OSHA’s standard, 29 C.F.R. § 1926.1427, which sets out operator qualification and certification requirements for cranes used in the construction industry is currently set to take effect on November 10, 2014. However, after significant concerns among stakeholders regarding these requirements, in February, OSHA proposed a three-year extension to the operator certification deadline and requested public comment on or before March 12, 2014.
OSHA proposed this extension, in part, due to issues pertaining to the requirements in the standard addressing crane operator
certification that arose shortly after OSHA issued the final rule. After the final standard was issued, OSHA took the position that an operator is qualified to operate a particular piece of equipment if the operator is certified for that type and capacity of equipment or for higher-capacity equipment of that type. Therefore, an operator certified to operate a 100-ton hydraulic crane may operate a 50-ton hydraulic crane but not a 200-ton hydraulic crane. OSHA’s interpretation raised concerns for many stakeholders who believe that certification should be limited to the type of crane, not the capacity.
OSHA received over 60 comments in response to its request for public comment with one submission from Crane Institute Certification requesting that OSHA hold a public hearing.
OSHA has now announced that it will hold an informal public hearing on Monday, May 19, 2014 at 9:30 a.m. in the auditorium of the U.S. Department of Labor at 200 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20210.
Individuals who wish to testify at the informal public hearing must submit a notice of intention to appear by April 25, 2014. Individuals interested in speaking can submit a notice of intention to appear electronically at http://www.regulations.gov and submitting the request to Docket ID-OSHA-2007-0066. Additionally, notices can be faxed to the OSHA Docket Office at 202-693-1648.
Additional information regarding the informal public hearing can be found online.