HBR Hosts Roundtable to Discuss New OSHA Crane Regs

More than 200 people attended the Houston Business Roundtable’s panel discussion earlier this month in Houston, addressing OSHA’s new Cranes and Derricks in Construction rule. Organized by HBR’s Crane and Rigging Committee, “The purpose of the discussion was to educate our membership, which includes owners of petrochemical plants, refineries, and energy companies, on how the new regulation affects their operations,” said John Hellums, who co-chairs the Crane and Rigging Committee and is the business development manager for Bishop Lifting Products, Houston.

Prior to the event, members were asked to submit questions, which Jim Shelton, an OSHA compliance assistance specialist serving the Houston area, addressed. Questions sought to clarify issues related to:

  • Variances in operator certification requirements depending on type and capacity of crane as well as what certification organizations are acceptable.
  • Whether telescopic handlers equipped with a jib and winch are considered cranes.
  • Determining which entity is responsible for crane inspections on rental crane.
  • Establishing qualifying criteria for riggers and signalpersons. 

This and other presentations made by the following speakers are available for download at www.houbrt.com in the News section.

  • Don Jordan with BP addressed some of the key changes in the Final Rule.
  • Jim Shelton, OSHA, addressed multi-employer citations.
  • Roger Bruton of LyondellBasell discussed power line safety and ground conditions.
  • Steve Owns with ConocoPhillips spoke about crane assembly and disassembly requirements.
  • John Cole, Crane Inspection & Certification Bureau, touched on crane inspection, use of safety devices and operational aids, and equipment modifications.
  • Ted Blanton of North American Crane Bureau addressed how to document qualified persons, including operators, riggers, and signalpersons. 

Several speakers admitted that these presentations are good start, but thorough understanding of the new regulation will require work on the part of crane owners and users. “The rule has so many requirements that you need to take the time to review the details,” said Don Jordan, lifting technical authority for BP, Houston. However, on the bright side, Craig Epperson, president of CICB quipped: “It's complicated and complex, but not as complex as the health bill.”