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.

August 13, 1987

Mr. Lawrence R. Stafford
Stetson - Harza
Renssolaer Technology Park
250 Jordan Road
Troy, New York 12180

Dear Mr. Stafford:

This is in response to your letters of July 30, 1987, concerning perimeter protection along roofs and the necessary inspection cycle required by 29 CFR 1910.66(e)(3).

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards at 29 CFR 1910.23 are applicable to all workplaces and do not exempt old installations. Employers are required to provide perimeter protection or fall protection for all employees exposed to hazardous falls from height, such as from roofs. The enclosed OSHA Instruction STD 1-1.13 clarifies the requirements for fall protection in general industry situations.

In regard to your concern for the inspection requirements of powered platforms for exterior building servicing as specified by 29 CFR 1910.66(d)(3), we provide the following clarification. Periodic inspections and tests need not be conducted on 30 day intervals when the intended usage of the equipment is less frequent than every 30 days. However, the equipment must be placarded as required by 29 CFR 1910.145(c)(3), instructing potential users that the equipment must be inspected and tested as required by applicable portions of 29 CFR 1910.66(e) prior to each use. Furthermore, the equipment should be locked-out so that occasional unsupervised use is impossible. Employers who comply with such a placarded instruction, and lockout procedure, although in technical violation of the standard, would not create a hazard for employees and would not be subject to citation under the rules for a de minimis violation. De minimis violations are discussed by an enclosure.

Dormant equipment which is not available for use by employees can not be hazardous or in violation of the Occupational Safety and Health Act.

If we may be of further assistance, please contact us.

Sincerely,



Leo Carey, Director
Directorate of Field Operations




July 30, 1987

U.S. Department of Labor
Occupational Safety & Health Adm.
200 Constitution Avenue
Washington, D.C. 20210

Attn: Mr. John K. Barto Chief - Div. of Occupational Safety Programming

Dear Mr. Barto

We have an unusual case wherein a client has two high rise office buildings that were erected prior to 1970.

At issue is the applicability of your Standard 29 CFR 1910.23 (c), which requires Perimeter Protection for employees that are required to work at or near the edge of building roofs.

Are the OSHA Standards retroactive for situations that were in place prior to the effective date of the standards?

Your response to this questions will be appreciated.

Thank you for your past cooperation.

Very truly yours,



Lawrence R. Stafford, P.E.
Senior Professional Engineer




July 30, 1987

U.S. Department of Labor
Occupational Safety & Health Adm.
200 Constitution Avenue
Washington, D.C. 20210

Attn: Mr. John K. Barto Chief - Div. of Occupational Safety Programming

Dear Mr. Barto:

In reviewing my file, I find that to date I have not received a response to my letter of May 6, 1987, a copy of which is enclosed for your reference.

This is an important subject in that our clients are obligated to comply with your standards, but the specific requirements of 1910.66 (e)(3) have been superseded by the state of the art, due to the cost of doing business.

Therefore, will you please reply to the enclosed request.

Thank you for your past cooperation.

Very truly yours,



Lawrence R. Stafford, P.E.
Senior Professional Engineer




May 6, 1987

U.S. Department of Labor - OSHA
200 Constitution Avenue
Washington, DC 20210

Attn: Mr. John K. Barto Chief, Division of Occupational Safety Programming

Dear Mr. Barto

In reviewing OSHA's Standard 1910.66(e)(3) Maintenance Inspection and Tests, we note that each installation is required to undergo a maintenance and test every 30 days, except where the cleaning cycle is less than 30 days such inspection and tests shall be made prior to each cleaning cycle.

However, this paragraph does not relate to equipment installations where the cleaning cycles occur only three or four times a year, which is normal for all present installations, due to the relatively high cost of cleaning windows.

We request that in the latter case, the equipment be allowed to have a maintenance inspection and test prior to each cleaning cycle in that the cost of monthly maintenance inspection and tests cannot be justified for dormant equipment.

We would appreciate an early reply to this question. Thank you for your past cooperation.

Very truly yours,



Lawrence R. Stafford, P.E.
Senior Professional Engineer