Crane Accidents

Consensus Reached on Recommendation for OSHA Cranes and Derricks Standard



The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) today announced that its Crane and Derrick Negotiated Rulemaking Committee (CDAC) has reached consensus on language for a revised crane and derrick standard for construction. The draft will be submitted to the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health and will continue through the rulemaking process.

“This is a significant step forward in protecting the thousands of workers who operate and work around cranes,” said OSHA Administrator John Henshaw. “The members of this committee were tasked with a formidable challenge — to develop and reach consensus on a revised cranes and derricks standard in one year-and they achieved that ambitious task. We applaud their hard work and commitment to protecting workers and improving crane safety.”

Key provisions of the C-DAC proposal include:

  • The scope section covers a wide range of new types of cranes that have been developed over the past 30 years.
  • A qualified person must address a list of key hazards associated with equipment assembly and disassembly.
  • Ground conditions must be made adequate for crane set-up to help prevent tip-overs.
  • In order to prevent electrocution, a leading cause of crane-related fatalities, employers must choose from a list of options for ensuring that equipment does not come within a prescribed distance of power lines. When working closer than that distance, a specified list of measures must be taken.
  • After a phase-in period, crane operators will have to be certified by either: (1) any crane operator testing organization approved by a nationally recognized accrediting agency, or (2) the employer’s own qualification program, which must be audited by a testing organization approved auditor.
  • Signal persons must meet specified qualification requirements.
  • Updated requirements for cranes on barges.
  • Safety devices, operational aids, signals, specific types of equipment (such as derricks and tower cranes), inspections, wire rope, prototype design and testing, crushing and overhead hazards, fall protection and equipment modification are also addressed.

C-DAC was established in June 2003 to function as a part of OSHA’s rulemaking process to revise the existing standards for cranes and derricks in construction.

OSHA’s role is to assure the safety and health of America’s workers by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach, and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit

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