When OSHA hoist and crane training and certification are talked about in regards to industrial cranes and parts, there isn’t a single designation. There are specific definitions for varying degrees of lifting/rigging training and certification. These help employers and supervisors properly staff and designate roles while remaining in compliance with OSHA standards.
The first OSHA hoist and crane operator definition we’ll discuss is the ‘competent person.’ OSHA defines this as “One who is capable of identifying existing and predictable hazards in the surroundings, or working conditions which are unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous to employees, and who has the authorization to take prompt corrective measures to eliminate them.” It is up to the employer to deem someone a ‘competent person’ for their jobsite. They must be able to perform inspections of all slings and rigging hardware before every shift. They must also be able to identify hazards quickly and know when slings or rigging hardware should be taken out of service.
A qualified person is defined by OSHA as “A person who, by possession of a recognized degree, certificate, or professional standing, or who by extensive knowledge or training and experience, successfully demonstrated the ability to solve/resolve problems related to the subject matter, the work, or the project.” Employers are responsible for making this designation as well. Some certifications alone may not be enough to consider someone a qualified person. If someone only has a basic rigging course under their belt and no job experience, that is probably not enough. But if they had a degree in a related field in combination with real world field experience, they may be a qualified person.
There are certain OSHA hoist & crane guidelines that state only designated personnel can operate industrial cranes and parts. OSHA doesn’t give a specific definition for the term. However, The American Society of Mechanical Engineers, or ASME does define ‘designated person.’ A designated person is “A person selected or assigned by the employer or the employer’s representatives as being competent to perform specific duties.” It again is up to the employer to make this decision, but the person should have experience or certifications related to a specific task like crane operation.
Since OSHA does not certify trainers, employees and training programs, there is no official definition of ‘certified person’ in regards to OSHA hoist & crane operators. However, OSHA does require any organization that offers certification exams in crane operation to become accredited through American National Standard Institute (ANSI), or the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). Getting a crane operator certification from an accredited company may make you a ‘certified person’ but does not necessarily mean you are qualified or even competent for a task. In the end, it takes the employers research and best judgment to make these determinations.
OSHA Hoist & Crane Professionals
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