OSHA

Highway construction workers are always at risk on the job. OSHA reports the leading cause of highway construction worker injuries and fatalities is contact with construction vehicles, objects and equipment. Best practices can prevent and eliminate injuries and deaths.

The Fifth Annual Industry Forum on Personnel Qualifications has been rescheduled for Oct. 29, 2020, as a virtual event, the NCCCO Foundation has announced. As previously reported, Scott Ketcham, director of OSHA's Directorate of Construction, will once again provide the keynote address and participate in a Q&A session that will conclude the conference.

The NCCCO Foundation announced the launch of a web-based directory designed to help employers navigate OSHA's rules on crane operator qualifications. The Most Similar Certifications Directory is designed to assist employers in selecting the most appropriate operator certification for a particular crane when no specific accredited certification is available.

To assess the degree of understanding and compliance of OSHA's 2018 crane operator qualification rule, and to gauge their approach to operator evaluation, the NCCCO Foundation surveyed crane operator employers. The results are promising: Employers have a "fairly sound" understanding of OSHA rules, reports the Safety Information and Education Network (SIREN) arm of the Foundation.

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published a final rule revising the beryllium standard for general industry. The final rule includes changes designed to clarify the standard and simplify or improve compliance.

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently issued a compliance directive designed to ensure uniformity in inspection and enforcement procedures when addressing respirable crystalline silica exposures in general industry, maritime, and construction.

The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) is entitled to "considerable deference" in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a June 11 federal appeals court decision. The ruling assures that the transportation construction industry is free to use proven workplace best practices to protect its workers, according to the American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA).

This is the third article covering OSHA's three steps to operator qualification. The first, "OSHA Takes Training to a Higher Level," (Crane Hot Line, June 2019, page 12) covers OSHA's expansion of operator training. The second article, "Misunderstanding Crane Operator Certification," (Crane Hot Line, July 2019, page 12) covers unreasonable expectations regarding operator certification.

The two biggest factors that contribute to crane failures are fluid leakage in the outrigger hydraulic cylinder and ground conditions, or the supporting structure for the outrigger pads. Ensuring that your crane is operating on firm, level and drained ground per OSHA's Cranes & Derricks in Construction rule, starts with a proper inspection of the crane and the job site.

Requiring the federal government to impose a single, emergency standard for coping with COVID-19 is misguided because workers are better protected from the virus by construction industry best practices rather than a rigid "one-size-fits-all" regulation.

Crane operator certification is the second of OSHA'S three steps to operator qualification. By now, most people who use cranes are aware that crane operator certification is firmly established as federal law. That officially occurred on December 10, 2018, but it took more than thirty years to happen.