The construction industry is fighting back against new training requirements for crane operators from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
The Coalition for Crane Operator Safety,Â launched ThursdayÂ by the construction industry, says the new training requirements would be costly and “counterproductive.”
They would require crane operators to be certified to operate different sizes of cranes, even if they are the same type of cranes.
“This means that an operator certified to operate a 100-ton crane would not be permitted to operate a 200-ton crane of the same type, despite wide consensus in the industry that certification based on capacity is unnecessary and burdensome,” the coalition noted.
In September, OSHAÂ delayed the rulesÂ until November 2017, but construction companies want the agency to scrap it altogether. They say it would be too expensive to comply with.
In the meantime, employers are responsible for making sure crane operators are trained and competent, even if they have not been certified.
“Requiring certified crane operators to be retested on a higher capacity crane of the same type does not advance safety and imposes tremendous financial burdens on employers and individual crane operators,” the coalition noted.
“No national safety study has found any additional safety benefits beyond certification by type, and OSHA has not analyzed the costs, benefits or other consequences of certification by capacity,” added Stephen Sandherr, CEO of the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), which is part of the new coalition.
OSHA is a branch of the Labor Department.
ByÂ Tim DevaneyÂ -Â 10/30/14 04:15 PM EDT