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Archive Notice - OSHA Archive

NOTICE: This is an OSHA Archive Document, and may no longer represent OSHA Policy. It is presented here as historical content, for research and review purposes only.

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.

October 28, 1993

Mr. Gene Kavanaugh
Capital Contractors, Inc.
1001 N. 9th Street
P.O. Box 80098
Lincoln, NE 68501

Dear Mr. Kavanaugh:

This is in response to your September 17 letter requesting a statement of compliance from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for the Super Cage manufactured by United States Crane, Inc.

As you know, OSHA neither approves nor endorses products or work practices, but when provided with adequate information, it can offer an opinion as to whether or not they afford compliance with certain regulations. We have reviewed the Super Cage product advertisement enclosed in your letter and from the picture the Super Cage appears to be adequately designed but the advertisement does not provide enough information to enable us to determine if the platform meets our strength and fall protection requirements.

With respect to the use of a crane mounted personnel platform, please be advised that when the work platform is attached to an extensible boom crane and used at a construction site, the device is covered by the aerial lift provisions of 1926.556. This section, at paragraph 1926.556(b)(2)(ix), requires upper and lower controls for extensible and articulating boom platforms which are primarily designed as personnel carriers. We interpret this standard as applying only if the lifting of personnel is a routine function of the crane (i.e., one of the primary uses). Under such circumstances, the crane and attached platform as a combined unit must be equipped with upper and lower controls. If positioning personnel in this manner is only done occasionally, OSHA would not consider this practice as a primary use and upper controls would not be necessary.

Although OSHA standards do not address the attachment of personnel platforms to lattice boom cranes or the non-routine attachment of personnel platforms to extensible boom cranes, American National Standards Institute's recommended industry standard ANSI B30.5(b) - 1991, Section 5-3.2.2 addresses this practice. As you know, in instances where OSHA standards do not specifically address a particular activity or hazard, ANSI standards can be used by OSHA as a basis for a citation under 5(a)(1) of the Act.

With regard to whether a contractor could be cited under 1926.550(a)(1), 1926.451 or 1926.556 for using the Super Cage, please be advised that the effectiveness of your system can only be determined by a health and safety professional observing it in actual use under site conditions. As provided in OSHA's de minimis violation policy, the Agency will generally consider full compliance with an industry consensus standard (e.g., ANSI B30.5(b)-1991) to be the equivalent of being in compliance with the applicable existing OSHA standard. Of course the industry consensus standard must provide for the equivalent or greater degree of safety as provided for in the existing OSHA standard. However, inappropriate use of any boom-mounted platform could be cited under the applicable sections including 1926.550(a)(1), 1926.556 or 5(a)(1) of the Act based on ANSI B30.5(b)-1991, Section 5-3.2.2 Personnel Lifting.

If we can be of further assistance please contact me or Dale R. Cavanaugh of my staff at (202) 219-8136.


Roy F. Gurnham, P.E., Esq.
Office of Construction and Maritime
Compliance Assistance

September 17, 1993

Occupational Safety and Health Administration
Roger A. Clarke
Director of Compliance Programs
200 Constitution Av. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20210

Dear Sir:

We have become aware of a company which manufactures a device known as a "Super Cage". This lifting platform attaches to a lattice boom crane in the same manner as a jib would. We have been thinking of purchasing one to use in bridge stripping operations as an employee work platform. Our question is does the device meet OSHA requirements, and which standard covers its construction and use. Also would a contractor be cited under 1926.550(a)(1), 1926.451, or 1926.556 for using such a device.

We would appreciate your response on this matter. If you have any questions contact me at 402-476-1021.


Capital Contractors Inc.

Gene Kavanaugh


Archive Notice - OSHA Archive

NOTICE: This is an OSHA Archive Document, and may no longer represent OSHA Policy. It is presented here as historical content, for research and review purposes only.