OSHA Extends Crane Operator Certification Deadline

Also extending provision for employer duty to ensure that crane operators are competent.

The National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO; Fairfax, VS) recently announced that OSHA has published a Final Rule delaying its deadline for crane operators to be certified by one year until November 10, 2018. OSHA is also extending its employer duty to ensure that crane operators are competent to operate a crane safely for the same one-year period. The Rule takes effect immediately.

The notice, which comes just one day before the certification requirement was due to come into effect, follows publication of a Proposed Rule in August in which OSHA announced its plans for the postponement.

OSHA believes that an additional year will be sufficient to complete work on addressing the two issues that has concerned industry ever since the crane rule was published in 2010; namely, whether operators need to be certified by type and capacity, or just by type; and whether certification is sufficient by itself to deem an operator qualified to operate a crane.

On the second issue, OSHA states in this latest rulemaking that it currently is "not prepared to make a determination whether certification alone is insufficient" in determining whether an operator is qualified.

The NCCCO supported the additional delay "reluctantly" since the changes to the rule were critically important to the effectiveness of the certification requirement, said NCCCO CEO Graham Brent. However, it was important OSHA acted with urgency.

For more information, visit nccco.org.

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