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.

July 25, 1989

Mr. Paul Falconer
Safety Director
Cianbro Corporation
Hunnewell Square
Pittsfield, Maine 04967

Dear Mr. Falconer:

This is in response to your request addressed to our Area Office in Augusta, Maine, for a clarification of 29 CFR 1926. 1431(k)(10)(i) concerning the fall protection requirements for employees working over water.

Concerning fall protection while working from a personnel platform over water, 29 CFR 1926.1431(k)(10)(i), reads, "except over water, employees occupying the personnel platform must be provided and use a personal fall arrest system. The system must be attached to a structural member within the personnel platform." When working over water the additional requirements of 29 CFR 1926.106 still apply. The next sub-paragraph, 1926.1431(k)(10)(ii), reads, "the fall arrest system including the attachment point (anchorage) must meet the requirements in section 29 CFR 1926.502."

If you require any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us again by writing to: Directorate of Construction - OSHA Office of Construction Standard and Compliance Assistance, Room N3468, 200 Constitution Avenue N.W., Washington D.C. 20210.


James G. Maddux, Director
Directorate of Construction

Amended: June 18, 2014