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Construction

NEW Visit the Electric Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution Standard Page
for information on the new final rule.

Electric power generation, distribution, and transmission hazards are addressed in specific standards for the construction industry.

OSHA Standards

State Standards

Twenty-five states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands have OSHA-approved State Plans, which are required to be at least as effective as Federal OSHA, but may adopt their own standards and enforcement policies. However, most have adopted standards that are identical to Federal OSHA. Other federal standards related to agricultural operations are included for reference.

This section highlights OSHA standards, the Regulatory Agenda (a list of actions being taken with regard to OSHA standards), and directives (instructions for compliance officers) and standard interpretations (official letters of interpretation of the standards) related to power transmission and distribution in the construction industry.

Frequently Cited Standards

OSHA maintains a listing of the most frequently cited standards for specified 2-6-digit North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes. Please refer to OSHA's Frequently Cited OSHA Standards page for additional information. For Power and Communication Line and Related Structures Construction use NAICS code 237130 in the NAICS search box.

Other Highlighted Standards

Construction Industry (29 CFR 1926)

Regulatory Agenda
  • The OSHA Regulatory Agenda contains an entry related to electric power transmission and distribution, and electrical protective equipment.
Directives
Federal Registers
Standard Interpretations

Minimum Approach Distance

Fall Protection

Other Federal Agencies
  • For information on regulations of other Federal Agencies, see the general industry Other Federal Agencies section.
Industry Hazards

Electrocution

  • Electric Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution. OSHA eTool. Informs employers of their obligations to develop the appropriate hazard prevention and control methodologies designed to prevent workplace injuries and illnesses.
  • Construction. OSHA eTool. A Spanish version is also available. Contains information that helps workers identify and control the hazards that cause the most serious construction-related injuries.
    • Contact with Power Lines. Contains information for workers who may be exposed to the risk of electrocution due to equipment contact with power lines.

Electrocution Reports

Falls

  • Worker Deaths by Falls (PDF). US Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Publication No. 2000-116, (2000, September). Reports that falls from elevations were the fourth leading cause of occupational fatalities from 1980 through 1994. The 8,102 deaths due to falls from elevations accounted for 10 percent of all fatalities and an average of 540 deaths per year. Between 1982 and 1997, NIOSH investigated 90 falls incidents that resulted in 91 fatalities.
  • Maintenance Technician Drowns After Falling From a Turbine Support-Ring Platform at a Hydroelectric Power Generation Facility in South Carolina. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) 9116. Two technicians left the basket to inspect the welds. Neither was wearing a buoyancy (life) vest, even though life vests were available at the site and the company required their use.
  • Electrical Lineman Dies After Falling 35 Feet to the Ground from a Burning Aerial Bucket in South Carolina. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) 9035. Standard employer practice required the use of common hydraulic hoses (without metal reinforcement) on any area of the boom or aerial bucket that might be placed near energized power lines. The mechanic told investigators that he knew he was installing the wrong type of hose, but did not understand the potential hazards involved. When the hose ruptured while the lineman was using the impact wrench, the spraying hydraulic fluid contacted the hot metal and ignited.
  • Fall Protection - Construction. OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page.

Confined Spaces

Hazards for Other Workers

Cable Installers

  • Wireless Cable TV Service Installer Electrocuted by Overhead Power Line. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE), Missouri FACE Investigation Report 96MO059. An installer of a wireless cable TV service was electrocuted when the antenna mast he was raising/installing came into contact with a 7,200-volt overhead power line.
  • Cable Television Installer Electrocuted When Cable Wire Contacts 7,200-Volt Powerline. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE), Missouri FACE Investigation Report 98MO042, (1998, October 30). A cable television (CATV) installer was electrocuted when the cable wire he was holding contacted a 7,200-volt power line.
  • Three Fiber Optic Cable Installers Killed by Contact with Power Line. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE), Nebraska FACE Investigation Report 98025, (1998, October 16). A 41-year-old journeyman lineman, a 38-year-old journeyman lineman, and a 24-year-old, all working as cable installers in aerial line construction, were killed when a guy wire contacted an 8,000-volt above-ground power line.

Construction Workers

Crane contacts overhead power line

Crane contacts overhead power line

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  • Construction. OSHA eTool. A Spanish version is also available. Contains information that helps workers identify and control the hazards that cause the most serious construction-related injuries.
    • Contact with Power Lines. Contains information for workers who may be exposed to the risk of electrocution due to equipment contact with power lines.
  • Electrocution Resulting from Crane Cable Contact with Power Line. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) Investigations of Fatal Electrical Incidents Report 82-03. This report is based on an investigation of a single occupational electrocution resulting from a crane's cable coming in contact with a 7,200-volt power line.

Other

  • Laborer Dies of Complications After Receiving Severe Electrical Shock Installing a TV Tower. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE), Indiana State Department of Health Indiana FACE Report, (1993, November 18). A 51-year-old worker (the decedent), a co-worker, and the employer were installing a TV tower at the side of a building housing the employer's business. As the workers were trying to stabilize the TV tower into the pre-dug hole, it fell and contacted one phase of a three phase 7200-volt overhead power line. The electrical current traveled from phase to ground, killing one worker and giving the co-worker a severe electrical shock.

Fall Protection

Additional Information

Related Safety and Health Topics Pages

Training

Alliances

  • Construction. OSHA's Alliance Program. This is one of OSHA's Strategic Management Plan Focus Areas.

eTools

  • Electric Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution. OSHA eTool. This eTool seeks to inform employers of their obligations to develop the appropriate hazard prevention and control methodologies designed to prevent workplace injuries and illnesses.
  • Construction. OSHA eTool. A Spanish version is also available. Contains information that helps workers identify and control the hazards that cause the most serious construction-related injuries.
    • Contact with Power Lines. Contains information for workers who may be exposed to the risk of electrocution due to equipment contact with power lines.

Other Resources


*Accessibility Assistance: Contact OSHA's Directorate of Technical Support and Emergency Management at (202) 639-2300 for assistance accessing PDF materials.

All other documents, that are not PDF materials or formatted for the web, are available as Microsoft Office® formats and videos and are noted accordingly. If additional assistance is needed with reading, reviewing or accessing these documents or any figures and illustrations, please also contact OSHA's Directorate of Technical Support and Emergency Management at (202) 639-2300.

**eBooks - EPUB is the most common format for e-Books. If you use a Sony Reader, a Nook, or an iPad you can download the EPUB file format. If you use a Kindle, you can download the MOBI file format.

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