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Crane- or Derrick-Suspended Personnel Platforms Used in Construction
29 CFR 1926.550(g)(4)(ii)(I)

blackball Federal Register [10/07/1998] #63:53930-53937
Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request

A. Justification

1. Explain the circumstances that make the collection of information necessary. Identify any legal or administrative requirements that necessitate the collection. Attach a copy of the appropriate section of each statute and regulation mandating or authorizing the collection of information.

The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 authorizes the promulgation of health and safety standards necessary or appropriate to provide safe or healthful employment and places of employment. The statute specifically authorizes information collection by employers as necessary or appropriate for the enforcement of the Act or for developing information regarding the causes and prevention of occupational injuries, illnesses, and accidents.

Section 1926.550 (g)(4)(ii)(I) requires platforms used for hoisting personnel by cranes or derricks to be conspicuously posted with a plate or other permanent marking which indicates the weight of the platform and its rated-load capacity or maximum intended load.

This requirement enables crane operators to know the platform weight and capacity limitations prior to hoisting and is essential to prevent harm to employees.

2. Indicate how, by whom, and for what purpose the information is to be used. Except for a new collection, indicate the actual use the agency has made of the information received from the current collection.

This posting requirement is used by employers and employees hoisting platforms so that they do not exceed the capacity of the hoisting machinery or the platform itself. It is also used to assist OSHA in enforcing safety requirements related to hoisting and using personnel platforms. Posting this information significantly reduces the likelihood of hoisting accidents.

3. Describe whether, and to what extent, the collection of information involves the use of automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses, and the basis for the decision for adopting this means of collection. Also describe any consideration of using information technology to reduce burden.

New information technology can be used to help generate capacity calculations.

4. Describe efforts to identify duplication. Show specifically why any similar information already available cannot be used or modified for use for the purposes described in Item 2 above.

OSHA is unaware of any other requirements that duplicate this collection of information.

5. If the collection of information impacts small businesses or other small entities (Item 5 of OMB Form 83-I), describe any methods used to minimize burden.

The burden is equal on all employers. However, small employers may have fewer platforms and thus will have a lower burden.

6. Describe the consequence to Federal program or policy activities if the collection is not conducted or is conducted less frequently, as well as any technical or legal obstacles to reducing burden.

If the information collection for the posting requirements was done less frequently or not at all the health and safety of the employees being hoisted could be seriously jeopardized. Unknown platform weight and capacity limits make it difficult to determine appropriate loads and significantly increases employee risk.

7. Explain any special circumstances that would cause an information collection to be conducted in a manner:

  • requiring respondents to report information to the agency more often than quarterly;

  • requiring respondents to prepare a written response to a collection of information in fewer than 30 days after receipt of it;

  • requiring respondents to submit more than an original and two copies of any document;

  • requiring respondents to retain records, other than health, medical, government contract, grant-in-aid, or tax records for more than three years;

  • in connection with a statistical survey, that is not designed to produce valid and reliable results that can be generalized to the universe of study;

  • requiring the use of a statistical data classification that has not been reviewed and approved by OMB;

  • that includes a pledge of confidentiality that is not supported by authority established in statute or regulation, that is not supported by disclosure and data security policies that are consistent with the pledge, or which unnecessarily impedes sharing of data with other agencies for compatible confidential use; or

  • requiring respondents to submit proprietary trade secret, or other confidential information unless the agency can demonstrate that it has instituted procedures to protect the information's confidentiality to the extent permitted by law.
The requirements are within the guidelines set forth in 5 CFR 1320.6.

8. If applicable, provide a copy and identify the data and page number of publication in the Federal Register of the agency's notice, required by 5 CFR 1320.8(d), soliciting comments on the information collection prior to submission to OMB. Summarize public comments received in response to that notice and describe actions taken by the agency in response to these comments. Specifically address comments received on cost and hour burden.

Describe efforts to consult with persons outside the agency to obtain their views on the availability of data, frequency of collection, the clarity of instructions and recordkeeping, disclosure, or reporting format (if any), and on the data elements to be recorded, disclosed, or reported.

Consultation with representatives of those from whom information is to be obtained or those who must compile records should occur at least once every 3 years -- even if the collection of information activity is the same as in prior periods. There may be circumstances that may preclude consultation in a specific situation. These circumstances should be explained.

As required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, OSHA solicited comments from the public on the burden hour estimates and the need for the collections through an announcement in the Federal Register, published on June 19, 1998 (63 FR 33715). The Agency received one comment in response to the notice, from the North American Crane Bureau West, Inc. The commenter replied that the stated purpose of OSHA's request (reducing paperwork and information collection burdens) was not relevant to the section cited. He further noted that the provision "is necessary for ensuring the availability of information that is vital to performing a safe lift of personnel." OSHA has not made any changes to the burden estimates based on this comment.

9. Explain any decision to provide any payment or gift to respondents, other than reenumeration of contractors or grantees.

No payments or gifts will be provided to the respondents.

10. Describe any assurance of confidentiality provided to respondents and the basis for the assurance in statute, regulation, or agency policy.

No elements of confidentiality are involved in this information collection.

11. Provide additional justification for any questions of a sensitive nature, such as sexual behavior and attitudes, religious beliefs, and other matters that are commonly considered private. This justification should include the reasons why the agency considers the questions necessary, the specific uses to be made of the information, the explanation to be given to persons form whom the information is requested, and any steps to be taken to obtain their consent.

No such information is required to be reported under this rule.

12. Provide estimates of the hour burden of the collection of information. The statement should:

  • Indicate the number of respondents, frequency of response, annual hour burden, and an explanation of how the burden was estimated. Unless directed to do so, agencies should not conduct special surveys to obtain information on which to base hour burden estimates. Consultation with a sample (fewer than 10) of potential respondents is desirable. If the hour burden on respondents is expected to vary widely because of differences in activity, size, or complexity, show the range of estimated hour burden, and explain the reasons for the variance. Generally, estimates should not include burden hours for customary and usual business practices.

  • If this request for approval covers more than one form, provide separate hour burden estimates for each form and aggregate the hour burdens in Item 13 of OMB Form 83-I.

  • Provide estimates of annualized cost to respondents for the hour burdens for collections of information, identifying and using appropriate wage rate categories. The cost of contracting out or paying outside parties for information collection activities should not be included here. Instead, this cost should be included in Item 14.
The provision requires that crane- and derrick-suspended personnel platforms be conspicuously posted with a plate or other permanent marking that indicates the weight of the platform and its rated-load capacity or maximum intended load.

From a review of OSHA inspection data and based upon discussions with crane operating companies and personnel platform manufacturers, it has been determined that there are approximately 5,000 personnel platforms in use per year. It has also been determined that half of the platforms are factory-built and half are site-built.

Factory-built personnel platforms
In a factory-built platform, the manufacturer will establish the weight of the platform and the rated-load capacity. This information will be permanently affixed to the platform when delivered. The only time an employer would incur a burden for this information collection activity would be when and if the information needed to be re-posted due to damage caused by wear and tear. It is estimated that 10 percent of factory-built platforms will need the information re-posted each year due to damage.

(2,500 platforms) x (10% re-posted/yr) x (5 mins. to post information) = 21 hrs.

Site-built platform.
When a platform is site-built, it is necessary to determine the weight and rated-load capacity of the platform and then post the information on the platform. The platform would typically be designed by an engineer. The platform weight and rated-load capacity are readily known from the engineering plans. For platforms that are site-built, posting of the weight and rated-load capacity would be required in all instances. Since personnel platforms are required to be designed by a qualified engineer or a qualified person competent in structural design, the only burden would be the time needed to post the weight and rated-load capacity developed by the engineer on a plate or to permanently mark the platform.

(2,500 platforms) x (5 min. to post info.) = 208 hrs.

Total burden hours = 229 hours

Cost to respondents
Using an hourly wage rate of $21.54(1) (which includes benefits), the cost to comply with this standard is as follows:

229 burden hours x $21.54 = $4,933

Paint, stencils, and other permanent-marking equipment have many industrial uses and are normally available on construction sites. Therefore, no cost has been attributed to these items.

13. Provide an estimate of the total annual cost burden to respondents or record keepers resulting from the collection of information. (Do not include the cost of any hour burden shown in Items 12 and 14).

Costs under this item for complying with this standard are stated in Item 12.

14. Provide estimates of annualized cost to the Federal government. Also, provide a description of the method used to estimate cost, which should include quantification of hours, operational expenses (such as equipment, overhead, printing, and support staff), and any other expense that would not have been incurred without this collection of information. Agencies also may aggregate cost estimates from Items 12, 13, and 14 in a single table.

The cost to the Federal Government is the OSHA compliance officer's hourly wage rate ($25.56 average for GS-12 employee compliance officer) multiplied by the time it takes to ask for a collection of information records (5 minutes or 0.08 hour) or $2.04 per document per visit. Other operational expenses, such as equipment, overhead, and support staff expenses, would have occurred without these collection of information requirements and are considered normal OSHA operating expenses.

15. Explain the reasons for any program changes or adjustments reporting in Items 13 or 14 of the OMB Form 83-I.

There is an adjustment of 125 hours from the previous inventory. The increase has resulted because the number of respondents has increased.

16. For collections of information whose results will be published, outline plans for tabulation, and publication. Address any complex analytical techniques that will be used. Provide the time schedule for the entire project, including beginning and ending dates of the collection of information, completion of report, publication dates, and other actions.

This question is not applicable as this information will not be published for statistical use.

17. If seeking approval to not display the expiration date for OMB approval of the information collection, explain the reasons that display would be inappropriate.

OSHA is not seeking such approval.

18. Explain each exception to the certification statement identified in Item 19, "Certification for Paperwork Reduction Act Submission," of OMB 83-I.

OSHA is not seeking exceptions to the certification statement in Item 19.


The agency should be prepared to justify its decision not to use statistical methods in any case where such methods might reduce burden or improve accuracy of results. When Item 17 on the Form OMB 83-I is checked "Yes", the following documentation should be included in the Supporting Statement to the extent that it applies to the methods proposed:

1. Describe (including a numerical estimate) the potential respondent universe and any sampling or other respondent selection methods to be used. Data on the number of entities (e.g., establishments, State and local government units, households, or persons) in the universe covered by the collection and in the corresponding sample are to be provided in tabular form for the universe as a whole and for each of the strata in the proposed sample. Indicate expected response rates for the collection as a whole. If the collection had been conducted previously, include the actual response rate achieved during the last collection.

2. Describe the procedures for the collection of information including:

  • Statistical methodology for stratification and sample selection,

  • Estimation procedure,

  • Degree of accuracy needed for the purpose described in the justification,

  • Unusual problems requiring specialized sampling procedures, and

  • Any use of periodic (less frequently than annual) data collection cycles to reduce burden.
3. Describe methods to maximize response rates and to deal with issues of non-response. The accuracy and reliability of information collected must be shown to be adequate for intended uses. For collections based on sampling, a special justification must be provided for any collection that will not yield "reliable" data that can be generalized to the universe studied.

4. Describe any tests of procedures or methods to be undertaken. Testing is encouraged as an effective means of refining collections of information to minimize burden and improve utility. Tests must be approved if they call for answers to identical questions from 10 or more respondents. A proposed test or set of tests may be submitted for approval separately or in combination with the main collection of information.

5. Provide the name and telephone number of individuals consulted on statistical aspects of the design and the name of the agency unit, contractor(s), grantee(s), or other person(s) who will actually collect and/or analyze the information for the agency.

This is not applicable since there is no requirement for the collection of information employing statistical methods.

Footnote (1) This figure was arrived at by taking an hourly wage rate of $15.43 for an average construction worker (from Employment and Earnings, January 1997, U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)) and accounting for benefits as well as wages by multiplying the figure by 1.396 (BLS, Employer Costs for Employee Compensation, March 1996). (Back to Text)