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.

March 22, 1991

Mr. Dan Delauder, President
Future Equipment Inc.
P.O. Box 221814
Anchorage, Alaska 99522

Dear Mr. Delauder:

This is in response to your letter of January 2, requesting that we advise if (ROPS) Roll Over Protection is required on the Digger 50 hydraulic excavator which is built in Sweden.

We have coordinated your request with the State of Alaska-OSHA since they have observed the operation of your Digger 50. The "Digger 50 Excavator", has been determined to come under OSHA standards at 29 CFR 1926.602, Material Handling Equipment. Also under 29 CFR 1926.1000, Roll over Protective Structure (ROPS), for material handling equipment. The review was made from the literature and the video tape forwarded to us and from the on-site review of your excavator by the State of Alaska-OSHA. It has been determined that a ROPS is required.

I understand that you have received the SAE standards you needed for your trip to Sweden and your meeting with the Swedish Design & Mfg. Company.

In response to the question raised by telephone, concerning SAE J 1040, would the need for ROPS on your Digger 50 Excavator be eliminated due to the fact the machine does not have a mass weight of more than 700kg? 29 CFR 1926.602 and 29 CFR 1926.1000 do not exclude equipment by weight of the machine. Therefore, ROPS is required on the Digger 50 excavator should it be used in an American workplace.

The OSHA standard at 29 CFR 1926.1000 was derived from the SAE J 167 standard.

Please advise if we can be of further assistance.


Gerald P. Reidy, Director
Office of Construction and
Maritime Compliance Assistance