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.

January 9, 1987

Mr. Robert V. Citrolo
Local 503 I.B.E.W
55 Virginia Avenue
West Nyack, New York 10994

Dear Mr. Citrolo:

This is in response to your letter of December 1, 1986 requesting a clarification of 29 CFR 1926.551 for line maintenance on a de-energized transmission line.

The use of helicopters is not specifically prohibited by 29 CFR 1926.551 or by 29 CFR part 1926, subpart V. However, the company must comply with all of the applicable requirements in 29 CFR 1926.551 and 29 CFR part 1926, subpart V, including 29 CFR 1926.950(c) for clearance from any nearby power lines that are not de-energized.

If we can be of further assistance, please let is know.


John B. Miles, Jr., Director
Directorate of Field Operations