Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents|
| Standard Number:||1926.1050; 1926.1053(a)(1) ; 1926.1053(a)(1)(ii)|
|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.|
"shall be capable of supporting the following loads without failure:The §1926.1050 definition for "failure" states:
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(ii) . . . At least four times the maximum intended load....The ability of a ladder to sustain the loads indicated in this paragraph shall be determined by applying or transmitting the requisite load to the ladder in a downward vertical direction when the ladder is placed at an angle of 75½ degrees from the horizontal. Ladders built and tested in conformance with the applicable provisions of Appendix A will be deemed to meet this requirement."
"'Failure' means load refusal, breakage or separation of component parts. Load refusal is the point where the structural members lose their ability to carry loads."The concept of "load-refusal" was discussed in the preamble to the standard. The Agency explained that the term "failure" was not limited to "breakage or a physical separation of parts." What is also included was described as follows:
The one comment (Ex. 2-29) OSHA received concerning this definition expressed the view that OSHA should "[f]ind a better definition for 'failure'" because "[l]oad refusal is nebulous at best." The commenter did not explain the basis for this concern or suggest alternative wording. OSHA notes that in some cases failure will be evidenced by breakage or separation of components that can be easily detected through visual inspection. In other cases the ability of a component to hold its rated load will be destroyed without any permanently visible breakage or separation. Such cases include situations where an object, such as a ladder siderail, buckles after it has been loaded to the point of collapse. The siderail will not support the load and will not return to its original shape when the load is removed. Although the siderail could be straightened, the fact that the rail has sustained severe damage and will easily bend again may not be visibly apparent. While such structural members may show no signs of breakage or separation, the prior damage precludes their future use. Given these circumstances, the Agency believes that the definition, as revised, provides the appropriate guidance to employers.[Emphasis added].
|Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents|