Cranes and Derricks in Construction: Railroad Roadway Work
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration published its final rule for cranes and derricks in construction on August 9, 2010. The final rule set out new requirements to enhance worker safety around cranes and derricks. On October 7, 2010, the Association of American Railroads (``AAR'') filed a petition for review in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia challenging certain requirements affecting railroad roadway work. Subsequently OSHA and AAR reached a settlement agreement under which OSHA agreed to undertake rulemaking to propose expanding several exemptions and to issue clarifications affecting work on or along railroad tracks. These exemptions and clarifications, which would not apply to bridge work, would exempt entirely one type of railroad equipment from OSHA's crane standard; would exempt railroad equipment operators from the certification requirements in the standard; and would include several provisions relating to safety devices, work-area controls, out-of-level work, dragging loads sideways, equipment modifications, and manufacturer requirements. OSHA believes this proposal, if promulgated, would maintain safety and health protections for workers while reducing employers' compliance burdens.