The thought of an OSHA Compliance Office visiting a construction site may make some cringe.
OSHA released a ‘directive for enforcing requirements of the Cranes and Derricks in Construction standard.’ The purpose of the directive is to give OSHA personnel a basis on how to conduct their inspections at construction sites when equipment covered by Subpart CC are present.
The items outlined below are just the minimum a Compliance Office follows during their inspection. The officer can include items in the inspection from other applicable requirements if the reason for the inspection is a fatality, compliant/referral inspection, or if a hazardous condition is present.
- Are ground conditions adequate, including support/foundation, matting, cribbing, blocking, etc?
- Is there visibly apparent need for repairs of equipment?
- Are nearby power lines energized; what is the voltage; what is the crane’s working area; and what are the encroachment prevention procedures?
- Is a signal person used and do they have documentation of qualification, electronic or physical?
- Is the qualified signal person the one communicating with the operator?
- Are lift plans being followed, if used?
- If hoisting personnel, who determined it was necessary?
- Are meetings being conducting for working near power lines, A/D work or hoisting?
- Is all available rigging equipment compliant?
- Are load charts and OEM manual’s available for the specific equipment used?
- Is the operator qualified, trained and competent?
- Are equipment and wire rope inspections being conducted; by whom; and are they qualified?
- Are safety devices and operational aids functioning?
- Are there any visual deficiencies of hoisting equipment, components and load line?
- How is weight of load determined?
- Are qualified riggers being used for A/D work and when in the fall zone?
- Who is the A/D Director and are they present?
- Are oilers and mechanics qualified; are they communicating with the operator; and are...
Cranes have always been used to get construction personnel into hard to reach places.
Before OSHA, a worker riding the crane’s hook was common, this is still true in some places today. Until the mid-1980’s, hoisting personnel with a crane was one of the main causes of crane-related deaths. With new regulations in place, there are fewer fatalities. Lifting personnel with a crane should be a last resort, after exhausting all other safer possibilities. In fact, in an effort to discourage hoisting personnel with a crane, OSHA has made the requirements time consuming and costly.
The currently approved methods of lifting personnel are hook suspended baskets, boom tip attached baskets, boatswain (bosun’s chairs), and marine transfer units (Billy Pughs).
August 5, 2014 (Sanford, Fla.)—Crane Institute of America announces the availability of the newest edition of the industry’s favorite rigging handbook. Rigging, by James Headley, has been converted from imperial to metric. Providing practical information and great illustrations, the Rigging Metric handbook contains the latest information on wire rope, rigging hardware, and slings, including capacity tables and charts.
“For years, the handbook Rigging has been popular outside the United States for use in training,” said Jim Headley, President of Crane Institute of America. “Customers in Canada, South America, Europe, Australia, and the Middle East have been asking for a metric version of the book.”
Along with the rated capacity tables of slings and rigging hardware, the book covers how to calculate load weight, how to calculate sling loading, and proper load handling techniques. The information is applicable to rigging operations no matter where you are in the world. By offering two versions of the books, trainers and students now have a resource that improves communication, understanding, and safety.
The book can be ordered at Crane Institute’s Online Store and costs $19.95 USD.
About the Author
James Headley has spent more than 40 years working in the crane and rigging industry. After serving a crane apprenticeship through Operating Engineers Local 312 in Birmingham, Ala., he worked as journeyman crane operator until entering the crane training business in 1984.
As President of Crane Institute of America, Jim has developed training programs for hundreds of major companies including aircraft manufacturers, oil and gas producers, utilities, and the military. For over 20 years, he served on U.S. standards boards–ASME B30 main committee on cranes and lifting devices, and sub-committees for cranes, slings, and rigging hardware. Presently he serves on the International Standards Organization (ISO) committee on cranes.
Headley is also...
October 2010, Edison Electrical Institute (EEI) provided to OSHA clarification of digger derrick work in the electric-utility industry. EEI explained that when a digger derrick is used to install a pole, it is typical that the same digger derrick is used to install pad-mount transformers as part of the same power system as the poles. The Cranes and Derricks Standard was written to exclude the pole work but not the pad-mounted transformer installation. This would require digger derrick operators to obtain certification if using the digger derrick when installing pad-mounted transformers.
After review of EEI’s documentation, OSHA broadened the digger derrick exemption in November 2012 by publishing the direct final rule and a companion proposed rule. Only one comment was received and OSHA determined it to be a “significant adverse comment” and issued a withdrawl of the broadened exemption in Feb. 2013.
The commenter was concerned that the proposed rule exempted riggers and signalperson from working with digger derricks, therefore decreasing worker safety. After further investigation OSHA agreed that the commenter did not provide adequate information. The commenter noted 7 incidents where they believed having riggers and signalpersons present would have prevented the incidents. OSHA determined that the incidents did not relate to pad-mounted transformer installation and therefore issued the purposed rule in June 2013.