OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at http://www.osha.gov.

April 7, 1977

MEMORANDUM TO: Gabe Gillotti
Office of Field Coordination
FROM: David Hadden
Office of Construction Safety Standards
THRU: Allan E. Martin and John Proctor
Office of Standards
SUBJECT: Misapplication of Rollover Protective Structures (ROPS) Criteria of 29 CFR 1926.1000(b).

Several inquiries and contacts with this office indicate that ROPS criteria for machines built prior to September 1, 1972 are being used to design ROPS for machines of current production. This practice is contrary to the standard as written.

The criteria for ROPS structures applied to machines manufactured on or after September 1, 1972 is 29 CFR 1926.1001 or .1002 for the specific machine types mentioned respectively except that all rubber-tired loaders or dozers are required to be fitted with ROPS designed in accordance with the criteria of 29 CFR 1926.1001 (See 1926.1002(j)(2)).

Although some machines manufactured since September 1, 1972 reportedly have been fitted with ROPS which are designed to Corps of Engineers, California or 29 CFR 1926.1000(c)(2) criteria instead of the required criteria, the reports received to date do not indicate that replacement with ROPS of the correct criteria is warranted by recognized deficiencies. However, ROPS of the correct design criteria should be required for all machines fitted with ROPS from this time on. This does not appear to affect the agencies de minimus position regarding ROPS designed to SAE J1040a criteria of FIM #76-29.

A copy of FIM #76-29 and the 1928 Subpart C are attached for your convenience. This concern may be related to the agriculture tractors where ROPS are applied by other than the original tractor manufacturer.

(For Attachments, see printed copy)