Tag Archive for 'crane safety'

CCO Crane Inspector Certification Launches November 1

A new CCO national crane inspector certification program, developed jointly by the National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) and the Crane Certification Association of America (CCAA) becomes available today. The program provides for separate certifications for inspectors of mobile cranes, tower cranes, and overhead cranes.

“NCCCO and CCAA mutually recognize the importance of safe crane operations and the role of certification in ensuring that personnel have the knowledge necessary to inspect and certify cranes,” said Ed Shapiro, president of HESCO (Niantic, CT) and chairman of CCAA. “This latest CCO certification will effectively ‘close the loop’ on jobsite lift safety by providing a way for crane inspectors to show that they are qualified to inspect cranes and be sure that cranes are safe for use.”

CCAA members from across the country—as well as NCCCO staff and volunteers from many industries that use cranes—participated in the 45-member Crane Inspector Task Force that developed the new program. Psychometric consultants from International Assessment Institute (IAI), the testing services company that has provided exam development and administration services to NCCCO since 1999, also played a key role in guiding the program development to make sure that the tests are fair, valid, reliable, and legally defensible.

The new program provides a means for those with at least five years of crane-related experience to earn a professional credential that demonstrates their qualification to inspect cranes. Before candidates take the rigorous written exams they must attest to their experience using detailed work history, education, and reference forms and submit proof (documentation, letters of recommendation, transcripts, résumé, etc.). NCCCO reviews each application and individually approves candidates before permitting them to apply to take the crane inspector exams.

The required five years’ experience includes duties such as crane inspector, crane operator, crane mechanic/technician, and crane shop foreman. Related education may be substituted for related experience at a ratio of two years of education for one year of experience up to three years. Related education includes courses in engineering, physics, applied mathematics, applied science courses in non-destructive testing, construction technology, and technical courses in heavy equipment mechanic/technician and/or welding technology.

The six content domains covered by the crane inspector certification tests are: (1) pre-inspection survey, (2) records review, (3) visual inspection, (4) operational testing, (5) load testing and load charts, and (6) post-inspection. Candidates will also be required to pass the written portion of the respective CCO crane operator exam(s), although those who are currently CCO-certified operators will not need to retake those tests as long as their operator certification remains in good standing. While there is no practical exam, several written test items are pictorially based in order to test candidates on their observational skills.

“We expect that this new crane inspector certification will be popular with owners and employers who understand the safety and cost benefits of a professionally developed assessment process and who recognize its place within a comprehensive risk management process, while also meeting their obligations under state and federal requirements,” said NCCCO Program Manager, Joel Oliva. The new crane inspector certification will also show that inspectors are qualified to inspect cranes as required by OSHA 29 CFR 1926 Subpart CC, which states that cranes must be inspected after assembly, repair, jumping, and disassembly.

For more information about the new crane inspector certification program—including a candidate handbook, application, and experience forms—check the NCCCO website at http://www.nccco.org/certification/craneinspector.html.

New Crane & Derrick Guide Created to Help Protect Spanish-Speaking Workers

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has made major changes in the regulations for cranes and derricks, and according to the top executive of a national safety publishing company, that development poses challenges for trainers who need to instruct Spanish-speaking workers.

“For the most effective results, construction workers need to be trained in their native language. In fact, OSHA requires it,” said Benjamin W. Mangan, founder and president of MANCOMM. “But this requirement can lead to difficulties for construction industry safety trainers who instruct Spanish-speaking workers. They need to be able to provide their trainees with the materials needed to address the specific changes in the crane and derrick regulations.”

Mangan brought this concern to the attention of his colleagues at Reglas Press, LLC, a provider of safety materials for Spanish-speaking trainers and companies that employ Spanish-speaking workers. MANCOMM is the exclusive distributor for Reglas Press products.

As a result of the need for Spanish-translated regulations, Reglas Press has released a new Spanish-language book, Grúas y Cabrias en la Industria de la Construcción, which contains the new OSHA construction regulations addressing the use of cranes and derricks. 

The book is formatted in RegLogic® Premium, an innovative graphical approach which makes navigating, reading and understanding regulations easier. RegLogic® Premium was created by MANCOMM and is used with MANCOMM’s permission.

“The safety of America’s Spanish-speaking construction workforce is a top priority for both of our companies,” said Isidro Nieves, Senior Manager of Reglas Press. “The availability of these vital regulations in Spanish will greatly benefit members of the construction industry who communicate in that language.”

Preventing Construction Industry Fatalities
In an official OSHA statement regarding the changes to the OSHA crane and derrick regulations, Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis said, “The significant number of fatalities associated with the use of cranes in construction led the Labor Department to undertake this rulemaking.” According to OSHA, these changes are designed to prevent the leading causes of fatalities, including electrocution, crushed-by/struck-by hazards during assembly/disassembly, collapse and overturn.

A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reveals that from 2003 to 2006, the construction industry employed the most Hispanics who died from work-related injuries, and foreign-born (Spanish-speaking) workers were at especially high risk. The report indicates that preventing work-related injury deaths among these workers requires materials that are effective for workers who speak Spanish.

To find out more about Grúas y Cabrias en la Industria de la Construcción, visit www.Mancomm.com/ReglasCrane-Packet.aspx.

NCCCO Rigger & Signalperson Certifications Earn ANSI Accreditation

New Credentials “Close the Loop” on Construction Safety —

The National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) announced today that it has been awarded accreditation by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) for two of its newest certification programs. The CCO Rigger Level I and Signalperson certifications are now accredited by ANSI to the ISO/IEC 17024 International Standard for organizations that certify personnel.

The decision of ANSI’s Professional Certification Accreditation Committee to expand NCCCO’s accreditation came after rigorous audits of its management systems and psychometric procedures, and detailed scrutiny of its test development and administrative processes.

“ANSI represents the ‘gold standard’ of accreditation,” said NCCCO Commission Chairman, Kerry Hulse. “Candidates and employers alike can now be assured that, with ANSI’s independent verification of NCCCO’s programs, CCO Rigger Level I and Signalperson certifications meet the highest professional standards of examination development and administration.”

“While riggers and signalpersons often share some of the same duties, the NCCCO certifications clearly delineate the responsibilities of each activity and detail what is required from each to ensure safe lifting operations. These two certifications help to ‘close the loop’ regarding crane safety on the jobsite,” Hulse added.

“Achieving ANSI accreditation is a major undertaking,” said ANSI Program Director, Roy A. Swift, PhD, “and NCCCO can be very proud of this accomplishment. No other accreditation process demands the degree of psychometric or management disclosure that ANSI requires for accreditation under ISO 17024.”

Moreover, riggers and signalpersons holding either of these CCO certifications can be assured they are qualified under OSHA’s new rules for Cranes and Derricks in Construction, noted NCCCO Executive Director, Graham Brent.

Accreditation of certifying bodies is a provision of OSHA’s new rule and is increasingly being required by state regulators in their attempts to ensure quality of the certifications issued, Brent noted. Fully three-fourths of the states that have requirements for crane operators and related trades now require or recognize NCCCO certification.

“A central part of NCCCO’s goal since its inception 15 years ago has been to establish national testing programs that are fair to all candidates, while at the same time are both valid and reliable assessments of essential knowledge and skills,” Brent said. “ANSI’s accreditation of these two new certification programs—in addition to accrediting our crane operator programs—is clear testimony that that goal has been achieved.”

NCCCO Publishes Definitive Guide To Personnel Qualification 
Requirements Under New OSHA Rule

The  National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) has published what it calls “the definitive guide to the personnel qualification requirements” of a new OSHA standard governing the use of cranes and derricks in construction.

The new rule is the first major revision of OSHA requirements in this area since they were first issued in 1971.  For the first time, crane operators must be either certified by an accredited crane operator testing organization, such as the National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO), or qualified by an audited employer program.  Signalpersons and riggers must be qualified.

“Although this final rule is based on a document that has been circulating since 2004, many employers are not aware of the new responsibilities that OSHA has placed upon them,” said NCCCO Executive Director, Graham Brent.  “Most of the requirements take effect in November, so there is little time to lose.”

“Whether employers choose to certify their operators through NCCCO, another organization, or even in-house, NCCCO is pleased to provide this guide as a public service to the industry that has supported it since work began on the CCO national crane operator standard over a quarter century ago,” Brent added. “It is vitally important that these key provisions are known and responded to by all responsible parties in the industry.”

NCCCO has posted its document as a series of questions and answers based on its careful reading of the rule and preamble, which stretch to 1,070 pages. These FAQs will be continually updated as questions arise, Brent noted.

Visitors to the NCCCO website at www.nccco.org are invited to submit questions on personnel qualifications issues. Each question will be responded to personally and may also be posted in the FAQ section.