The amendment of Cranes and Derricks in Construction Standard
By Jeff Hampton06 April 2023
If all the advocacy efforts that the Specialized Carriers & Rigging Association has undertaken over its long history, none has been larger than the work to revise the Cranes and Derricks in Construction Standard. Most important, the Association’s resolve on the matter ultimately resulted in its biggest win.
In the year 2000, SC&RA advocated for and participated in the development of a new Cranes and Derricks in Construction rule issued by the Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Since that time, SC&RA members and staff participated in public hearings and wrote numerous letters stressing the importance of updated safety rules to Congress and the Department of Labor. Also, Association leaders testified before the White House Office of Management and Budget.
The new rule, promulgated in 2010, comprehensively addressed key hazards related to cranes and derricks on construction worksites and also addressed training and certification of crane operators. However, crane operator certification requirements were delayed for another four years.
A team effort
SC&RA was among ten of the nation’s leading construction industry organizations that launched the Coalition for Crane Operator Safety (CCOS) in 2014 to ensure the swift revision and finalization of the crane operator certification requirements. Working with the legislative and executive branches of government, SC&RA strived to ensure that crane operator certification requirements in the Standard were amended and finalized in a way that provided the highest degree of safety for the construction industry and the public.
CCOS specifically called for OSHA to rescind the crane capacity certification requirement, as well as a provision that equates employer certification with qualification. OSHA’s final requirements, published in 2010, contained these two provisions, which CCOS argued are counterproductive and a misinterpretation of the intent of OSHA’s Cranes and Derricks Advisory Committee, a group of twenty-three construction industry leaders commissioned by OSHA to develop a consensus document that formed the basis of the rule.
The culmination of SC&RA’s efforts was achieved, resulting in revised, concise requirements for employer evaluations and crane operator certification with which industry can comply.