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Construction Crane Safety (new requirements 2010). September 2, 2010. Why?. Crane  accidents killed an average of 78 people per year between 2003 and 2005 The new standard is located at

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  • Crane accidents killed an average of 78 people per year between 2003 and 2005
  • The new standard is located at
  • OSHA expects the final standard to prevent 22 fatalities and 175 non-fatal injuries each year.
  • Intention to develop the rule in July 2002.
  • Used negotiated rulemaking committee consisting both industry and labor.
  • The committee completed its work in 2004.
  • Released – July 28, 2010
  • Published – August 9, 2010
  • Effective – November 8, 2010
  • Phased in over four years – August 9, 2014
    • Certification of operators phased in over four years. No grandfathering of those past certification.
key hazards
Key Hazards
  • Four main causes of worker death and injury:
  • Electrocution,
  • Crushed by parts of the equipment,
  • Struck-by the equipment/load, and
  • Falls. (See Subpart M 1926.500-503)
largest impact
Largest Impact
  • Mandatory crane operator certification - qualification
  • 200,000 construction crane operators in the industry
  • OSHA allowing four years to meet the certification requirement.
  • It will take time for certifying organizations to gain enough capacity to cover so many operators.
other significant requirements
Other Significant Requirements
  • Use of synthetic slings in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions during assembly/disassembly work;
  • Assessment of ground conditions;
  • Procedures for working in the vicinity of power lines.
  • Pre-erection inspection of tower crane parts;
osha state local
OSHA – State - Local
  • Employers must comply with local and state operator licensing requirements which meet the minimum criteria specified in § 1926.1427.
  • Some state had existing Crane standards that exceeded the old standard. In state plan states, please see the rules for that state.
who pays
Who Pays?
  • Employers must pay for certification or qualification of their currently uncertified or unqualified operators. 1926.1427 (a)(4)
  • Reasonable that employees, who have already been sufficiently trained in crane operation and may have many years' experience, certainly need no more than a short preparation to successfully pass the crane operator certification tests. – FR Preamble
crane or not crane
Crane or Not Crane?
  • Functional description
    • Can hoist,
    • Lower and
    • Horizontally move a suspended load
  • Forklifts configured to hoist and lower (by means of a winch OR hook) and horizontally move a suspended load are covered
  • Backhoes are excluded even if used like a crane….1926.1400 (c)(2)

Forklift with attached boom. 1926.1400 (c)(8)

See 1926.1441 if using equipment with a rated hoisting/lifting capacity of 2,000 pounds or less

operator qualifications and certifications 4 options

Accredited testing organization


Employer qualification program


U.S. military


State/local gov’t license

Operator Qualifications and Certifications - 4 Options


written certification tests
Written Certification Tests
  • Administered in any language understood by the operator candidate.
  • Test must cover:
    • Controls/performance characteristics
    • Calculate capacity (w/ or w/out calculator)
    • Preventing power line contact
    • Ground support
    • Read and locate info in operating manual
    • Appendix Q subjects
practical examination
Practical Examination
  • Must be well designed and sufficiently comprehensive
  • Must have the demonstrated the skills and knowledge needed to operate the equipment safely.
  • An operator's ability to handle unusual worksite conditions, such as adverse weather or working on crowded jobsites, are hazards that are not commonly part of this exam.
1926 1408 power lines
1926.1408 Power Lines
  • Step 1: Identify Work Zone
    • Work Zone = Marking boundaries OR
    • 360 degrees around crane up to maximum working radius
    • Make the power line hazard assessment



Could you get within 20 feet of power line?



Option #1 Deenergize & Ground

No further action

Encroachment Prevention measures

Option #2

20 foot clearance

  • Planning meeting
  • If tag lines used Non-conductive
  • Elevated warning lines, barricade or line of signs
    • PLUS (Choose one):
  • Proximity alarm, spotter, warning device, range limiter, or insulating link

Option #3

Ask Utility for Voltage and

Use Table A

(with minimum clearance distance)


intentionally working closer than table a zone 1910 1410
Intentionally Working Closer Than Table A Zone 1910.1410
  • Paragraph (b) requires the employer to consult with the utility owner/operator before deciding that it infeasible to deenergize and ground the lines or relocate them.
  • 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.

Intentionally Working Closer Than Table A Zone

  • Must show:
  • Staying outside zone
  • is infeasible
  • Infeasible to
  • deenergize and
  • ground

All of the following are required:


  • PL owner – sets minimum approach distance
  • Planning meeting – procedures
  • Dedicated spotter
  • Elevated warning line or barricade
  • Insulating link/device
  • Non-conductive rigging
  • Range limiter (if equipped)
  • Non-conductive tag line (if used)
  • Barricades - 10 feet from equipment
  • Limit access to essential employees
  • Ground crane
  • Deactivate automatic re-energizer


assembly disassembly
Assembly Disassembly
  • Employers must use a qualified rigger for rigging operations during assembly & disassembly
  • Two options:
    • Manufacturer procedures or
    • Employer procedures (criteria requirements)
assembly disassembly supervisor
Assembly/Disassembly Supervisor
  • Must understand procedures
  • Review procedures (unless they’ve used them before)
  • Check that crew members understand their tasks, hazards
  • Follow manufacturer’s prohibitions
  • When using outriggers - fully extended or deployed per the load chart
assembly disassembly cont d
A/D supervisor addresses 12 key hazards, including:

Adequate site and ground conditions

Sufficient blocking for load and stability

Suitable boom and jib pick points

Identify center of gravity

Stability for pin removal

Consider wind speed and weather

Assembly/Disassembly (cont’d)


assembly disassembly cont d1
The suitability of blocking material

Verification of the loads for assist cranes

Snagging of cables or components

Struck by counter weights

Boom hoist brake failure

Loss of backwards stability

Assembly/Disassembly (cont’d)


qualified rigger
Qualified Rigger
  • 1926.1404 (r)
  • Meets the criteria for a qualified person
  • Possession of a recognized degree, certificate, or professional standing, or extensive (rigging) knowledge, training and experience
  • Successfully demonstrated the ability to solve/resolve problems (relating to rigging)
tower cranes
Tower Cranes
  • Employers must perform a pre-erection inspection of tower cranes.
  • Extensive requirements under 1926.1435 and other sections.
  • Beyond scope of this presentation
  • Numerous accidents such as  Seattle in 85, San Francisco in 89, Manhattan in 08, Hong Kong in 08, New York in 06,
ground conditions
Ground Conditions
  • 1926.1402 (b)
  • Ground conditions must be firm, drained, and graded
  • Use supporting materials,
  • Use equipment manufacturer's specifications for adequate support
  • Use equipment manufacturer's specifications for degree of level of the equipment
controlling entity
Controlling Entity
  • 1926.1402 (c)(3)
  • Must ensure that ground preparations are safe
  • Must inform the user of the equipment and the operator of the location of known hazards beneath the equipment set-up area (such as voids, tanks, utilities)
  • If there is no controlling entity then the employer that has authority at the site to make or arrange for ground preparations must do so.

Signal person – when required:

Point of operation not in full view of operator

View of direction of travel is obstructed

Site specific safety concerns

1926.1428 Signal person qualifications

Signal Types:

Hand, voice, audible or “new”

Only time an operator can use a cell phone is while lifting as part of a planned procedure


signals cont d
Signals (cont’d.)

Signal person qualifications

Qualified how




signals cont d1
Qualification Requirements:

Know & understand signals

Competent in using signals

Basic understanding of crane operation

Verbal or written test + practical test

Signals (cont’d.)


1926 1412 inspections
1926.1412 Inspections

Type of Inspection:Who Inspects:


inspections cont d
Inspections (cont’d)

Shift = visual inspection for apparent deficiencies

Monthly = documented shift inspection

Annual = comprehensive, every 12 months


each shift inspection
1926.1412 (d)

Apparent deficiencies

Control and Drive mechanisms



Wire Rope


Ground Conditions

Levelness of the crane

Operator view

All Safety Devices

Operational Aids are working

Each Shift Inspection
  • 1926.1417 has many requirements. Some highlights are:
  • Must not engage in any activity that diverts his/her attention while operating the equipment,
  • No cell phones (other than when used for signal communications)
  • Must not leave the controls while the load is suspended,  (four exceptions)
  • Must verify that the load is within the rated capacity of the equipment (2 methods)
  • Must obey a stop (or emergency stop) signal, irrespective of who gives it.
  • Told of any employee entering the crane work area 1926.1424(a)(3)
employer training
1926.1430 Employee Training Issues

Powerline safety

Signal persons


Competent Person

Qualified Persons

Crush Pinch point hazards

Tagout for repair

Must confirm that the employee understands the information provided in the training

Provide the training at no cost to the employee

Employer Training
work area control
Work Area Control
  • 1926.1424
  • Train each employee assigned to work on or near the equipment
  • Erect and maintain control lines, warning lines, railings or similar barriers to mark the boundaries of the hazard area (1 Exception)

Cranes and Derricks in Construction Final Rule

Associated Training Service Network

National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators

National Association of Heavy Equipment Training Schools

North American Crane Bureau Group

California Crane School


  • This ppt was prepared by John Newquist as a preliminary aid for the new standard. Please check the OSHA website for Crane Outreach Material that will be developed in the coming months.
  • This is not an official OSHA publication. Those will be on the website.
  • is my email if you see any errors
  • 312-353-5977
  • Brian Sturtecky is our Region V Certified Crane Inspector and has provided key assistance on this standard. He can be reached at 312-353-2220.
  • Several slides were obtained from the OSHA Training Institute from their Webinar August 30, 2010.
  • Every aspect from inspecting, repairing, operating, rigging and signaling these cranes require extensive training. Please take classes with hands on training if you are expected to perform any of these activities.
  • I want to thank Brian, Lisa, Tom, Bill, Cathy for all their assistance in answering questions and providing issues that are coming from the public.