Employers who operate cranes on a construction site are responsible for complying with all aspects of the 29 CFR 1926, Subpart CC, Cranes & Derricks in Construction standard, but other employers whose personnel work at the site have responsibilities as well. These employer duties are consistent with OSHA's multi-employer policy, which imposes compliance duties on employers:
This course is intended to help businesses comply with OSHA's standard 29 CFR 1926 Subpart CC – Cranes & Derricks in Construction. It is designed to address the most common compliance issues that employers will face and to provide sufficient detail to serve as a useful compliance course. It does not, however, describe all provisions of the standard or alter the compliance responsibilities set forth in the standard. The student must refer to the standard itself, which is available on OSHA's website and in the Federal Register to determine all of the steps that must be taken to comply with the standard.
Employers who have compliance responsibilities under the standard should take this course. In addition, crane operators and other workers who work with or near cranes on construction sites can find information in this course that will make them aware of the hazards cranes present and the steps employers must take to protect against those hazards.
This course is divided into modules that correspond to the sections of the standard. The course focuses on the standard's provisions that address the most serious hazards and the compliance issues employers will face most frequently. Hazards that arise less frequently are addressed briefly or not at all. In some places, the course refers the reader to sections of the standard for more detailed information about particular topics.
When this course uses the word "you," it is referring to an employer who operates a crane on a construction site unless the context indicates otherwise. However, as noted above, other employers may also have responsibilities under the standard.
When you complete this course, you will have the knowledge of the following components:
To begin your training, click on the module links below. If you are just starting this course, you should start with module 1.
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Most of these definitions are in the 1926.1401 standard. A few other key terms have been added to this list to assist with clarification.
Assembly/Disassembly: The assembly and/or disassembly of equipment covered under this standard. With regard to tower cranes, ‘‘erecting and climbing’’ replaces the term ‘‘assembly,’’ and ‘‘dismantling’’ replaces the term ‘‘disassembly.’’ Regardless of whether the crane is initially erected to its full height or is climbed in stages, the process of increasing the height of the crane is an erection process.
A/D director (Assembly/Disassembly director):An individual who meets this subpart’s requirements for an A/D director, irrespective of the person’s formal job title or whether the person is non-management or management personnel.
Assembly/Disassembly Supervisor (“A/D Supervisor”): An individual who meets this Section's requirements for an A/D supervisor, irrespective of the person's formal job title or whether the person is non-management or management personnel.
Attachments: Any device that expands the range of tasks that can be done by the equipment. Examples include, but are not limited to: an auger, drill, magnet, pile-driver, and boom-attached personnel platform.
Audible signal: A signal made by a distinct sound or series of sounds. Examples include, but are not limited to, sounds made by a bell, horn, or whistle.
Bird Caging:The twisting of fiber or wire rope in an isolated area in the opposite direction of the rope lay, thereby causing it to take on the appearance of a bird cage.
Blocking (also referred to as ‘‘cribbing’’):Wood or other material used to support equipment or component(s) and distribute loads to the ground. It is typically used to support lattice boom sections during assembly/disassembly and under outrigger and stabilizer floats.
Boatswains’ Chair: A suspended seat designed to accommodate one worker in a sitting position.
Bogie: ‘‘Travel bogie,’’ which is defined below.
Boom (equipment other than tower crane): An inclined spar, strut, or other structural member that supports the upper hoisting tackle on a crane or derrick. Typically, the length and vertical angle of the boom can be varied to achieve increased height or height and reach when lifting loads. Booms can usually be grouped into general categories of hydraulically extendible, cantilevered type, latticed section, cable supported type or articulating type.
Boom: If the “boom” (i.e., principle horizontal structure) is fixed, it is referred to as a jib; if it is moveable up and down, it is referred to as a boom.
Boom Angle Indicator: A device that measures the angle of the boom relative to horizontal.
Boom Hoist Limiting Device: A device that disengages boom hoist power when the boom reaches a predetermined operating angle. It also sets brakes or closes valves to prevent the boom from lowering after power is disengaged. This includes boom hoist disengaging devices, boom hoist shut-off, boom hoist disconnects, boom hoist hydraulic reliefs, boom hoist kick-outs, automatic boom stop devices, or derricking limiters.
Boom Length Indicator:The length of the permanent part of the boom (such as ruled markings on the boom) or, as in some computerized systems, the length of the boom with extensions/attachments.
Boom Stop: A device that restricts the boom from moving a certain maximum angle and toppling over backward (this includes boom stops, belly straps with struts/standoff, telescoping boom stops, attachment boom stops, and backstops).
Boom Suspension Systems:A system of pendants, running ropes, sheaves, and other hardware which supports the boom tip and controls the boom angle.
Builder: The builder/constructor of equipment.
Center of Gravity: The point in an object around which its weight is evenly distributed, such that if a support is placed under that point, the object could balance on the support..
Certified welder: A welder who meets nationally recognized certification requirements applicable to the task being performed.
Certified Welder: A welder who meets certification requirements applicable to the task being performed, in accordance with the American Welding Society or the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
Climbing: The process in which a tower crane is raised to a new working height, either by adding additional tower sections to the top of the crane (top climbing), or by a system in which the entire crane is raised inside the structure (inside climbing).
Come-A-Long: A mechanical device typically consisting of a chain or cable attached at each end that is use to facilitate movement of materials through leverage.
Competent Person: A person who is capable of identifying existing and predictable hazards in the surroundings or working conditions which are unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous to employees, and who has authorization from his employer to take prompt corrective measures to eliminate them.
Controlled Load Lowering: Lowering a load by means of a mechanical hoist drum device that allows a hoisted load to be lowered with maximum control using the gear train or hydraulic components of the hoist mechanism. Controlled load lowering requires the use of the hoist drive motor, rather than the load hoist brake, to lower the load.
Controlling Entity:A prime contractor, general contractor, construction manager or any other legal entity which has the overall responsibility for the construction of the projects, including its planning, quality and completion.
Counterweight:A weight used to supplement the weight of equipment in providing stability for lifting loads by counterbalancing those loads.
Crane Level Indicator:A device for determining true horizontal.
Crane, Articulating:A crane whose boom consists of a series of folding, pin-connected structural members, typically manipulated to extend or retract by power from hydraulic cylinders.
Crane, Assist: A crane used to assist in assembling or disassembling a crane.
Crane, Crawler: Equipment that has a type of base mounting which incorporates a continuous belt of sprocket driven track.
Failure: Breakage or separation of component parts.
Crane, Floating (or Floating Derrick) - Equipment designed by the manufacturer (or employer) for marine use by permanent attachment to a barge, pontoons, vessel or other means of flotation.
Crane, Land (or Land Derrick) - Equipment not originally designed by the manufacturer for marine use by permanent attachment to barges, pontoons, vessels, or other means of flotation.
Crane, Locomotive - A crane mounted on a base or car equipped for travel on a railroad track.
Crane, Mobile - A lifting device incorporating a cable suspended latticed boom or hydraulic telescopic boom designed to be moved between operating locations by transport over the road. These are referred to in Europe as a crane mounted on a truck carrier.
Crane, Overhead and Gantry - Includes overhead/bridge cranes, semigantry, cantilever gantry, wall cranes, storage bridge cranes, launching gantry cranes, and similar equipment, irrespective of whether it travels on tracks, wheels or other means.
Crane, Portal - A type of crane consisting of a rotating upperstructure, hoist machinery, and boom mounted on top of a structural gantry which may be fixed in one location or have travel capability. The gantry legs or columns usually have portal openings in between to allow passage of traffic beneath the gantry.
Crane, Side-Boom - A track-type or wheel-type tractor having a boom mounted on the side of the tractor, used for lifting, lowering, or transporting a load suspended on the load hook. The boom or hook can be lifted or lowered in a vertical direction only.
Crane, Tower - A type of lifting structure that utilizes a vertical mast or tower to support a working boom (jib) suspended from the working boom. While the working boom may be fixed horizontally or have luffing capability, it can always rotate about the tower center to swing loads. The tower base may be fixed in one location or ballasted and moveable between locations.
Critical Lift - A crane lifting operation involving an exceptional level of risk due to factors such as load weight, lifting height, procedural complications, or proximity to situational hazards. Critical lifts are often identified by conditions exceeding a specified percentage of the crane's rated capacity (75%); however, any more complex issues may be involved.
Crossover Points - The locations on a wire rope which is spooled on a drum where one layer of rope climbs up on and crosses over the previous layer. This takes place at each flange of the drum as the rope is spooled on the drum, reaches the flange, and begins to wrap back in the opposite direction.
Dedicated Channel - A line of communication assigned by the employer who controls the communication system to only one signal person and crane/derrick or to a coordinated group of cranes/derricks/signal person(s).
Dedicated Pile-Driver - A machine that is designed to function exclusively as a pile-driver. These machines typically can both hoist the material that will be pile-driven and pile-drive the material.
Dedicated Spotter (power lines) - A person who meets the requirements of Standard 1926.1428 (signal person qualifications) and whose sole responsibility is to watch the separation between the power line and the equipment, the load line and the load (including rigging and lifting accessories), and ensure through communication with the operator that the applicable minimum approach distance is not breached.
Directly Under the Load - A part or all of an employee is directly beneath the load.
Drum Rotation Indicator - A device on a crane or hoist which indicates in which direction and at what relative speed a particular hoist drum is turning.
Electrical Contact - When a person, object, or equipment makes contact or comes in close proximity with an energized conductor or equipment that allows the passage of current.
Employer-Made Equipment - Equipment designed and built by an employer for its own use.
Encroachment - When any part of the crane, load line or load (including rigging and lifting accessories) breaches a minimum clearance distance that this Section requires to be maintained from a power line.
Equipment Criteria - Instructions, recommendations, limitations and specifications.
Fall Protection Equipment - Guardrail systems, safety net systems, personal fall arrest systems, positioning device systems or fall restraint systems.
Fall Restraint System - A fall protection system that prevents the user from falling any distance. The system is comprised of either a body belt or body harness, along with an anchorage, connectors and other necessary equipment. The other components typically include a lanyard and may also include a lifeline and other devices.
Fall Zone - The area (including the area directly beneath the load) in which it is reasonably foreseeable that partially or completely suspended materials could fall in the event of an accident.
Flange Points - A point of contact between rope and drum flange where the rope changes layers.
Free Fall (of the load line) - When only the brake is used to regulate the descent of the load line (the drive mechanism is not used to drive the load down faster or retard its lowering).
Free Surface Effect - Uncontrolled transverse movement of liquids in compartments that reduce a vessel's transverse stability.
Functional Testing - The testing of a crane, typically done with a light load or no load, to verify the proper operation of a crane's primary function, i.e. hoisting, braking, booming, swinging, etc. A functional test is contrasted to testing the crane's structural integrity with heavy loads.
Hoist - A mechanical device for lifting and lowering loads by winding rope onto or off of a drum.
Hoisting - The act of raising, lowering or otherwise moving a load in the air with equipment covered by this Section. As used in this Section, “hoisting” can be done by means other than wire rope/hoist drum equipment.
Insulating Link/Device - An insulating device approved by a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory, as that term is defined in 29 CFR 1910.7(b).
Jib Stop (a.k.a. Jib Backstop) - Is similar to a boom stop but is for a fixed or luffing jib.
List - The angle of inclination about the longitudinal axis of a barge, pontoons, vessel or other means of flotation.
Load - The weight of the object being lifted or lowered, including the weight of the load-attaching equipment such as the load block, ropes, slings, shackles, and any other ancillary attachment.
Load Moment Indicator (also referred to as Rated Capacity Indicator) - A system which aids the equipment operator by sensing the overturning moment on the equipment (i.e., load X radius). It compares this lifting condition to the equipment's rated capacity, and indicates to the operator the percentage of capacity at which the equipment is working. Lights, bells, or buzzers may be incorporated as a warning of an approaching overload condition.
Load Moment Limiter (also referred to as Rated Capacity Limiter) - A system which aids the equipment operator by sensing the overturning moment on the equipment (i.e., load X radius). It compares this lifting condition to the equipment's rated capacity, and when the rated capacity is reached, it shuts off power to those equipment functions which can increase the severity of loading on the equipment (e.g., hoisting, telescoping out, or luffing out). Typically, those functions which decrease the severity of loading on the equipment remain operational (e.g., lowering, telescoping in, or luffing in).
Luffing Jib Limiting Device - Is similar to a boom hoist limiting device, except that it limits the movement of the luffing jib.
Marine Hoisted Personnel Transfer Device - A device, such as a “transfer net,” that is designed to protect the employees being hoisted during a marine transfer and to facilitate rapid entry into and exit from the device. Such devices do not include boatswain's chairs when hoisted by equipment covered by this Section.
Marine Worksite - A construction worksite located in, on or above the water.
Moving Point-To-Point - The times during which an employee is in the process of going to or from a work station.
Multi-Purpose Machine - A machine that is designed to be configured in various ways, at least one of which allows it to hoist (by means of a winch or hook) and horizontally move a suspended load. For example, a machine that can rotate and can be configured with removable tongs (for use as a forklift) or a winch pack, a jib with a hook at the end, or jib used in conjunction with a winch. When configured with the tongs, it is not covered with this Section. When configured with a winch pack, a jib with a hook at the end, or jib used in conjunction with a winch, it is covered under this Section.
Nationally-recognized accrediting agency - is an organization that, due to its independence and expertise, is widely recognized as competent to accredit testing organizations. Examples of such accrediting agencies include, but are not limited to, the National Commission for Certifying Agencies and the American National Standards Institute.
Nationally Recognized Accrediting Agencies - An organization that is accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) or the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to establish standards for and assess the formal activities of testing organizations applying for or continuing their accreditation.
Nonconductive - Because of the nature and condition of the materials, used, and the conditions of use (including environmental conditions and condition of the material), the object in question has the property of not becoming energized (that is, it has high dielectric properties offering a high resistance to the passage of current under the conditions of use).
Operational Aids - Devices that assist the operator in the safe operation of the crane by providing information or automatically taking control of a crane function. These include the devices listed in 13 NCAC 07F .0917, Standard 1926.1416 (“listed operational aids”).
Operational Controls - Levers, switches, pedals and other devices for controlling equipment operation.
Operator - Person who is operating the equipment.
Pendants - Includes both wire and bar types. Wire type pendants mean a fixed length of wire rope with mechanical fittings at both ends for pinning segments of wire rope together. Bar type pendants mean that instead of a wire rope, a bar is used. Pendants are typically used in a latticed boom crane system to easily change the length of the boom suspension system without completely changing the rope on the drum when the boom length is increased or decreased.
Personal Fall Arrest System - A system used to arrest an employee in a fall from a working level. It consists of an anchorage, connectors, and a body harness and may include a lanyard, deceleration device, lifeline, or a combination of these.
Power Lines - Electrical distribution and electrical transmission lines.
Proximity Alarm - A device that provides a warning of proximity to a power line that has been approved by a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory, as that term is defined in 29 CFR 1910.7(b).
Qualified Evaluator (not a third party) - A person employed by the signal person's employer who has demonstrated to his employer that he/she is competent in accurately assessing whether individuals meet the Qualification Requirements in this Section for a signal person.
Qualified Evaluator (third party) - An independent entity that has demonstrated to the employer its competence to accurately assess whether individuals meet the Qualification Requirements in this Section for a signal person.
Qualified Person - A person who, by possession of a degree, certificate, or professional standing, or who by knowledge, training and experience, successfully demonstrated to their employer an ability to solve/resolve problems relating to the subject matter, the work, or a project.
Qualified Rigger - A rigger who meets the criteria for a qualified person.
Range Control Limit Device - is a device that can be set by an equipment operator to warn that the boom or jib tip is at a plane or multiple planes.
Range Control Warning Device - A device that can be set by an equipment operator to warn that the boom or jib tip is at a plane or multiple planes.
Rated Capacity - The maximum working load permitted by the manufacturer under specified working conditions. Such working conditions typically include a specific combination of factors such as equipment configuration, radii, boom length, and other parameters of use.
Repetitive Pickup Points - When an operation involves the rope being used on a single layer and being spooled repetitively over a portion of the drum.
Rotation Resistant Rope - A type of wire rope construction that reduces the tendency of a rope to rotate about its axis under load. Usually, this consists of an inner system of core strands laid in one direction covered by an outer system of strands laid in the opposite direction.
Running Wire Rope - A wire rope that moves over sheaves or drums.
Runway - A firm, level surface designed, prepared and designated as a path of travel for the weight and configuration of the crane being used to lift and travel with the crane suspended platform. An existing surface may be used as long as it meets these criteria.
Special Hazard Warnings - Warnings of site-specific hazards (for example, proximity of power lines).
Stability (flotation device) - The tendency of a barge, pontoons, vessel or other means of flotation to return to an upright position after having been inclined by an external force.
Standard Method - The hand signals established in ASME B30.3-2004 and ASME B30.5-2004.
Standing Wire Rope - A supporting wire rope which maintains a constant distance between the points of attachment to the two components connected by the wire rope.
Tagline - A rope (usually fiber) attached to a lifted load for purposes of controlling load spinning and pendular motions or used to stabilize a bucket or magnet during material handling operations.
Tender - An individual responsible for monitoring and communicating with a diver.
Tilt Up or Tilt Down Operation - Raising or lowering a load from the horizontal to vertical or vertical to horizontal.
Travel Bogie (also referred to as Bogie) - An assembly of two or more axles arranged to permit vertical wheel displacement and equalize the loading on the wheels.
Trim - The angle of inclination about the transverse axis of a barge, pontoons, vessel or other means of flotation.
Two Blocking - A condition in which a component that is uppermost on the hoist line such as the load block, hook block, overhaul ball, or similar component, comes in contact with the boom tip, fixed upper block or similar component. This binds the system, and continued application of power can cause failure of the hoist rope or other component.
Unavailable Procedures - Procedures that are no longer available from the manufacturer, or have never been available from the manufacturer.
Upperworks (also referred to as Superstructure or Upperstructure) - The revolving frame of equipment on which the engine and operating machinery are mounted along with the operator's cab. The counterweight is typically supported on the rear of the upperstructure and the boom, or another front end attachment is mounted on the front.
Wire rope - means a flexible rope constructed by laying steel wires into various patterns of multi-wired strands around a core system to produce a helically wound rope.
1. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. (2011). Small Entity Compliance Guide for Final Rule for Cranes and Derricks in Construction. Retrieved from: https://www.osha.gov/cranes-derricks/small_entity.html
2. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. (2010). 1926.CC Cranes & Derricks in Construction. Retrieved from: https://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=STANDARDS&p_id=13
3. N.C. Department of Labor. (2010). A Guide to Cranes and Derricks. Retrieved from: http://www.nclabor.com/osha/etta/indguide/ig20.pdf