The US Department of Labor/ OSHA has issued a notice stating that it no longer recognises crane operator test certifications issued by Florida based Crane Institute Certification – CIC.

The statement issued on Monday states: “OSHA will not accept CIC certification (including recertification) issued on or after December 2, 2019, as evidence of compliance with OSHA’s operator certification requirements in 29 CFR 1926.1427.”

The reason behind the agency’s announcement is that CIC has confirmed that it has no current accreditation to test and certify operators to OSHA’s standards and requirements. CIC has stated though, that it hopes to obtain the required accreditation sometime over the next few months.

On the basis that CIC was previously accredited, OSHA has made it clear that it understands that some employers will have obtained operator certification through CIC in good faith. In such cases where this is found to be the case it will not cite the employer for violating the operator certification requirement. Also that such operator certifications can run their course. BUT it will not accept any such certifications issued after December 2nd of this year, regardless of any claims of good faith.

CIC which was established in 2007 has yet to issue a statement on this development.

The full text of the announcement from Scott Ketcham, a director from the Directorate of Construction is as follows :

SUBJECT: Temporary Enforcement Policy- Certification Issued by Crane Institute Certification

Background

Subpart CC—Cranes and Derricks in Construction requires crane operators to be certified by a certification body “accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency.” 29 CFR 1926.1427(d). The Crane Institute Certification (CIC) had previously been accredited by an organization that appeared to meet that requirement. However, CIC has informed OSHA it is not currently accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency. CIC also stated that it expects to receive that accreditation within the next few months. Therefore, operator certifications currently being issued by CIC do not meet the requirements of OSHA’s standard.
Nevertheless, OSHA understands that CIC was previously accredited, and even after its accreditation lapsed, many employers may have acted in good faith by obtaining crane operator certifications from CIC that they believed would comply with OSHA’s requirements. The agency wishes to avoid unnecessary disruptions in the industry.

Temporary Enforcement Citation Policy

To eliminate construction industry confusion going forward, OSHA will consider whether crane operators acting in good faith obtained certifications issued by CIC prior to December 2, 2019 believing they met the requirements of the standard. Where such good faith is found, employers should not be cited for violating the operator certification requirement of 29 CFR 1926.1427(d). This policy will only apply until the expiration date listed on each certificate (that date cannot exceed the 5-year maximum specified in 29 CFR 1926.1427(d)(4)).
OSHA will not accept CIC certification (including recertification) issued on or after December 2, 2019, as evidence of compliance with OSHA’s operator certification requirements in 29 CFR 1926.1427. Please contact the Directorate of Construction if there are any questions during compliance inspections about the validity of crane operator certifications issued by CIC. OSHA intends to revisit this policy when CIC produces evidence that it is accredited in accordance with the requirements found in 29 CFR 1926.1427(d).