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.

August 8, 1994

Mr. T. W. Elmy Sr. Staff Engineer Aluminum Company of America 2300 N. Wright Road Alcoa, TN. 37701

Dear Mr. Elmy:

Thank you for your inquiry of April 30, concerning whether it is acceptable to OSHA and within the intent of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standard at 29 CFR 1910.179(k) that a crane may be used for rated load testing of "below-the-hook lifting device" provided the test does not exceed 125% of the crane's rated load. We apologize for the delay in responding.

Use of the crane for rated load testing of "below the hook lifting device" may be undertaken in compliance with 1910.179(k) as specified below.

1. As often as necessary, provided that the total weight on the hook does not exceed 100% of the rated load of the crane, or

2. No more than once between each periodic crane inspection as required by 1910.179(j)(1)(ii)(b) and 1910.179(j)(3) when the total weight on the hook exceeds 100% but does not exceed 125% of rated load of the crane.

OSHA highly recommends you use other acceptable methods such as higher rated cranes that will be within their rated capacity when testing below-the-hook lifting devices.

We appreciate your interest in employee safety and health. If we can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.


John B. Miles, Jr., Director Directorate of Compliance Programs