Crane Institute of America

Debates and Delays

Each year at the SC&RA’s rigging workshop meet, the US crane industry gathers together to discuss the most important issues affecting the US market. This year was an atmosphere of anticipation with several major decisions from regulators dragging on and a noticeable changes in the US market yet to occur. Zak Garner-Purkis attended the event to hear what the US lifting industry had to say. The following is an interview with Crane Institute Director, James Headley.

Cranes Institute of America’s certifying body Crane Institute Certification is one of those that tests by capacity, and believes this is the way to go. Director James Headley says, “We have federal OSHA which applies to all states and territories, but some states have their own OSHA plan. A state can have its own regulations, but the regulations can’t be less stringent than federal OSHA. For example CalOSHA is much more stringent than federal OSHA and requires operator certification.”

“A hot topic right now is what OSHA is going to do about the operator certification type and capacity law that was due to be required in November 2014. Crane Institute Certification (CIC) thinks it’s reasonable for crane operators to be certified by type and capacity as the law currently requires and others want it taken out, which I can understand since their certifications will not meet the new law. We’ll see what happens but CIC won’t change its program. We will continue to certify by type and have different capacity levels.”

“The Cranes and Derricks Negotiated Rulemaking Committee (CDAC) was put together by OSHA to write the new cranes and derrick regulation. The committee met for a year and drafted the new regulation that went into effect in 2010, however OSHA allowed until November 2014 for operators to be certified, which was to be by type and capacity. There are currently four accredited certification programs that OSHA has approved. Two of the four programs have certifications for different capacity levels and will meet the new law. The other two programs certify operators by type only, which means that the certifications they have issued will not meet the new law when it comes into effect.”

“Many of the people complaining about this type and capacity requirement served on the CDAC committee that wrote the new law. In other words they wrote a law that the certification program they support will not meet. How much sense does that make? If they thought that crane operators should be certified by type only they should not have written and approved a law that would be different from that. Now they want a law they approved changed.”

Excerpt from “Debates and Delays.” Cranes Today. November 2013. Issue 467.