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Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents
• Standard Number: 1910.66; 1910.66(b)(1); 1910.66(b)(2); 1910.66(b)(2)(i); 1910.66(b)(2)(ii)

July 6, 2006

Mr. Conrad Paulson
Senior Consultant
Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc.
120 N. LaSalle Street, Suite 2000
Chicago, IL 60602

Dear Mr. Paulson:

Thank you for your December 7, 2005 and May 30, 2006 letters to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA's) Directorate of Enforcement Programs (DEP). This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation only of the requirements discussed and may not be applicable to any questions not delineated within your original correspondence. You have concerns on how OSHA views and interprets parts of the OSHA standard at 29 CFR 1910.66, Powered Platforms for Building Maintenance, the International Window Cleaning Association (IWCA) standard at I-14.1-2001, Window Cleaning Safety, and the American Society Mechanical Engineers (ASME) standard at A120.1-2001, Safety Requirements for Powered Platforms for Building Maintenance. Your paraphrased scenario, questions, and our responses are provided below.

Scenario: The owner is replacing the original davit arms of an existing powered platform. The identical replacement davit arms are no longer available from the manufacturer. The owner is planning to install davit arms that will be designed for use with a platform that has hoist motors on the platform. The davit arms are engineered to accommodate the total weight to be supported. The building was completed in approximately 1987 or 1988.

Question 1: Does the OSHA standard at 29 CFR 1910.66(b)(2)(i) and 1910.66(b)(2)(ii) apply to this equipment?

Response 1: No. The replacement of the davit arms constitutes a major modification, and, thus, it is a new installation under 1910.66(b)(1). Major modifications include major replacements to existing platform installations which affect platform equipment. 54 FR 31412 (1989) (preamble to the final rule). Since appropriate davit arms are essential to the stability of the platform, their replacement affects platform equipment and, thus, is a major modification.

Question 2: Does OSHA view replacing existing facade access equipment with new equipment of the same general type as an alteration to the building within the meaning of ASME 120.1-2001 or a substantial remodeling of the building within the meaning of IWCA 1-14.1-2001?

Response 2: These consensus standards are not OSHA requirements. For an official interpretation of ASME 120.1-2001 and IWCA 1-14.1-2001, you should contact the following organizations:
Secretary, A120 Main Committee
The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Three Park Avenue
New York, NY 10016
Telephone: (800) 843-2763

Secretary, I14.1 Committee
International Window Cleaning Association
7801 Suffolk Court
Alexandria, VA 22315
Telephone: (800) 875-4922
Question 3: Does OSHA require installations with a vertical platform travel exceeding 490 feet to conform to ANSI A120.1-2001, paragraph 3.2.7, which requires that hoists for the platform be located at the roof level?

Response 3: No. With respect to powered platforms for building maintenance OSHA only requires employers to comply with the provisions of 1910.66, which does not have such a provision.

Thank you for your interest in occupational safety and health. We hope you find this information helpful. 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. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact the Office of General Industry Enforcement at (202) 693-1850.


Richard E. Fairfax, Director
Directorate of Enforcement Programs

Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents

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