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 https://www.osha.gov.

June 24, 1977

Mr. Dennis R. VonEschen
Design Engineer
Safeguard Automative Corporation
Power Transmission Division
P. O. Box 1089
Aberdeen, South Dakota 57401

Dear Mr. VonEschen:

This is in response to your letter of April 29, 1977, to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Denver Regional Administrator, Curtis Foster, concerning a safety sleeve your company has designed for guarding projecting shaft ends, and a request for a clarification of the term "safety sleeve" as used in 29 CFR 1910.219(c)(4)(i). Your letter was forwarded to this office for reply.

The term "safety sleeve" means a smooth-type cover of durable material used to prevent an accident from exposure to the hazard created by the rotating motion of the shafts, keys, set screws, and other projections.

The proposed shield for projecting shaft ends comes within the category of a safety sleeve. If the proposed safety sleeve functions as described, the protective sleeve rotates with the shaft and when externally contacted the outer sleeve becomes stationary thus isolating the individual from the rotating shaft; it would meet the intent of 29 CFR 1910.219(c)(4)(i).

Thank you for your concern and continuing interest in occupational safety and health.


Richard P. Wilson
Deputy Director, Federal Compliance
and State Programs