SC&RA Clarifies Date of Mandatory Crane Operator Certification

- The Association is diligently working to clarify a number of questions that have surfaced after OSHA’s final rule on crane operator certification requirements. On November 5, in anticipation of the effective date of existing crane operator certification requirements and awaiting the publication of a new final rule revising these requirements, the U.S. Department of Labor issued compliance guidance noting that “OSHA will accept operator certification issued by type only, or by type and capacity.”  Two days later, November 7, DOL issued a final rule on crane operator certification requirements noting “the final rule, with the exception of the evaluation and documentation requirements will become effective December 9, 2018. The evaluation and documentation requirements will become effective on February 7, 2019.”  

Many within industry believed December 9 became the new effective date of crane operator certification.  This is incorrect.  The effective date for mandatory crane operator certification was November 10, 2018. OSHA posted a list of frequently asked questions to assist industry compliance.

Although the evaluation and documentation requirements are not currently in effect, SC&RA strongly encourages companies that have not started the process to not wait until February 2019 to begin evaluating your operators. Employers must, through an evaluation process, ensure operators are qualified to operator the machine to which they are assigned.  The components of these evaluations are spelled out in Section 1926.1427(f) – Evaluation.  The final rule allows employers to rely on previous operator assessments to meet this requirement for operators employed prior to December 10, 2018. SC&RA is developing sample evaluation forms for member compliance.  More details to follow next week. For more information, contact Beth O’Quinn.

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