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.

February 28, 1990

Mr. Max C. Painter
CRYOVAC packaging/Marketing Systemsv W.R. Grace & Co.
P.O. Box 464
Duncan, South Carolina 29334

Dear Mr, Painter:

This is in response to your letter of October 20, 1989, addressed to Mr. Joe Bode, a member of my staff, requesting a written interpretation from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regarding the listing requirements in the United States for Industrial Packaging equipment. We apologize for the delay in responding to your inquiry.

The OSHA standards covering electrical hazards associated with the machines you described are contained in 29 CFR, Subpart S, sections 29 CFR 1910.302 through 1910.308. The OSHA standard at 29 CFR 1910.303(b)(2) requires that the listed or labeled machines shall be used or installed in accordance with any instructions included in the listing or labeling.

The definitions for "listed" or "labeled" are contained in section 29 CFR 1910.399, as follows:

1. Equipment is "listed" if it is of a kind mentioned in a list which, (a) is published by a nationally recognized laboratory which makes periodic inspection of the production of such equipment, and (b) states such equipment meets nationally recognized standards or has been tested and found safe for use in a specified manner.

2. Equipment is "labeled" if there is attached to it a label, symbol, or other identifying mark of a nationally recognized testing laboratory (a) which makes periodic inspections of the production of such equipment, and (b) whose labeling indicates compliance with nationally recognized standards or tests to determine safe use in a specified manner.

There could be a situation where a custom-made machine may not be listed or labeled by a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL). Such types of machines or installations are acceptable to OSHA and are approved within the meaning of Subpart S of OSHA electrical standards, if they: 1) are designed, fabricated for, and intended for use for a particular customer and; 2) are determined to be safe for their intended use by their manufacturer(s) on the basis of test data which the employer keeps and makes available for inspection to OSHA representatives.

The machines which are not covered by specific OSHA standards are required under the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act) and Section 29 CFR 1910.303(b)(1) to be free of recognized hazards which may cause death or serious injuries. These machines must be designed and maintained to meet or exceed the requirements of the applicable industry consensus standards. In such situations OSHA may apply standards published by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), such as standards contained in ANSI/NFPA 79, Electrical Standard for Industrial Machinery, to cover the electrical hazards that are not covered by specific OSHA standards.

You requested listing requirements with respect to listings provided by CSA. At present CSA is not recognized to be a NRTL, but may be recognized to be one at some future time. The listing provided by CSA will be not accepted by OSHA until CSA is recognized to be a NRTL. Any listing provided by CSA, prior to its recognition as a NRTL will not be accepted by OSHA.

We are providing you with a current list of NRTLs. You may contact them to get a list of equipment for which they were given approvals, at the following addresses:

1. Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. 333 Pfingsten Road Northbrook, Illinois 60062 Telephone: (312) 272-8800

2. MET Electrical Testing Company, Inc. Laboratory Division 916 West Potapsco Avenue Baltimore, Maryland 21230 Telephone: (703) 354-2200

3. Factory Mutual Research Corporation 1151 Boston Providence Turnpike Norwood, Massachusetts 02062 Telephone: (617) 762-4300

Thank you for your interest in occupational safety and health. If we may be of further assistance, please contact us.


Patricia K. Clark
Director Designate
Directorate of Compliance Programs