TUV Rheinland of North America, Inc.; Expansion of Recognition
This notice announces the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's final decision expanding the recognition of TUV Rheinland of North America, Inc., as a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory under 29 CFR 1910.7.
Kiewit Power Constructors Co. et al.; Application for a Permanent Variance and Request for Comments
Since 1973, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has granted permanent variances to a number of chimney- construction companies from the provisions of the OSHA standards that regulate boatswain's chairs and hoist towers, specifically paragraph (o)(3) of 29 CFR 1926.452 and paragraphs (c)(1) through (c)(4), (c)(8), (c)(13), (c)(14)(i), and (c)(16) of 29 CFR 1926.552. These variances use temporary personnel-hoisting systems to transport workers to and from worksites in a personnel cage while constructing tapered chimneys using formwork techniques and procedures. Recently, the Agency received applications from 15 employers for a variance addressing chimney and chimney-related construction that, like the previous variances, propose to use temporary personnel-hoisting systems to transport workers to and from worksites in a personnel cage. These variance applications, however, included conditions that address construction of chimneys and chimney-related structures using temporary hoisting systems and procedures in association with two different methods of construction (i.e., formwork and slip-form construction) and two different structural configurations (i.e., tapered and straight-barreled). OSHA consolidated these variance applications into a single application for publication in this Federal Register notice. OSHA invites the public to submit comments on this variance application to assist the Agency in determining whether to grant the companies a permanent variance based on the conditions specified in this application.
Revocation of Permanent Variances
With this notice, OSHA is revoking twenty-four (24) obsolete variances. Between 1975 and 1977, OSHA granted permanent variances to 24 companies engaged in the construction of cylindrical steel tanks. The variances specified several conditions that served as an alternative means of compliance to the falling-object-protection and fall-protection requirements of the standard governing general requirements for scaffolds in effect during this period. In 1996, OSHA revised its scaffolds standards for construction to include provisions that essentially duplicated the conditions specified by these variances. Therefore, OSHA believes the alternative means of compliance granted by the variances is no longer necessary and is revoking the variances. Based on comments received in response to a December 19, 2011, notice proposing to revoke these variances (76 FR 78698), on August 7, 2012, OSHA published a notice in the Federal Register correcting several cross references in OSHA's scaffolds standards for construction (77 FR 46948). Today's notice revoking the variances takes into consideration these newly corrected cross references.