OSHA Changing Crane Proximity Alarms Enforcement

The temporary enforcement policy will be in effect from July 26 to Nov. 8, 2013.

From July 26, 2012, to Nov. 8, 2013, OSHA will follow a temporary enforcement policy in cases of construction cranes and derricks that have proximity alarms or insulating links and are operating near power lines. Posted at OSHA’s standards interpretation online page in late June, the policy concerns 29 CFR 1926 Subpart CC’s recognition of these devices as optional ways to warn of proximity to power lines or to insulate against electricity, saying they must be "listed, labeled or accepted by a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory in accordance with § 29 CFR 1910.7."

But the June 25 memo to regional administrators from Jim Maddux, director of OSHA's Directorate of Construction, said as of July 26, 2012, no current proximity alarm or insulating link/device meets the NRTL requirements, and no Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory is recognized by OSHA to perform the required testing.

The temporary enforcement policy says employers may not rely on any proximity alarm to comply with 29 CFR 1926 Subpart CC. A company using a proximity alarm along with an additional measure, such as dedicated spotter or range control warning device from 1926.1407(b)(3) or .1408(b)(4), will not be cited, it states. A similar approach will be applied for insulating links/devices, it says.

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