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CCO Testing Reaches Notable Milestones

Three major milestones were achieved by the National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) in July when the 250,000th written exam, the 50,000th recertification written exam, and the 100,000th practical exam were administered.

“To reach such a volume of testing is a remarkable achievement,” said John M. Kennedy, president of Fairfax, Va.-based NCCCO. However, he noted that the real credit should go to the crane experts that created the CCO programs, and to the industry that has adopted them.

“These are much more than numbers on a page,” Kennedy said. “Each one represents a crane operator seeking to better him or herself and, in the process, to become a safer, more productive employee.”

Kerry Hulse, NCCCO commission chairman, noted how far the CCO program had come since the idea of a national crane operator certification program began to take shape more than two decades ago. “This achievement is an outstanding testimony to the vision of those who came together with the earnest desire to improve safety and the working conditions for all those who work in and around cranes,” said Hulse. “It proves that, no matter what the odds, a sound idea, firmly rooted in the desire to improve the quality of life and work, will always prevail.”

Hulse paid tribute to the selfless dedication of the volunteers who established the first written tests that were introduced in 1996. “These milestones could not have occurred without the literally hundreds of thousands of hours of time donated by the subject matter experts who created the CCO tests,” Hulse said. “Collectively representing thousands of years of crane expertise, these volunteers came from all corners of the industry and the nation in an unprecedented united effort to help reshape crane safety.”

As members of nine exam management committees and task forces that meet throughout the year, they continue to monitor the performance of the CCO tests, Hulse said, noting that this was key to preserving the integrity and fairness of the testing process, and to maintaining the programs’ accreditation by ANSI and NCCA.

“This is a continuing process,” he said. “Creating a fair, valid and reliable test is one thing. Ensuring it stays that way through multiple forms over more than a decade is what much of our volunteers’ time and expertise is committed to. As a result, we have sustained the effectiveness of CCO certification in reducing crane accidents and ultimately fulfilled the NCCCO mission of helping to save lives in the workplace.”


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