Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents|
| Standard Number:||1915.2; 1910.12(a); 1917.1(a); 1926.450(b); 1926.451(g)(1); 1926.106|
|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.|
"...the provisions of this part shall apply to all ship repairing, shipbuilding and ship breaking employments and related employments." [Emphasis added.]Given the situation you described your activity does not involve, ship repairing, shipbuilding or ship-breaking. Therefore, Part 1915 does not apply to this situation.
"work for construction, alteration, and/or repair, including painting and decorating."Under 29 CFR 3.2(a) (2003), construction work or activity includes, among other things:
"buildings, structures, and improvements of all types, such as bridges, dams, plants, highways, parkways, streets, subways, tunnels, sewers, mains, power lines, pumping stations, heavy generators, railways...excavating..." [Emphasis added.]The activity of building bridges, therefore, is construction. The use of work docks or work bridges built to help construct the bridge or to load/unload construction materials and equipment onto barges must therefore meet the applicable Part 1926 standards.
Any temporary elevated platform (supported or suspended) and its supporting structure (including points of anchorage), used for supporting employees or materials or both. [Emphasis added.]"Platform" is defined as:
…a work surface elevated above lower levels. Platforms can be constructed using individual wood planks, fabricated planks, fabricated decks, and fabricated platforms."Lower levels" mean:
areas below the level where the employer is located and to which an employee can fall. Such areas include, but are not limited to, ground levels, floors, roofs, ramps, runways, excavations, pits, tanks, materials, water, and equipment. [Emphasis added.]Here, the structures fall within the definition of a scaffold as set forth in Subpart L. As described, the work docks or work bridges are supported platforms that provide a temporary elevated work surface over water to support employees and construction materials during the course of constructing bridges. They are temporary because they will be removed from the site at the job's completion.
OSHA has carefully analyzed all of the comments and data available in the record and determined that it is appropriate to maintain the 10-foot fall protection in the final scaffold standard, as proposed. * * * This level differs from the 6-foot threshold for fall protection in subpart M (Fall Protection) for other walking/working surfaces in construction because scaffolds, unlike these other surfaces, are temporary structures erected to provide a work platform for employees who are constructing or demolishing other structures. The same features that make scaffolds appropriate for short-term use in construction * * * make them less amendable to the use of fall protection at the time the first level is being erected. [Emphasis added.]Note also that the Agency stated in this section of the preamble that scaffolds are used to provide a work surface for workers who are "constructing...other structures." In the instant case, the work docks and work bridges only provide a temporary surface from which workers can work on other structures.
Each employee on a scaffold more than 10 feet (3.1m) above a lower level shall be protected from falling to that lower level...The particular type of fall protection required depends on whether the scaffold is one of the specific types described in §1926.451(g)(1)(i) through (g)(1)(vi). If the work docks and work bridges fall within one of those categories, you must provide the fall protection described in the applicable section.1 If the work docks and work bridges do not fall in any of those categories, then §1926.451(g)(1)(vii) applies, which states:
For all scaffolds not otherwise specified in paragraphs (g)(1)(i) through (g)(1)(vi) of this section, each employee shall be protected by the use of personal fall arrest systems or guardrail systems meeting the requirements of paragraph (g)(4) of this section.Additional requirements under §1926.106
|Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents|
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