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North Carolina Adopts Operator Certification

October 2009  – North Carolina has become the first state in the nation to adopt the Proposed Federal Rule on cranes.

Effective October 1, all employers became subject to the new requirements.  Key provisions include certification for crane operators, optionally through an accredited certification program such as NCCCO, as well as more stringent qualification requirements for signalpersons.

Although Federal OSHA’s rule is not likely to be published until 2010, with the operator certification requirement not effective until five years after that, so-called “state plan” states can promulgate their own rules so long as they are at least as effective as federal requirements.

North Carolina Labor Commissioner, Cherie Berry, cited the publication of the new rule as a “great example” of what can be accomplished when the public sector and private industry work together.

“North Carolina has taken a giant leap forward toward elevating the safety of crane operators and construction workers across our state by adopting this standard,” Berry stated.