926.1415 (safety 
devices) and Sec.  1926.1416 (operational aids) would not apply to 
tower cranes. Instead, this proposed section lists the safety devices 
and operational aids that would be required for tower cranes. In 
addition, this proposed section contains additional requirements for 
erecting, climbing, dismantling, and inspections.
Paragraph 1435(b) Erecting, Climbing and Dismantling
    Proposed paragraph 1435(b) addresses erecting, climbing, and 
dismantling tower cranes. Under proposed paragraph 1435(b)(1), the 
employer would be required to comply with the assembly and disassembly 
requirements set out in proposed Sec. Sec.  1926.1403, 1926.1404 and 
1926.1405 except as otherwise specified in this section. Because the 
industry generally refers to the assembly and disassembly of tower 
cranes as erecting, climbing and dismantling, the term ``assembly,'' as 
used in Sec. Sec.  1926.1403 through 1926.1405, is replaced with 
``erecting and climbing,'' and the term ``disassembly'' is replaced 
with ``dismantling.''
    OSHA notes that proposed Sec.  1926.1403(b) specifies that employer 
procedures for assembly and disassembly may be used only where the 
employer can demonstrate that the procedures used meet the requirements 
in Sec.  1926.1406. The C-DAC draft of Sec.  1926.1435(b) inadvertently 
omitted a reference to Sec.  1926.1406. OSHA has corrected that 
omission; proposed paragraph (b)(1) now reads as follows:

    (1) Sections 1926.1403 (Assembly/disassembly--selection of 
manufacturer or employer procedures), 1926.1404 (Assembly/
disassembly--general requirements), 1926.1405 (Disassembly--
additional requirements for disassembly of booms and jibs), and 
1926.1406 (Assembly/disassembly--employer procedures--general 
requirements), apply to tower cranes (except as otherwise 
specified), except that the term ``assembly/disassembly'' is 
replaced by ``erecting, climbing and dismantling,'' and the term 
``disassembly'' is replaced by ``dismantling.''

    Proposed paragraph 1435(b)(2), Dangerous areas (self-erecting tower 
cranes), addresses the hazards associated with crew members located in 
certain areas. Employees would be prohibited from being in or under the 
tower, jib, or rotating portion of the crane during erecting, climbing 
and dismantling operations until the crane is secured in a locked 
position and the competent person indicates it is safe to enter these 
areas. The only exception to this would be where the manufacturer's 
instructions direct otherwise and the employer limits access to 
necessary employees only.
    These areas are hazardous because, in the event of unintended 
movement of components, there is a heightened chance than an employee 
could be struck or crushed. The exception accounts for those situations 
in which, due to the design of the equipment, it is infeasible for all 
employees to be out of these areas during erecting, climbing and 
dismantling operations.
    Under proposed paragraph (b)(3), Foundations and structural 
supports, tower crane foundations and structural supports would be 
required to be designed by the manufacturer or a registered 
professional engineer. The Committee noted that structural supports can 
include portions of a structure, such as the floors or columns of a 
building, when the tower crane is mounted to them and they are used to 
help support the crane.
    When a tower crane is mounted to portions of a structure, it is 
vital for safe operation that the structure be able to withstand both 
the crane and the loads the crane will handle throughout the job. 
Accordingly, when portions of a structure are used to support a tower 
crane, the manufacturer or registered professional engineer who designs 
the crane's structural supports must ensure not only that the structure 
is adequate to support the crane when it is mounted but that it will 
continue to support the crane under all anticipated conditions of use.
    Moreover, that entity must ensure both that the structure is strong 
enough to support the crane under all anticipated conditions of use and 
that the means of attaching the crane to the structure are strong 
enough to maintain the crane's support throughout the job. Therefore, 
OSHA interprets ``structural supports'' in this provision to include 
both the portions of the structure used for support and the means of 
attachment. OSHA requests public comment on whether proposed Sec.  
1926.1435(b)(3) states this intent with sufficient clarity.
    As drafted by C-DAC, this provision was listed as one of the 
hazards the A/D supervisor must address. However, the provision imposes 
a specific duty on the employer to have the foundations and structural 
supports designed by the manufacturer or a registered professional 
engineer, and this will be more clearly stated if the provision is 
contained in a stand-alone requirement rather than as one of several 
requirements that the A/D supervisor must address. Accordingly, OSHA 
has moved the provision into a separate Sec.  1926.1435(b)(3).\76\ In 
addition, as discussed below, the original Sec.  1926.1435(b)(3)(i) 
(now Sec.  1926.1435(b)(4)(i)) has been modified to state that the A/D 
supervisor must verify that the foundation and structural supports have 
been installed in accordance with their design in order to ensure that 
the design of the manufacturer or registered professional engineer has 
actually been implemented.
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    \76\ The list of hazards the A/D supervisor must address was in 
Sec.  1926.1435(b)(3) of the C-DAC draft; that list (as modified in 
accordance with the discussion above) is now located in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1435(b)(4).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Proposed paragraph 1435(b)(4), Addressing specific hazards, would 
require the employer to comply with proposed Sec.  1926.1404(h)(1) 
through (9).

[[Page 59848]]

During erecting, climbing and dismantling, proposed Sec.  1926.1404(h) 
would require that the A/D supervisor address certain hazards (these 
are discussed above in the discussion of proposed Sec.  1926.1404). 
Proposed 1926.1435(b)(4) lists additional hazards, specific to tower 
cranes, that the A/D supervisor would also have to address. These 
additional hazards are those associated with (i) the foundations and 
structural supports for tower cranes, (ii) the loss of backward 
stability, and (iii) wind speed.
    Proposed paragraph 1435(b)(4)(i) would require the A/D supervisor 
to verify that the foundation and structural supports are installed in 
accordance with their design. This paragraph is designed to ensure that 
the design of these components by the manufacturer or registered 
professional engineer is followed when they are installed.
    Proposed (b)(4)(ii) would require that the A/D supervisor address 
the backward stability of the crane before self erecting tower cranes 
or cranes on traveling or stationary undercarriages are swung. This 
provision is similar to the assembly/disassembly requirement in Sec.  
1926.1404(h)(11)(discussed above) except that it applies only to self 
erecting tower cranes and cranes that are on traveling or static 
(stationary) undercarriages. It applies to these types of tower cranes 
to highlight the fact that, because they do not have a base that is 
fixed to the ground, the backwards stability safety issue needs to be 
addressed.
    Tower cranes have a relatively small footprint relative to their 
height. The horizontal force caused by wind during erecting and 
dismantling can therefore have a substantial effect on the stability of 
a tower crane. Proposed Sec.  1926.1435(b)(4)(iii) would require that 
erecting, climbing, and dismantling not take place when the wind speed 
recommended by the manufacturer is exceeded. Where the manufacturer 
does not specify the proper wind speed, a qualified person would be 
required to determine the wind speed not to be exceeded.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(4), Plumb tolerance, addresses the extent to 
which tower cranes need to be plumb. This proposed provision would 
require that the crane's tower be plumb to the manufacturer's tolerance 
and verified by a qualified person. The Committee noted that if a 
vertical tower is out of plumb the stability of the crane is greatly 
reduced. In addition, an out of plumb condition can reduce the crane's 
capacity and could cause a collapse.
    Where the manufacturer does not specify the plumb tolerance, this 
provision would require that the tower be plumbed to a tolerance of at 
least 1:500. The Committee noted that a tolerance of at least 1:500 is 
generally what manufacturers specify and that for any type of vertical 
structure this generally is the accepted plumb tolerance in the 
engineering and construction industries.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(6), Multiple tower crane jobsites, would 
require construction jobsites with more than one fixed jib (hammerhead) 
tower crane installed to be located so that no crane could contact the 
structure of another crane. However, the jibs of multiple hammerhead 
tower cranes would be permitted to pass over/under one another.
    This would help to ensure that multiple tower cranes on a 
construction site do not collide with each other. Such a collision 
could cause employee injuries or fatalities in various ways. For 
example, employees could be struck by a load that was caused to swing 
by the collision; a tower crane operator could be struck; employees 
could be struck by a falling load, or there could be a collapse of one 
or more cranes.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(7), Climbing procedures, contains special 
requirements that would have to be followed during the climbing 
process. ``Climbing'' is defined in Sec.  1926.1401, Definitions, as: 
``The process in which a tower crane is raised to a new working height, 
either by adding additional tower sections to the top of the crane (top 
climbing), or by a system in which the entire crane is raised inside 
the structure (inside climbing).''
    Currently, the process of climbing is unique to tower cranes. The 
Committee indicated that, if done improperly, a collapse can occur 
during the climbing process. This proposed paragraph would require that 
prior to, and during all, climbing procedures the employer (i) comply 
with all manufacturer prohibitions; (ii) have a registered professional 
engineer verify that the host structure is strong enough to sustain the 
forces imposed through the braces, brace anchorages and supporting 
floors; and (iii) ensure that no part of the climbing procedure takes 
place when wind exceeds the speed recommended by the manufacturer or, 
where the manufacture does not specify the wind speed, a qualified 
person must determine the appropriate wind speed.
    Proposed (b)(7)(ii) would require the employer to have a registered 
professional engineer verify that the host structure is strong enough 
to sustain the forces imposed through the braces, brace anchorages and 
supporting floors. Examples of typical host structures include a 
building, parking garage, bridge or pier. If the host structure is not 
strong enough, the host structure could collapse and cause the tower 
crane to collapse as well.
    Proposed (b)(7)(iii) would require the employer to ensure that no 
part of the climbing procedure takes place when wind exceeds the speed 
recommended by the manufacturer or by a qualified person if the 
manufacturer does not specify this information. This provision is 
included because, during the climbing process, a tower crane is not yet 
fully stabilized and excessively high winds can lead to a collapse.
    The Agency notes that proposed Sec.  1926.1435(b)(4)(iii) would 
require wind speed to be addressed during erecting, climbing and 
dismantling in the same manner as Sec.  1926.1435(b)(7)(iii). OSHA 
requests public comment on whether Sec.  1926.1435(b)(7)(iii) should be 
omitted as redundant.
    Proposed paragraph (b)(8), Counterweight/ballast, addresses the 
hazard of instability that can result from improper installation or 
removal of counterweight/ballast, which can cause a collapse. Proposed 
Sec.  1926.1435(b)(8)(i) and (ii) would require that tower cranes not 
be erected, dismantled or operated without the amount and position of 
counterweight or ballast in place as specified by the manufacturer or a 
registered professional engineer and that the maximum amount of 
counterweight or ballast not be exceeded. The registered professional 
engineer must be one who is familiar with the equipment.
    OSHA has made several wording changes to proposed Sec.  
1926.1435(b)(8)(i) and (ii) as compared with the C-DAC draft of these 
provisions. First, the C-DAC draft of proposed Sec.  1926.1435(b)(8) 
used the term ``professional engineer,'' rather than, as used in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1435(b)(7)(i) and other provisions in this proposed 
standard, ``registered professional engineer.'' OSHA believes that this 
was an inadvertent omission and has added the word ``registered'' in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1435(b)(8)(i) and (ii).
    Second, the C-DAC draft of proposed Sec.  1926.1435(b)(8)(ii) used 
the word ``approved'' in the phrase ``approved by the manufacturer or 
professional engineer.'' In contrast, in the draft of proposed Sec.  
1926.1435(b)(8)(i), C-DAC used the phrase ``as specified by'' rather 
than ``approved.'' To ensure consistency and avoid confusion, the 
Agency has substituted the phrase ``as specified by'' for the word 
``approved'' in proposed Sec.  1926.1435(b)(8)(ii).
    Third, the C-DAC draft of proposed Sec.  1926.1435(b)(8)(i) 
referred to the amount and position of the

[[Page 59849]]

``counterweight or ballast.'' However, some tower cranes, such as 
traveling tower cranes, have both counterweight and ballast. Therefore, 
the Agency has changed the language so that proposed Sec.  
1926.1435(b)(8)(i) refers to ``counterweight and/or ballast.''
Paragraph 1435(c) Signs
    This proposed requirement addresses the hazards that can result 
from adding signs to tower cranes. Many employers will attach/hang/
install signs (or advertisements) to the jib, boom or tower, such as 
signs with the company name. The force of the wind bearing against a 
large sign can significantly increase the horizontal force the wind 
exerts on the crane. According to the Committee, most manufacturers 
specify the maximum size and permissible location of signs so that the 
stability of the tower crane is not compromised. Proposed 1926.1435(c) 
would require employers to comply with the manufacturer's 
specifications \77\ regarding the size and location of signs. Where the 
manufacturer does not specify this information or where such 
information is unavailable, this provision would require a registered 
professional engineer who is familiar with the specific type of tower 
crane involved to give written approval of the size and location of any 
signs.
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    \77\ OSHA has changed the C-DAC word ``procedures'' to 
``specifications'' for greater accuracy and clarity.
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    Note that the C-DAC draft included this provision as Sec.  
1926.1435(b)(4). However, upon review, OSHA became aware that signs are 
sometimes placed on tower cranes after the erecting/climbing process 
has been completed. Therefore, to make clear that the provision would 
apply irrespective of whether the sign was installed during or after 
erecting/climbing, the Agency has changed this provision's designation 
so that it is no longer under the paragraph on erecting, climbing and 
dismantling.
Paragraphs 1435(d), Safety Devices, and 1435(e), Operational Aids
    These proposed paragraphs set out the safety devices and 
operational aids that would be required on tower cranes. Proposed 
Sec. Sec.  1926.1415 and 1926.1416, which would require safety devices 
and operational aids on other types of cranes, would not be applicable 
to tower cranes. Instead, proposed Sec.  1926.1435(d) and (e) would 
apply. Although some of the safety devices and operational aids for 
tower cranes are the same as Sec. Sec.  1926.1415 and 1926.1416 require 
for other equipment, others are unique to tower cranes. C-DAC believed 
it would promote clarity to list all the devices and aids for tower 
cranes in this section.
    Safety devices would be required to be in proper working order. 
Where a safety device is not in proper working order, the crane would 
have to be taken out of service until it is again functioning properly. 
The Committee believed that the protection offered by safety devices is 
critical to safe operation and that there is no alternative way to 
achieve the same level of safety that the safety devices provide. By 
contrast, if an operational aid is malfunctioning, operations may 
continue where the employer implements specified temporary alternative 
measures. Where the tower crane manufacturer specifies more protective 
alternative measures than those specified in this proposed section, the 
employer would be required to follow those more protective alternative 
measures.
    Safety Devices: Proposed paragraph (d)(2) would require the safety 
devices on tower cranes discussed below.
    Boom stops on luffing boom type tower cranes (proposed Sec.  
1926.1435(d)(2)(i)) and jib stops on luffing boom type tower cranes if 
equipped with a jib attachment (proposed Sec.  1926.1435(d)(2)(ii)) 
would be required. These are comparable to the boom and jib stops 
required for other cranes under proposed Sec.  1926.1415 (discussed 
above) and are intended to prevent the boom and jib from being raised 
to too high an angle and toppling over backwards.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(2)(iii) would require travel end rail stops 
at both ends of the travel rail. These are comparable to the rail stops 
required for equipment on rails under proposed Sec.  1926.1415 and are 
designed to keep the crane from overshooting the boundaries on the rail 
within which it is supposed to operate. Overshooting the boundaries 
could result in a collapse. Subpart N currently contains a similar 
requirement at Sec.  1926.550(c)(4).
    Proposed paragraph (d)(2)(iv) would require travel rail clamps on 
all travel bogies. A ``travel bogie (tower cranes)'' is defined at 
Sec.  1401 as ``an assembly of two or more axles arranged to permit 
vertical wheel displacement and equalize the loading on the wheels.'' 
This definition is comparable to the definition of ``bogie'' in the 
SC&RF Handbook. When tower cranes travel on rails, they are mounted on 
travel bogies. The rail clamps that would be required by this proposed 
paragraph enable the bogies to be clamped to the rail to prevent the 
crane from lifting off the rail. They secure the crane in place when 
out of operation to prevent the crane from drifting unintentionally, 
which could cause struck-by accidents.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(2)(v) would require integrally mounted check 
valves on all load supporting hydraulic cylinders. A check valve 
permits fluid to flow in one direction only. When installed on load 
supporting hydraulic cylinders, such as the cylinders used to climb the 
crane, they protect against the loss of load support in the event of a 
hydraulic pressure failure by preventing the reverse flow of the 
hydraulic fluid supporting the cylinder.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(2)(vi) would require a hydraulic system 
pressure limiting device. A pressure limiting device, such as a relief 
valve, would prevent the pressure in a hydraulic system from exceeding 
its design limit, which can cause the system to fail.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(2)(vii) would require the following brakes, 
which must automatically set in the event of pressure loss or power 
failure: A hoist brake on all hoists; a swing brake; a trolley brake; 
and a rail travel brake. These types of brakes are needed to enable the 
motion of the crane and load to be controlled safely. Under this 
proposed paragraph, they must set automatically to avoid uncontrolled 
movement of the crane or load in the event of pressure loss or power 
failure that prevents their operation.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(2)(viii) would require deadman control or 
forced neutral return control (hand) levers. These devices ensure that 
the crane does not move unless the movement is being controlled by the 
operator. In the case of a deadman control, the motion being 
controlled, such as hoisting or trolleying, ceases when the operator 
releases the control. Forced neutral return control levers 
automatically return to the neutral position when they are released.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(2)(ix) would require an emergency stop 
switch at the operator's station. This safety device is needed to 
enable the operator to immediately stop all crane functions in the 
event of an emergency.
    Proposed paragraph (d)(3) would require that the safety devices 
listed in Sec.  1926.1435(d)(2) be in proper working order for the 
crane to be operated. Where a device stops working properly during 
operations, the operator would have to safely stop operations, and 
operations would be prohibited from resuming until the device is once 
again in proper working order.
    Operational aids: Like proposed Sec.  1926.1416 for other 
equipment, proposed paragraph Sec.  1926.1435(e) divides operational 
aids for tower cranes into Category I aids and Category

[[Page 59850]]

II aids, with the two categories differing in the amount of time that 
temporary alternative measures can be used until the aids are repaired. 
For Category I aids that period is seven days, and for Category II it 
is 30 days. Also like Sec.  1926.1416, if a required part is ordered 
within seven days and not received in time to complete the repair in 
seven and 30 days, respectively, the employer would have seven days 
from receiving the part to complete the repair.
    Proposed paragraph 1435(e)(4) specifies that operational aids must 
work properly during operations and, if an aid stops working, the 
operator would be required to safely stop operations until the aid is 
working properly again or until the temporary alternative measures are 
implemented. Where a replacement part for an operational aid is not 
available, the substitution of a device that performs the same function 
would not be considered a modification subject to proposed Sec.  
1926.1434, i.e., it would not need to be approved by the manufacturer 
or a registered professional engineer. See the discussion above 
regarding proposed Sec.  1926.1416 for an explanation of the 
committee's rationale for this approach to operational aids.
    Three of the operational aids discussed below would be required on 
tower cranes manufactured more than one year after the effective date 
of the standard. The remainder would be required on all cranes. It was 
C-DAC's understanding that the three aids that would not be required on 
existing cranes represent technology that has not been commonly 
available until recently, while the aids that would be required on all 
cranes have routinely been used in the industry for some time.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5) would require the Category I operational 
aids discussed below and specifies the alternative measures that would 
have to be followed if they are not working properly.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5)(i) would require trolley travel limiting 
devices. These devices would be required at both ends of the jib to 
prevent the trolley from running into the end stops. If the trolley 
were to run into an end stop, injuries or fatalities could result in a 
variety of ways. For example, the sudden stopping of the trolley at the 
outward end stop could cause the load to swing significantly past the 
crane's maximum working radius, causing a collapse. Another example is 
where the load swing from the sudden stopping of the trolley could 
cause the load to fall and strike employees.
    If this operational aid was not working properly, the employer 
would have to use one of two temporary alternative measures: (A) Mark 
the trolley rope so it can be seen by the operator at a point that will 
give the operator sufficient time to stop the trolley prior to the end 
stops, or (B) use a spotter when operations are conducted within 10 
feet of a trolley end stop. The Committee believed that both options 
would constitute safe alternatives until the trolley travel limit 
device is back in working order within the required time frame.
    In order for the proposed option for a spotter in proposed Sec.  
1926.1435(e)(5)(i)(B) to work effectively and as the Committee 
intended, the spotter would need to communicate with the operator. 
Although such a communication requirement is implicit, the Agency 
believes that, to avoid ambiguity, the provision needs to explicitly 
require that the spotter be in communication with the operator. 
Therefore, OSHA believes that the C-DAC language in proposed Sec.  
1926.1435(e)(5)(i)(B), as well as the additional provisions in proposed 
Sec.  1926.1435 which reference spotters, should be changed to include 
such a requirement. The provision, if changed in this manner, would 
read:

    (B) Option B. A spotter who is in direct communication with the 
operator shall be used when operations are conducted within 10 feet 
of the outer or inner trolley end stops.

    OSHA requests public comment on the advisability of such a change.
    In Subpart N, Sec.  1926.550(c)(3) currently requires trolley end 
stops (it refers to them as ``buffers''). In reviewing the C-DAC draft 
of the trolley travel limiting devices provision discussed above, OSHA 
realized that the C-DAC draft did not carry forward the requirement in 
Sec.  1926.550(c)(3) for trolley end stops. The Agency believes that 
this was an inadvertent omission, since the C-DAC draft included a 
requirement for trolley travel limiting devices, and those devices 
would not work without trolley end stops. Therefore, OSHA has added 
proposed Sec.  1926.1435(d)(2)(x), which would require trolley end 
stops as safety devices.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5)(ii) would require a boom hoist limiting 
device. As defined in proposed Sec.  1926.1401, the word ``boom'' used 
in reference to tower cranes refers to a luffing boom. Therefore, under 
this proposed paragraph, a boom hoist limiting device would only be 
required on cranes with luffing booms. A boom hoist limiting device 
automatically prevents the boom hoist from pulling the boom past the 
minimum allowable radius (maximum boom angle), which can result in boom 
failure (see the discussion above of boom hoist limiting device with 
respect to proposed Sec.  1926.1416(d)(1)). The temporary alternative 
measures for this operational aid are similar to the ones for the 
trolley travel limiting device and the boom hoist limiting device in 
proposed Sec.  1926.1416(d)(1): The employer would have the option of 
clearly marking the cable at a point that would give the operator 
sufficient time to stop the boom hoist within the minimum and maximum 
boom radius or use a spotter.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5)(iii) would require an anti two-blocking 
device. This is comparable to the requirement for anti-two blocking 
devices for other cranes required by Sec.  1926.1416. This operational 
aid would be required on tower cranes to prevent damage from contact 
between the load block, overhaul ball, or similar component, and the 
boom tip (or fixed upper block or similar component). Where the 
operational aid is not working properly, the employer would have the 
option of clearly marking the cable at a point that would give the 
operator sufficient time to stop the hoist to prevent two-blocking, or 
use a spotter. (See the discussion of the need for this type of device 
and rationale for including it as an operational aid above with respect 
to proposed Sec.  1926.1416(d)(3)).
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5)(iv) would require a hoist drum lower 
limiting device. This proposed paragraph would require that tower 
cranes manufactured more than one year after the effective date of this 
standard be equipped with a device that prevents the last two wraps of 
hoist cable from being spooled off the drum. Such a device would 
prevent the entire rope from being spooled off the drum, which can 
cause the rope to separate (and the load to fall) from the drum due to 
the shock from the load suddenly stopping.
    OSHA notes that the C-DAC draft of this provision was mistakenly 
entitled, ``Hoist drum lowering device.'' Since this device is a 
limiting device, the title has been changed in the proposed rule to, 
``Hoist drum lower limiting device.''
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5)(v) would require a load moment limiting 
device. ``Load moment (or rated capacity) limiter'' is defined in Sec.  
1926.1401 as ``a system which aids the equipment operator by sensing 
the overturning moment on the equipment, i.e., load multiplied by 
radius. It compares this lifting condition to the equipment's rated 
capacity, and when the rated capacity is reached, it shuts off power

[[Page 59851]]

to those equipment functions which can increase the severity of loading 
on the equipment, e.g., hoisting, telescoping out, or luffing out. 
Typically, those functions which decrease the severity of loading on 
the equipment remain operational, e.g., lowering, telescoping in, or 
luffing in.'' As the definition indicates, this type of device detects 
and prevents a potential overload condition which could cause the load 
to fall, the crane to collapse or other failure of the crane.
    Where the load moment limiting device is not in proper working 
condition, two types of measures would be required. The first type of 
measure is designed to ensure that the operator determines the radius. 
If the crane is equipped with a radius indicating device, it would be 
required to be used. If the crane is not so equipped, the radius would 
be required to be measured (such as with a tape measure) to ensure that 
the load is within the rated capacity of the crane.
    The second type of measure is designed to ensure that the operator 
accurately determines the weight of the load. The load weight would be 
required to be determined from a reliable source (such as the load's 
manufacturer), by a reliable calculation method (such as calculating a 
steel beam from measured dimensions and a known per foot weight), or by 
other equally reliable means. This information would be required to be 
provided to the operator prior to the lift.
    The C-DAC document refers to this device as a ``load moment limit 
device.'' OSHA has corrected this to ``load moment limiting device.''
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5)(vi) would require a hoist line pull 
limiting device so that the load applied to the hoist drum will not 
exceed the hoist's capacity. If the hoist is equipped with a multiple 
speed hoist transmission, the device would have to limit the hoist's 
lifting capacity in each individual gear ratio. If the hoist line pull 
were to exceed the hoist's capacity, the hoist could fail and unspool 
the line, causing the load to drop suddenly. Such a drop could cause a 
worker to be struck by the load.
    The temporary alternative measure for this operational aid would be 
that the operator would ensure that the weight of the load does not 
exceed the capacity of the hoist, taking into account each individual 
gear ratio if the crane is equipped with a multiple speed hoist 
transmission. For example, this could be done by the operator checking 
the hoist capacity in the equipment manual and verifying that the load 
will not exceed that capacity.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5)(vii) would require a rail travel limiting 
device in each direction to prevent the travel bogies from running into 
the end stops or buffers. As noted above, rail stops that keep the 
crane from overshooting the section of rail within which it is supposed 
to operate is one of the safety devices required for tower cranes that 
travel on rails. A rail travel limiting device is a device that limits 
the crane's travel to keep a travel bogie from running into a rail 
stop. C-DAC believed that rail stops should not be the exclusive means 
of ensuring that the crane stays within its intended limits because the 
crane could jump the tracks if it were to strike the rail stops at a 
high enough speed. The temporary alternative to a rail travel limiting 
device that is not in proper working order would be to use a spotter 
when the crane is operated within 10 feet of a rail stop.
    Proposed paragraph (e)(5)(viii) would require the boom hoist drum 
to be equipped with a positive locking device. One example of such a 
device is a ratchet and pawl mechanism. The purpose of the device is to 
prevent the boom (and therefore the load as well) from inadvertently 
lowering.
    C-DAC intended that the device be able to be set from the 
operator's station because it provided that the temporary alternative 
to a device that can be set from the operator's station is to set the 
device manually when its use is required. However, neither the 
requirement for a device that can be set from the operator's station 
nor the alternative of setting the device manually will help the 
operator lock the boom hoist drum if the device itself malfunctions. 
Accordingly, the Agency requests public comment on whether this 
provision should